The elevator door in the hotel opened and there he stood: Gilles Peterson. The Dj’ing legend from London.
Wearing his favourite visvims, blue jeans and a black t-shirt. Nothing but sympathy. The first impression set the tone for the rest of this inspiring, friendly conversation. Meeting Gilles was more of a long talk about his musical preferences, the leisures and pains of constant travelling than just some simple Q&A’s interview. In the end, it was even more than we had hoped for.
To everyone who never heard of Gilles Peterson: Gilles Peterson, born in 1964 in Caen, France, is a DJ, record collector and record label owner from London, UK. Through his labels Acid Jazz, Talkin’ Loud, and latterly Brownswood Recordings, he has been associated with the careers of well-known artists of the 1990s such as Erykah Badu, The Roots and Roni Size plus Jamiroquai. He is also well known as a radio DJ. For the most part, he spreads his music knowledge to the listeners through his radio-show on BBC 1, but has been touring the best clubs in the world, mostly promoting various musical projects and collaborations such as Havana Cultura in Berlin.
When he stepped out the elevator everything made sense. This was the voice we’ve been hearing for the last couple of years. Rather small and humble, Gilles is one of these pioneers who never really tried to take the mainstage in this commercial business. They just remain as they are and do what they love. For the most part. Still, he manages to capture a great selective audience around the world, playing magnificent music day in and day out.
We’ve been listening to his radio show for BBC 1 the last few years now and keep coming back, because the sound is just too good.
Once he got his black tea and some homemade cookies from the Hotel restaurant, we hit the roof to take some pictures.
We chatted about Berlin, his new project, recent gigs and his favourite places and clubs around the globe.
The photoshoot took place on a rooftop near Bar Tausend, where he performed later that night.