See that guy up there, on the left? If you don't know who Dr. Luke is, you should, because his music's basically everywhere. Miley Cyrus knows who Dr. Luke is. Besides making her a metric fuckton of money with his producing genius, he now—as explained in an incredible New Yorker profile of him—owes her a $10,000 toilet. True story.
Dr. Luke (real name: Lukasz Gottwald) is the producer behind the hits of everyone from Cyrus to Katy Perry to Kelly Clarkson to Juicy J and back. And in this week's issue of The New Yorker, while it's far from his first time in the press spotlight (see: 2010's New York Magazine profile) he's now finally getting the profile he deserves: Eight pages and a couple thousand words into the man behind everything from "We Can't Stop" to "Teenage Dream" to "Since U Been Gone" and then some.
But one of the best moments in the piece comes early on, when Miley Cyrus is quoted talking about working with Dr. Luke. Not only did Dr. Luke not think her "Wrecking Ball" was going to be a hit, but he made a bet on it:
[Dr. Luke] can make a song that's also a business plan. Still, it's always a gamble. With "Wrecking Ball", for example, [he] wasn't sure it was a smash, and he wagered against it, telling Cyrus he would buy her a Numi toilet like his, the ultimate in potty technology (it has a Bluetooth receiver that can stream music from a smartphone), if he was wrong. Cyrus told me, "Contrary to what he thinks, Dr. Luke isn't always right. I bet him him that 'Wrecking Ball' would go to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and it did. Now he has to buy me a ten-thousand-dollar toilet. I'll be thinking of him every time I go."
And now, you can think of "Wrecking Ball" every time you sit on a less-than-ten-thousand-dollar-toilet. For the record, a $10,000 shitter looks like this.
Other great tidbits from the Dr. Luke New Yorker profile:
- A little Juicy J and JT news: "I've got Juicy J—he's my rapper, he had the biggest urban record last year. We have two songs we have to finish for him. No, three songs." Only two made Stay Trippy, which means there's more Dr. Luke/Juicy J out there.
- He grew and sold weed from his Manhattan apartment as a kid to make money.
- He made the music for Nike's 1994 World Cup ad, and as he tells it, he hated it.
- Dr. Luke's friends from summer camp—Jarret Myer and Brian Brater—started Rawkus Records (along with Rupert Murdoch's son James Murdoch). He made beats for Rawkus under the name Kasz. Rappers didn't really like them, but it was Alchemist who once supposedly noted: "Yo, this dude could be really big."
- Dr. Luke's production name does not come from "his mixing of Adderall and Ritalin with coke and MDMA to create the perfect studio cocktail that keeps you working through the night." Someone else gave it to him: "One day in the studio, Mos Def just said, 'Nah, man, your name's not Kasz. It's Dr. Luke, man,' and it stuck."
- Dr. Luke's method for pushing new artist/fellow songwriter Bonnie McKee's new single: "Did Katy Tweet it?"
It should go without saying at this point, but if you're at all interested in the business of the music, how it gets made, and who the people behind the biggest hits of the last five years are, this one is a must-read, and handily one of the best pieces of music journalism you'll read this year. It's on the subscription-only New Yorker site, but well worth the $7 you can pay for it on a stand.
via: The Doctor Is In - The New Yorker [Subscription Only]