Monday, 13 August 2007

Tony Wilson 1950-2007

I was sad to hear of the death of Manchester music legend Tony Wilson. I always admired him as a man who tread his own path. I think I first came across Wilson in the late 80s when he was presenting the music and arts show The Other Side of Midnight. I think this was around the time he was flirting with the moniker Anthony H. Wilson.

Wilson is of course credited with breaking bands such as Joy Division, New Order and Happy Mondays. He was always a man who had something to say and Fraser was quoting him to me only the other day.

As much as he was nicknamed 'twat' by all in Manchester he was always a guy who wanted to promote and get the best out of other people. Steve Coogan's portrayal of him in Michael Winterbottom's film 24 Hour Party People may have been cartoonish, but all in all it's a hugely entertaining film and Wilson himself provides an amusing commentary on the DVD.

Here's the obituary by Paul Morley from today's Guardian.

Below is the two part tribute to him from Friday night's edition of Newsnight. It features an interview with him when he knew he was dying and an upbeat panel who all worked with him including Paul Morley, Peter Saville and Richard Madley.

Below that he introduces The Stone Roses on TOSM in 1989.


Fraser said...

Always had time for the guy.

Rivanski said...

Good to see you leaving a wee tribute to Tony Wilson.

A great loss. I too was a local TV presenter (in Aberdeenshire), managing a band. I too did the shitey 'And Finally' stories about lock keepers, bell ringers and handgliding.

No matter what you think, he was an inspiring, energising character. I was absolutely disgusted by the comments left on the BBC News website, supposedly set up for folk to pay tribute. Instead, a large number of them were from soul-less pricks who said they'd 'never heard of him' or he was 'completely over-rated.' Or from Londoners saying 'he kept banging on about Manchester - that's all he was famous for.'

These stupid f*cks. Too thick to even ask WHY other people have left so many tender tributes, WHY Wilson was so important a figure in British music history?

Rest In Peace, mate.