Timbaland has recalled discovering Ludacris and shared a story about the first time they met.
During a recent episode of the I AM ATHLETE podcast, Timbo ran through a list of musicians who changed his life. The Virginia native cited a lengthy list of rappers, including Slick Rick, Gang Starr, Run-DMC, LL Cool J, A Tribe Called Quest, and Ludacris—who he claimed to have musically found.
“I was the one who found Ludacris,” he began. “Because Ludacris was working in the radio station, and I was like, ‘Hey, ain’t nobody sign you? What’s going on here?’ [He was like], ‘Nah man.'”
“Then he came down to Virginia, and we did ‘Phat Rabbit,’ and from there, labels started calling. He asked me one time, ‘Would you sign to Def Jam or Elektra?’ I said, ‘Man, you better go to Def Jam. And I didn’t know how the business go, I just backed them ’cause I knew he was incredible, so I put him on that list.”
Timbaland’s story falls neatly in line with Luda’s recalling of his origin story, with the “Move Bi**h” rapper speaking about the mega-producer in 2019.
“Tim was the first person that really believed in me, along with Jermaine Dupri and Organized Noize,” he said in the video while in the studio with the Virginia native. “But in terms of really the very first person, [he] came to the radio station in Atlanta when I was working there. Timbaland was the first person who was like, ‘Who is that?’
“And then [I] got on ‘Phat Rabbit’ and got on Tim’s Bio. Do your history, Google that. He’s the first person. So, to be back in the studio with him at this moment in time — for this juncture and this particular moment, that is about to be monumental for me — is amazing.”
Tim then echoed the sentiments on his Instagram, disclosing that the two were working on another project. “After 20 years, the love of creating music hasn’t faded,” Timbo wrote. “Much respect to my brotha Ludacris. We are working on something special for y’all.”