Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.
It’s recently come to my attention that not everyone is aware of the infamous “Dr. Dre discovers Burning Man” letter that’s been floating around the internet for a few years. The authenticity is a bit doubtful, but here’s the text of the handwritten letter dated Feb. 26, 1995, and addressed to Dr. Dre’s then-girlfriend, now wife, Nicole Young, née Threatt:
Hopefully you doing well and you realized you need to quit fuckin with Sedale [Threatt, former NBA player and Nicole’s ex-husband] and come home to your Doctor. I will take care of you, baby girl.
I’m in Nevada with Hype [Williams, music video director] lookin at spots for this new video we are shooting for that single I told you [Tupac Shakur] is going to be on once he is out, called “California Love.” We met a bunch of crazy, naked motherfuckers in the desert today, they were putting up some type of giant wood man. I guess they have a big party out here for a bunch of days. I asked them how much they pay, they said “nothing.” I was like no money? Someone should get behind this shit and make some loot off these fools cause they said there will at least be 5,000 people. I think I will have my office look into it, just to see if there is easy money to be had here. I’m bout to pass out girl, wish I was up in that ass. See you back in L.A.
I left most of the original spelling, but fixed some punctuation.
Is it real? Maybe. Is it hilarious? Definitely.
And take a look at the video for “California Love,” which was in near-constant rotation on MTV when I was in high school in the mid-’90s, and tell me it doesn’t seem Burning Man-inspired. Or at least shares some Mad Max DNA with the festival as it was back then in the lawless days, just waiting for financial exploitation.