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The Islander cover art

The Islander

By: Chris Blackwell,Paul Morley - contributor
Narrated by: Bill Nighy
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Publisher's Summary

As the founder of Island Records, fabled music producer Chris Blackwell has discovered and worked with some of the most important musicians of the second half of the twentieth century—from Steve Winwood to Cat Stevens, Bob Marley to Grace Jones, U2 to Roxy Music, plus countless others. He is also widely credited with having brought reggae music to the world stage.

Now, as he turns eighty-five, Blackwell takes us back to the island where it all began: Jamaica—the place where his family once partied with the likes of Noël Coward, Ian Fleming and Errol Flynn and where, as Jamaican local music began to adopt contemporary American trends, Blackwell's burgeoning musical instincts flourished. It was also the birthplace of the now-legendary Island Records, founded by Blackwell in 1959.

Five years later, while living in London selling Jamaican records to Caribbean immigrants, Blackwell came across the vocal talents of teenager Millie Small, who he paired with the song 'My Boy Lollipop'. The producer added a ska beat and released what would be a worldwide hit.

But this was just the beginning of a truly remarkable career. In this fascinating memoir, the music icon will discuss the many artists he's worked with over the years, as well as unpicking the initiatives, decisions and risks that ultimately brought such success to both Blackwell and his esteemed musical collaborators.

©2022 Chris Blackwell (P)2022 Bonnier Books UK

Critic Reviews

"An adventurer, an entrepreneur, a buccaneer, a visionary." (Bono)

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Extraordinarily Enjoyable Bio

What an amazing life Chris Blackwell has lived. An amazing book with a superb job done by Bill Nighy narrating, and a pretty good pairing with Trevor Horns own autobiography, makes this both a must listen & a very highly recommended book for
anyone with a deeper interest in the making of music, it's origins & a deeper & different insight into all involved in the process.
A truly great read.

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Loved it

Insightful and passionate story by the man who lived and created so much of my favourite music

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Epic but simple and of the earth

Chris has given us a tale or story of a life lived fully and with joy, celebrating not only his journey but those who have travelled with him through time. The book takes you along as a friend as Chris creatively intertwines past, present and future but never loses its narrative. This is one of those rare books that you love to know more but you fear the end approaching because you are enjoying the images described to you in rich and vibrant tones. I feel like I got to know the man, his friends and his life which is an achievement in itself. Beautifully read by Bill Nighy please immerse yourself in this Islanders story it truly is extraordinary and captivating,

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