4 Mar 2009
Skylab's Managing Director thanks Tony Wilson for inspiration after winning the Anthony Wilson Original Modern Award at the Big Chip awards at bigchipawards.com.

He also recalls an interesting university project which involved the creation of a Factory Records CD-ROM:

"When I was at University in 1994, I was one of the first people in the UK to make an interactive CD for their final degree project. Very fittingly, the subject was the pioneering Factory Records. I interviewed Tony Wilson and Ben Kelly, the architect of the Haçienda and over time built a really good rapport with Tony.

The CD had an interactive Filofax (or FiloFaç as I called it) with the entire Factory Records catalogue listed, album covers, artwork, videos (including Madonna's first performance at the Haç), interviews with key people and when I eventually finished it and showed it to Tony he said, "I'm going to take this to London Records. This is going to be huge!" He was so enthusiastic about it and I became so caught up in that enthusiasm, such was the passion of the man. Needless to say it didn't go to London Records and it wasn't huge... but it didn't matter. I had my moment and my memory that still drives me to this day. Tony was an inspirational character and to have the award in his name is a personal achievement as well as an achievement for the studio. I have wonderful memories of that time and it's special to me that the award was given in his name. I would like to make a special and personal thanks to Yvette Livesey for her kind comments that were passed forward to us when we received the award."

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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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