John Robert Parker Ravenscroft (aka John Peel)

John Peel
John Peel

What sad, sad news to learn that legendary DJ John Peel has died suddenly while on holiday in Peru. I was visiting our local Roman Catholic community when one of the priests, Fr John, returned home with the news that John Peel had died suddenly, of a heart-attack.

I discovered John Peel rather late on, but when I did any opportunity I had I would tune in to his late-night Radio 1 show. What I loved about him was his gentle, down-to-earth nature on the radio and his passionate love for music that spanned almost endless genres and styles and moods. I used to enjoy how he ended his show on a Tuesday night, leading into the Rock Show with a heavier-than-heavy track by someone like Nalpalm Death. Often that track would be heavier and ‘nastier’ than any of the Nu-Metal that was (sadly) offered up on the Rock Show.

I shall miss him on the radio; a familiar, comforting uncle of music who disturbed and challenged, and pushed boundaries to introduce me, and thousands of others, to all sorts of obscure and wonderful pieces of music. I only hope there will be someone to fill that void on radio, to keep challenging those who would reduce popular music to a narrow selection of manufactured artists.

Published by

Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 49 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert (INFP), I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, play mahjong, write, draw and laugh… Scrum master. Latterly, web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and former warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.