Tracy Lynn Curry (born June 10, 1968), primarily known by his stage name The D.O.C., is an American rapper from Dallas, Texas. In addition to a solo career, he was a member of the hip hop group Fila Fresh Crew, and a creative force behind the gangsta rap group N.W.A, where he co-wrote many of their releases. He has also semi-frequently worked with Dr. Dre, who is one of the founders of N.W.A and produced two of his solo albums.
After Fila Fresh Crew split up in 1988, The D.O.C. went on to pursue a successful solo career. In 1989, he released his debut album, No One Can Do It Better, which reached number-one on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart for two weeks and spawned two number one hits on the Hot Rap Songs chart: "It's Funky Enough" and "The D.O.C. & The Doctor". The album went platinum five years after its release. Months after the release of No One Can Do It Better, The D.O.C. almost died when a car accident resulted in crushing his larynx, permanently changing his voice. Since his recovery, he has released two more albums, Helter Skelter and Deuce, both released 7 years apart. Since 2008, The D.O.C. has been working on new material for his fourth album Voices through Hot Vessels.
Early career and No One Can Do It Better (1986 1989)
Curry began his career as a member of Fila Fresh Crew, a hip hop group that was originally based in Dallas, Texas. While in the group, The D.O.C was known as Doc-T. The group had four tracks featured on the compilation album N.W.A. and the Posse, which was released in 1987 and featured various other artists. The same four tracks would later appear on the groups album Tuffest Man Alive, released in 1988. The group disbanded shortly after its release, however.
After leaving the Fila Fresh Crew, Doc-T moved to Los Angeles, and changed his stage name to The D.O.C.. He was signed to Ruthless Records and contributed lyrics and vocals to N.W.A.'s debut album, Straight Outta Compton, Eazy-E's debut, Eazy-Duz-It and co-wrote "Keep Watchin'" from Michel'le's self-titled debut album (all three produced by Dr. Dre). In 1989, The D.O.C. released his Dr. Dre-produced debut album, No One Can Do It Better. The album was very well received by critics, and sold very well, peaking at #20 on the Billboard 200, eventually going platinum. Allmusic gives the album a five-star rating and describes it as "an early landmark of West Coast Rap" as well as "an undeniable masterpiece".
Accident and aftermath (1989 2007)
In November 1989, five months after the release of No One Can Do It Better, The D.O.C was involved in a near-fatal car accident. Driving home from a party, he fell asleep at the wheel and his car veered off the freeway. Curry, who was not wearing a seat belt, was thrown out the rear window, slamming face first into a tree. His injuries required 21 hours of plastic surgery, and he spent 2 weeks in the hospital. He couldn't speak for about a month, and he was left with a different, raspier voice.
However, The D.O.C. remained important to N.W.A; he continued to write for the group and contributed lyrics to their final album Niggaz4Life and their 1990 EP 100 Miles and Runnin', where he co-wrote all the songs except for "Just Don't Bite It" and "Kamurshol". Dr. Dre also used his talents as one of the writers for his debut solo album The Chronic, on Death Row Records contributing to the tracks "Lil' Ghetto Boy," "A Nigga Witta Gun," and "Bitches Ain't Shit". He also appeared on the skit track "The $20 Sack Pyramid." He is referenced by name in "Nuthin' but a G Thang," and appears in the song's video as well. The liner notes to The Chronic say, "I want to give a special shout out to The D.O.C. for talking me into doin' this album." His name is mentioned by Snoop Dogg in the intro of the album. ("Peace to my nigga D.O.C., still makin' it funky enough").
In addition to The Chronic, The D.O.C. worked on Snoop Dogg's debut album Doggystyle, and added some vocals on the song "Serial Killa". The D.O.C. continued to be a ghostwriter for various songs on Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg albums.
The Dr. Dre song "What's the Difference?" from the album 2001 features the following lyrics, sung by Dre:
Back when Cube - was rollin wit Lorenzo in a Benzo I was bangin wit a gang of instrumentals, got the pens and pencils, got down to business; but sometimes the business end of this shit can turn your friends against you - but you was a real nigga, I could sense it in you - I still remember the window of the car that you went through, that's fucked up - But I'll never forget the shit we been through, and I'ma do whatever it takes to convince you, cuz you my nigga D.O.C.
Surgery and Voices Through Hot Vessels (2008 present)
In a May 2008 interview, The D.O.C. revealed that he and Dr. Dre were working on his fourth album, entitled Voices Through Hot Vessels. He explained, "There is an album, and you got the title, but that's also because that's the title Dre likes. Dre and I decided to do another D.O.C. album after this Detox record. We decided to do one more together and end our story the right way."
According to a 2009 interview, Snoop Dogg assisted The D.O.C. in seeking a voice therapist. It was found that The D.O.C.'s vocal cords are not irreparably severed or crushed, and that his voice could still be surgically restored by up to 70%. As such, LA-Based Publicist, Idalyze Nasiha Rose, has assisted him in finding a surgeon who will repair his vocal cords. The D.O.C. is currently undergoing final tests before the surgery takes place, which may or may not be televised.
There is a great deal of buzz about The D.O.C.'s documentary film about the early days of The D.O.C. and presumably his accident, drug addiction and road to recovery. The D.O.C. is writing a book about his experiences on Ruthless Records and Death Row Records, his vocal surgery and subsequent recovery.
The D.O.C. will be making one of many trips to Barcelona to meet with HMG label owner Alex Roberts whom he contacted in 2009 to set up a meeting with Roberts associate Dr. Paolo Macchiarini, and it was March 2011 that The D.O.C. finally arrived in Barcelona to meet with Roberts and Dr. Macchiarini where he and Dr. Macchiarini discussed the first part of the procedure on what it would take to restore The D.O.C.'s voice which will take place at the world-renowned doctor's clinic in either Stockholm, Sweden or perhaps Florence, Italy. The D.O.C. will have his film crew with him.
In 2011, The D.O.C. rejoined forces with his long time business partner entertainment and digital media entrepreneur John "Tech" Huffman to start a company called DOC Ventures (DOCv). The D.O.C. and Tech are also class A shareholders and executive producers of HipHopDraft in America presents "I Got My Voice Back".
The D.O.C. dated Erykah Badu for several years. Together they have a daughter named Puma, born on July 5, 2004.
- Studio albums
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