The new memoir from guitarist for Blur Graham Coxon, Verse, Chorus, Monster!, engrossingly recounts his fascinating life story, from his upbringing in England and Germany where his father was stationed with the British Army, to meeting future bandmate Damon Albarn in secondary school in Colchester, Essex, to forming Blur at Goldsmiths art college, where he befriended bassist Alex James and hung out with people like Damien Hirst.
Graham Coxon spoke to Paul Nolan of Hotpress, and shared his experience:
Particularly the last two years, out of the last four have been completely wild. No, I couldn’t have predicted how much has changed since last year. I mean, my life has transformed in ways that seem hardly conceivable.
When asked about whether Verse, Chorus, Monster! born out of lockdown, he said:
Not much; Faber had helped me prepare for it for a long. I considered writing a book that included etchings and other types of artwork. After then, it sort of fell asleep for a while until we revived the idea. We crafted it to read more like a memoir with a focus on art. In a previous book, Alex discussed a lot of the antics that Blur engaged in.
These words have helped us understand the mindset of Graham Coxon, but when it comes to the culture of the 90s, Graham was open to talk about things that happened, and how they were perceived back in the day, or are done to this day by reputed music experts and columnists. He said:
It was strange, people did slag each other off within the British groups. I always thought, ‘F**k, we’re all striving to do the same thing. We all probably like the same bands and yet we’re all slagging each other off!’ But it was a matter of life and death for our careers at that point. And we were competitive young men, mostly, I suppose. So that’s how it was. But I find the constant encouragement these days a little bit sickening. Maybe that’s cos I had it so hard in the ’90s. Now everyone’s so nice to each other I want to puke.
When asked about how Blur changed things in their album, and if Damon made the call, Graham Coxon said:
I don’t know what the changes of look were. I suppose it went from baggy, to mod, then back to baggy again, didn’t it?! (laughs). The thing is, we were scruffy fuckers, really. I’ve been realising that recently, when I go to see groups now, and they’re wearing really nicwe suits and looking chic. We were just wearing some work clothes that we were comfortable in. A pair of Vans or desert boots, some jeans and a t-shirt. Damon would go to the box of Fred Perry t-shirts in the corner of the dressing room, and pick one out and put it on. I don’t know if we changed our look that much, did we?
Graham Coxon is an integral part of Blur, and he is one of the best in the group. He has a conversation on the hand, and talked about dressing, That was probably just a result of the clothing in the area. He said:
I believe Damon frequently wore Maharishi pants, whereas I began to don Stussy clothing as a result of my skating activities. However, I don’t believe Alex and Dave have changed significantly. Alex, after all, never gave a crap about clothing. Dave would dress in a Fred Perry, jeans, and DM shoes. Damon and I may have moved around a little, but my uniform has always been jeans and a striped t-shirt. I suppose I’d wear skate shoes, Grand Royal, and Stussy t-shirts in moderation. Not really stylish. I believe we basically made an intuitive adjustment when we saw what Damon was wearing, so it wasn’t truly innovation.
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