“The way a movement emerges is through sharing, you have to share." - Gilles Peterson
Over the past decade British festivals have planted their seed across the globe, swapping out fields for more paradisiacal landscapes and glinting sea views. Making the voyage away from home towards the sun, sea and great music creates nothing short of magic.
Taking cues from Dimensions and Outlook in Croatia, and spurred on by the success of Worldwide Festival in the south of France, sonic genius Gilles Peterson brings the unencumbered spirit of UK-festivals-abroad back home with We Out Here festival. We took some time out of the second edition of We Out Here to chat with Gilles Peterson about sharing knowledge to spark new movements.
Unfolding on the grassy pastures of Cambridgeshire, Peterson invites you to be a part of his community, creating an environment ripe for discovery. Having started out installing illicit radio transmitters and hosting shows for pirate radio stations, before heading up several pioneering record labels, Peterson’s community stretches far and wide from the obscure to the familiar, the common denominator being greatness. In many ways We Out Here is an extension of Gilles Peterson himself, a showcase of his abundant repertoire of sound ranging from much loved music heroes to new and exciting talent.
Having mentored the minds behind Boiler Room and NTS, for Peterson, music is about sharing knowledge to spark new movements, “I’m not saying I want to take credit for those people but the way a movement emerges is through sharing, you have to share. It’s like how jazz works in America, the legends didn’t just become legends, they still went and taught and did their bit. It’s like Tomorrow’s Warriors: Nubya was taught for free and now she’s teaching for free, it’s about handing over. Talking about ego and success, it’s easy to forget your role in this cycle and get caught up in the hype of yourself. There’s a really fine balance between ego, success and giving back.”
Emerging from a pandemic in an era marked by individuality, We Out Here is a celebration of the collective; coming together to enjoy music and contribute towards a shared experience. This feeling of togetherness is finely tuned by the organisers who strip the festival back to its bones, forgoing the unnecessary add-ons that distract from the main ethos which is the exchange of good music; no VIP or backstage, just musical dexterity.
Peterson’s genre bending programme seamlessly connects live performances to DJ sets whilst diffusing any sense of hierarchy, “I don’t think anyone really gets the combination of live music and DJ’s right...I wanted to create a festival where I could invite Anderson Paak, Shabaka or Orchestra Poly Remote, followed by Antal, Hunee, Floating Points or Joy Orbison, and they're all going to get an amazing experience”. In the spirit of ‘equality over exclusivity’, South London community-cum-sound system Lemon Lounge (founded by Worldwide FM alumni), curated their own taste-making stage shining light on new talent at the forefront of the UK scene, garnering equal amounts of buzz as Californian artist and Grammy-winner Thundercat who performed as a special guest.
We Out Here is a destination for both enjoying what you love and discovering new sounds; an entire career's worth of sonic expertise and knowledge packaged into a weekend. After a seemingly infinite hiatus, live music is returning as a more thoughtful yet bolder and braver version of its former self with industry pioneers like Gilles Peterson at the helm. Legends make more legends, and there is no better way to experience the good that comes from sharing knowledge than at We Out Here. Add this to your summer 2022 list.