From the archive: Ten Crazy Creation Facts
Creation had a great relationship with the NME, which for many years was a weekly bible to the world of music, in those days they could make or break bands whenever they chose. In February 1994 NME ran a two-part special celebrating 10 years of Creation Records.
During the run many of the bands were interviewed, I’ll try and put a load of those interviews online in the next few weeks, but in the meantime here are ten facts published at the time.
- The Creation warehouse is run by Graham Gillespie, Bobby’s brother.
- The main reason why the first Creation release, The Legend!’s ’73 in 83′, is so rare is because it sold so badly that Alan McGee kept most of its 1,000 copies under his bed. Later, after he and the legendary one fell out, he had the entire stock melted down.
- Ed Ball has been at Creation since the start but no-one can explain what he does. “He’s just Ed Ball!” says Alan McGee. “I think somebody called him an executive without a portfolio. Basically, Ed’s the vibe”. Ed has featured in at least five Creation bands and currently plays keyboards with The Boo Radleys.
- Alan McGee first met Joe Foster when Foster approached him at a Television Peronalities gig, produced a taxi receipt and announced that McGee owed him £8. He didn’t get the money but became McGee’s business colleague until the mid-’80s, when he went to Rough Trade’s Christmas party and punched a RT employee. “I was in the middle of re-negotiating my deal with Rough Trade says McGee, and it’s not really the best negotiating technique.”
- If it hadn’t been for Baby Amphetamine, The KLF might never have existed. Bill Drummond was on Creation at the time, and when McGee played him the Baby Amphetamine single he resolved to make a hip-hop record. A year later The JAMMs were born.
- Apart from McGee himself, Biff Bang Pow! featured business partner Dick Green, one-time NME picture researcher Phil King (now with Lush), Dave Evans who went on to play with The Jesus And Mary Chain, and Ed Ball (of course).
- One happy result of the Sony deal was that Alan McGee got to meet Michael Jackson in Tokyo last year “I freaked him out with my Scottish year. dialect” he says. “I was photographed being embraced by Michael, although Sony have yet to come up with the pictures. I thought he was a nice bloke…”
- Conclusive proof of McGee’s champion ligger capability comes in the fact that a few months ago he met none other than Brian Wilson at a Madonna party. “He was busy dancing away, holding four beer bottles a bit like a middle-aged Bez. There was no music on at the time!”
- Although he now resides at the Mondrian, Mr McGee’s LA crash-pad used to be the legendary Chateau Marmont. “I had to stop going there because Kim Fowley started banging on my door at 4am demanding that I sign him to Creation. He still rings me up to play backing tapes down the phone and to insist that Bobby Gillespie does the vocals!”
- Until the Sony deal, Alan McGee’s father owned a share in the company. After the Sony deal he could afford to give up his job as a panel-beater. “When you’re 61,” says McGee, “you don’t want to be hitting cars.”
Given away with the magazine that week, was a cassette called ‘The Mutha of Creation’ featuring tracks from The Boo Radleys, Sugar, Teenage Fanclub, Ride and a then unknown Oasis. Listen below…