Producer: Dr. Dre
Album: No One Can Do It Better
Label: Ruthless, Atlantic
Though he only released one classic solo album the D.O.C. is probably the hardest emcee with whom Dre ever collaborated. According to his production partner Mel-Man, the Doctor himself is said to have admitted as much behind closed doors.
Recorded and released in 1989, "It's Funky Enough" was one of those West Coast songs that beat New York at its own game. Based on a canonical sample by the kiddie funk performer Foster Sylvers (of the Sylvers), the song is as snarly as anything by Just-Ice and as authoritative as anything by Boogie Down Productions.
In his prime, the D.O.C. could have gone toe-to-toe with LL Cool J, though the Texas-bred rapper had none of the crossover pretensions of Def Jam's heartthrob. "It's Funky Enough" is the stuff of concrete and brick, rather than the greenery and sparkle usually associated with California.
And yet the song boasted something that Ced Gee and Rick Rubin and KRS-One didn't have, something unique to Dre that would recur throughout his career, from "Express Yourself" to "In Da Club": An effortless mechanical fluidity. His beats were—and still are—like machines that function with fewer parts but have been designed to run at twice the efficiency of their competitors.