Island Records

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Island Records is a record label that was founded by Chris Blackwell in Jamaica. It was based in the United Kingdom for many years and is now owned by Universal Music Group. The label now operates as a division of The Island Def Jam Music Group in the United States (where it is now a largely rock-oriented label) and as a standalone label in the United Kingdom (also known as Island Records Group or Universal Island).[1] Since 2007, there is also a frontline local artist and repertoire label in Australia known as Island Records Australia, run by Universal Music Australia.



Rise of the Island brand

Island Records was founded in Jamaica in 1959 by Chris Blackwell and Graeme Goodall, and partially financed by Stanley Borden from RKO, taking its name from the 1955 Alec Waugh novel, subsequent film and Harry Belafonte hit song 'Island in the Sun'.[2] The company relocated to the UK in May 1962. Until Blackwell sold the label to PolyGram in 1989, Island was the largest indie record label in history. Island had a major influence on the progressive music scene of the UK in the early 1970s. In the mid-1970s, Island operated its own record pressing plant, but had sometimes problems with quality control; many records were defective and had to be returned. Island (UK) contracted EMI to manufacture and distribute their works, from 1972–1977, when higher vinyl prices forced Island to a lower quality manufacturer[citation needed]. EMI regained the duty in 1987.

Island's first multinational distribution deal in North America was with RCA Records Canada (then an independent company), established and developed for almost a decade by manager Kathy Hahn and prior to its move to Warner Brothers. The RCA deal yielded Bob Marley's first gold album for North American record sales with the release of Exodus, and also marked Island's first gold album certification for North American Record sales. Island did, however, incorporate and operate business offices in the U.S. and Canada in the 1970s and 1980s.

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