Creation Stories Riots,Raves And Running A Record Label

Ok, since we have got things Scottish in mind l thought l’d write a Scottish themed item to serve the current times. I got hold of Alan McGee’s Creation Stories book which is the most up to date story of Alan’s life in the music business. It was tough growing up in Glasgow during the 60’s/70’s. It really was a depressing place to be. (Thank goodness for comedians like Chic Murray and Billy Connolly for making Glaswegians laugh). It was in a sense the pits. Alan Mcgee he had his tough times growing up, in fact he says it’s what made him the man he is. Somebody said later on in his life that he was a good actor, to which he replied he has been playing a character called Alan McGee most of his life.
Alan grew up in the Mount Florida area of Glasgow, which was nearby where l had dwelled once. l lived in Crosshill, nicknamed Angry Mountain. But that was in 1978 and that was kind of bleak. lt was here that he met fellow co-conspirator, Bobby Gillispie, who would would become famous as the lead singer of Primal Scream.
Alan moved to London in the early 80’s to start his now world-famous record label, Creation Records, and to put out records by bands he loved and thought deserved better recognition. I always loved a lot of bands that recorded on Creation and thought it was a brilliant label, with the likes of The Jesus and Mary Chain, Swervedriver, House of Love, Slowdive, Teenage Fanclub and Primal Scream to name just a few. To be honest l love most of the stuff that has come out on this label and Mcgee was great at bringing this stuff to the public. He wasn’t a one man operation; he had input from the likes of Joe Foster, Ed Ball and Dick Green and many others.
I have to say l read this book quickly. l had to force myself to put it to down it was that thrilling. l was totally immersed in it. l had read another book about Alan and creation called My Magpie Eyes Are Hungry For The Prize, The Creation Records Story, so in a way l was familiar with this book’s concept. Nevertheless, although, in some parts l knew some of the stories, it did not matter; it’s better to hear them from the horse’s mouth so to speak.
It’s a real shame that Alan had his come-apart-at-the-seams moment and could not enjoy the success with Oasis – his greatest signing and the band that would monopolise the Creation outfit. In the end, it got too out of hand and Alan moved on to start Poptones and had success with The Hives. He also started up the club, Death Disco, which was a brilliant night. l played at this club and it was ace.
Another thing that Alan excelled in was management. He had managed bands such as the House of Love and The Mary Chain so it was with no surprise he got asked to manage The Libertines who boosted the two songwriting talents of Carl Barat and Pete Doherty. The latter, who like a true artist, was a nutter, a trait that some would say Alan himself may have a bit of, though it would not be forthright to make any comparison. At present Alan McGee is back in the music game after a slight hiatus from the business, he currently has a new label called 359 records which he runs from his home in Wales and l’m sure he will discover more emerging talent to keep music alive.

Chris McDougall

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