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Simon says

This month, our columnist looks back at his experiences creating and recording Cocteau Twins’ classic 1988 album, Blue Bell Knoll

It’s exactly 30 years since Cocteau Twins wrote, recorded and released the album Blue Bell Knoll, which came out on 4AD on 19 September 1988. 4AD also licensed the album to major label Capitol Records in North America.

What I know now about record deals and contracts makes writing those words in that order quite difficult for me without grinding my teeth, as a record label should only ever have the right to license your material internationally to other labels if they paid significantly for those rights; otherwise, the licence should be with you, and you should be free to license wherever the host label are unable to. Anyhow, any festering residual bitterness about signing a two-page deal back in 1983, that granted worldwide master and publishing rights to 4AD/Beggars in perpetuity, should be reserved for a different time. As others would no doubt – and in fact do – argue, we weren’t forced to sign it!

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