There’s a shakeup going on at The BBC, and for once, it’s on their terms. Radio DJ Tim Westwood – a hip-hop pioneer for the past three decades – is stepping down to let fresh blood take the Saturday night mantle. MistaJam and Charlie Sloth take the reigns, the BBC reports. No Pressure guys.
Westwood, 55, (what?) has been at Radio One sine 1994, when he joined the station and started their BBC’s first rap show. Since then, his enthusiasm for the craft of hip-hop has won him many admires, although there have been detractors along the way.
Criticisms came from all directions, but the most vehement attacked the dichotomy between his modern, urban dialect and his middle class upbringing. For example, he said ‘safe’ and ‘sick’ a lot, and his father, Bill Westwood, was the Anglican Bishop of Peterborough.
Despite all this, though, he was an inspiration to many young artists, and his legacy will be felt for years to come. The BBC owe him a great deal of gratitude for bringing an underground scene to the fore, and helping young artists to prosper. Radio 1 and 1Xtra controller Ben Cooper said: "I'd like to thank Tim for the last 20 years on Radio 1 - his passion for hip-hop is legendary. I wish him all the very best."
Speaking about his new show MistaJam said: "It's an absolute honour to be given the chance to lead the 1Xtra takeover of Radio 1 on a Saturday night. I've grown up listening to Trevor Nelson and he's still at the top of his game so it's a dream come true."
Charlie Sloth – two-times Sony Radio Academy Awards nominee for best entertainment programme and music personality of the year – said: "It's like a dream come true for me and something that I've worked towards my whole career, especially to be succeeding a legend like Tim Westwood who has done so much for the game. I know they are big shoes to fill, but luckily, man's got fat feet."
The changes to the Radio 1Xtra schedule will take effect from 21 September.
Tim Westwood enjoying a Mojito