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Mike Gormley

Mike Gormley

For 40+ years, Ottawa-born Mike Gormley has been journalist, record company executive, artist manager and marketing/PR expert. He has helped launch the careers of film composer Danny Elfman, massively successful pop band the Bangles as well as Rod Stewart, Rush, BTO, The Police and Supertramp.

At 18, Mike was already a weekly columnist and writer for the Ottawa Journal, covering major pop music stars of the day from his base in the San Francisco Bay area. He interviewed such as icons-to-be as the Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, etc. After returning to Ottawa to write for Canada's Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, Gormley was recruited as columnist and youth editor for the Detroit Free Press (then the fifth largest morning newspaper in North America).

Three years later, as Director of Publicity for Mercury Records, Mike engineered the introductory and continuing PR campaigns for Thin Lizzy, Rod Stewart, Rush, Bachman-Turner Overdrive, the Runaways, the Ohio Players as well as many others. He was highly instrumental in signing the pioneering punk band the New York Dolls and the groundbreaking German Electronica artists, Kraftwerk.

Eventually Mike worked at A&M Records where he rose to the post of Vice President of Publicity and Assistant to the Chairman. In this position, he worked closely with the Police, Supertramp, Herb Alpert, Squeeze and others.

Mike left A&M to partner with Miles Copeland, then manager of the Police and founder of IRS Records (REM, The Go Go's, Fine Young Cannibals and others). They formed the management firm LAPD, (Los Angeles Personal Development). He convinced Danny Elfman, leader of the legendary band, Oingo Boingo to write the score for Tim Burton's first movie Pee Wee's Big Adventure spawning Elfman's mercurial climb to the top of the film composer world.

In the 1990s, Mike co-founded and ran Wildcat Records. In the year 2008, Mike established the UCLA Extension's continuing education programme, "The Insider's Guide to Music Management." 

Mike is a past President of the Conference of Personal Managers and a past board member of L.A. WoMen In Music as well as being on the board of Music Manager's Forum U.S. He was on the Board and is past-Secretary of the Folk Alliance International and its Executive Committee. Mike is also on the Management/Legal Advisory Committee for SAG/AFTRA and a Director of Ombience, a center that provides aid to musicians. Mike is also on the Advisory Committee for Music From the Streets.

 

79 articles

By Artist | By Date

List of articles in the library by artist

The Band: "It's Great Growing Up": The Hard Hawks Became The Relaxed Band

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 28 November 1969

THE BAND. Free-flowing, graceful, country-spiced music from an ex-hard, hard rock band. ...

The Band, Ronnie Hawkins: Rompin' Ronnie Hawkins Is Suddenly a Star

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 23 January 1970

SUDDENLY THE world is hearing about Ronnie Hawkins. And all because John Lennon made him an international figure by staying at Ronnie's Canadian home for ...

The Beatles: Abbey Road (Apple)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 30 September 1969

THE FIRST Beatle album since just before Christmas, 1968, is being played all over the place. The album, Abbey Road, evidently will precede another LP around ...

The Beatles: Christmas Release for Get Back — Album Won't Set the World on Fire

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 17 October 1969

THE BEATLES' next album, Get Back, actually recorded before their recent album Abbey Road, probably won't set the scene on fire. It's better than Abbey ...

The Beatles, The Chambers Brothers: The Chambers Brothers: 'They Put Us Up for Sale; People Bought'

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 31 October 1969

THE CHAMBERS Brothers, who are Willie, George, Joe and Lester Chambers plus Brian Keenan, were dressed in the usual cool clothes they've been noted for ...

The Beatles, Paul McCartney: Are We Burying McCartney Before He Is Dead?

Report by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 17 October 1969

What's the Meaning of Beatle Death Symbolism? ...

The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Sly & The Family Stone: Sly Stone: Stone Too Sick to Rock

Report by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 24 February 1970

Refunds Available ...

The Beau Brummels, Bobby Freeman, Dobie Gray, Gary Lewis & the Playboys, The Righteous Brothers, The Shangri-Las, Del Shannon, Sonny & Cher, Phil Spector, The Supremes, The Temptations, The Vejtables, Dionne Warwick: The Supremes, the Righteous Brothers, the Beau Brummels et al: Cow Palace, San Francisco CA

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 27 February 1965

Righteous Sound Shakes 'Frisco ...

The Bee Gees: Bee Gees Long Climb to the Summit

Profile and Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 22 September 1967

Group From Down Under on Top ...

Blind Faith, Delaney & Bonnie, The Frost, Taste: Blind Faith, Delaney & Bonnie, the Frost, Taste: Olympia Stadium, Detroit

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 5 August 1969

In Detroit Debut at Olympia, Pop Pantheon's Blind Faith is 'Nothing Really Special' ...

Hamilton Bohannon: Bohannon: "The Band Doesn't Get the Proper Respect"

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 2 January 1970

MOST MOTOWN groups don't perform on stage while playing their own instruments. It would be rather difficult for The Temptations to go through their dance ...

The Box Tops: Big Time Unknowns: The Box Tops Mystery

Profile by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 2 February 1968

THE BEST way to establish an act in the musical big time is to have a No. I record. ...

Brownsville Station: Station Offers a Rock 'n Roll Holiday

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 26 December 1969

AS WE SEE it now, about 12 years ago a lot of people had good foresight. They knew what was going to happen in the ...

Buffalo Springfield, Neil Young: Neil Young: On His Own In His Own Special Way

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 28 February 1969

NEIL YOUNG is into doing things his own way. ...

Paul Butterfield Blues Band: According to Paul, Butterfield Blues Is Really Music

Profile and Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 8 December 1967

ASK HIM. Paul Butterfield will tell you he doesn't play blues. ...

Chairmen Of The Board: Chairmen of the Board: 'We Turned Each Other On to Our Talents'

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 13 March 1970

TIME CAN be dangerous and it can be helpful. The old think of the past and enter depression. The young think of the future and ...

Chairmen Of The Board, Jimi Hendrix, John Lennon, Yoko Ono: John and Yoko Envisage Super Jam

Report by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 2 January 1970

IT'S A WELL known fact that John and Yoko Lennon were in Toronto and Ottawa recently to talk about their Peace Festival to be held ...

Chairmen Of The Board, Freda Payne: Eddie Holland: A Musical Magician, Once of Motown, Bidding for His Own 'Detroit Sound'

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 8 February 1970

Yes, Holland-Dozier-Holland DID Split with the Giant; Yes, Eddie Holland DID form Invictus Records; Yes, Invictus IS Climbing the Charts ...

The Chambers Brothers: For Chambers Bros., Time Has Come in a Big Way

Profile and Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 1 November 1968

ELECTRIC, PSYCHEDELIC, smooth and professional, they don't depict poor Mississippi-born farmers. But that's where they started. The Chambers Brothers, Willie, George, Lester, Joe and non-brother ...

Merry Clayton, Ry Cooder, Mick Jagger, The Last Poets, Randy Newman, Jack Nitzsche, Buffy Sainte-Marie: Various Artists: Performance (Warner Bros.)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 9 August 1970

PERFORMANCE IS the movie starring Mick Jagger. Don't get it mixed up with Ned Kelly, the other Jagger starrer. Performance unlike Ned Kelly is supposed ...

Joe Cocker: On Stage Joe's Strong Otherwise He's Groggy

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 16 May 1969

JOE COCKER isn't the best known name in the land. In fact when it was announced he was coming to town everybody asked, "Who's Joe ...

Joe Cocker, Curtis Mayfield, Leon Russell: Curtis Mayfield: Curtis (Curtom); Joe Cocker: Joe Cocker, Mad Dogs and Englishmen (A&M)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 1 September 1970

Mayfield, Solo, Comes on Strong ...

Dennis Coffey: Guitarist Dennis Coffey: "No Room for Temperament in Music"

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 7 November 1969

WHEN YOU talk to him he impresses you as a confident man. He knows what's going on but chooses to do things his way rather ...

Bill Cosby, Charles Wright & The Watts 103rd St. Rhythm Band: Watts 103rd St. Rhythm Band: Cosby Was Never the Boss

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 4 September 1970

THE WATTS 103rd Street Rhythm Rand is probably best remembered for its million seller 'Loveland'. The group's had several records that have done just as ...

Country Joe & The Fish, Janis Joplin: The Janis Joplin Revue, Country Joe & the Fish: Cobo Hall, Detroit

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 12 May 1969

Joplin Revue: Music, Yes; Excitement, No ...

Crazy Horse, Neil Young: Neil Young with Crazy Horse: Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere (Warner Bros.-Seven Arts)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 6 June 1969

NEIL YOUNG has allowed his full creative ability loose and hasn't ignored any type of music he's acquainted with in putting this album together. ...

Cream: A Split in the Offing

Report by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 16 August 1968

THINGS JUST WONT BE THE SAME ...

Creedence Clearwater Revival, Savage Grace: Olympia Stadium, Detroit MI

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 29 July 1969

A RATHER eventful weekend just passed as Jeff Berk's group played their last performance together Saturday night at the Grande. It's reported Beck and the ...

Crosby Stills Nash & Young: Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: Olympia Stadium, Detroit; Hair: Vest Pocket Theater, Detroit

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 16 June 1970

2 Happenings Make Exciting Weekend ...

Mike Curb Congregation, John Sebastian: Mike Curb: Record Boss Keeps Mum

Report and Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 6 December 1970

The 'Curb 18' Still Unidentified ...

Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock: Follow Pianist Herbie Hancock On a Trip into the World of Jazz

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 19 December 1970

Meet Miles Davis, Ramsey Lewis And Oscar Peterson To Learn About the Kinds of Music That Are Sneaking into Rock ...

Delaney & Bonnie: Delaney and Bonnie Sing a Simple Song

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 15 August 1969

THEY'RE POLITE but friendly, quiet but demonstrative, artistic but businesslike, talented — but talented. ...

Bob Dylan, The Turtles: Bob Dylan Dropped In — Night Howard The Turtle Lost His Voice

Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 9 July 1966

Mike Gormley Calling from San Francisco ...

Fleetwood Mac: Kiln House (Reprise)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 13 December 1970

AN ECHO-chambered 'This Is The Rock' starts off Kiln House, Fleetwood Mac's latest album, setting the stage for one of the strangest albums this group ...

The Four Tops: Four Tops Live Up To Their Name

Profile by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 22 March 1968

THEY HAD reached the top — all four of them. ...

Kim Fowley

Profile by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 14 October 1969

EVER HEAR OF a guy named Kim Fowley? Fowley was the MC at the Toronto Rock and Roll Revival, which was a good job for ...

John Fred and his Playboy Band, Van Morrison, Peter Sarstedt: Albums from Van Morrison, John Fred & His Playboy Band and Peter Sarstedt

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 8 March 1970

VAN MORRISON — MOONDANCE — WARNER BROS. A tremendous album. The production is tight, the songs are good and Morrison's voice, weird as it is, fits perfectly. ...

Bobby Freeman: Still In Swim Of Pop Things

Profile and Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 2 July 1966

TWELVE YEARS in the business and he is only 25. ...

Grand Funk Railroad Arrive in Detroit for First Visit

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 25 July 1969

THE STIGMA "local group" has been slapped on many bands and as a result several great groups have found themselves confined to their home territory. ...

Grand Funk Railroad: Hot Group Gets the Cold Shoulder at Home

Report by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 24 November 1970

REST OF U.S. RIOTS OVER GRAND FUNK ...

Grand Funk Railroad: The Bigtime Rock Band That's Ignored Back Home in Detroit

Report and Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 17 May 1970

THERE'S NOTHING small-time about Detroit in the music business. More and more, record company executives come here first to tap talent. They know it's here. ...

Grand Funk Railroad, Sly & The Family Stone: Sly & the Family Stone, Grand Funk Railroad: Madison Square Garden, New York NY

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 17 February 1970

Sly and Family Survive Rush Down the Garden Paths ...

George Harrison: All Things Must Pass (Apple)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 6 December 1970

Old Un-Fancy George Returns ...

Janis Ian: Musical Psychologist: Janis The Voice Of Mini-Hippies

Profile by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 21 July 1967

HERE WE go again. Another great song-writer is upon us. ...

Tommy James & the Shondells: Tommy James Isn't Pro-Canada

Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 7 July 1967

Says Audiences Here 'A Drag' ...

Jethro Tull: He's Embarrassed and Great

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 5 June 1970

ALL THE hoopla about Jethro Tull, including stories in Life, Time, Jazz & Pop and other influential magazines, is justified. Jethro Tull is the best ...

Elton John: Elton Sings 'Your Song' and Finds Himself New Star of the 70s

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 19 December 1970

ELTON JOHN is a pianist, singer, songwriter and newfound hero of musicians and music lovers alike. Bob Dylan came to see him one night and ...

The Jones Girls, Little Richard: Little Richard: Music Hall Theater, Detroit MI

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 9 November 1970

150 See Little Richard: Music Hall No 'Apollo' Yet ...

Janis Joplin — A Legend in Her Time

Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 18 April 1969

A Girl of Down-to-Earth Conviction ...

Janis Joplin: Joplin's Last Visit: She Told Them Who Was Boss

Memoir by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 6 October 1970

LUSTY HEROINE OF ROCK IS DEAD ...

B.B. King, The New York Rock & Roll Ensemble: B.B. King, New York Rock 'n' Roll Ensemble: Meadowbrook Theater, Oakland University, Rochester MI

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 29 August 1969

B.B. IS the Blues King At Meadow Brook ...

Gladys Knight and the Pips: Gordy's Gladys Souled Out?

Report by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 26 April 1968

THEY RECORD for Soul Records in Detroit. And it's just possible the record label was named for the music the company's top group, Gladys Knight ...

John Lennon: John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 19 December 1970

Tender and Bitter — Lennon Says It All ...

Little Richard: "He's Forgotten Me" — Little Richard Raps James Brown

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 2 September 1969

LITTLE RICHARD is coming to Detroit along with Jerry Lee Lewis. They'll be at Cobo Hall Sept. 6. ...

Little Richard: The Far-Out Little Richard

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 21 November 1970

'Bronze Liberace' Has Some Unusual Ideas About the State of Music — and the World ...

Lonnie Mack: Mack the 'Memphis' Man Returns: 'I'm Glad I'm in the Band'

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 24 October 1969

THE SONG 'Memphis', made Johnny Rivers a big star. Remember? He recorded it live at the Whiskey A Go Go, making the club famous throughout ...

Arif Mardin, The Mar-Keys: Arif Mardin: Glass Onion (Atlantic); The Mar-Keys: Damifiknow (Stax)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 4 July 1969

GLASS ONION — Arif Mardin. You may not be acquainted with Arif Mardin. For a quick run down, he's from Turkey, got deep into jazz ...

Freda Payne: In Pursuit of Superstardom

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 5 April 1970

From the Art Institute to Joe Louis To Duke Ellington to the Carson Show ...

Elvis Presley: Olympia Stadium, Detroit MI

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 15 September 1970

CAPTURED 17,000 MINDS Legendary Elvis Frenzy Lives On ...

Gary Puckett & The Union Gap: Gary Puckett Says: the Gap About to Widen

Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 22 November 1968

GARY PUCKETT and The Union Gap are not exactly the teeny-bopper group most people think they are. ...

Gary Puckett & The Union Gap: Thoughts of the Union Gap

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 13 December 1968

WILL THEIR FANS LEAVE THEM? ...

Otis Redding: The Memphis Sound: Otis Leads the Way

Profile by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 5 May 1967

FOR A LONG time now, the public has been thrilled by the essence of Otis Redding. His original contribution has conquered the world of music ...

Emitt Rhodes: Emitt Rhodes (Dunhill)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 15 November 1970

EMITT RHODES' new LP is a one-man job that sounds like Paul McCartney's first solo effort. That crossed my mind to the point of mentioning ...

Mack Rice Hopes For a Comeback

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 14 March 1969

"'MUSTANG SALLY' has definitely been good to me, but you can't live off one big record. You need a string of 'Sally's' to be able ...

The Righteous Brothers: Just Brothers in Soul

Profile and Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 17 February 1967

IT'LL BE A wet, rainy day in San Francisco before The Righteous Brothers appear there! And it was — and they did. ...

Smokey Robinson & The Miracles: Smokey and His Associates Work Hit Parade Miracles

Profile by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 31 May 1968

MOTOWN'S MOST VERSATILE ACT ...

The Rolling Stones: Let It Bleed (London)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 14 November 1969

Stones Make a Softer Sound With a Strong Hint of Dylan ...

Bob Seger: The Bob Seger System: Mongrel (Capitol)

Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 29 September 1970

Underrated Bob Seger LP Deserves Attention ...

Sly & The Family Stone: Sly & the Family Stone: Cobo Hall, Detroit

Live Review by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 24 November 1970

YOU HATE to admit that a man who put you off three times and thus openly displayed his lack of interest in you, turned out ...

The Stooges: The Very New 'Iggy' Approach To Rock Music

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 21 September 1969

"On Saturday, Iggy appeared onstage wearing only sneakers and dungarees cut down to shorts. Iggy, who was a high school valedictorian back home, seeks to ...

The Up: New Political Rock Group: The Up Begins Where the MC5 Left Off

Profile by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 3 July 1970

ABOVE AND beyond his highly publicized political life, John Sinclair had a great interest in the rock 'n roll world. His band, the MC5, attained ...

The Up

Report by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 21 October 1969

THE UP, A group we'll all be hearing a lot about in the near future, will get in the recording studios Oct. 24, 25, 26 ...

Vanilla Fudge: Taking Apart the 'Fudge': Can They Survive Now?

Profile by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 4 October 1968

THEIR PRESS release says, "The Vanilla Fudge is a group unlike any other." They proved this with their rendition of 'You Keep Me Hanging On'. ...

Johnny Winter: He Waited, Worked and Worried; Then Overnight, Winter Was Here

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 11 July 1969

HE'S A TALL, white Texan who not only plays the blues, he lives them. ...

Johnny Winter: Living the Blues

Interview by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 26 September 1969

Johnny Winter Tries to Live Up to His Image ...

Stevie Wonder: Grand Old Music Man — and Just 17

Profile by Mike Gormley, Ottawa Journal, The, 24 May 1968

STEVIE WONDER is 'Uptight'. ...

List of genre pieces

Creem Reflects Detroit Rock 'n' Roll And Tries to Direct 'the Monster'

Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 19 December 1970

ROCK 'N' ROLL has always had its own journalistic field. The teen magazines used to tell us about Paul Anka's nose job and Elvis Presley's ...

Mariposa Folk Festival To Be One of the Best

Report by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 23 June 1970

TORONTO IS going to have a music festival. It will be properly run, have good talent and a place to operate. It's the same one ...

New-Old Grande Something to See

Report and Interview by Mike Gormley, Detroit Free Press, 26 December 1969

THE LATEST word, in the merry-go-round that ballroom promoters have been sending Detroit people on, is good, but still a little confusing. It's confusing In ...

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