Legendary UK concert promoter Andrew Miller died of cancer Feb. 16. He was 65.
Apart from becoming one of the pioneer promoters of the ‘70s, working with top acts of the day including Pink Floyd, Supertramp and Dire Straits, he was well known for the money and support he raised for various charities. He was also a founding member of the UK’s Concert Promoters’ Association.
In 1976 Miller began working with Oxford-based charity Nordoff Robbins, setting up a fundraising committee with Willie Robertson of insurance broker Robertson Taylor. Robertson died of cancer last July.
Miller’s landmark charity event was at Knebworth Park in Hertfordshire June 30, 1990, when a bill including Pink Floyd, Robert Plant and Jimmy Page, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Genesis and Cliff Richard & The Shadows was believed to have raised something in the region of £6.5 million ($10.1 million).
It pulled a sellout crowd of 120,000, was broadcast worldwide by MTV and later released on DVD.
The proceeds were split among several charities, with some going to Nordoff Robbins and some to help launch the BRIT School for Performing Arts and benefit future generations of artists such as Adele, Amy Winehouse, Katie Melua, Leona Lewis and Kate Nash.
In the last decade or so, Miller took a backseat from the live music industry as he battled his illness, occasionally returning to promote such longstanding clients as Chris de Burgh or co-promote Barry Manilow or Meat Loaf with Danny Betesh of Kennedy Street Enterprises.
“He was an absolute gentleman,” according to Betesh, who said he felt many in the UK live music business would say the same.
Laurie Jay, manager of Billy Ocean, said: “The industry has lost an honourable gentleman promoter and I have lost a true friend.
“We shook hands over 40 years ago for Andrew to promote my artists and the arrangement lasted until last Thursday.”
A note on the Nordoff Robbins website credited Miller for making it “the UK’s leading specialist music charity” and described him as “one of the most well respected live music promoters of his time.”
He leaves a wife, Anna, and two daughters, Faye and Emily.
There will be a private family funeral near Miller’s home in Shropshire March 1.
Details of a memorial service in London in the spring will be announced in the near future.