Beggars Banquet Vinyl, CD & tapes from this label at Norman Records
Like the similarly-vaunted Rough Trade, Beggars Banquet spawned out of a brick-and-mortar venture. The first Beggars Banquet shop opened in Earls Court in 1973, and soon there were a string of the shops throughout West London. Five years later shop founders Martin Mills and Nick Austin decided that, with all the exciting music coming out of the punk boom, it was time for them to boot up a record label.
Launched by a single by cult punks The Lurkers, Beggars soon hit the big time with hit albums from Tubeway Army and Gary Numan. The following years saw them snap up LPs by acts like Bauhaus and The Fall, and Beggars continued at a good clip for well over two decades - fast-forward to the 2000s and you could find records from St. Vincent and The National bearing the Beggars Banquet seal.
In 2008 Beggars Banquet as it had been previously known ceased to exist. Morphing into Beggars Group, the operation shifted from a single label into an umbrella-company for other noteworthy indies. The likes of 4AD, XL and Matador now operate as part of Beggars Group - think of it as a modern-times version of ‘The Cartel’ that Factory, Rough Trade, Red Rhino and others had going back in the day.