Ever since his breakout days on Death Row with Dre, Snoop and The Dogg Pound, Nate Dogg has been creating hooks and sung verses to an unbelievably perfect degree. There is absolutely no denying how talented he is and how he manages to translate what could be construed as rude, and vulgar lyrics into seemingly beautiful words (for a prime example - check his hook on 'Your Wife'). His record speaks for itself. If you're unaware of it, or of him, you evidently haven't been exposed to the mainstream in a couple of years.
The very much un-noticed debut album, the double CD 'G Funk Classics Vol. I and II' basically slid into oblivion. Nobody really remembers it. Was it good or bad? If you're unsure, you're like myself and many others. But you'll definitely be familiar with his hooks from 'The Chronic' and through to his present day hooks on hits such as Ludacris' 'Area Codes.'
With 'Music And Me' Nate Dogg attempts to gain a little more shine. Everyone appreciates him, but exactly how much? Enlisting guests such as Pharoah Monche, Kurupt, Snoop, Dre, Ludacris, Jermaine Dupri and more has Nate preparing something intriguing, or is he? In short, yes. 'Music And Me' features Nate doing what he does best, ride in-between and on occasion alongside other artists. From the get go with 'I Got Love' we get classic G-Funk production and Nate's talented vocal weavings. Fabulous and Kurupt guest upon the remix (at the end of the album), the beginning version, with Nate singing alone, though it's very well done isn't as good. 'Backdoor' contradicts my theory on Nate solo. The lyrics, as they tend to be aren't exactly meaningful, however, Nate performs them with such talent and charisma that they're sung well enough to be interpreted however you choose.
The production on the album is solid. G-Funk has always been Nate's vibe, and this release is no exception I'm pleased to say. From the excellent 'Your Woman Has Just Been Sighted' featuring Jermaine Dupri and a priceless hook to 'Can't Nobody' with Kurupt to 'Ditty Dum Ditty Doo' with Snoop, you notice a consistent West Coast G-Funk influenced mood.
The subject matter throughout the album is essentially about Nate and his co-performers (with the exception of Lil' Mo) chauvinistic attitudes. But, though this isn't exactly something to praise, it is done so well that you can't help but enjoy it. Even Pharoah Monche's contribution, an emcee who I very much respect is threaded inbetween Nate's hook which consists of: "I pledge allegiance to all my homies who have never loved a hoe and never will." The patriotic beat, combined with Nate's hook and Pharoah's verse make this track perfect.
Basically, 'Music and Me' is a great album, for Nate Dogg fans. If you're not into his singing, it's simple, you'll loathe this. Otherwise, be prepared for well performed vulgar content sung soulfully.