Despite myriad technological advances, "an iPod will never be able to replace a DJ" says DJ Jazzy Jeff — great news for Canadians since he also feels Canada is a hotbed of turntable talent.
The music producer and performer — perhaps best known for his collaborations with Fresh Prince, aka Will Smith — is in Toronto to judge the Red Bull Thre3style World DJ Championships, which wrap up a week of nightly competitions on Saturday.
Quebec City's Adam Doubleyou is among nearly 20 disc jockeys from around the world vying for the coveted crown.
"A lot of great DJs hail from Canada — from the entire spectrum, West Coast to East Coast, from A-Track to guys like Skratch Bastid and Kid Koala," Jazzy Jeff, whose real name is Jeff Townes, told CBC News this week.
"When you have that kind of talent pool, it only breeds more talent."
Also on hand to judge this week's competition are two of the Canadian DJs he mentioned: Montrealers Kid Koala (Eric San) and A-Track, aka Alain Macklovitch, who at the age of 15 became the youngest-ever world champion in 1997.
A talented turntablist is a musical storyteller crafting a unique sonic journey, according to Jazzy Jeff.
In the attached video, he talks to CBC's Eli Glasner about Canada's place in the DJ world, the impact of social media on the industry and why DJs matter.
Tune into CBC's The National on Friday for Glasner's report on the 2013 world championships.