John Robert Parker Ravenscroft, OBE (30 August 1939 – 25 October 2004), known professionally as John Peel, was an English disc jockey, radio presenter, record producer and journalist. He was the longest-serving of the original BBC Radio 1 DJs, broadcasting regularly from 1967 until his death in 2004. He was known for his eclectic taste in music and his honest and warm broadcasting style.
He was one of the first broadcasters to play psychedelic rock and progressive rock records on British radio, and he is widely acknowledged for promoting artists working in various genres, including pop, reggae, indie rock, alternative rock, punk, hardcore punk, breakcore, grindcore,death metal, British hip hop, and dance music.
Peel's Radio 1 shows were notable for the regular 'Peel sessions', which usually consisted of four songs recorded by an artist live in the BBC's studios, and which often provided the first major national coverage to bands that later would achieve great fame. Another popular feature of his shows was the annual Festive Fifty countdown of his listeners' favourite records of the year.
Peel appeared frequently on British television as one of the presenters of Top of the Pops in the 1980s, and he provided voice-overcommentary for a number of BBC programmes. He became popular with the audience of BBC Radio 4 for his Home Truths programme, which ran from the 1990s, featuring unusual stories from listeners' domestic lives.
JOHN PEEL AND FOOTBALL
"I always say, rather flippantly, but it’s not a million miles from the truth, that football supplies many of the requirements that other people seek and find in religion, with the difference that you can actually see the truth of it being demonstrated on the pitch every Saturday afternoon, and that’s enormously satisfying." - John Peel
"I find that football provides any number of useful analogies for life." - John Peel
Listeners to John Peel’s radio shows were unlikely to miss his fanatical devotion to Liverpool football team, which went as far as wearing a red and white suit at his wedding and giving his four children names that included references to the Anfield club. Favourite players, such as Kenny Dalglish, also inspired something close to worship. As a fan, Peel attended many Liverpool matches – including three European Cup finals – and was deeply affected by the disasters of Heysel and Hillsborough. In later years he went to fewer games, mostly those involving Ipswich Town, his local side, but his on-air comments left little doubt that his heart remained firmly with the Merseyside club.
From a wider perspective, the DJ seemed heartened by the emergence of the new fan culture that grew up around the game from the late 1980s, epitomised by the emergence of football fanzines. Nevertheless, he remained distrustful of the increasing commercialism of the modern game, along the motives of those who ran it, drawing a parallel with music:
Although both are run by vulgarians with nothing but contempt for the paying customers, the product itself in both cases retains the capacity to play upon the emotions in a matter entirely beyond the understanding of said vulgarians.
In both football and music, Peel appeared reluctant to dwell too much on the past:
I’m more concerned about what Liverpool do next Saturday than what they’ve done in the past. Their past history, although matchless, isn’t of particular interest to me … It’s the same with the music, when I say I’m more concerned about those records that I have in the back of the car that I’ll listen to this weekend than I am really even in the ones I’ve played in this week’s programmes.
Peel also played football from an early age and frequently commented that the only unfulfilled ambition in his life was that he had not played for Liverpool. When asked to name a luxury as part of his contribution to Desert Island Discs, he chose a football and a wall to kick it against.
Read more : http://peel.wikia.com/wiki/Football
American TV Cops were a UK based four piece active between 1994 and 1997. Coming from Lichfield in Staffordshire, the Cops released several critically acclaimed 7 inch singles - on their own Pest Records label - and recorded a session for legendary DJ John Peel before signing to UK independent label ‘Starfish’ which was an ill fated liaison and after becoming somewhat disaffected by their experience, the band split.
Led by ‘helium’ voiced singer Anthony Cluer, the Cops played fast and furious new wave, often likened to Buzzcocks and the Only Ones they were tagged with the ‘new wave of new wave’ label by the British press including Melody Maker and the NME.
A demo version of their first single, “Thirst”, was aired on Steve Lamcq’s Evening Session on BBC Radio One. When the song was officially released as a seven inch, the DJ made it his Single of the Week.
The band also enjoyed a close relationship with BBC Radio Derby DJ, Mark Sheldon, who interviewed them live on his show “Level Out” on two seperate occasions.
During their peak they had prestigious support slots with the likes of Shed Seven, Smash, These Animal Men, Deus and Bush.
The former members, Anthony Cluer (vocals & guitar), Dale Farrington (guitar), Steve ‘Sam’ Allsop (bass) and Andy Whitty (drums, percussion & vocals), are now scattered across the globe from London to the West Midlands toThailand to New Zealand.
American TV Cops singles
1. Thirst (Farrington/Cluer) b/w Sleeper (Cluer)
2. Atrocity Girl (Farrington/Thorpe/Cluer) b/w Whose Hall of Fame (Farrington/Cluer) & Brief Grief (Farrington/Cluer)
3. Cruiser (Farrington/Cluer) b/w Mouthwash (Farrington/Cluer)
John Peel Session (recorded 15/1/95 - broadcast 11/2/95)
1. Thirst (Farrington/Cluer)
2. Cruiser (Farrington/Cluer)
3. Captain Marvel & Pervy Dimo (Farrington/Cluer)
4. Lip Splint (Farrington/Cluer)
Listen : American TV Cops : Cruiser
Ivor Cutler (15 January 1923 – 3 March 2006) was born in Glasgow into a middle-class Jewish family of eastern European descent. He was a Scottish poet, songwriter and humorist. He became known for his regular performances on BBC radio, and in particular his numerous sessions recorded for John Peel's influential radio programme
Cutler was an anti-intellectual and noted eccentric, dressing in a distinctive style including plus-fours and hats adorned with many badges, travelling mainly by bicycle and often communicating by means of sticky labels printed with "Cutlerisms"
Cutler recited his poems in a gentle Scottish burr, and this, combined with the absurdity of the subject matter, is a mix that earned him a faithful cult following. John Peel once remarked that Cutler was probably the only performer whose work had been featured on Radio 1, 2, 3 and 4. Cutler was a member of the Noise Abatement Society and the Voluntary Euthanasia Society. He retired from performing in 2004, and died on 3 March 2006.
Watch : Ivor Cutler : Pass The Ball, Jim (includes footage of Peelie playing football)
The Sharks were formed in the late 1970's by guitarist Alan Wilson and were initially a 50's style Rockabilly band. A line up change in 1982 brought in Steve Whitehouse on slap bass and Paul 'Hodge' Hodges on drums. Within 2 weeks the trio had not only written and recorded their first album Phantom Rockers but had also signed to Nervous records - a new label that was spearheading the Neo-Rockabilly movement.
Although live performances are now kept to a minimum - due to individual members all being so busy, the Sharks are by no means dead in the water and are currently putting together a new studio album titled Apex Predator. Meanwhile a collection of EP tracks and other assorted Sharks songs that never made it to CD has just been released and is available from Raucous records.
Listen : The Sharks : Surfcaster
My Perfect Cousin was the first of two singles to be released from the band's Hypnotised LP (the second being Wednesday Week), and was released on 28 March 1980. The single reached number 9 in the UK charts - making it The Undertones' only Top 10 single.
The song was performed on Top of the Pops on two occasions: 3 April and 10 April 1980.
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