ANTHONY H. WILSON: 1950-2007

“I’m not afraid, not at all, I watch them all as they fall, but I remember when we were young”

Writer, journalist, presenter of the legendary ‘So It Goes’ and of course boss of Factory Records, Anthony H. Wilson died on Friday 10th August aged 57 from cancer.

Like allot of younger people, I only really found out about Tony Wilson through the brilliant 2002 film ’24 Hour Party People’. After all, I was still wearing nappies when Factory Records was in it’s prime. It was a film that painted him as a self-obsessed, pretentious egomaniac. But it also showed his ‘Fuck the money’, ‘Lets make art that endures’ attitude that made him a thoroughly likeable, nay heroic character. Indeed this approach made little or no money for himself or his artists but what wondrous things they produced with him at the helm, cocooning his bands from record-industry worries like “Mass appeal” and “Uncommercial”. If mankind survives to reach out into the stars in a thousand years time, there will still be teenagers dressed in black space-suits listening to ‘Unknown Pleasures’.

Here is the Factory Records holy-trinity, three of the finest, most groundbreaking singles to have come out of Britain:

Joy Division – Love Will Tear Us Apart mp3
New Order – Blue Monday mp3
Happy Mondays – Step On mp3

Here are some great Wilson clips from YouTube: Interview In Hulme / Tony Meets God – 24HPP Clip / Short Tony Wilson Doc / The Fall on SIG / Joy Division – Transmission / Sex Pistols on SIG / Newsnight Obit Part 1 / Newsnight Obit Part 2

Click here to buy the ’24 Hour Party People’ DVD from Amazon.

Click here to search Ebay for a copy of the out of print 4-disc set ‘Palatine: The Factory Story’ on Ebay.

A final note, as of 12.02 pm GMT… Simon Cowell is still alive.

3 Comments to “ANTHONY H. WILSON: 1950-2007”

  1. Tony aka [Anthony H] Wilson was indeed a tremendous champion for good music and the Manchester scene in particular but he could also be a dickhead. In 1979 I was on the door [entry £1] at the old West Indian Centre on Carmoor Road, Manchester at an Anti-Nazi League fundraiser. The headline band were Manchester legends The Naughty Boys with support from The Worms, whose leader Wayne seemed to have caught Tony’s ear [or eyes]. Tony arrived during the Worms’ set and asked me how long much longer they’d be playing. I told him I didn’t know and he paid the entrance and went in during what turned out to be their last song. He was back at the end of the song highly agitated and demanding his entrance money back – a measly pound! I just said to him “You need a pound?” and he went quietly…………

  2. I’m listening to the xfm podcast that was made in tribute to Tony. I have always held him in high regard and after hearing this I am even more in awe of this genius.

    The Manchester John Peel. RIP.

  3. I don’t even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great. I do not know who you are but definitely you’re going to a famous blogger if you are not already 😉 Cheers!

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