How Timbaland Revolutionized R&B + Hip-Hop and then Reinvented Himself
A master of rhythm and melody, Timbaland always knew he had a gift when it came to music. He’d put it to good use in producing a number of groundbreaking works for the likes of Missy Elliott, Ginuwine, Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake. But with fame came delusion and addiction, which trumped his extreme talent. Now, sober and revitalized, Timb has fallen in love with the art form again and set his sights on a new goal: create a classic that will mark the next chapter in his career, just as Quincy Jones did with Thriller.
Timothy Zachery “Tim” Mosley (born March 10, 1972), known professionally as Timbaland, is an American record producer, rapper, singer, songwriter and DJ. Timbaland’s first full credit production work was in 1996 on Ginuwine…the Bachelor for R&B singer Ginuwine. After further work on Aaliyah’s 1996 album One in a Million and Missy Elliott’s 1997 album Supa Dupa Fly, Timbaland became a prominent producer for R&B and hip hop artists. As a rapper he initially released several albums with fellow rapper Magoo, followed by his debut solo album Tim’s Bio in 1998. In 2002, Timbaland produced the hit single “Cry Me a River” for Justin Timberlake, going on to produce most of Timberlake’s subsequent LPs such as FutureSex/LoveSounds and The 20/20 Experience and their respective hit singles. A Timbaland-owned imprint label, Mosley Music Group, featured artists such as Nelly Furtado, whose Timbaland-produced album Loose (2006) was a commercial and critical success. In 2007, Timbaland released a solo album, Shock Value, which was followed by Shock Value II in 2009.
Aside from the aforementioned artists, Timbaland’s production credits from the 2000s forward include work with Jay-Z, Nas, Ludacris, Bubba Sparxxx, Madonna, Rihanna, OneRepublic, Brandy, Drake, Rick Ross and others. As a songwriter he has written as of 2014, 85 UK hits and 99 hits Stateside. Timbaland has received widespread acclaim for his production style. In 2007, Entertainment Weekly stated that “just about every current pop trend can be traced back to him — from sultry, urban-edged R&B songstresses … to the art of incorporating avant-garde sounds into No. 1 hits.”