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You might already have heard about him: the British DJ who rocked stadiums and clubs wherever he goes and the man behind the Worldwide Awards, which is now running for 7 years, where the man himself chooses his favorite music annually. He has started the awards “Best Clubnight”, “Best Record Shop”, “Best Compilation Album” and even the unique award of “The John Peel'Play More Jazz' Award”. Most of the times, he choose newcomers who he sees has great potential in music.
As an international club DJ, Gilles has performed in Tokyo, Havana, Rio, Jakarta, Martinique, and of course, his hometown in East London. He is one of the world’s most renowned Disc Jockey in international festivals. Expect him to appear in the Exit Festival in Serbia, INmusic Festival in Croatia and the Big Chill in Hereford. Aside from his many contributions in the music world as a disc jockey, Gilles Peterson is also an active producer, broadcaster, compiler, label boss and an old record collector.
Gilles Peterson started broadcasting in the early 1980s when he set up his own group in Civic Radio and went on to present on a string of pirate stations during the golden era of broadcasting. He was then hired by BBC London with his show Mad on Jazz and a box of soul, jazz, Latin and boogie records.
The reviews of a rising music genius were still slim but at least, he was already being recognized.
Dingwalls in Camden was his next residency after he left BBC in 1986. He then stayed there for five years. Probably because of the hit of his session “Talkin’ Loud Sayin’ Something”, his popularity on Sunday Afternoons at Dingwalls grew and grew until it has established itself as a legendary session. Good reviews about him started to spread as well. Dingwall was not the only significant club he has ever been.
Gilles was also associated with the group Special Branch, Wag Club, Electric Ballroom, Babylon at Heaven, Heaven, Talking Loud at the Fridge and not forgetting That’s How It Is at Bar Rumba and his long association with Plastic People.
As a compiler, Gilles Peterson has put together more than 100 compilation releases making him the unbeatable world record holder.
One of his downfalls though was when he worked as a DJ in Jazz FM, featured in the Boiler Room. He publicly condemned the first Gulf War on air and played ‘Fight the Power’ by Public Enemy. Unsurprisingly, he was fired after his first show.
Kiss FM then opened its arms to him on September, 1990 where he played diverse acts from Josh Wink, Gang Starr and Horace Silver in the space of a single programme. This is where he also built the foundations of his Worldwide radio show.
He was again rehired by BBC in 1998 which earned him a spot as being a world renowned broadcaster. It is no wonder why his regular show features Top 3 of the most listened to show in BBC.
Today, Peterson is handling his own recording label, Brownswood Boiler Room Recording, which he started in 2006. He had worked with the likes of Roberto Fonseca, Raphael Gualazzi, The Bees and Fatouma Diawara among others.