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On this day:

John Peel Passes Away

Keeping It Peel

A true music pioneer and legend was lost today in 2004, as the great John Peel passed away aged 65. An avid radio fan from an early age, as a young man he travelled to the United States and started DJing in 1961 at a local Dallas station before returning to the UK and working on pirate station Radio London with his groundbreaking show The Perfumed Garden. In 1967 he was one of the first DJs on the brand new BBC Radio 1 network, hosting the show Top Gear, which ran until 1975.From the off, Peel championed underground artists and non-mainstream music, bringing many acts to the public consciousness. His willingness to play unsigned artists led to a deluge of submissions from hopefuls. Once, after returning from a holiday, he found that 173 LPs, 91 12 inches and 179 singles had been sent to him in his absence. Thanks to his vision and pioneering spirit, he shaped the music tastes of many generations. He is greatly missed.