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Former Genesis manager Tony Stratton-Smith celebrated in new biography

Tony Stratton-Smith laughing black and white shot
(Image credit: Barrie Wentzell)

The life of former Genesis, Van der Graaf Generator and The Nice manager and the man behind the legendary Charisma Records label, Tony Stratton-Smith, is to be celebrated in a new biography.

Strat! The Charismatic Life And Times Of Tony Stratton Smith has been written by author Chris Groom and features a foreword from Peter Gabriel and will be published on June 11 by Wymer Publishing.

A former sports journalist for the Daily Express, Strat was scheduled to cover the Red Star Belgrade v Man Utd European Cup match in Yugoslavia in 1958, but missed out to chief football correspondent Henry Rose, who would lose his life in the ensuing Munich Air Distaster.

Inspired by The Beatles, Strat moved into music, managing The Nice in 1968, and forming the Charisma Record label in 1969. he signed Genesis and released their second album Trespass in 1970. Other artists associated with label include VdGG, Marillion, Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, Lindisfarne, Monty Python, Rare Bird, String Driven Thing and Brand X, and later as solo artists Peter Gabriel, Peter Hammill, Steve Hackett, Phil Collins and more.

The popular Stratton-Smith died of pancreatic cancer in19 March 19, 1987 aged 53. A memorial service was held for him at St. Martin's In The Field in London. Marillion's Clutching At Straws, which was released shortly after his death, was dedicated to him, as was 3's On My Way Home, from their 1988 album To The Power Of Three.

Pre--order Strat! The Charismatic Life And Times Of Tony Stratton Smith.

Tony Stratton-Smith

(Image credit: Wymer Publishing)

Writer and broadcaster Jerry Ewing is the Editor of Prog Magazine which he founded for Future Publishing in 2009. He grew up in Sydney and began his writing career in London for Metal Forces magazine in 1989. He has since written for Metal Hammer, Maxim, Vox, Stuff and Bizarre magazines, among others. He created and edited Classic Rock Magazine for Dennis Publishing in 1998 and is the author of a variety of books on both music and sport, including Wonderous Stories; A Journey Through The Landscape Of Progressive Rock, as well as sleevenotes for many major record labels. He lives in North London and happily indulges a passion for AC/DC, Chelsea Football Club and Sydney Roosters.