Blur’s frustrated beginnings in Chile, stopped by the Pinochet affair

The London band had planned to stop in Chile in November 1999 to present their album 13. However, a few weeks before the show was due to arrive, they put it on hold for good.

There are only a few hours left until Get confused is presented on Chilean lands as part of the festival Wildlife Spring 2023 . Being one of headliners from the poster, the British group with hits like Song 2 And Beetle will be responsible for closing the first evening of the musical event in style.

This is the return of the English to Chile after several years. Their first performance dates back to November 2013, when they managed to dazzle the 20,000 supporters who were impatiently awaiting them on the athletics track at the National Stadium. Then they returned in October 2015 to take the stages of the Movistar Arena.

The group led by Damon Albarn also has a curious history with our country. Initially, the date of his debut was not 2013, but fourteen years earlier, which has long left his supporters with a bitter feeling.

How Blur saw its beginnings in Chile frustrated by the Pinochet affair

Before the arrival of November 25, 1999, everything indicated that the debut of the quartet made up of Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon, Alex James and Dave Rowntree would take place completely normally.

The plan was for them to present their sixth album, 13released the same year and which includes songs like Tender, Coffee and television And There’s no distance left to go. Even the label responsible for their catalog, EMI Music, had scheduled press conferences and other promotional initiatives.

However, with a few weeks to go, they have decided to permanently cancel the long-awaited show.

to blur
Blur had planned its debut in Chile for 1999.

There was only one reason to forgo the visit to Chile: the arrest of Augusto Pinochet in London. According to a note from Mercury of those years, The British embassy informed the group’s agency that protests and reprisals could take place from those who supported Pinochet.

After receiving this warning, the London quartet chose not to go through Chile to avoid difficulties. The rest of the tour through Latin America, which included other countries like Mexico, Brazil and Argentina, continued as normal.

Both at the record label and the production company, there were mixed feelings due to the determination of those running Blur.

“It was his agency that made the decision not to come, following the warning,” said Fernando Marino, production director at DG Medios. “The company gave Blur every guarantee that it would benefit from the same, if not better, security than other artists.”

The last recital that Blur gave in Chile, in 2015, before his appearance at Fauna Primavera.

“We never warned the group. Even they recently gave interviews confirming their arrival and it does not seem to us that anything too relevant happened to modify an itinerary that remained unchanged a week ago,” explained Cristián Rodríguez, executive director of ‘EMI Music.

Years later, Albarn himself would discuss this situation in an interview he gave to The third .

“In 1999 we came to South America, we had prepared everything to play in Santiago, but at the last minute the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of our country suggested that we not come because of a series of problems ( …) It wasn’t nice” said the musician in 2014.

In any case, it was not the first time that an international artist decided to suspend his exhibition in the country due to problems linked to Pinochet: this had already happened with Iron Maiden And Jamiroquai .

Source: Latercera

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