Stephen Simpson Hillage (born 2 August 1951) is an English musician, best known as a guitarist. He is associated with the Canterbury scene and has worked in experimental domains since the late 1960s. Besides his solo recordings he has been a member of Khan, Gong and System 7.
He started with the band Uriel then left for college and they continued on as Egg. They reunited to record under the pseudonym Arzachel, then Hillage ended up with Kevin Ayers, then into Gong where he picked up on Daevid Allen's glissando guitar techniques that Allen had evolved from watching Syd Barrett play with a butter knife bowing strings.
Hillage became a virtuoso and the guitar sound evolved with echoes and reverb blending with synthesizers. He had a solo band after Gong and did some session work, and was a pioneer in new age ambient music and retired from recording for a while as he went on to be a prominent producer in the early 1980's, most known for his work on the Simple Minds albums of that era.
Some years later he was in a club and heard the Orb sampling his music and hooked up with them, and resurfaced with his duo with his longtime partner to record as System 7, aka 777 due to concerns from Apple over their operating system 7.
He reunited with Gong circa 2008 and toured with them in 2009 and 2010.
Links to Peel
Peel was aware of Steve Hillage's bands that he played for and continued supporting him by playing his solo material, as well as his work with the Orb and System 7. Steve Hillage also made the list of the Longest Gaps Between Peel Session Appearances between March 1976 with the National Health, where he was featured guitarist on the band's first session and 1990 with the Orb.
- 17 April 1975: The Salmon Song (LP - Fish Rising) Virgin
- 06 September 1978 (Paul Gambaccini): 'Not Fade Away (Glid Forever) (LP-Motivation Radio)' (Virgin)
- 22 January 1979: Salmon Song (LP – Live Herald) Virgin
- 22 January 1979: The Dervish Riff (LP – Live Herald) Virgin
- 22 January 1979: Castle In The Clouds / Hurdy Gurdy Man (LP – Live Herald) Virgin
- 24 January 1979: Searching For The Spark (LP-Live Herald) Virgin
- 29 January 1979: Its All To Much/The Golden vibe (LP-Live Herald) Virgin
- 26 February 1979: 'Talking To The Sun (album - Live Herald) Virgin
- 06 March 1979: Electrick Gypsies (album - Live Herald) Virgin
- 08 October 1979: Day After Day (LP - Open) Virgin
- 22 November 1979: Getting Better (7") Virgin
- 15 August 1992: Pentagramaspinn (v/a 2xLP - V) Virgin
- 30 January 1993: Saucer Surfing (7" - Not Fade Away (Glid Forever)) Virgin