I’m sad. Great DJ.
Oh my God.
Mind you, I’d no idea he was that old.
I’ve never heard him. Could those of you who have explain why he was so appealing? Why he was a legend?
I though he’d be around forever.
That might have come across unlike I intended. I just mean to say that I’m sorry I haven’t heard him. From the article, he seems to have been loved by many and varied folks.
Lib I’m sure a UK’er will be here shortly to talk to you about him but they may be too stunned.
Check out his tributes. This page will be HUGE shortly.
The man to me was the quintessential English man. Humble and fun loving with a appetite for life and all things musical.
He championed underground music and brought many of the bands that dominated his era to the notice of the British public.
He also had a great program on radio about him and his family and just lif in general.
A true great and I for one am actually very sad that he’s no longer with us
A great, great man.
He was a DJ who had his finger totally on the pulse of music. He wasn’t judgemental - he played everything and anything he deemed worthy of a listen. He “discovered”, or at least brought to the public’s attention, a vast array of new music acts and styles, from the obscure to the sublime. He also had an incredible number of bands playing live in the studio.
Not just that, but he’s been around forever. His career began in Dallas in 1962, when he was present at the arraignment of Lee Harvey Oswald. He then moved back to the UK to begin his monumental career. And he never stopped bringing new music to the forefront.
He was also a charming and gifted radio and TV presenter. Amiable, self-deprecating, funny, humble. He appealed to all generations.
I’m not exaggerating when I say that, at the point he died, he was probably the best-loved person alive in Britain.
I grew up with him in my ear, at night and every Saturday morning for the past few years, and I feel like I’ve lost a friend.
For a long long time he had a radio show that broadcast every weekday night where he would champion new or overlooked acts. Unsigned bands would record sessions to be broadcast (IIRC the Smiths first album actually was their Peel sessions). He was initially associated with prog-rock but started supporting punk as soon as it turned up. (IIRC again) His favourite song of all time was Teenage Kicks.
There’s probably a good biog’ on that BBC site (I’ll have a look in a mo’).
Basically the guy was an institution, I grew up with his show as I guess did paulberserker, GorillaMan and jjimm.
On preview I’m repeating what everyone else has said, anyway
The moment I read it on BBC news I turned to straightdope to search for a thread. His broadcasts were brilliant for me for much the same reasons that so many people loved them, they constantly exposed me to new music that I had no idea existed. Being a lover of music myself I am often confronted by not knowing what that’s available is quality and what is not, the vast majority of radio programming exposes one only to the same popular tunes over and over again, but John Peel was a source of this information, through his incredibly varied playlists I was able to find more artists to expand my music collection, his non-judgemental style always gave the listener a chance to make their own choices.
A great man, who will be sorely missed.
His BBC Obituary
That’s right. Nobody else could get away with playing with ten minutes of white-noise guitar-trashing on Sunday afternoon radio
Weren’t Lawnmower Death songs all just a few seconds long?
His show was broadcast live from the Glastonbury Festival for many years too, before they started showing it on TV (although he presented that as well).
I have an entire Sonic Youth gig from Brixton Academy, uninterupted, from Peels show around Christmas 91.
As well as about 15 or 20 C90 tapes chock full of stuff from when he did the late night Saturday/Sunday shows. I’m going to dig them out next time I go to my parents.
Also, about a million Peel Sessions by The Fall, The Wedding Present, and the Nirvana one, which has never been released. Man was on the ball, thats for sure.
I also recall him saying when he did his last ever radio show (knowingly ) after Teenage Kicks had played, his final record would be a rousing gospel tune, by Father Bones, or someone like that - it may have been called Dusty Bones though, if anyone knows.
Bill Nicholson on Saturday and John Peel today - my youth is being destroyed by the day.
John Peel’s show was an english institution - 10.02pm (after the news) every weekday night (in my day) that 12 bar blues (by Grinderswitch dontcha know)would herald two hours of stuff that was worth hearing, not necessarily something you were going to like (lots of it was god awful and he did have a thing for Scitti Politti that completely baffled me) but you never knew if the next record would be something as exciting and different as Joy Division, The undertones; XTC; The Slits etc.
The English punk and new wave scene would certainly not have existed outside the big cities oif it wasn’t for Peel.
Those of us who grew up in little country towns owe him a great deal.
Very difficult to take in.
Damn… my wife is going to be quite upset.
I dare say Boris will soon be telling us we are overdoing the grief.
I met him at a John Peel Roadshow at Leicester Polytechnic in 1979 and, after a short but pleasant chat (I was probably very drunk at the time), I asked him for his autograph. It read “John Peel Is Fat”. Marvellous bloke!