RICHARD COWLEY, the former co-head of Chrysalis Agency in the early-70s and co-founder of Cowbell Agency in the mid-‘70s, has died at the age of 72.
Cowley was running Universal Attractions with Kenny Bell before the company merged with the Ellis-Wright Agency, operated by Chrysalis Records founder Chris Wright and Terry Ellis, in 1967.
Artistes represented by Chrysalis at the time included Jethro Tull, Generation X, Blondie, Ten Years After, Tyrannosaurus Rex and Jeff Beck. He later represented The Sex Pistols for a while, before they imploded.
After leaving Chrysalis in the mid-‘70s, Cowley created Cowbell with business partner Kenny Bell, continuing with the company after it morphed in to World Service, headed by former Chrysalis and Cowbell agent Martin Hopewell. Cowley left in 1990 when World Service merged with Station Agency to become Primary Talent International.
“Richard was one of the directors of World Service when I started there as an agent in 1986,” says Nigel Hassler, now an agent at CAA in London. “He was kind and considerate, and at the time I joined, his main client was Culture Club who had exploded everywhere and were probably the hottest group on the planet.
“It was fun and an interesting learning curve to watch him book them all over the world.”
It is understood Cowley went on to work as a healthcare consultant after leaving the music industry.