Dr. Dre, Eminem Headline Star-Studded Launch of Beats Music
Officially kicking off its new, much-touted music-streaming service on Friday night, Beats Music endeavored to pack several years’ worth of Rock the Bells tours into a single hour at its launch party at the Belasco Theater in Downtown L.A.
In front of a very Hollywood-friendly crowd that included Paul McCartney, Selena Gomez, Drake, Macklemore, Universal’s Ron Meyer, John Singleton, Brian Grazer, Michael Rapaport and Pink, Beats principle (and Interscope chairman) Jimmy Iovine talked up the curatorial depth of the company’s new Spotify competitor, and used the night’s performance to demonstrate the concept, presenting a ‘90s hip-hop Beats “playlist” allegedly curated by Eminem manager Paul Rosenberg, as performed live by the artists themselves.
Granted, the “playlist” seemed to move in roughly chronological order through the decade, with each artist performing their signature hit, but the show still boasted an almost ludicrously packed bill, cycling through perfs from Beats founder Dr. Dre, Eminem, Ice Cube, Nas, Blackstreet, the Pharcyde, Cypress Hill, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony (whose five members’ rapid-fire rhymes proved a bit too much for even an audio company to mix properly), Souls of Mischief, Ma$e, Diddy, Method Man and Redman, the Geto Boys and Busta Rhymes at a rather dizzying pace.
DJ Jazzy Jeff led a seven-piece band through each number, with Fab 5 Freddy serving as the night’s emcee.