John McCready Profile

Murray Cammick
19 May 2016

John McCready is the key music executive in the formative years of the New Zealand Music Industry. Although he has always been a very business and profit-orientated businessman, he always considered the recording of local music as a key part of a company’s market share and profitability.

He started at Philips in 1957, straight out high school, after responding to their newspaper advert offering “A Career In The Record Business.” At the time, McCready’s qualifications were more athletic than academic. He started in the warehouse and then was trained in the office work like royalties, before getting his dream job of A&R: the selecting of overseas titles to release locally and the signing of local talent.

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John McCready with Boz Scaggs at the White Heron Lodge, Parnell
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John McCready signing Citizen Band, with Gaynor Crawford
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John McCready at Philips in the mid-1960s
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John and Sharon O'Neill in Sydney, circa 1982
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John McCready – a happy man, music and coffee
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Labels:

Decca


CBS


RTC


Phonogram


Motown

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Trivia:

John McCready’s sparring partner in London, Phil Solomon released on his Major-Minor label, ‘Days Of Pearly Spencer’ by David McWilliams. This turntable hit did not sell in the UK, but it was a successful single for Wellington group the Avengers.

McCready’s best colleague in the UK, Ken East, was very popular with musicians – Elton John was touring Australia in November 2007 when East died and said: “Ken was without a doubt one of the greatest record men I have ever met. I was so pleased to be able to be here to say goodbye to him.”

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