26 Sep 2007
Where are they now file 
Colin Sinclair, one-time manager of one-time Factory artists The Railway Children and A Certain Ratio and now Chief Executive of Midas - the inward investment agent for Manchester - is interviewed in the latest Manchester Evening News.

"Mr" Sinclair rose from the ranks of Salford University Federation of Conservative Students to become the SUSU Entertainment Officer in the early eighties. After a stint as an independent Manchester promoter (first gig Lavolta Lakota @ Deville's!) Colin invested in property: renovating a dilapidated Victorian school building and turning it into the Boardwalk venue (of Nirvana fame) and rehearsal rooms (home to ACR, Happy Mondays and Oasis).

After managing the The Railway Children's releases on Factory Records (FAC 162, FAC 167 & FACT 185) and the signing of A Certain Ratio to A&M, Sinclair eventually sold The Boardwalk building in the nineties before going on to "produce major televised events like the Commonwealth Games handover in Manchester in 1998 and the opening of the Welsh National Assembly in Cardiff in 1999".

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A Certain Ratio

"Manchester, 1978. In the beginning there were four: Jez Kerr (bass), Martin Moscrop (guitar/trumpet), Peter Terrel (guitar/effects) and Simon Topping (vocals/trumpet). Four thin boys with a name borrowed from a Brian Eno record, the intense, drummerless quartet initially drew influence from Wire, Eno, the Velvets and Kraftwerk, and gained a manager in Anthony Wilson of Factory Records.

"May 1979 saw the release of their first ACR single, the dark All Night Party, although the sound and musicianship of the band would be transformed by the arrival of funky drummer Donald Johnson (DoJo) in August. Over the next few months the band gigged widely, often with Joy Division as part of Factory packages, and recorded demos with producer Martin Hannett as well as a Peel session. Their support slot with Talking Heads on their UK tour in December 1979 set David Byrne on a new course, and provided the compelling live half of their chic cassette package The Graveyard and the Ballroom. Post-punk, ACR now reflected the influence of Funkadelic, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, The Bar Kays and James Brown."

- intro to ACR Biography by James Nice (LTM)

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