January 1993 - "they might be giving me more time next year; then I'm going to introduce more guests doing half hour mixes.."
Pete Tong MBE.. Most of us will know the voice of dance music from Radio 1. The Essential Selection and Essential Mix became staple listening in the nineties and still carry on to this day. Originally a soul DJ Tong moved through the scene with appearances at various soul weekenders, a mobile roadshow, Invicta radio, Radio London and a job at Blues & Soul magazine. It was after this and a chance move to London Records that he became exposed to a new style of music that was surfacing in the UK – House, the mid eighties saw him work on the very first 'House Sound of Chicago' LP which for many was one of the first opportunities to buy a compilation concentrating on this new genre.
It was not until 1993 that we would see Pete head the new Essential Selection show. Interestingly he had appeared on the network previous to this hosting a 15 minute dance special that was featured on Peter Powell's show in the early eighties. With an incredibly varied career spanning three decades in music Pete Tong rightly acquired the moniker 'Ambassador of Dance Music' the Essential Selection and the soon to follow Essential Mix stand testament to one of the most popular music styles of our time. Below is one of the very first features on those early Radio1 shows..
Couriers rush into Egton House with records for Pete at random intervals right up to the last minute..
Article originally appeared in DJ magazine - January 1993