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SBD Global/August 20, 2014/People and Pop Culture

BBC's James Alexander Gordon, Known As The Voice Of Football Results, Dies At 78

JAMES ALEXANDER GORDON, "one of the most recognisable voices in British broadcasting, has died aged 78," according to the BBC. Gordon "read the classified football results on BBC radio for 40 years before stepping down in 2013." Match of the Day presenter GARY LINEKER tweeted, "A voice we all know, the voice of the football results, James Alexander Gordon has died. Tottenham Hotspur 1.. Newcastle United 1.. #RIP." Nicknamed "Jag" because of his initials, Gordon "attracted an army of followers with his distinctive Scottish accent and unique style of delivery." He "would alter his tone of voice to indicate whether a result was a home win, an away win, or a draw" (BBC, 8/18). BBC Radio Sport Head RICHARD BURGESS said, "James was an iconic radio voice, who turned the classified football results on BBC radio into a national institution. He was also a true gentleman, who was loved and admired by his colleagues." Radio 4 newsreader and presenter CORRIE CORFIELD "was one of many who took to Twitter to pay tribute to the announcer." Corfield tweeted, "Always smiley, always the perfect gentleman, always a bit naughty. And what a voice" (London GUARDIAN, 8/18). The LONDON TIMES wrote "for generations of football supporters the sympathetic and avuncular inflection in Gordon’s voice as he read out the results on Saturday afternoon at 5pm would signal either euphoria or gloom." If he "read out the team’s name on an upward note, the listener could anticipate delightfully that their team had won even before he had read the score." Equally, the "downward inflection would prepare the listener for disappointment, while a flat voice signalled a draw." Gordon said, "In those days it was funereal when people read the football scores. I decided I would communicate better if I was in sympathy with the listener" (LONDON TIMES, 8/18). In Belfast, Guy Aspin wrote former England captain JIMMY ARMFIELD "led the tributes." Armfield, now a BBC pundit, "described his former colleague, who retired last year after four decades with the corporation and had been battling cancer, as 'something special.'" England goalkeeper BEN FOSTER tweeted, "RIP James Alexander Gordon. Saturday afternoons checking Teletext and listening to the footy scores was the best" (BELFAST TELEGRAPH, 8/19). In London, Kashmira Gander wrote former Everton and England midfielder PETER REID "praised the broadcaster's memorable voice." He said, "When you are growing up and the results coming in you always remember his voice. It was a big moment in the week of anyone who loved football, especially in the era before social media and instant television coverage." BBC pundit and former Wales player ROBBIE SAVAGE said, "Such sad news about James Alexander Gordon who has sadly passed away, what a fantastic man with a great voice. RIP James" (INDEPENDENT, 8/18).
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