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Plaque tribute for rock band at spiritual home
Supergrass, from left to right, Mick Quinn, Gaz Coombes, Danny Goffey and Rob Coombes at The Jericho Tavern in Oxford to unveil a Performing Right Society plaque
CITY rock heroes Supergrass reunited yesterday to mark the unveiling of a blue plaque at their spiritual home.
The band, who split in 2010, reconvened at The Jericho Tavern in Walton Street to mark the honour.
The Britpop stars had five Top 10 albums and were a regular feature at the venue before hitting the big time in 1995.
An early appearance there as The Jennifers even saw the band land a deal to release a single, Just Got Back Today on Nude Records.
Legendary DJ Bob Harris introduced the four as they returned to the tiny upstairs stage for a Q&A.
The Steventon-based presenter said the venue had “been at the centre of new talent emerging from the Oxfordshire music scene now for nearly three decades”.
He said: “I love this venue. I love everything it stands for.”
Singer and guitarist Gaz Coombes recalled how he visited the pub from 1989 to catch bands like The Wedding Present, Inspiral Carpets and Oxford Indie icons Ride.
He said: “The mood and the atmosphere was just incredible here and we carried that on when we started playing here as a band.”
The 36-year-old, who still lives in Wheatley where he grew up and has recently embarked on a solo career, praised the “diversity” of Oxford’s music scene.
He said: “When we were growing up and living in Cowley Road, there was a real mixture of the students and the top hats and artists and musicians. That mix makes for a diverse scene over the years.”
After signing to Parlophone – home of The Beatles – the band had a number 1 album with I Should Coco and a number 2 hit in the singles chart with the hit song Alright.
Other singles included Caught By The Fuzz, Lenny, Going Out, Richard III and Sun Hits the Sky.
Asked if they could see the four sharing a stage again, Danny joked: “We would have to take all the tempos and keys down a bit!”
Prompted by a question from dad Chris, drummer Danny Goffey said of early shows: “We put up some Jennifers posters but we didn’t have any of the proper stuff to stick them up, so we made some pancake mixture up.
“We went out in the dead of night and it was really sunny the next day. We went back and they were all caked in pancake mixture!”
Chris Goffey told the Oxford Mail he was “very proud” of his son, adding: “I said to Danny ‘what are you going to do in your life?’ He said ‘the group is going to be big’.
“I thought ‘what would most fathers say?’ We supported him all the way through and he was quite right, the group was big.”
Oxford’s David Norland, who first released Caught By The Fuzz on his Backbeat label, said: “It is brilliant.
“It was great watching their career all the way through. They never lost their heads. They are always the same group.”
The plaque was unveiled by the Performing Right Society, which licenses music on behalf of thousands of artists.