Since i’m on the theme of the record industry here is another riff on the darkside of the music biz.
Our manager Goff was absent , a chronic Cocaine habit kept him up all night and in bed most of the day , at times like these you hoped that things would get better but they just getting worse.
The record company by that time had got sincerely fed up with The Darkside , it was not the quality of music that displeased them but the behaviour of Goff and the band which finally evaporated whatever goodwill or trust that existed.
Internally the band had problems from the get go , Beggars money was an instant corrupting influence , Rugby drug squad were being fed information by a local junky Clive Haddon , a verminous creep who put Nick Hayden the band’s vocalist in prison .
Nick had problems and was not really enjoying the way his band was developing , things were just not working out for him , I hoped that we would work through our problems and eventually find an equilibrium , the drug busts were a major disaster which destroyed Nick.
Goff had a blasé attitude towards the drug squad despite serving time at her majesties pleasure for drug offences , Goff delighted in the cat and mouse games , the Police followed him by helicopter from the M1 motorway and set up a road block in Rugby , Goff got away by dumping his car and taking to the old railway tracks like a runaway fugative , he would wave in the street at the diminutive weasel who hounded us like he was a great friend , I thought it was odd but that was Goff’s way of telling him to go fuck himself.
The DS were in those days a real menace to the benign society of casual drug users and a minor threat to the main dealers who seemed to be exempt from the petty empty headed attempts at law enforcement , they hated us because we were making something of ourselves more than the human garbage that polluted the town with narcotics !
Fortunately somehow we survived , Nick did not , a spell in the big house broke him and he just kept on a downward trajectory until he left the band and the town.
Beggars were nice people , Martin appeared benign and somewhat distant, a little aloof maybe .
They never knew about our troubles back home, we just pretended everything was hunky dory when in reality life was a battle to stay healthy and sane , Goff was feeding us Cocaine all day and night and our grip on reality became quite tenuous .
Beggars was a tight operation and one that returned handsome profits , Martin striking lucky in the early years with the odd ball synth pop act Gary Numan , from a geeky University grad working in a statistics office to the head honcho of a major record label , it was an impressive achievement but nothing really to do with Martin’s skill or business acumen , it was just simple get lucky economics on a large scale , it was easy money and with this easy money he built his empire .
So Martin was the mercurial character who hid in his office most of the time , Roger was the A and R man , I have no idea why a useless lump like Roger existed , I never really understood what he was about until the band split and then Roger treated us like shit .
What was the oddest thing about Beggars was that from the outside Beggars-Momentum Music , 4AD ect all appeared as separate concerns when in reality they were all in bed with each other having a very close relationship.
The bands were certainly problematic for Beggars but so was having a goon like Roger as an A and R man , and a hippie turned rampant capitalist as the boss , despite the benign appearance Beggars were not a likeable company or an especially honest one since the close relation ships gave each other a clear advantage to manipulate the market in a way other labels could not.
In the end both Beggars and the publisher Andrew Heath made the decision to bury us and all these years later we are still in the same position.
Andrew Heath has been a busy bunny and it would take a fair amount of research to get to the bottom of his story but from my perspective he was another of the music business takers , he knew the industry and he knew the methods to make gains , his publishing company grew in tandem with Beggars , at a time before he had been awarded a MBE , Andy was similar to Martin , he kept his distance and showed little signs of having any interest in us .
Andy sold Momentum to Universal Music , none of the artists were informed of the sale , in my opinion the deal stunk , a little bit of research revealed Andy to be the director of over 40 companies , some repititions , the same company popping up then being shut down , why ? well it’s one way of avoiding capital gains tax.
2015 and my wife buys a cd , it was funded by The Momentum Music Fund , maybe I am wrong but is Andy trying to dig himself out of a potential difficult and contentious situation ?
Perhaps you understand why The Darkside are kept permanently in the dark , buried in the vaults of Beggars and Universal Music , it is not just the music they want buried but the people.
The consequence has been dire for us ,we tried to talk to them but every time you got stonewalled , the leper status still in full force , this is mainly to do with Martin and Andy’s lofty position within the music industry , they both are at the higher echelons , an elite , in stature and financially .
I don’t think a resolution could ever happen but as long as a part of me is being suffocated by them I will try to escape , and if the people I speak about here consider my opinions to be detrimental to them , show yourself , stop hiding behind the facade .