Sunday, September 23, 2007

Blair through Blur - an interesting companion piece

A weird experience reading Alex James' Bit of A Blur (his autobiographical
recounting of the rise and rise of Blur) and Alastair Campbell's Diaries: The Blair Years, back to back - a bit like a history teacher of mine who insisted on reading the Morte D'Arthur acccompanied by Sibelius 4th....complimenarity, eat your heart out!

for example, Alex is astounded at meeting famous (really famous) people like royals
and the Old Brigade/royalty of rock, and Blur are a bit downhearted when they go to tour america to support the release of an album the day kurt cobain blows himself away and Grunge comes to town - Campbell seems similarly besotted with Diana, and famous US Clinton type people, and is upset when the press dont report his beloved T.B.'s wonderful works in favour of some lurid tabloid tale. Oh, and both feature silly abbreviations of names (everyone in Blur-land is reduced to one syllabul, every one in Blair to Reggie Perrin's style dual-initials). Oh, and people namecheck awfully the whole time, and hang out in Camden (the awful Good Mixer - knackerish pub I used to avoid near Arlington House (doss house), or the Camden Brasserie (knackerish faux-french place which is always full of people trying to sit next to famous people).

One difference (and this may be key to Blur getting my vote over New Labour every time) - Alex expresses remorse at his bad behaviour but admits that a) it was fun and b) rock musicians are MEANT to behave this way - its their job. Hey, and Blair had the poor taste to invite Oasis to No. 10, not Damon:)

There are loads of other parallels, and i wont spoil either book by reciting them here, but suffice it to say that Blur didn't go on to invade Iraq, and Zlex dance music taste isn't bad...

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