Telstar Records

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Telstar Records was a British record label that operated from 1982 to 2004.


Telstar was founded in 1982 by Sean O'Brien and Neil Palmer with a government loan of £120,000.[citation needed] It was launched as a specialist compilation marketing label and had hits with a range of compilation franchises such as the Deep Heat, Kaos Theory and 100% ranges.[citation needed] As well as these brands, the company licensed a number of major artist recordings (for example ABBA and the Four Tops) to release telemarketed compilations.[citation needed]

In the mid-1990s it diversified its output into the singles market and long-term artist development with the launch of the Multiply Records and Wildstar Records subsidiaries.[citation needed] Until then, Telstar normally only released singles that were tele-marketed and associated products like The Chippendales or PJ and Duncan.[citation needed] Acts signed in this period included Conner Reeves, Sash!, Phats & Small and Basement Jaxx.[citation needed] Craig David had the label's first UK number one single.[citation needed]

Other artists included Victoria Beckham (a sub-licence deal from 19 Records), Rosie Ribbons, Skream!, The Cheeky Girls and Mis-Teeq.[citation needed] In the late 1990s, Telstar became closely associated with BMG Records, especially with the Telstar TV compilation arm and The Hits Album releases.[citation needed]

Telstar Records went bankrupt in 2004, largely due to the company's habit of giving large advances to artists such as Claire Sweeney and Victoria Beckham who failed to make them any money.[citation needed] In the media much of the blame for the label's failure was placed on their most high-profile signing, Victoria Beckham.[citation needed] However, as most of Telstar's artists were not directly signed to the label, instead being either sub-licensed or part of a number of joint ventures, BMG (soon to be merged with Sony) declined to buy the label's assets outright.[citation needed]







Wildstar Records was a record label launched in 1993 by Colin Lester, Ian McAndrew and Capital Radio in a joint venture with Telstar.[citation needed] In February 2017, Sony Music acquired Wildstar from Global Radio and Telstar for £1.8m.[1]


Compilation brands[edit]

  • Deep Heat
  • 100%
  • Euphoria (to Ministry of Sound)
  • The Greatest Hits of... (yearly compilation series e.g. The Greatest Hits of 1987)
  • Hits 93 / Hits 94 (these were listed as part of the Hits Album brand in the Complete Book Of British Charts due to Telstar TV's later involvement with the series, but were actually released by Telstar in joint venture status with BMG. There was later a 'Pure Hits 97'.)
  • Box Hits (to UMTV)
  • Megabass
  • BRIT Awards (to Sony BMG)
  • Kaos Theory

In the late 1990s, Telstar's successful dance music compilation series Euphoria and Breakdown (full name The Very Best of Euphoric Breakdown) were launched, both of which lasted into the days when BMG were co-credited on compilations, and transcended Telstar Records' closure when they were continued on the Ministry of Sound label.

Chart Attack[edit]

Chart Attack was Telstar Records first chart hit in the UK Top 75 album charts.[citation needed] It was released in autumn 1982 and reached number 7 in the main chart in the days before the exclusion of such various artist albums.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Sony Music UK acquired Wildstar Records last year for £1.8m". Music Business Worldwide. 4 January 2018.