Notebooks of late Joy Division manager Rob Gretton to be

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‘1 Top Class Manager’
The Notebooks of Joy Division’s Manager 1978-1980
Notebooks of late Joy Division manager Rob Gretton to be

published by his partner, shedding new light on one of the most talked-about bands and music scenes in recent history.
October 7th 2008 will see the release of ‘1 Top Class Manager’ – The Notebooks of Joy Division’s Manager 1978-1980.
Published by Rob Gretton’s partner, Lesley Gilbert, with a foreword by celebrated cultural commentator Jon Savage, the book condenses over twenty working notebooks into one volume, and contains posters, letters, diaries and studio notes, dating from August 1978 to late 1980 – the Joy Division years.
Editor Abigail Ward said, “Rob Gretton remains one of Manchester music’s most influential, yet elusive, characters. ‘1 Top Class Manager’ allows us a glimpse of his thought processes and working methods during the Joy Division period.”
“It gives us a new perspective on post-punk Manchester and the birth of Factory Records, and retells the Joy Division story through a collage of band manifestos, 'to do' lists, studio notes, and scribbled ideas.”
“Rob kept detailed notes about everything. One of the funniest pages in the book reveals that Joy Division bought eggs and live mice to throw at Buzzcocks during their joint tour of ’79. Rob has accounted meticulously for both weapons.”
The book also reveals a list of new names that the band considered, before hitting on New Order, following the death of Ian Curtis. They include Arab Legion, Voices Crying, Dharma Bums, the Radical Jesuits and Man Ray.
‘1 Top Class Manager’ is strictly limited to 1500 copies and is available to pre-order now exclusively through
Read excerpts here.

‘1 Top Class Manager’ is published in association with Manchester District Music Archive.


Notes to Editors

  • Rob Gretton (January 15, 1953 - May 15, 1999) was best known as the manager of the post punk bands Joy Division and New Order. He was also a partner in Factory Records, proprietor of the Robs Records label and a co-founder along with Tony Wilson of The Haçienda nightclub in Manchester, England. He was portrayed by Paddy Considine in the 2002 film 24 Hour Party People, which documented the rise and fall of Factory Records, and by Toby Kebbell in the 2007 film Control, a biopic of Joy Division singer Ian Curtis.

  • MDMArchive is a not-for-profit organisation established to celebrate Greater Manchester music, protect its heritage and promote awareness of its cultural importance. Its website is a user-led virtual archive of scanned Manchester music artefacts.


Lesley Gilbert is available for interview

Abigail Ward is available for interview

Please contact Abigail Ward on 07749 134079

Or email

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