A few months ago, I randomly made friends with a guy at a gig. We became gig buddies for the night, and I really enjoyed the company of my new pal. We chatted a little bit about ourselves, but I didn’t really know very much about him. Let me tell you who that lanky, smiley gentleman actually was.

Tim Gray (or Tim P Gray) was an all round good guy. He loved music and ran Bigtone Studios in Manchester for ten years, where he worked with established artists such as The Wildhearts, Peter Hook and the Light, British Sea Power and Sonic Boom Six, to name a few. Whilst this is impressive, he was also passionate about working with local and unknown musicians, helping them to achieve their goals, encouraging them and working tirelessly to help them create a great sound. He worked with up-and-coming musicians such as Joseph Stephen Astley, This Time Last Year and Aerial Salad. Tim was a big fan of punk and ska and he loved the DIY ethic of underground bands and artists.

A gifted musician himself, Tim had a spell of playing guitar in the ska/punk band Harijan, who were well loved on the Manchester scene and who played with the likes of punk legends The Voodoo Glow Skulls.

Tim had a wicked sense of humour, and liked to make mash-ups of two different songs just for a laugh. Some of these are hilarious and others are pure genius. The mash-up videos were often banned by record companies, but they also attracted the attention of MTV, and Tim ended up working for MTV Mash.

The sheer talent of the man speaks for itself, but the most enduring thing about Tim is that he was a genuinely lovely person. He was down to earth, humble, positive, encouraging of others and had no sense of ego about his accomplishments.

Although Tim died unexpectedly in May, he still lives on in the hearts of the many people whose lives he touched. So, thanks for the tunes, the giggles and the good energy, Tim Gray. You rock absolutely!


Red Hen