Nuthin’ but a “G” Thang

Nuthin’ but a “G” Thang

Dr. Dre (Ft. Snoop Dogg)

“Nuthin' But a ‘G’ Thang” was the lead single to Dr. Dre’s debut solo album, The Chronic, and highlighted the performance of Snoop Doggy Dogg following their first collaboration “Deep Cover,” which was released a few months earlier. The beat is built around a sample from Leon Haywood’s 1975 track “I Want'a Do Something Freaky To You.” Dr. Dre also directed the music video, which features cameos from Daz, Warren G and The D.O.C.

“Nuthin' But a ‘G’ Thang” is considered one of the greatest hip-hop songs of all time. The single achieved platinum status after it peaked at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topped the Hot Rap Songs and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts. In 1994, the song was nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group category. It was ranked #427 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, featured on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll list, and named as the Greatest Rap Song of the 90s by XXL magazine.

Musician Colin Wolfe talked about how the song came together:

I think Warren G. brought the Leon Haywood sample around for ‘Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang.’ Matter of fact, I was the first one to hear the song’s lyrics. Snoop was in jail and used to call up to the house. I picked up one time and Snoop was like, ‘Yo, man, I just wrote this rap called ‘G’ Thang.’ Check it out–tell me if you think Dre gon’ like it.’ He rapped it for me and I said, ‘Hell fuckin’ yeah!’ We had to record that song three different times, I believe one time the tape was left in the car and got messed up. Another time it got accidentally erased. The only live instrument on there was me playing the [synth] string part and live bass. Dre added an 808 to the kick to make it thump harder.

A scene in the 2015 N.W.A biopic Straight Outta Compton re-enacted the creation of the song: