2 February 1952 |
Stoke Newington, London,
England, United Kingdom
|Occupation||Record company/record shop manager|
|Known for||Head of Rough Trade Records|
Geoff Travis (born 2 February 1952) is the founder of both Rough Trade Records and the Rough Trade chain of record shops.  A former drama teacher and owner of a punk record shop, Travis founded the Rough Trade label in 1978.
Travis was born on 2 February 1952 in Stoke Newington, London, and was raised in Finchley. Travis is an alumnus of Owen's School and Churchill College, Cambridge. He worked as a drama teacher before opening the original Rough Trade record shop in Kensington Park Road, Notting Hill, London on 23 February 1976, setting up the record label two years later. He claimed that he chose the location because it was close to Powis Square, where Performance, one of his favourite films, was made. Travis was also instrumental in the foundation of the independent distribution network The Cartel. While Rough Trade was a key independent label, Travis also co-ran labels with major record companies, including Blanco y Negro in 1983 (with WEA) and Trade2 (with Island Records).
Rough Trade was home to The Smiths, but by 1986, after three years on the label, the band were in dispute over finances. The song "Frankly Mr. Shankly" from The Queen is Dead was reportedly a jibe at Travis. The label was wound up in 1994 after briefly being revived in partnership with One Little Indian, but revived by Travis in 2001 with breakthrough acts The Strokes and The Libertines.
His brother Alan is Home Affairs Editor of The Guardian.
- Hotten, Russell (2006-09-10). "Rough Trade: Rough and ready". Independent Online (London). Retrieved 2010-05-03.
- Burrows, Tim (19 July 2007). "This Rough plan makes sense". London: Daily Telegraph.
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- Glinert, Ed (4 March 2001). "Rough justice". Sunday Herald.
- Larkin, Colin (1998) The Virgin Encyclopedia of Indie & New Wave, Virgin Books, ISBN 0-7535-0231-3, p. 363
- "Churchill College Phoenix Society". Retrieved 3 May 2012. "Geoff Travis originally studied English at Churchill and supplied many of the records that started the College’s weekly ent, Pav in the early 1970s."
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