Gilles Peterson is a broadcaster, DJ and record collector who hosts a weekly Saturday afternoon show on Radio 6 Music that’s one of the BBC’s most popular music shows. He is also the founder of online radio station Worldwide FM (which he also hosts on the GTA V computer game).
Throughout his career, Gilles has promoted the new frontiers of jazz, hip-hop and electronic music. Starting by installing illicit transmitters and hosting shows for pirate radio station Radio Invicta, he later joined the newly-founded Jazz FM then the pirate-turned-legal station Kiss FM. In 1998, he was hired by BBC Radio 1, where he hosted a weekly show until his move to his current slot on Radio 6 Music.
Gilles has been behind several game-changing record labels. He founded Acid Jazz in the late 1980s, and in the early 1990s he started Talkin’ Loud, five of whose albums were nominated for a Mercury Music Prize. His current venture is independent record label, Brownswood Recordings. As a curator and collector, he’s compiled over 100 albums.
In 2011, Gilles founded the Steve Reid Foundation in memory of the legendary jazz drummer. The charity supports musicians who are ill and facing financial difficulties. Jointly with the PRS Foundation, he runs the Steve Reid InNOVAtion Award, which has supported upcoming artists such as Moses Boyd, Nubya Garcia and Sarathy Korwar.
Since 2005, Gilles has hosted the annual Worldwide Awards in London and the Worldwide Festival in Sète, France and, in 2019, he launched the new We Out Here Festival in the UK. In early 2021, Gilles releases the Str4ta album (with Bluey from Incognito) and his first full-length book, Lockdown FM – Broadcasting In A Pandemic.