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Blur performing Parklife at 2009 T in the Park

Retrieved from Wikipedia:
Parklife on Wikipedia
"Parklife"
Single by Blur featuring Phil Daniels
from the album Parklife
Released22 August 1994
Format7" vinyl (jukebox only), 12" vinyl, cassette, 2 x CD
RecordedOctober 1993-January 1994
GenreBritpop
Length3:05
LabelFood/EMI
ProducerStephen Street, John Smith, Blur
Blur featuring Phil Daniels singles chronology

"Parklife" is the title track from Blur's 1994 album Parklife. When released as the album's third single, "Parklife" reached #10 in the UK singles chart. The song has spoken verses, narrated by actor Phil Daniels, who also appears in the song's music video.

The song won Best British Single and Best Video at the 1995 Brit Awards.

Background

A number of newspaper articles about the young middle classes' adoption of Estuary English appeared during the single's chart run, including one in The Sunday Times on the day the song entered the singles chart (although Daniels' accent is more obviously Cockney).[citation needed]

The song played a part in Blur's supposed feud with fellow Britpop band Oasis at the 1996 BRIT Awards when the Gallagher brothers, Liam and Noel, taunted Blur by singing a drunk rendition of "Parklife" (with Liam changing the lyrics to "Shite-life" and Noel shouting "Marmite") when the members of Oasis were collecting the "Best British Album" award, which both bands had been nominated for.

The track was written about the bands experience of Castle Park in Colchester, the town where the band lived.

Phil Daniels re-united onstage with Blur to perform a rendition of the song at the band's headline slot at Glastonbury Festival 2009 and at the band's concerts in Hyde Park, London in July 2009.

Music video

The song's music video (directed by Pedro Romhanyi) features Phil Daniels as a smarmy double glazing salesman (a homage to Tin Men), with Damon Albarn as his assistant. Other band members appear as various characters from the song, including Dave Rowntree and Alex James as a couple, with the latter in drag. At one point, Albarn is impressed to see a man (Graham Coxon) carrying a placard reading "Modern Life Is Rubbish", the title of Blur's previous album; on the reverse is written "End of a Century", the title of their subsequent single from Parklife.

The car used by Daniels and Albarn is a bronze coloured Ford Granada Coupe Mk1. In one part of the video, the Granada pulls up next to an Audi Cabriolet convertible and Daniels says "it's got nothing to do with your 'Vorsprung durch Technik' ya know". The driver, seemingly played by Alex James, grimaces back at him. Both cars then pull away at speed to reveal 'Parklife' written on the tarmac.

The video was reviewed on a 1995 episode of Beavis and Butt-Head. The characters stated Daniels bore a resemblance to Family Feud host Richard Dawson.

Advertisement

The song started to be played at football matches in the mid-1990s, later becoming a "football anthem" and featuring on albums like The Best Footie Anthems in the World...Ever! and The Beautiful Game, the Official Album of Euro 1996.

Thus, Nike aired a television advertisement in 1997 called Parklife. The advertisement featured the song and many famous footballers. The album received acclaim and later was rated the 14th best advert of all time by ITV 1 in 2005.

Reception

The song is still very popular today, with occasional radio plays and regular appearances on music television, in shows such as "The Best of... 1994" on The Vault. In May 2007, NME magazine placed "Parklife" at number 41 in its list of the 50 Greatest Indie Anthems Ever.

Track listings

  • 12"
  1. "Parklife"
  2. "Supa Shoppa"
  3. "To the End" (French Version)
  4. "Beard"
  • CD1
  1. "Parklife"
  2. "Supa Shoppa"
  3. "Theme from an Imaginary Film"
  • CD2
  1. "Parklife"
  2. "Beard"
  3. "To the End" (French Version)
  • Cassette
  1. "Parklife"
  2. "Supa Shoppa"
  3. "Theme from an Imaginary Film"
  • 7"
  1. "Parklife"
  2. "Supa Shoppa"
  • Note: the 7" vinyl edition was pressed for use on jukeboxes and was not issued commercially.

Production credits

  • "Parklife" and "Theme from an Imaginary Film" produced by Stephen Street
  • "Supa Shoppa" and "Beard" produced by Blur and John Smith
  • "To the End" (french version) produced by Stephen Hague, Blur and John Smith

Trivia

  • The song appeared in the 2007 video game Thrillville: Off the Rails
   

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