Saturday, January 24, 2009

Alex James from Blur: Coldplay were 'ordinary'

This is quite a funny article that I just found on the BBC's Newsbeat page. It shows how easy it is to misjudge a new act. Personally, I've been right about some artists in the past, but made some major misjudgements too. For instance, I was totally wrong about the Spicegirls back in the days (I was convinced they'd never make it) and I also am starting to take back my earlier judgement on Katy Perry. I expected her to be a one-hit wonder, but 'Hot 'n cold' ended up growing on me & 'Thinking of you' definitely shows that she is way more talented than I ever gave her credit for.

Anyway, this is that Newsbeat article:

Blur's Alex James has said that he passed on signing Coldplay to his record label in the 90s. The bassist went to see them with his fellow label heads, artist Damien Hirst and late Clash frontman Joe Strummer, but thought they were "ordinary".

"Then again, I still think Coldplay are a fairly ordinary band, although the singer is good," he wrote in The Spectator magazine.

James compared them to The Beatles and Blur - all found it hard to get a deal.
"We all thought they were ordinary and passed on them," he wrote. "I think everybody did, except Parlophone, just like [what] happened with The Beatles - and Blur."

Decca Records rejected The Beatles in 1962 before they signed to Parlophone, famously declaring "guitar groups are on the way out".

James, who will again play with Blur when they reform for a series of gigs this summer, explained that he, Hirst and Strummer preferred forgotten indie band Murry The Hump to Coldplay.