Label Boss / Promoter TONY CALDER Dead At 74; Signed BLACK SABBATH To NEMS Records In 1975
January 4, 2018, 9 months ago
Beatles promoter Tony Calder, who signed Black Sabbath (pictured above) to NEMS Records in 1975, has died at the age of 74.
According to BBC News, Calder, who helped The Beatles score their first hit single, started his career at Decca Records in the 1960s and went on to work with the Beach Boys, Marianne Faithfull, Black Sabbath and Eddy Grant. The executive also co-founded his own independent record label, signing acts like Rod Stewart and Fleetwood Mac.
Born in Surbiton, Surrey, to Scottish parents in 1943, Calder was one of the busiest agents on the music scene of the 1960s, working at Decca Records by day and as a DJ for Mecca dancehalls by night. In 1962, he was tasked with promoting the Beatles' first single, "Love Me Do".
A few years later, he joined forces with Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham to launch a PR company, Image. Together, they helped cement The Rolling Stones' reputation as the bad boys of British rock.
In 1965, Calder and Oldham founded formed UK independent label Immediate, whose artists included Rod Stewart, Fleetwood Mac, PP Arnold and the Small Faces.However, the label lost millions of pounds and was embroiled in legal disputes for years after it collapsed in 1970. The Small Faces famously only started to receive royalties for albums like Ogden's Nut Gone Flake in 1997.
In the 70s, Calder signed groups Black Sabbath and managed Eddy Grant. He was credited with saving Grant's "I Don't Wanna Dance" from being a forgotten demo when he pushed for its release as a single.
Read the full report at BBC News.