Tiffany Calver has told Music Week that the new generation of music industry stars are succeeding because of “blind faith” in its ability.
The 24-year-old former Radar Radio, NTS and Kiss FM DJ took over as the new host of BBC Radio 1Xtra’s Rap Show in January, and stars on the cover of the new issue of Music Week, out now.
“The great thing with my generation is the blind faith that things will work,” said Calver, who is currently touring as a DJ with Fredo.
“We go for what we want. We have the privilege of being able to do that. So we’re doing it,” Calver said. “My parents couldn’t, they had to raise me, make money, hold everything together. I’d be doing them a disservice if I didn’t go for the life I wanted. There’s no excuse anymore not to just try.”
Calver has interviewed a range of acts from Headie One and Unknown T, to Fredo and Future on the Rap Show, and said she is cultivating a new era for the programme, which first aired in 1994 and has been presented by Tim Westwood and Charlie Sloth.
I'm a tastemaker to my core
“What Tim did for five million years was incredible, and inspired me to do what I do now,” Calver said. “I watched Charlie and how he put his stamp on the show, but when he started, people wanted Tim. It’s hard for people to adjust and I know that.”
However, Calver underlined the differences between her and her predecessors. “I don’t have [play] a character, which is probably a first for my show,” she said.
“Charlie has a character and Tim is Tim and always will be. I’m Tiffany and I’m not that. I’m sarcastic and probably really moody most of the time, and I’ll say weird things and make weird noises and randomly do weird accents. I haven’t studied radio or had the classic experience. I literally have no choice but to be myself.”
Calver is already known across the industry as a champion of new music and described herself as “a tastemaker to my core”.
“I’ve been with Kojey Radical, Fredo, AJ Tracey all these artists, even Jorja Smith, when she was just a matey wearing a North Face jacket and we were eating fish and chips at a Boiler Room event in Dalston,” she said.
“We’ve all been around each other and supported each other as much as we could. We’re showing that, as long as you keep going and persevere, it will happen.”
Fredo released his debut album Third Avenue via Since ’93 earlier this year, and the label’s co-president Glyn Aikins told Music Week Calver was “the only choice” for the Rap Show.
Mark Strippel, head of programmes for 1Xtra, added: “Tiffany has already had an amazing start and is showing why she’s the right person to take the throne of Europe’s biggest rap show. She’s on the way to being one of the most influential rap DJs in the world, let alone the UK.”
Subscribers can read the full interview with Calver online here.
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