Stuart Slater, a musician and music industry executive, died this week in London at the age of 77.
Slater is credited with playing a substantial role in shaping the British music scene in the ’60s, ’70s and beyond
Born in Liverpool, he was head boy of Liverpool Cathedral Choir, and attended Liverpool Institute Grammar (now Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts), where he developed his love for writing and performing music. He would leave school during lunchtime to catch live performances at the legendary Cavern Club.
Slater went on to form the popular band The Mojos, who achieved widespread success with their Top 10 1964 hit single Everything's Alright, written by Slater (as Stu James). The track was covered by David Bowie on his 1973 album Pin Ups.
After leaving The Mojos, he returned to education to gain a BA Honours degree, before transitioning to the industry side of the music world.
His first job in the music industry was at CBS, where he began his career as a junior in the promotions department. Slater went on to become general manager at Bradley's Records in London’s Bruton Street, where he helped launch the careers of bands including Rain, Sweet Dreams and The Goodies.
At ATV Music - later to become known as Sony/ATV Music Publishing - he began to work in A&R and publishing. Slater subsequently joined Chrysalis Records and Publishing, where he worked with artists such as Spandau Ballet, Living In A Box, Haysi Fantayzee and Go West. He also had a knack for spotting industry talent, giving Simon Fuller his first job while at Chrysalis.
Slater was also a prolific songwriter and penned three entries for the Song For Europe competition with Stephanie De Sykes, his then partner, two of which were chosen to represent the UK in the Eurovision Song Contest. One of their entries, Love Enough For Two by Prima Donna, finished third in the 1980 contest.
Stuart Slater's daughter Tracy Stent (née Slater) is an artist manager, while his eldest son Toby Slater, who died in 2021, was also a songwriter, musician and performer who enjoyed chart success with his musical output before acting as consultant for major labels.
Stuart Slater’s legacy in the music industry extends via his grandchildren, too, who also work in A&R, artist management and more.
Stuart Slater is survived by his wife Andrea, daughter Tracy, son Barnaby and his grandchildren Charlie, Mia, Finn and Josh.