Podcast 461 – Chris Blackwell remembers the “underdogs, rejects and misfits” he signed to Island Records

Nearly every Island act seemed impossibly hip, characterful and charismatic and much of that was down to the vision and long-term belief of the man who founded the label and ran it for 30 years. Chris Blackwell beams in from Goldeneye, the Ian Fleming estate he bought in Jamaica, to remember Errol Flynn and his dachshund waterskiing, the wit and charm of Noel Coward, record-buying trips for the local jukeboxes and sound-systems and the story of Millie’s My Boy Lollipop, and talks about his relationship with Free, Traffic, Tom Waits, U2 and Roxy Music (also the ones that got away like Madonna). At one point he explains how he and Bob Marley modified Jamaican reggae to give it international appeal and there’s a great moment where he relives the overpowering effect of first hearing Trevor Horn’s production of Two Tribes. Chris’s memoir The Islander is published by Bonnier Books.

The Islander by Chris Blackwell …

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