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The meaning and origin of the expression: A blast from the past

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Blast from the past

What's the meaning of the phrase 'A blast from the past'?

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Something or someone that returns after a period of obscurity or absence. It is normally applied to things that that were thought fondly of previously and are making a welcome return - particularly pop songs.

What's the origin of the phrase 'A blast from the past'?

Blast from the pastUsed first by US radio DJs when introducing old records. It isn't clear which DJ coined this, and no one lays especial claim to it. A strong contender has to be Jerry Blavat ('The Geator with the Heater'). Blavat's style was frantic and he was known for his impromptu 'stream of consciousness' verbal delivery. Here's an example from an article about him in 'The Progress', a Pennsylvania newspaper, from 1967:

"Kings and queens, yon [sic] royal teens, this is your Geator with the Heater coming to you on Big-Tahm Tuesday where we rock the big tick- tock, where we got the class to beat the blast from the past"

The article began with a dictionary of 'handy translations, straight from The Geator', including:

Groove, blast - great
Golden Oldies - old rock 'n roll songs

See other phrases that were coined in the USA.