Gilles Peterson has many strings to bows: DJ, label manager, A&R, radio presenter, all round music aficionado, and in every area of his work he excels. He is, in short, a living legend. Starting his career as a pirate radio DJ in the 80s, it was upon his club residency at London’s Electric Ballroom playing jazz, funk, soul and Afro-Cuban fusion music that he built his early reputation. His Sunday day time event at Dingwalls in the mid to late 80s with Patrick Forge - Talkin’ Loud & Saying Something’ - coincided with the emerging acid house scene, and it was here that the acid jazz scene developed. Gilles started the Acid Jazz label in 1987, but after a few years he begun to feel disillusioned with the ghettoization of the sound and the scene, and when approached by Phonogram in 1989 to set up a label, he grabbed the opportunity and Talkin’ Loud was born. Releasing music by such luminaries as Roni Size & Reprazent, 4Hero, MJ Cole, Omar, Courtney Pine, Jamiroquai, Nuyorican Soul and The Roots, Talkin’ Loud has had five of its albums nominated for the Mercury Music Prize, and was one of the most innovative and pioneering British labels of the 90s. Since 1998 Gilles has had his ‘Worldwide’ show on BBC Radio One, a format that gives Gilles the freedom to showcase amazing music from around the world, and exhibit his remarkable and eclectic knowledge of, and taste in, music. More recently he’s started a new independent label, Brownswood Recordings which has seen him release music by some amazing new talent such as Soil & Pimp Sessions, The Heritage Orchestra, Jose James and Ben Westbeech. Gilles still has the same boundless enthusiasm for music, and continues to push musical boundaries as a DJ around the world.
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