Pete Tong

 

Peter Tong, (born 31 July 1960, Dartford) is a British DJ who works for BBC Radio 1 as host of programmes such as Essential Mix and Essential Selection. He has also worked as a record producer, and is regarded as the "global ambassador for electronic music"

His DJ carreer started with a gig at a friend's wedding at age 15. While at school he and a couple of friends earned some extra money by promoting a couple of local bands, booking halls for gigs etc. He also worked as part of the Kent "Soul Mafia" bringing soul weekenders to seaside towns like Caister-on-Sea and Prestatyn. 

Initially after leaving school Tong set up a mobile disco based in a transit van, but he soon started his own club in Baker Street called Family Function. He also booked bands for an alternative night, the first of which was the then unknown Culture Club. Later he became DJ and promoter at the Kings Lodge club in West Kingsdown and quickly gained a faithful following, who were prepared to travel from far and wide on a Wednesday night to hear him playing underground jazz, funk and soul. Later moving venue to the Hill Top, also in West Kingsdown, he was responsible for breaking classics such as Lonnie Liston Smith's "Expansions" and Ritchie Cole's "Groovin on a New York Afternoon".

In 1979, Tong became a staff writer for Blues & Soul Magazine. After a year he was promoted to features editor, a position he would hold until 1983. He left Blues & Soul to join London Records as an A&R manager. Through his connections in London Records, Tong was exposed to the newly emerging house music sound from Chicago. In 1986, Tong organised a compilation album, The House Sound of Chicago, Vol. 1, the first British release to gather and expose this genre.

Credit: Wikipedia