Seminal Hip Hop D.J. and television personality Doctor Dre has overcome various health crises since learning that he had developed Type 2 diabetes a decade ago. Now the once rotund co-host of Yo! MTV Raps plans to document his struggle with the disease, on the heels of a weight-loss surgery recommended for its victims. Having linked with former Def Jam executive Bill Adler, the 52-year-old Dre, whose given name is Andre Brown, is in the process of putting together a reality television series to chronicle his recovery and lifestyle transition.
If anybody has experienced the effects of the illness which has plagued the Black and Latino communities in endemic numbers, it has been Dre, who it turns out has been blind for three years, and has even begun losing toes. His decision to get the surgery and begin a regimen of healthy eating was a choice for an alternative to the long term medications supplied by the pharmaceutical industry. “My stubbornness put me where I’m at. Now my energy is going to change that,” Dre recently told the New York Times. “We got young people, grown people, old, all having this. We can prevent this. We can cure this. I have an idea how to do it.”
With the loss of so many important figures in the entertainment world in 2016, Doctor Dre is somebody Hip Hop celebrates keeping around. The Long Island native broke into the mainstream alongside partner Ed Lover on the classic MTV rap show after DJing for the Beastie Boys. But it was behind the scenes where he was perhaps most pivotal, having been responsible for putting Chuck D on at Def Jam after working with him at the college radio station of their alma mater Adelphi University. Years later he'd help the East Coast-West Coast connection along when he introduced a transitioning Ice Cube to the Bomb Squad production team that would engineer his early solo career.
His partner Adler explains a natural connection between is proven reach in music and potential reach in reality TV, calling Dre an "arbiter" and posing that "he wants to share his enthusiasm with other folks.”