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Idris Elba 'diving into the pinnacle' of DJ career


The actor says music is a labour of love for him.

Idris Elba has told how he feels he is reaching the “pinnacle” of his career as a DJ.

The Luther star described music as a “labour of love” as he prepares for a number of UK shows this year.

He told the Press Association: “Music is a passion because I don’t get paid for it. I love acting, producing and directing but music is a labour of love.

“I make tunes but it’s mostly DJing and right now I am diving into the pinnacle of that career – I’m being given all these opportunities to play in these great places so I’m going to go for it.”

His comments came as he spoke of his upcoming BBC Three takeover, which will see him showcase a range of unsung young talent in music, sport and film for a week.

It will also feature TV’s Romesh Ranganathan interviewing comedians such as Jack Dee, Sharon Horgan and Russell Howard from a pub.

The 44-year-old, who recently returned from four months of filming in the Rocky Mountains, said his influence as a well-known actor gave him the ideal platform to share the inspirational stories.

He said: “I’m an actor, people love that, I’ve got an audience so I’ve got an chance to really say something. I could just do monologues and accents but this is me taking the opportunity to tell a million different stories.”

Speaking about the moment he was once compared to a “male Oprah”, he added: “Possibly I am, but we are not putting the inspirational message on the nose.

“These stories show people fighting against adversity, rappers rapping about what inspiration means to them… whatever you take from it, we wanted to put on a week of different things that you would probably never see. And it isn’t just London-based, it’s got a UK vibe.”

The programme also features some of Idris’s own music in collaboration with five new artists.

“It’s a grime, hip-hoppy record, but the lyrics are deep,” he said.

“If you go back to the origins of this genre it’s the idea that people are going to jump on a tune and articulate what everybody else is feeling, even if it’s a little bit tongue-in-cheek at times… It felt like the right type of music to tie to this week.”

:: The Idris Takeover will be available on BBC Three from March 27.

PA Media