×

‘Idris Elba Performing at Coachella?’ The Story Behind His DJing Career

After years of blockbuster movie roles, Idris Elba has solidified himself as a Hollywood mainstay, but it looks like his music career isn’t far behind.

It was announced Wednesday that the “Luther” and “Wire” star will be making his Coachella debut on April 13 and 20, in the company of artists like Childish Gambino, Ariana Grande, Tame Impala, Solange and Billie Eilish. And although some fans were surprised by the announcement, Elba’s Coachella appearance is just one of many in the British actor’s long musical career.

After entering the music industry at the age of 14, Elba has worked as a DJ and producer, performing at a number of prominent music festivals around the world including  Essence Fest in New Orleans, the Boardmasters Festival in Cornwall and the Glastonbury festival in southwest England. Additionally, he was on hand to perform a set at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding reception in May and launched his own record label 7Wallace Music in July.

“Actors doing music is corny, I know that’s what people think and I accept that,” he told The Voice in 2009. “But music has always been a way for me to express myself. Honestly, I hate pushing my music. I’m passionate about what I do, so to hear someone saying they hate it would be a bit like having someone say your child is ugly!”

Elba’s work with other artists is equally as diverse, including collaborations with Fatboy Slim on “Uptown Funk” and a remix of Skepta’s “Shutdown.” The British DJ also worked alongside Pete Tong to create an “All Gone Pete Tong” edit of his single “Spectacle.”

In 2010 Elba released his EP titled “High Class Problems Vol. 1,” which garnered a Billboard Music Awards nomination before appearing on the Loose Tapestries’s second album in 2015 and opening for the Germany leg of Madonna’s Rebel Heart tour in the same year.

Elba will also be taking his DJing skills to to Netflix as part of a new comedy series titled “Turn Up Charlie.” After co-creating the series with Gary Reich, Elba is set to star as the show’s titular character DJ Charlie who gets his final chance at success after becoming a “manny” for his famous best friend’s, problem-prone daughter (Frankie Harvey). Also joining the show is Angela Griffin, Guz Khan, Jocelyn Jee Esein, Jade Anouka, Cameron King and Dustin Demri-Burns.

More Film

  • BOTM-Eve-Viper-Gang

    Director Angus Gibson: My Audience is ‘Young, Black South Africans’

    DURBAN–Sophiatown, 1958. On the outskirts of Johannesburg, as the apartheid police prepare to demolish the community at the heart of black South African cultural and intellectual life, a notorious gang leader is determined to make a last stand. Resisting the forced evictions that will transport the residents of Sophiatown to a desolate township miles away, [...]

  • marvel

    Marvel Phase 4 Plan Revealed, But Comic-Con’s Big Winner is Disney Plus

    In a triumphant return to the San Diego Comic-Con main stage, leadership at Marvel Studios managed some splashy surprises and showed off risky creative bets for the next two years of content coming from the superhero operation. But the biggest takeaway from the Saturday presentation inside Hall H was how important Marvel will make Disney [...]

  • Florence Pugh, O. T. Fagbenle, Rachel

    'Black Widow': Scarlett Johansson and Florence Pugh Go Head-to-Head in First Footage

    Marvel’s “Black Widow” has only been in production for a month, but studio president Kevin Feige still delivered the goods for fans at San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday. Filmmakers brought an intense sizzle reel of on-location shots, kicked off by a dazzling and bone-crushing fight sequence between lead Scarlett Johansson and her on-screen sister Florence [...]

  • Natalie Portman Thor

    Natalie Portman Returns for 'Thor: Love and Thunder' as Female Thor

    Natalie Portman is coming back to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but she’s no one’s love interest this time around. The Oscar winner will play a female god of thunder in the fourth film from the Chris Hemsworth series, titled “Thor: Love and Thunder.” Portman hit the stage at San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday to great [...]

  • Fantastic Four

    New 'Fantastic Four' Movie in Development at Marvel

    Marvel is going back to the Fantastic Four. Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige announced that a new movie based on the superhero group is in the works at San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday. Further details, however, including a release date, were not revealed. It marks the first Fox property for Disney to mine since the [...]

  • Mahershala AliMarvel Studios panel, Comic-Con International,

    Mahershala Ali to Star in Marvel's 'Blade' Reboot

    Marvel is rebooting the “Blade” series, and has cast Mahershala Ali to star. Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige announced the news at Comic-Con on Saturday as the panel’s big ending surprise. Ali also took the stage at the announcement to massive applause, donning the Blade baseball cap. Wesley Snipes previously played the half-vampire superhero in [...]

  • Doctor Strange

    'Doctor Strange' Sequel Billed as First MCU Horror Film at Comic-Con

    A sequel to “Doctor Strange” was announced as expected on Saturday at Marvel’s Comic-Con panel — what we didn’t see coming was the tone. Director Scott Derrickson said the film, titled “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness,” will mine the original comics and play up “the gothic, the horror.” Derrickson said it will lead [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content