Raymond Cook agrees to fund David Bowie’s music

In late 1965 David Bowie’s manager Ralph Horton was looking for financial assistance.

In early November both men went to see Harold Taylor, the owner of the Guardian Bank, at Taylor’s home at Avon House on Wimbledon Hill Road, London.

Taylor was unfamiliar with the music industry, so declined to invest, but suggested that an upstairs neighbour, Raymond Cook, might be interested. Cook was a director of Petray Heating Ltd.

Bowie and Horton immediately went to see Cook, who arranged a further meeting at which he agreed to finance Bowie’s career with a loan of £1,500.

The agreement was signed on 15 November 1965. Cook was given no management rights, and did not see a return on his investment.

AN AGREEMENT made this day 15-11-1965

BETWEEN Ralph James Horton of 79A Warwick Square, London, SW1 and Raymond Cook of Avon House, 82 Wimbledon Hill, Wimbledon, London.

WHEREBY IT IS AGREED AS FOLLOWS:

That Ralph Horton manager of David Bowie (David Robert Jones), will pay to Raymond Cook ten per cent of the artistes earnings provided that the artistes earnings total more than one hundred pounds per month. If the artistes earnings do not total more than one hundred pounds per month then no such remuneration is payable. The length of the agreement will be for a period of three years upon the signing of this agreement and a further continuance of two years will take effect should the option clauses on the management contract between the artist and Ralph Horton.

It is further agreed that although this agreement constitutes a contract, Raymond Cook does not become a partner to the management of David Bowie and that Ralph Horton remains the sole manager of the artist.

Raymond Cook for his part will supply to the artist care of Ralph Horton a financial investment the amount of which will be verbally agreed between the two parties.

Live: David Bowie and the Lower Third, New Barn Club, Brighton
Live: David Bowie and the Lower Third, Marquee Club, London
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