Saturday, August 11, 2007

RIP - Anthony H Wilson

I met Tony Wilson a handful of times over the years and on one of those occasions, at New Music World in Glasgow, I gave him an Angel Corpus Christi cd. He was a very smart man and although I wasn't a rabid Factory fan, you can't get away from the fact that he was a true original. A character and a maverick. And he was only bloody 57, what's up with that?

There's a story that Claude Bessy (of Slash magazine) once made Tony a pirate copy of ET where he tacked the closing credits on right after the little guy dies. Now I'm not sure if that story is actually true but it rattled into my noggin every time I saw Tony Wilson on TV or wherever. I always figured that if I met him again that I'd ask if that indeed happened.

My thoughts are with his friends and family. Some of whom I know stop in here from time to time. Lefsetz tribute here.

This event will make the screening of "Control" next weekend at the EIFF even more intense.

1 comment:

Martin said...

Anthony H was on BBC tv about 2 months ago and he looked very ill. He said he'd been battling kidney cancer since last year. His spirit appeared still strong but he was walking with a stick and was looking very gaunt. The heart attack that took him was probably a blessing in many ways.

Always opinionated and not everyone's cup of tea he had a lot of guts and made things happen that very much went against the trend. One of my favourite memories of him was non music related. In the summer of 1974, when he was a 24 year old Granada Reports tv news reporter, he was out and about in Liverpool asking the locals their opinion of the just breaking news about Bill Shankly (the legendary Liverpool football club manager) announcing his retirement. Most of the locals didn't know and Wilson was clearly getting a bit of a thrill from telling them to see their shocked reactions (he was a life long Manchester Utd fan).

He was the first person to put the Sex Pistols on tv on 4 Sept 1976 when they were the featured band on the ground breaking Granada show "So it Goes" performing "Anarchy in the UK", 3 full months before the Bill Grundy "Today Show" debacle in London. "So it Goes" was Wilson's own show and the 19 broadcasts in 76/77 are a who's who list of the new bands of the time including Iggy Pop, Patti Smith, Blondie, Elvis Costello, Ian Dury, Buzzcocks, The Clash & the Banshees

No doubt the coming days will see "24 Hour Party People" rerun and a lot of old footage dug out of the archives but I hope what gets featured is more of Wilson talking passionately about the many subjects he believed in from music to football to journalism and many others.

R.I.P.