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Timothy Westwood (born 3 October 1957) is an English DJ and presenter of radio and television. He also presents the UK version of the MTV show Pimp My Ride. He is often referred to by other DJs and artists appearing on his shows simply as 'Westwood'.


Disc Jockey career

During his career, Westwood has DJ'ed for many radio stations, including the newly formed radio stations Kiss FM (which he co-owned) and LWR in the 1980s, followed by mainstream station Capital FM (from 1987). In December 1994, following a shake up of Radio 1 by the then chief executive Matthew Bannister, he was given the new and somewhat innovative national Radio 1 Rap Show. He was the Radio 1 Rap Show's first presenter and has been its only permanent presenter; he is now one of Radio 1's longest-serving broadcasters.

His first broadcast on a legal station appears to have been on 23 March 1985, when he was already working as a pirate DJ. He was a guest on a BBC World Service programme called Meridian where he discussed early hip-hop culture in Londonmarker. After appearing in the 1987 BBC Open Space documentary Bad Meaning Good, which was an early work of his own company Justice Entertainment, he achieved TV exposure in the late 1980s on the ITV programme Night Network, produced by London Weekend Television.

More recently, he presented a series of his own television programme on UKTV channel UK Play, which has since ceased broadcasting. His Radio 1 show is produced by his independent company Justice Entertainment, which also produces Chris Goldfinger's dancehall show for Radio 1.

In the late 1980s his name was often mentioned in British rap records, as he was the only well-known DJ playing hip hop on legal radio in Britain. He was named Best UK Radio DJ in the MOBO (Music of Black Origin) Awards in 2000, 2003 and 2005. In interviews, he has said that he has strong moral convictions, and that he does not drink nor take drugs. He is a patron of the internal radio station at Feltham Young Offenders' Institutionmarker in West London.


Westwood was injured in a drive-by shooting in Kenningtonmarker, South London, on 18 July 1999 - after he had been playing at the Lambeth Country Show in Brockwell Parkmarker. According to police reports, gunmen on a motorbike pulled up alongside his Range Rover and shot him and his assistant.


Radio 1

On 4 July 2006, BBC Radio 1 announced a new schedule mostly affecting specialist music slots on the station. Westwood was confirmed as one of four presenters to host a programme as part of the station's strand 'In New Music We Trust', (INMWT) It has run for four nights a week since 25 September 2006 at 2100 GMT. Westwood's show is for one hour every Tuesday. Westwood's former Friday slot of two hours was given over to a showcase of music from 1Xtra, called Take Over, and Annie Mac's Mash Up, but his Saturday show was extended to three hours, and is on-air from 21:00 to midnight. He now co-hosts a four-hour show on Saturday nights with Dancehall DJ Chris Goldfinger, which runs from 21:00 until 01:00.


Since the autumn of 2007 Westwood has also presented a Sunday night show (22:00 - Midnight) on 1Xtra, showcasing grime and related scenes.

MTV's Pimp My Ride

In 2005 MTV announced that Westwood would be the presenter of the UK version of Pimp My Ride. Already an established program in the USA, Pimp My Ride takes a viewer's car and outfits it with fancy paintwork, revamped upholstery and advanced technology.

Soon after The Guardian quoted Westwood saying "When I heard that MTV were making a version of the show for the UK, I got straight on the phone. Can you imagine the bling machines we're going to create that'll be cruising down your local high street? We're gonna be crazy."


Vocal Style and Upbringing

Critics have also derided Westwood's apparent emulation of Black British pronunciation and dialect, which is at odds with his middle class British origins. In response to this Timothy Westwood stated "Honestly, baby, I get love out there, pure and simple". His father, Bill Westwood was the Anglican Bishop of Peterborough until 1996 (and was himself a prolific broadcaster). He also attended Norwich Schoolmarker, which is a prestigious private grammar school.

In interviews Sacha Baron Cohen has stated that Westwood, including his fake Caribbean accent was the inspiration for his fictional Ali G character.

Criticism by David Cameron

On 6 June 2006, BBC Radio 1 and Westwood's show in particular was accused of encouraging knife and gun crime by Conservative Party leader David Cameron, who was speaking at a British Society of Magazine Editors event. Radio 1 controller Andy Parfitt responded in a Press Association news agency article: "There's been a debate about this particular genre of music for many years. Hip-hop is of great interest to many people in our audience. I strongly refute that any of our programmes condone violence, gun crime or knife crime."


  • Street Beats
  • Westwood Volume 1
  • Westwood Volume 2
  • Westwood Volume 3
  • UK Hip Hop 2002 Volume 1
  • Westwood Platinum Edition 2003
  • Westwood: The Jump Off
  • Westwood 6: The Takeover
  • Westwood 7: The Big Dawg
  • Westwood 8: The Invasion
  • Westwood Heat: Volume 9
  • Westwood X
  • Westwood 11: Ride With The Big Dawg
  • Westwood: The Greatest


  • Westwood Raw DVD


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