"Ah neee owder ellows!"
Those are Dr. Dre's shouted instructions, heard through a storm of bass and beats so deafening that a full-size couch is actually lurching off the ground, like a great green whale preparing to breach. Realizing that he can't be heard, Dre touches a button on the mixing board and the music stops. "I need louder cellos," he says in a normal voice to the recording-studio technician. Then quietly to himself, "Cellos make everything sound evil."
Dr. Dre is not an instrumentalist. "I bought a trumpet a couple of years ago, and everybody started hiding from...