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Damon Albarn says meeting with Tony Blair put him off pursuing politics

The Blur frontman said he'd be "lying if I said I hadn't considered it"

By Charlotte Krol

Damon Albarn and Tony Blair pictured in a composite image.
Damon Albarn; Tony Blair. (Picture: Wikimedia commons/Henry W. Laurisch; Wikimedia commons/ U.S. Department of State

Damon Albarn has revealed that he’d considered going into politics before a meeting with Tony Blair left him feeling “terrified” about such a move.

The Blur frontman, who last month released his second solo album ‘The Nearer the Fountain, More Pure the Stream Flows’, said in a new interview that the 1997 meet brought an end to his ambitions.

Albarn told the Metro newspaper’s Guilty Pleasures column [via Music News]: “Politics is such a murky business. I would be lying if I said I hadn’t considered it when I was younger.

“I even went and had a strategic meeting with Tony Blair before he became prime minister, but that terrified me so much,” Albarn said.

“[I thought] ‘I don’t know if this is for me at all. I’m not a politician, I am a musician.'”

He continued: “I have strong views. Music is escapism. It’s not really there for the unpleasant truths of life.

“But I’ve always felt, ‘No, that’s the perfect place for it’. It can catch people unaware emotionally in a way nothing else can.”

Instead, the musician said that he channels politics into his music. ‘Polaris’, which features on his new album, takes its name from Britain’s nuclear attack defences.

“A big anxiety of my adolescence was nuclear destruction,” Albarn added. “It has now become third or fourth on the list of imminent doom and Armageddon.”

In other news, the singer also spoke to Metro recently about kickstarting conversations with his Blur bandmates to devise a reunion of some kind in the future.

Albarn, who has fronted the band since their formation in 1988, was speaking in a new interview about plans to revive the band. Blur’s last album was 2015’s ‘The Magic Whip’.

Asked if Blur are “dead and buried”, he responded: “Not at all.”

“I am just about to have a conversation with people about Blur and I would love to sing all those songs again. I miss the songs. I miss playing with Blur,” he said.

He added that a revival is “not something I would do just for the sake of it”.

“There has to be a really good reason to do it all again and then I will wholeheartedly engage with it,” he said.