Geoff Travis
Geoff Travis is the founder of both Rough Trade Records
Rough Trade Records
Rough Trade Records is an independent record label based in London. It was formed in 1978 by Geoff Travis who had opened a record store off Ladbroke Grove...

 and the Rough Trade chain of record shops
Rough Trade Shop
Rough Trade are two independent record shops based in London, UK.The first Rough Trade shop was opened in 1976 by Geoff Travis in the Portobello Road district of west London. In 1978 the shop spawned the famous Rough Trade Records, which was to go on to be home to bands from The Smiths to The...

. 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
Stoke Newington
Stoke Newington is a district in the London Borough of Hackney. It is north-east of Charing Cross.-Boundaries:In modern terms, Stoke Newington can be roughly defined by the N16 postcode area . Its southern boundary with Dalston is quite ill-defined too...

, London.
Travis is an alumnus of Owens School and Churchill College, Cambridge
Churchill College, Cambridge
Churchill College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge, England.In 1958, a Trust was established with Sir Winston Churchill as its Chairman of Trustees, to build and endow a college for 60 fellows and 540 Students as a national and Commonwealth memorial to Winston Churchill; its...

. He worked as a drama teacher before opening the original Rough Trade record shop in Kensington Park Road, Notting Hill
Notting Hill
Notting Hill is an area in London, England, close to the north-western corner of Kensington Gardens, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea...

, 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
Powis Square, London
Powis Square is a garden square and locality in Notting Hill, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in London, England. The closest London Underground station to the square is Westbourne Park tube station....

, where Performance
Performance (film)
Performance is a 1968 British crime drama film; the film was produced in 1968 but not released until 1970. Directed by Donald Cammell and Nicolas Roeg, Performance stars James Fox and Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones in his film acting debut.-Plot:...

, 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
Blanco y Negro Records
Blanco y Negro Records, a subsidiary of WEA Records Ltd., was established in 1983 by Geoff Travis of Rough Trade Records.Blanco y Negro was home to such artists as Bananarama, Everything But the Girl, The Jesus and Mary Chain, The Dream Academy, Dinosaur Jr., Bernthøler, A House, Catatonia, The...

 (with WEA) and Trade2 (with Island Records
Island Records
Island Records is a record label that was founded by Chris Blackwell in Jamaica. It was based in the United Kingdom for many years and is now owned by Universal Music Group...


Rough Trade was home to The Smiths
The Smiths
The Smiths were an English alternative rock band, formed in Manchester in 1982. Based on the song writing partnership of Morrissey and Johnny Marr , the band also included Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce...

, 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
The Queen Is Dead
The Queen Is Dead is the third studio album by the English alternative rock band The Smiths. It was released on 16 June 1986 in the United Kingdom by Rough Trade Records and released in the United States on 23 June 1986 through Sire Records. The album reached #2 on the UK Albums Chart, maintaining...

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.

Writer Douglas Wolk
Douglas Wolk
Douglas Wolk is a Portland, Oregon-based author and critic. He has written about comics and popular music for publications including The New York Times, Rolling Stone, The Washington Post, The Nation, The New Republic,, Pitchfork Media, and The Believer...

 credited Travis as virtually defining "the British post-punk sound", and XFM
Xfm is a brand of two commercial radio stations focused on alternative music, primarily indie pop, and owned by Global Radio.-History:Xfm was created in London in 1992 by Sammy Jacob, who later co-founded NME Radio in 2008. Xfm subsequently expanded to a network of four stations; there are...

 viewed his impact on independent music as greater than anyone else's in the country.

Geoff Travis was raised in Finchley.

His brother Alan is Home Editor of The Guardian
The Guardian
The Guardian, formerly known as The Manchester Guardian , is a British national daily newspaper in the Berliner format...


External links

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