DJ Khalil. One half of the rap group Self-Scientific (for underground hip-hop fans). The man behind beats such as Jay-Z’s “I Made It”, 50 Cent’s “I’ll Still Kill”, Drake’s “Fear” and Eminem’s “Won’t Back Down” (for the commercially inclined). And most notably, a staff producer for Dr. Dre (for those of you paying attention). If the name doesn’t ring a bell right away, it’s probably because he prefers it that way.

While the Grammy winner’s resume reads like a who’s who of hip-hop, if he had it his way, he’d pass on the fame altogether and go straight to the music. After all, it’s always been about the music. When a 13-year old Khalil first met his musical hero, Dr. Dre, at a party his parents had thrown (Khalil’s father was former basketball legend Walt Hazzard), he had no idea that his words would actually come to fruition.

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