Blur are an English alternative rock band. Formed in London in 1989 as Seymour, the group consists of singer/keyboardist Damon Albarn, guitarist/singer Graham Coxon, bassist Alex James and drummer Dave Rowntree. Blur's debut album Leisure (1991) incorporated the sounds of Madchester and shoegazing. Following a stylistic change influenced by English guitar pop groups such as The Kinks, The Beatles and XTC, Blur released Modern Life Is Rubbish (1993), Parklife (1994) and The Great Escape (1995). As a result, the band helped to popularise the Britpop genre and achieved mass popularity in the UK, aided by a chart battle with rival band Oasis in 1995 dubbed "The Battle of Britpop".
In recording their follow-up, Blur (1997), the band underwent another reinvention, showing influence from the lo-fi style of American indie rock groups. Their next album, 13 (1999) saw the band members experimenting with electronic and gospel music, and featured more personal lyrics from Albarn. In May 2002, Coxon left Blur during the recording of their seventh album Think Tank (2003). After a 2003 tour without Coxon, Blur did no studio work or touring as a band, as members engaged in other projects. In 2008 Blur reunited, with Coxon back in the fold, for a series of concerts and have continued to release several singles and retrospective releases.
Links to Peel
Peel was not a fan of Blur's early material, but he did like their 1997 self titled released album, which had a lo-fi American indie style influence and from which he played some tracks. Peel invited the band for two sessions at Peel Acres and a music festival with Silver Apples at Meltdown, drawn up by Peel.
He also subsequently played some of Blur's later material and also some of Graham Coxon and Damon Albarn's solo career.
Damon Albarn was also a guest of John Peel's Record Box, when he talked about John Peel and his record collection.
Festive Fifty Entries
Two sessions only. #1 released on Bustin' + Dronin' (CD, 1998).
- Country Sad Ballad Man / Chinese Bombs / Movin' On / M.O.R. / On Your Own / Popscene / Song 2
- Bugman / Fried / B.L.U.R.E.M.I. / 1992 / Bonebag / Trimm Trabb / John Peel's Birthday Skank
- Misty Mountains
- Untitled Collaboration
- Essex Dogs
Other Shows Played
- 16 February 1997: M.O.R. (CD - Blur) Food (JP: You see, I knew these buggers would come good in the end.’)
- 26 February 1997: Chinese Bombs (CD - Blur) Food
- 05 March 1997: Movin' On (LP - Blur) Food
- 05 May 1997: Bank Holiday (CD - Parklife) Food (JP: "It's April 22nd... today on our calendar is Blur day... it's 8:30 in the morning... I've come out to walk the dogs... and already vans have started arriving...)"
- 05 May 1997: Beetlebum (CD - Blur) Food
- 28 May 1997: Popscene (Live At Peel Acres)
- 29 May 1997: M.O.R. (Live At Peel Acres)
- 10 June 1997: M.O.R. (Live At Peel Acres)
- 26 June 1997 (BFBS): 'On Your Own (Live At Peel Acres) (promo CDS)' (Food)
- 09 December 1997: Death Of A Party (7" Remix) (CD Single) Food
- 23 December 1997: Beetlebum (CD - Blur) Food (Alison Howe, Peel Show producer chose this track)
- 23 December 1997: Song 2 (CD - Blur) 1997 Festive Fifty: #11
- 19 May 1998: It's All A Blur (12") white label 12 BITE
- 04 June 1998: It's All A Blur (12") white label 12 BITE
- 22 October 1998 (& Thurston Moore): Root (CD - Root) Lo
- 24 June 1999: Trade Stylee (Alex Bugman Remix)
- 24 June 1999: Song 2 (Glastonbury Mix)
- 23 December 1999: Tender (CD - 13) Food 1999 Festive Fifty: #40
- 25 March 2003: We've Got A File On You (7") White label
- 17 April 2003: We've Got A File On You (7") White label
- 07 October 2003: Out Of Time (SFB Remix) (12") White label
- Radio 1 Vintage - John Peel: On Your Own (session)