Tuesday, October 26, 2004

John Peel, 1939-2004

Very sad news from the UK, with word that BBC disc jockey and alt-music legend John Peel has died of a heart attack.

I came somewhat late to alternative and independent music and even later to Peel fandom, but I have always been impressed by his nearly infallable taste, panache, and willingness to give unknown and unusual bands unheard-of exposure -- in the process, making many of them superstars, and connecting untold others to like-minded fanbases all over the world.

The BBC ran with Peel's death as a front page story. His institutional legacy is less apparent in the States, but I was able to pick up his obit on the AP wire. As radio increasingly turns to political talk and equally mindless music, he may well be remembered by future historians as the last DJ who mattered.

No comments: