Mike Stock

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Mike Stock was born in Margate, Kent, England in 1951 and grew

up in Swanley, Kent. He was self-taught in playing the

piano and guitar and began writing songs at the age of seven.

 

Inspired by The Beatles he soon became fixated with pop music

and at the age of nineteen he signed a publishing contract after

earning a reputation as a budding songwriter.

In 1970 Mike earned a placement at the University of Hull to study

Drama and Theology and formed a band, The Cosmics,  with a

fellow student, the later acclaimed Oscar-winning director

Anthony Minghella.  

By the late 1970s he was performing up and down the country as

a solo artist, in a duo or with the bands Mirage and Nightwork. 

Stock's band had gone through several guitar players before he

was alerted to Matt Aitken who had been working on a cruise ship. 

In 1982 Mike moved to Abbey Wood, South London where he

acquired a recording desk and tape machine and, along with Matt,

concentrated on making records of their own as well as gigging at

nights.

In late 1983, Mike announced he was going into the studio to pursue a career in songwriting and production. Matt agreed to join him and from January 1984 onwards the pair worked exclusively in recording studios.

Stock had previously worked with Pete Waterman in 1980 with the song "One Nine For A Lady Breaker". Waterman managed Peter Collins, a successful producer with acts like Musical Youth and Nik Kershaw and they re-recorded the track with Collins as producer and Stock singing under the alias Chris Britton. Because of this previous connection Stock and Aitken arranged a meeting with Waterman in January 1984. 

"To his credit Pete got it straight away. We had recorded this song, The Upstroke, we were the band and we had 2 girls who would front the record. He could see what we were doing and where we were coming from and how he could help us. What we needed was a proper first flight studio not a home demo and he could supply that with his background and success as a manager. Initially Pete was going to be our manager, but I have this thing about managers, I don't need to be managed. So, I said Pete the only way I'll do it is if we're all equal. And that's how it was formed, we've never had a contract between us and nothing more than a handshake."

By the end of 1984 the newly formed partnership of Stock Aitken Waterman (SAW) had a #16 hit with Divine's, "You Think You're A Man", a massive #4 with Hazell Dean’s "Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)" and had released "You Spin Me Round (Like A Record)" by Dead Or Alive which would give them their first #1 in March 1985.

Over the next ten years the trio would take the pop world by storm. They sold 200 million records, had 13 UK #1 singles and the roll call of their artists reads like a who's who of 80's/90's pop culture. They created massive stars in Kylie Minogue, Rick Astley and Jason Donovan and worked with artists as diverse as Sir Paul McCartney, Sinitta, Donna Summer, Sir Cliff Richard and Bananarama.

After the break up of SAW in 1993 Mike developed his own record label and along with Matt Aitken achieved worldwide hit records - notching up an impressive market share of business in the first months of operation. In its lifetime the company achieved 26 UK Top 40 singles with much associated worldwide success. This included three massive selling NO.1’s from Robson & Jerome with their debut hit, “Unchained Melody/White Cliffs Of Dover” selling over 1.8 million copies and becoming the best selling non-charity record of the 90’s. Nicki French had a massive worldwide hit with “Total Eclipse Of The Heart” reaching number two in America!

In 2003 Mike formed a new company, Better The Devil Records. The first single released, “Fast Food Song”, was the biggest selling CD single of the day going on to sell over 200,000 copies and reached number 2 in the UK charts. This was followed by a further two top 40 hits for the group, Fast Food Rockers.

In 2004 Mike published his first book “The Hit Factory” which recorded his early years and the history of Stock Aitken Waterman and more. 

Bringing us up to date Mike set up a new label, MPG Records, which is based at his private studios in Surrey.

He worked with former X Factor winner Shayne Ward on an album, “Closer”, that reached NO.17 in the UK.

Mike also works closely with Bucks Fizz, now known as The Fizz. Their first album together album gave the group a Top 30 chart placing, their first in over 30 years. Their most recent album 'Smoke & Mirrors' hit number 29 in the album charts and number 6 in the official sales charts.