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Friday, 4 October, 2002, 14:43 GMT 15:43 UK
Coxon talks of Blur exit
Blur accept an award in 1995 with Graham Coxon (r)
Blur were massively popular in the mid-1990s
Blur guitarist Graham Coxon has told a music magazine that he was informed by the band's manager his services were no longer required.

Coxon told Q magazine he had been treated twice last year in psychiatric hospitals for drink and depression, but had now been sober for 10 months.

Last month, the band's management said the guitarist was no longer recording with the band and that his future with them was being considered.

But Coxon told Q while he was "officially" still in the band, negotiations were continuing over his departure.

Blur with Coxon (centre)
Coxon (centre) brought alternative influences
As well as being a founding member of Blur, Coxon was credited with helping the band move towards a more alternative guitar sound for their self-titled fifth album.

Coxon told Q the situation at the moment was "difficult".

"This is being negotiated now. Officially I'm still in the group. But maybe spiritually I haven't been for a long time."

A short stint with Blur in the studio for the latest album earlier this year was followed by a call from the band's management.

"Our manager, Chris Morrison, told me my services weren't required anymore. It was something to do with my attitude," Coxon is quoted as saying.

"Although I felt I was going about my work honestly, perhaps they mistook honesty for attitude.

"There's a total problem with honesty and communication in Blur at times."

The guitarist denied reports he had fallen out with other members of the band.

Clash denied

At the end of August, Coxon also issued a categoric denial of rows with lead singer Damon Albarn.

But DJ and producer Norman Cook of Fatboy Slim fame set tongues wagging at the beginning of September when he revealed Coxon was no longer recording with the band.

The guitarist said there had been "no row, no clash", and that problems had been purely professional.

Coxon has produced a number of solo projects, including his fourth solo album The Kiss of Morning released on 14 October.

Albarn has also branched out with side project Gorillaz achieving commercial success and a well-publicised foray into west African music with musicians from Mali.

See also:

06 Sep 02 | Entertainment
29 Aug 02 | Entertainment
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15 Apr 02 | Entertainment
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