Read Margrave Of The Marshes by John Peel Free Online
Book Title: Margrave Of The Marshes|
The author of the book: John Peel
ISBN: No data
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Format files: PDF
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Reader ratings: 7.4
The size of the: 384 KB
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Edition: Transworld Digital
Date of issue: May 31st 2012
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John Peel is something of a national treasure in Britain and in the world popular music for his unceasing promotion of new music and unknown artists. Peel (real name John Ravenscroft) was a DJ for many years; in the US in the early 60s and then on pirate radio and finally the BBC form the late 60s until his death in 2004. Peel always promoted the odd, obscure and aspiring. He famously championed punk rock on his show after hearing the Ramones and was the first BBC DJ to do so. He was also a champion of reggae, hip-hop, garage, grime; the list is endless. He worked for the World Service and went on trips around the world where he picked up local music to promote on his shows.
The list of bands that Peel supported and assisted to fame is enormous and impressive from Pink Floyd in the 60s to White Stripes in the early 2000s. He was a great supporter of live music and toured endlessly all over the country. I remember him from my university days turning up and playing stuff that you would not normally find on the radio. In later years he also had a radio programme on Radio 4 called Home Truths which was not musical at all. It gave a platform to ordinary people to talk about all sorts of aspects of their lives; funny, eccentric, poignant. Peel (despite his reservations) was a great interviewer and knew how to put people at their ease.
This is part autobiography and part biography as Peel died before he finished it and it was completed by his wife Sheila. Peel’s part (by far the best part of the book) ends whilst he is in America and before his first marriage. The book does feel disjointed and the second part is rambling and overlong.
Peel is very honest about his early years He was sent to public school (Shrewsbury) and describes (with the self-deprecating humour he is known for) the horrors he and others underwent. The sexual abuse of younger boys by older boys was routine and institutionalised and in Peel’s case went as far as him being raped by an older boy. There has been a good deal of soul-searching about the various child abuse scandals in Britain recently. The origins and history must be partially linked to what we have put our children through in times past; linked, of course to the nature of male sexuality.
I must admit that Peel was a hero of mine; these days I don’t do heroes as everyone has feet of clay, as we all do. That brings me to the issues I have been skirting around. Peel married his first wife when she was 15 (he reportedly said he was misled about her age). He married in Texas and so the marriage was legal, Peel was ten years older. Peel also reports that because he was from Liverpool, when the Beatles broke in America he suddenly became very attractive to local teenagers. I know that in the 60s there was a much more lax attitudes to boundaries, but some of the stories and reports I have problems with. I know Peel married again and settled down to become a national treasure. It leaves me with questions about redemption; how do you atone for past misdeeds; what about the victims. It is a pity that Peel did not live long enough to answer some of these questions himself. All in all this feels like a very unsatisfactory review partly because I don’t have the answers. All I do know is that parts of this left a nasty taste and in some ways I wish I hadn’t read it.
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Read information about the authorEnglish disc jockey, radio presenter and journalist, broadcasting regularly from 1967, until his death in 2004.
Peel celebrated music with his eclectic taste. He was one of the first radio DJs to play psychedelic rock, reggae and punk. He also played classic blues, folk music and psychedelic rock, with an emphasis on music emerging from Los Angeles and San Francisco.
The 'Peel sessions' launched a lot of music careers. They usually consisted of four songs recorded by the artists live in the BBC's studios. These sessions were often the first big exposure for bands that would go on to become quite popular.
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