Hugh Hopper (April 29, 1945 — June 7, 2009) was an English bassist from Whitstable, Kent, that gained global renown with jazz-rockers Soft Machine, premiering his signature fuzz-bass sound on 1969’s Volume Two and appearing on the band’s subsequent four albums.
In 1973, he released the experimental solo album 1984 on CBS and also appeared on Freedom Is Frightening, the first of two albums by Stomu Yamashta‘s East Wind, which also included guitarist Gary Boyle. The following year, Hopper played on the first two albums by Boyle’s spin-off combo Isotope.
In 1977, Hopper cut his second solo album for Compendium Records and collaborated on several recordings with saxist Elton Dean and keyboardist Alan Gowen. When joined in 1979 by drummer Pip Pyle (Delivery, Hatfield and the North, National Health), they became Soft Heap; “Heap” being an acronym of the four member’s first names.
During the subsequent three decades, Hopper kept busy with numerous solo and collaborative projects, including a late-1980s stint with In Cahoots, the jazz-rock supergroup led by guitarist Phil Miller (Delivery, Matching Mole, Hatfield, Nat. Health). In 1995, Hopper partnered with Seattle/Portland musician Fred Chalenor (Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore) for the avant-jazz/rock project Hughscore.
- 1984 (1973)
- Hopper Tunity Box (1977)
- Cruel but Fair (1977 • Hopper / Dean / Tippett / Gallivan)
- Monster Band (1979)
- Two Rainbows Daily (1980 • Hugh Hopper & Alan Gowen)
- Mercy Dash (1985 • Hopper / Dean / Tippett / Gallivan)
- A Remark Hugh Made (1994 • Hugh Hopper & Kramer)
- Hooligan Romantics (1994)
- Adreamor (1995 • Hugh Hopper / Mark Hewins)
- Carousel (1995 • Hugh Hopper Band)
- Bracknell-Bresse Improvisations [archival] (1996 • Alan Gowen & Hugh Hopper With Nigel Morris)
- Somewhere in France [archival] (1996 • Hugh Hopper & Richard Sinclair)
- Huge (1997 • Hopper / Kramer)
- Different (1998 • Hopper / S. Klossner)
- Cryptids (2000 • Hopper S.Klossner)
- The Swimmer (2000 • Jan Ponsford, Frances Knight, Hugh Hopper & Vince Clarke)
- Flight’n Shade (2002 • Hugh Hopper & Micaël Gidon)
- In a Dubious Manner (2003 • Hugh Hopper & Julian Whitfield)
- Jazzloops (2003)
- The Stolen Hour (2004 • Hugh Hopper & Matt Howarth)
- Numero d’vol (2007 • Hugh Hopper, Simon Picard, Steve Franklin & Charles Hayward)