Salute the Spin Doctors!: DJ Freestyle Steve On Uncle Al, Timbaland, and Everything In Between


Editor’s Note: DJs carried the original torch for Hip-Hop – back when there were no MCs! is taking a little time out to “Salute the Spin Doctors” this month. Check back for more feature stories and editorials with some of the top DJs across the country.

If you were in the crowd at the South By Southwest Vibe House in Austin, Texas last month, there was no not noticing Timbaland’s DJ during the producer’s set. For a man to keep up with one of the hottest producers of all time on the 1’s and 2’s and not miss a beat was a feat that few talked about but many noticed.

DJ Freestyle Steve was that man, and he has been the man helping Timabaland rock and perform for sold-out crowds across the world for years as the Grammy Award-winning producer’s official DJ. While there is much to hear and be told about how travels, experiences, and working relationship with Tim, Steve’s past is just as integral in his story as his present and inevitable future.

Coming up under Uncle Al in the South Florida music scene, Steve was practically the first DJ to play New York Hip-Hop on the radio in South Florida, and the rest is pretty much history. Literally. No one can tell a man’s story better than the man himself, though. So, caught up with Freestyle Steve before he hit the stage to back Timbaland and Missy Elliott in New York City for a special, surprise performance:

In part one below, Steve talks about his come-up, the reaction to him playing “N.Y. Hip-Hop” in Florida, his thoughts on the current role of the DJ and much more:

In the second half of our interview, DJ Freestlye Steve recalls how he first linked up with Timbaland and how their working relationship helped catapult his career, as well as what he thinks about the new music Tim is cooking up, looking back on SXSW 2012, and what he has in store for the rest of the year:

Follow DJ Freestyle Steve on Twitter (@DJFreestyleSteve).