Alan McGee was the founder of Creation Records. First formed in 1983, it originally released limited edition 7 inch singles in editions of 1,000 copies, before progressing to also releasing albums from 1986.

Creation Records provided the start of the career for many bands including Primal Scream, the Jesus and Mary Chain, the Jasmine Minks, the Weather Prophets, and the House of Love. It was a label that always looked forward to the next scene, and which helped to pioneer both the new dance and rave scenes. Primal Scream’s 1991 third album, ‘Screamadelica’, was in particular ahead of the game. They were an indie band that went dance, and which had a massive hit which they are at the moment playing live again. Creation Records was also the main focus of the shoegaze scene, releasing records by both Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine.

A documentary film and history of Creation Records, ‘‘Upside Down - The Creation Records Story’, has recently been released on DVD and Blu Ray.

After Creation Records folded in 2000, Alan McGee formed Poptones, another label of love. He is now retired from the record industry. His biggest success remains discovering Oasis and bringing them to a worldwide audience.

In his third interview with Pennyblackmusic, he spoke about Creation Records’ legacy.


PB: Do you think Creation would have existed and you would have gone through all the hassle of running a label if Postcard Records had not already been a success?

AM: Postcard Records was never an influence. It was always Whaam Records! The Television Personalities’ Dan Treacy, Edward Ball and Joe Foster, who were all involved in that label, showed me that we could have our own label. They were each a massive influence on me.

PB: How would you say punk changed you?

AM: It made me feel that I wasn't alone. I was sixteen, and I felt as if I finally belonged to something and that was punk rock.

PB: Is it true that you and Bobby Gillespie from Primal Scream once had a bedroom band?

AM: Yeah, Bobby and Andrew Innes, the guitarist with Primal Scream, and I had a bedroom band when I was sixteen, Bobby fifteen and Innes fourteen called Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons. Bobby was great even then.

PB: Were you surprised at the success of ‘Upside Down' on DVD and Blu Ray?

AM: Yeah, I was. I like it as well which is more surprising than anything else.

PB: Who owns the rights to Creation’s back catalogue? For example, Slowdive’s catalogue has has been issued on Sanctuary, Cherry Red and now their eponymous first LP is out again on vinyl on a new label called Music On Vinyl.

AM: Mostly Sony. Some of the early records are owned by the bands.

PB: What is your favourite band on Creation Records and why?

AM: Probably Oasis, but I love the Scream. Without Bobby we would never have made it as a label. He brought me the Primals, the Jesus and Mary Chain and Teenage Fanclub, so 50% of the creative success of the label is down to him.

PB: After Creation Records, you formed Poptones. Was Poptones set up more as a hobby label?

AM: I wanted an internet label, ten years too early I suppose in some ways. It was a reaction to the way Creation Records had become corporate.

PB: You have met up in recent times with your son Daniel, who was adopted when he was five years old. He hasn’t had too many kind words to say about you in the press. Would you like to comment on this situation and how you feel on the subject?

AM: I first met Dan when he was sixteen. He was adopted by my ex-wife’s husband seventeen years ago when he was five. His name is now Dan Devine, not McGee, so it is what it is. We met eventually when he was sixteen. He texted me and we met, but unfortunately we never got along.

All I can say is that I wish him all the best personally and good luck with his band Flats. I hope that they do well for him.

PB: What do you spend your time doing now?

AM: As little as possible really. I read a lot and bring up my daughter who is ten, and I DJ and give talks sometimes if the money is stupid in weird and wonderful parts of the world, or if you are my friend I just DJ for fun i.e not much money. I am through with the music business though. I did it for twenty five years, and I worked from eleven years old in Glasgow, so I am happy where I am now with my life at fifty.

PB: What are your future plans?

AM: I get offered loads, but I don't want a real job.

PB: Musically you have said that you only listen to the Beatles and the Stones these days. Is that because they started the whole journey for you?

AM: It's really just the Beatles musically. In terms of books it is Aleister Crowley, Peter J. Carroll and Austin Osman Spare and in films it is Kenneth Anger...Love is the law.

PB: Thank you.















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