Peel aches!

Okay, the subject is a personal play on words that only a few people may get, and it describes the way I feel at a certain time of night when a certain voice just isn’t there. There was a guy on the radio, the letters “DJ” don’t do him justice, and he was, for me and millions like me, the voice of late night solitude and musical exploration. His name was John Peel, and he had a late night show on BBC Radio 1 that refused to comply to playlists, or “pop culture”… In the musical haze of the early and mid-nineties he’d broadcast from “Peel-acres”, his own home, and the shows would be interspersed with conversations with his wife and children or comments about his dog along with perfectly crafted comments on the state of music, society, or the world today…

These shows ended, tragically, in late October 2004 when John Peel died while on holiday in Peru. Since then there have been many evenings when I’ve been driving home on a lonely road and wanted the friendly sound of his voice to keep me company. There hasn’t been a musical spokesperson who could take his place, but fortunately his fans have kept his voice alive, as can be seen on sites like “The Peel Tapes” which do their best to share his legacy with the digital world.

So if you’ve never heard the genius that was John Peel, check out “The Peel Tapes”, read his BBC obituary, and try to Keep it Peel!

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