Archive for the ‘Richard Oakes’ Category


Monday, August 15th, 2011

Listen: Film Star / Suede
Film Star / Suede

Easily my favorite British act from the 90′s, and one of my favorites of all time. Favorite hardly describes it really. We’d met when they were unsigned, looking for a deal, having recorded their demo with Ed Buller, then resident engineer, in the Island demo studio at 22 St. Peter’s Square, during my last few months at the label.

By then, I was plotting my new venture through Warner Brothers, The Medicine Label, back in New York, but still spent a lot of time in London. I would soon try to sign them to my company for the US. Didn’t happen, but never mind, it not once blemished my love for their music.

It was during those months in early ’92 that I did my A&R drill, showing up at several of their shows around England, where they were playing to bulging crowds in small pubs and clubs, booked only a month or so prior to the frenzy. One night after a show at the Princess Charlotte Pub in Leicester, Brett, Mat and I rode back to London together, Brett dj-ing David Bowie’s HUNKY DORY the entire trip. In my opinion, Suede never took their eyes off it as one of the band’s great inspirations.

Third album, COMING UP unexpectedly took everyone off guard. Having replaced their original guitarist, the naysayers were naysaying big time. Big surprise, new guitarist Richard Oakes was a much better musician and ultimate band catalyst. As well, COMING UP established Mat Osman as one of rock’s very most accomplished bassists. After the album’s cycle, which by it’s finishing stretch had delivered five Top 10 UK singles, the non-believers were silenced. A fantastic work.

‘Film Star’ was the fifth of those five, a #9 in England.