Island Records

Island Book of Records - Volume One: 1959-68


Release date: 7 June, 2024

Nominated for the 2024 Association for Recorded Sound Collections’ Awards for Excellence in Historical Recorded Sound Research.

Every album released between 1959 when Chris Blackwell founded Island in Jamaica through to the end of 1968 in the UK is included. Each is fully illustrated to include labels, booklets, die-cut covers and foreign editions as well as scheduled but ultimately unreleased LPs. Hardback and vinyl-sized, the IBoR runs to 392 pages and also contains a 20+ page illustrated discography of 45s and EPs; appendices detailing subsidiary label LP releases; gig adverts (many at venues which no longer exist); record release flyers; magazine covers; concert tickets, and Island’s pioneering LP adverts – many of which became art in their own right – plus other artefacts and
ephemera. Many featured photographs have never been seen before. These archival treasures have been painstakingly drawn together for the first time, offering a truly unparalleled resource for those seeking an immersive trip back to a period when music ignited a cultural renaissance.

The IBoR text combines contemporary commentary with interviews from years gone by. Exclusive interviews include Chris Blackwell together with photographers Dick Polak, John Benton-Harris, Barrie Wentzell and Gered Mankowitz; graphic artists John Hurford and Burt Goldblatt; musicians Owen Gray, Ernest Ranglin, Muff Winwood, Jess Roden, Dave Pegg, Simon Nicol, Spooky Tooth’s Mike Harrison, Kellie and Luther Grosvenor, Patrick Campbell-Lyons, Don Letts and Steve Winwood; former Island staff members David Betteridge, Ann Sullivan, Rob Bell, Penny Massot, John Glover, Tom Hayes, Tim Clark and John Knowles; studio engineers Phill Brown, Brian Humphries and John Wood; producer-managers Joe Boyd and Sandy Roberton. Commentary of the time includes Ian Anderson, Terry Ellis, Barbara Lynn, Enid Cumberland and Linton Kwesi Johnson while in memoriam Guy Stevens, Sandy Denny, Elmore James, John Martyn, Lee Gopthal, Chris Wood, Byron Lee, Count Prince Miller, Millie Small, the Rt Hon Edward Seaga and Jim Capaldi all feature. Their memories evoke the early excitement generated by this pioneering record label.

"Like entering the record shop of your dreams." - David Hepworth/Mark Ellen, Word in your Ear podcast.

"An exemplary piece of musical archaeology." – Mojo.

"The level of detail is simply stunning." – Record Collector.

"Comprehensively compiled and meticulously edited." – Richard Williams, The Blue Moment.

Volume 2 (1969–1970) is planned for worldwide publication by
Manchester University Press during November 2024.