Stephen Richard Hackett was born on 12 February 1950 in Pimlico, south-central London to Peter and June Hackett- a day before his future Genesis bandmate Peter Gabriel. During his childhood, he had access to a variety of musical instruments, such as flute and harmonica. His younger brother was playing flute who ended up collaborating with his brother Steve their entire lives. In fact, Hackett did not pick up the guitar until he was 12 and at 14, he started to enhance his interest with chords and basic compositions.
As apparent in Genesis’ sound and his solo career, he was influenced mainly by classical composers, opera, and early blues, and proto-prog music. His inspirations from Bach, King Crimson, The Beatles, Mario Lanza, Peter Green, and many more caused home to perceive the guitar and rock music in a way that no one has thought before. This unorthodox vision caused him to contribute to the forward-thinking authentic music throughout his Genesis and solo career, along with inventing some guitar techniques such as sweep picking and tapping(no, it was not Eddie Van Halen) that changed the game of guitar playing.
After playing for a few bands for studio experiences and understanding the band dynamics, he fully shaped the ideal music that he wanted to create and placed an ad in Melody Maker for other musicians that have the same vision with an “Imaginative guitarist-writer seeks involvement with receptive musicians, determined to strive beyond existing stagnant music forms”. The ad was replied by the lead-singer Peter Gabriel since Genesis was looking for a guitarist at the time. Until the full launch of his solo career in 78, Hackett contributed and co-shaped the music of Genesis from 71’s Nursery Crime to 76’s Wind & Wuthering. After leaving the band for “autonomy”, he played with many contemporaries and expanded his influence on the music scene.
His solo work has evolved in each album, making him one of the rare musicians that always seeks for new and better. He always experimented with different genres and techniques, and one cannot shut their eye to the fact that he was one of the most important musicians not just for only last 50 years, but also for the history.
He is now currently playing the old Genesis albums live with his live-band, providing the long-time and new fans one of the best experiences one can imagine.