February 25, 2024

Ira Robbins was nineteen years old and pursuing an electrical engineering degree in Brooklyn in 1974, fueled by his passion for underappreciated British rock bands. That led him to start a publication called “Trans-Oceanic Trouser Press,” which would eventually transform into “Trouser Press.” The publication played a key role in bringing British genres like prog and New Wave to American audiences. But after a decade, by 1984, the stress of a divorce and the rise of MTV led Robbins to stop publishing the magazine. He recalls the moment they went out of business, they began hearing how much people loved their work. Now nearly seventy, Robbins has embraced retirement and the digital age. But Trouser Press is not entirely forgotten – Robbins has revived the name as a small imprint called Trouser Press Books. Self-publishing with a touch of sophistication is how he describes the venture. He has published his own anthology and a couple of novels, and now he’s entertaining the work of other writers. He has strict standards and is selective about the kind of output he’s willing to publish.