Stiff Records logo with tm in black text on an ivory background.
157 W.57 St. N.Y.C, 10019
Stiff Records is an independent British record label that has been reactivated since 2007 but was originally active from 1976-1985. The label was created by two well-known London music businessmen named Dave Robinson and Andrew Jakeman aka Jake Riviera. Robinson had briefly, in the 1960s, worked for Jimi Hendrix and Jakeman had managed the band Dr Feelgood. The label, because it was active during the outset of the punk rock era, signed various punk and new wave artists. The record label was known for its witty and provocative marketing and advertising slogans as well as its promotional tours that featured groups of artists. The first promotional package tour was called “Live Stiffs” (1977) and featured five bands: Elvis Costello and the Attractions, the Blockheads, Wreckless Eric and the New Rockets, Ian Dury, Nick Lowe’s Last Chicken in the Shop and Larry Wallis’s Psychedelic Rowdies. In 1978, as a result of a series of disagreements between the business partners, Riviera left Stiff. In 1983 fifty percent of Stiff Records was bought by Island Records. Even though Island Records was short on money Robinson led the label through its best year. Island released Legend by Bob Marley, U2’s The Unforgettable Fire and signed The Pogues. As a result of financial problems Stiff Records was sold to ZTT in 1985. The rights to all of Stiff’s records are currently held Warner Music Group.