Still Keeping It Peel – a bit more obscure

I’ve been back in the garage – this time to dig out some slightly more obscure vinyl that I was inspired to buy after listening to John Peel. I stacked up quite a pile but settled on this five for now (missing out on some Max Romeo, Lightning Hopkins, Autechre, Kenicke, Mambo Taxi, Sebadoh, Ten Benson all of which I’ll get round to recording).

Shut Up And Dance – The Green Man

Seem to remember this had some trouble with sample clearance as the orchestral part is by Riyachi Sakomoto from Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence (please correct me if I’m wrong 😉 ). This finished abruptly before the end.

Gunshot – Killing Season (Remix)

British Rap from the mid 90’s – with some nice fast rapping and wordplay and just enough nod’s to 80’s hip-hop and a feel for sounds like Senser to make this a real curiousity item…

Arcwelder – Cranberry Sauce

Always liked the stop start sound of the guitar work on this.

The Voodoo Queens – Supermodel Superficial

Some great shouty feminist pop

Ty Gwydr – Taith (Trip To The End Of The Universe)

This has to be one of my favourite ‘heard it once’ on Peel tracks ever – enough for me to trawl round most of Birmingham’s record shops looking for a copy and trying to pronouce the Welsh title. For the very helpful people in Plastic Factory to say “oh you’ll want the rack of Ankst records, we can’t pronounce any of the titles either.”

First of all – an obligatory mistake, playing the Ty Gwydr track at the wrong speed.

And then at the right speed 😉

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Keeping It Peel

My way of Keeping It Peel – I’ve been slowly recording significant vinyl records in my life onto YouTube. A lot of these I first heard on a Peel radio program (note: this isn’t a strict list). Somehow it seems appropriate to celebrate the life of John Peel with vinyl.

I started listening to Peel around 1987 when I was 14.  He would be on about 8:30 in the evening on Radio 1 and it fitted in with me doing howework. I keep listening all through my school and university years, even when the world of work arrived I’d be at least an occassional listener and ALWAYS recorded the Festive50.

Peel was a lifeline, an anchor, a reassuringly normal voice on the radio – but a very remarkable one too, his passion for music was phenomenal his breadth of taste WAS the point.

….. err…. this one ends abrubtly.

It was about surprise, the uncovering of something new and heart-stopping, something challenging, something precious, something that you *GOT* and it differentiated you from most other people because you shared that passion.

They day I heard John had died I was building a fence. I was building a fence with my brother in law who is the only person I know who has a personal connection to John Peel, he used to babysit for the Ravencroft family in the late 80’s / early 90’s (or more specifically his girlfriend did and he was along for the ride). He told me that he’d talked with John about the Cure (an enourmous love of his) and got away with calling him a fat bastard. Digging holes seemed appropriate that afternoon.

In the days that followed I found myself very upset, oddly upset – doing things like having to pull off motorways to have a cry on the way to work. I made my own tribute t-shirt and started to collate old recordings, whilst searching for show recordings on file-sharing networks and BitTorrent.

I used to run a John Peel dedicated station on Live365 (about 6 years ago) and I still own the Domain ‘johnpeelarchive.co.uk’ which I always feel has been a largely squandered opportunity where I managed to do absolutely nothing.

My idea following John’s death was to collect together tapes and recordings of shows and distribute from there. Fortunately lot’s of other people have had that idea and BitTorrent has been very useful to those who wanted a complete set of the Festive50 for example. Then I had kids…… and now there seems like no time available to do anything useful.

So in a small way this is my tribute to a man who turned me on to so much brilliant music, but even more improtantly taught me to continue to seek it out – to stay hungry for it, to stay curious.

Cheer’s John.

This one starts quietly …..