Unprecedented. Sharing the front page with the Rolling Stones on Music Week

Unprecedented. Sharing the front page with the Rolling Stones on Music Week
Neil Storey, editor of The Island Book of Records 1959-68

Keith Richard and Mick Jagger must be spitting. They release a new album after a zillion years. Music Week magazine review Hackney Diamonds, as they would, but hold on who it this sharing the limelight??? why it’s editor Neil Storey, standing in front of his Island archive, featured on the same home page. A cracking photo of his lordship, taken by yours truly, even if I say so myself. (No cats were injured in the making of this picture)

What a lovely shock though. Keef, Mick and Neil.

********Here’s a sample of the Music Week interview

Looking back now, what do you think is Island’s legacy as a label?
“Legacy? Quite simply I’d cite Island as being the most important label across a period of thirty years.

For me it is the sheer breadth of music represented on the label, not just a bit of reggae, a little ska and rock-steady, a few rock bands, a couple of folk groups, some singer-songwriters etc.

If one looks down the full database of releases you’ll discover truly groundbreaking artists recording music that broke all the established rules.

It demonstrates a legacy of which there is no parallel, that no other label in the universe possesses.

No other label had Chris Blackwell at the helm – so that’s one answer. CB was cited at the 2009 Music Week Awards as ‘the most influential figure in the last fifty years of the British music industry’, an accolade which says it all really. His was an ethic of giving the artists signed space and time to create. It was all for the long term.


  1. the oft told tale of him being informed he’d never see his money or an album being recorded when advancing The Wailers cash to make a new record. They returned with their first Island LP, Catch A Fire.
  2. There was the faith shown in Robert Palmer as it took five solo albums before he started seeing mainstream success on both sides of the Atlantic.
  3. U2 and the suggestion they should be dropped after October… heads literally rolled after that.
  4. And the faith shown in Marianne Faithfull, an artist everyone had long since given up on and no one wanted to sign. The list is near enough endless.”