Bob Stanley (musician)
|Birth name||Robert Andrew Shukman|
|Born||25 December 1964|
|Origin||Horsham, Sussex, England|
|Genres||Pop, Dance, Indie|
|Occupations||Musician, songwriter, journalist, DJ|
|Associated acts||Saint Etienne|
|Website||Saint Etienne website|
He has had a long parallel career as a music journalist writing for amongst others NME, Melody Maker, Mojo, The Guardian and The Times. After leaving school, Stanley worked in various record shops. While working at Virgin Records in Peterborough he met Andrew Midgley, who later fronted the 1991 side-project Cola Boy. Stanley and Midgley produced a fanzine called Pop Avalanche in 1986. They then produced their own fanzines; Stanley wrote four issues of Caff with childhood friend Pete Wiggs. In 1987 he sent one to James Brown, then live reviews editor for NME. This led to Stanley's first commissioned work, a review of a Johnny Cash show in Peterborough. After two years he moved to Melody Maker, where he wrote regularly until Saint Etienne became a full-time occupation in 1991. He wrote occasionally for The Face and Mojo in the 1990s. In the 2000s he has returned to journalism and contributes regularly to The Times and The Guardian. He has also written liner notes for many reissues, including box-sets by Joe Meek, Sandie Shaw and The Searchers. In 2007 with Paul Kelly he edited Match Day, a book of football programme artwork. His second book,Yeah Yeah Yeah: The Story of Modern Pop a history of pop music since 1952 is due to be published on 23 September 2013.
While recording the album Finisterre in 2002, Stanley, Wiggs and frequent collaborator Paul Kelly made a film to accompany the record. The resulting film, also called Finisterre, was described in The Observer as a "cinematic hymn to London". It premiered at the ICA in London and was screened around the world by one dot zero. In 2005 the band and Kelly were invited by the Barbican to create a film and music event, for which they made What Have You Done Today Mervyn Day, a drama-documentary set in the Lower Lea Valley, the site for the 2012 Olympic Games. In 2007 their third London film, This Is Tomorrow, a history of the Southbank Centre, was premiered with a live performance, including a 60-piece orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall.
Stanley has curated several film seasons for the Barbican, including Gonna Make You A Star (a series of pop documentaries) and Britain Learns to Rock (early British Rock'n'Roll movies).
In the late 1980s/early 1990s he briefly ran a record label called Caff, which released 17 7" singles, all limited to 500 copies, including early singles by the Manic Street Preachers and Pulp. Between 1992 and 1994, Stanley and Saint Etienne bandmate Pete Wiggs ran the indie label Icerink Records. The most notable act to emerge from this endeavour was the girl-group Shampoo. In 1996, Stanley ran EMIDisc, again alongside Wiggs, backed by EMI Director of A&R Tris Penna. The label was to be an EMI sub-label devoted to new talent. The label was short-lived and the only major act to emerge was Kenickie. Stanley and Wiggs currently have a CD imprint called Eclipse through Universal.
Stanley is known for his large collection of vinyl records. When Saint Etienne are between projects, he DJs, playing generally 1960s and 1970s pop music and soul. With Wiggs, he ran a club called Don't Laugh in the mid-1990s in Maida Vale. Cherrybomb, a girl group night in Bloomsbury, ran from 2006–2009.