The Late Tony Wilson

Some of you may not be familiar with the name, Tony Wilson, but trust me when I tell you that his past work has influenced a great amount of alternative music that we listen to now. Tony was a popular news reporter in Manchester during the early 80’s, but to music fans he will always be known as the manager of Factory Records and the Hacienda Club. Factory Records is the company that created such bands as Joy Division, New Order, and the Happy Mondays. All of these bands were managed by Tony, who saw the true artistic talents of each one. These three bands alone created the “Madchester” sound that fused dance beats with punk/alternative melodies. The whole “Madchester” movement that started in the mid 80’s created the whole club scene that has since evolved into our current electronic and rave scene now. It was Tony who signed these bands, brought out their artistic value, and trusted them to make some of the most influential songs in the dance and alternative genre. Trust me when I tell you that without the Happy Mondays or New Order, their would not be any Chillville bands like Oasis, Travis, Kasabian, LCD Soundsystem, Gorillaz, or Massive Attack.

Most recently, he was a big part of the Happy Mondays reunion tour and album. He even introduced the band at this year’s Coachella Festival. Tony died of a heart attack at the age of 57 on 8/10/07.

Do yourself a favor after reading this blog. Go to your nearest Blockbuster and rent the 2002 movie, 24 Hour Party People. This is one of the best movies to come out this decade and shows the semi-fictionalized accounts of Tony’s life and the three bands that started it all.

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