New Album Release October 2020
Twenty years after Brian Islands departure from recording and performing pop-rock music, he is back with his retrospective solo album.
An album filled with soulful tracks of roots, folk and country rock music. There is something for everyone.
It's a wonderful trip.
I was born in West Lothian Scotland. I was an only child when my parents decided to immigrate to Canada. We landed in Quebec headed west by train and settled in Winnipeg Canada . I would not realize till I was much older that this city was one of the hubs of music in Canada and was the home to many of my musical peers such as Randy Bachman, Neil Young and others that had their start in the city. It was a struggle as a young boy with a strange accent in a new country, and because of this I turned to music and a guitar that was given to me for Christmas as a way to pass my time at home alone. In High School after several years of teaching myself guitar, learning and writing songs did I take the leap and decide to start playing out. It started with small gigs, coffee houses, school dances and eventually the local folk circuit.
I traveled as a solo act playing folk music until I met up with Robert Bartlett and Graham Jones. We formed the Winnipeg based band Bootleg, playing bars and eventually releasing a single “Queen of Hearts". From there I played and sang with several other bands such as Prototype releasing top 40 songs "Video Kids", "Sorry" and the band IO. After several years playing and working as a studio vocal arranger and bass player I released my self titled solo Album in 1989.
Now many years later after a long departure from the spotlight I am releasing “Looking Back”. A few of the tracks on this album are songs that were written in the 70s that were never recorded. I felt they needed their time to shine along with newer songs that have been written over the last few months. These songs are a retrospective of my music career from the early years to current day.
I hope you enjoy the music just as much as I enjoyed creating it.
The album “Looking Back” is a retrospective on my diverse musical career. I wanted to start the album at my current state of musical evolution, and look back in time from there. The songs weren’t written in order from the present to the past, but they represent musical genres I have passed though in my career. From Rock, Pop, Country Rock and Folk Rock to Folk music.
Beyond My Reach The album starts with a song I wrote early in my career, but I lacked the ability to take the song where I wanted it to go at the time. I’m glad I waited, as the song has now arrived. It’s a better representation, musically, of where I am now.
Turn Back Time This is one of my more recent creations. I have a deep respect for the indigenous community and the hardships colonization brought upon it. As things come to light over these injustices, I felt compelled to write this song to honour and express the shame of what the white man has done and continues to do. This is a time for Truth and Reconciliation in Canada and it is my wish that we put an end to these injustices and find a way to heal the past and move forward together.
Running Into The Night This song is another recent creation. I have always had a strong bond with my horses right from the day they were born. As my animal partners grow older, I have to face the realization that we won’t be together forever.
William Another one of my more recent writings. I’ve always had a lingering need to explore my relationship with my father. Through the process of writing this song I was able to better understand who he was, and how it affected my relationship with him.
I Was Your Man This is one of my songs from my Country Rock past. I never had a recording of this song that did it justice. I wanted to re-record it in the Country Rock vein that it was written in.
So Fine Another song written during my Country Rock past. I wanted to re-record this song - a humorous musing on the human tendency to continually look for more instead of appreciating what you already have.
Home This recently-written song nevertheless fits well into my Folk Rock past. It was written out of regret for the sale of the acreage that was my home for many years. A lot of memories are tied to that land, and the song was a born of the misgivings I had about letting it go.
You’ll Be Free This song that fits well with my history in Folk music. After years of not writing or playing music, all the lyrics for this song came to me at once in the middle of the night. I got up in the morning and wrote the music to fit the lyrics. The song was inspired by my grandson who lived a good portion of his youth with us.
Until Your Breath Is Gone This is a song written recently, but that arises from my Folk roots. It reminds us to live every moment as if it were our last. As I get older I am constantly faced with the fact that we’re not here forever, and it’s important to use our time well.
Brian Island - Looking Back - Retrospective - 2
This Retrospective and a complete Press Kit containing Bios' are available in PDF format by request to firstname.lastname@example.org or filling out the Contact Form on this Page.