An Island Sampler

1 Feb 1973
Capitol Records
The Bottom Line:

Rare US support sampler for Solid Air tour

John has two tracks on this item; I'd Rather Be The Devil is shortened like the other long tracks (as indicated after the album titles).

"island records | available from capitol records"

track table
nr artist track time provenance
A1 The Wailers Rock It Baby 2:35 Island - SW-9329 (13 Apr 1973)
Catch A Fire (3:55)
A2 Traffic Evening Blue 5:00 Island – SW-9323 (Feb 1973)
Shoot Out At The Fantasy Factory (5:19)
A3 John Martyn I'd Rather Be The Devil 2:36 Island – SW-9325 (1 Feb 1973)
Solid Air (6:19)
A4 Amazing Blondel Seascape 5:30 Island – SW-9327 (1973)
England (5:32)
A5 Free Travellin In Style 4:02 Island – SW-9324 (Jan 1973)
Heartbreaker (4:00)
B1 Free Wishing Well 3:40 Island - SW-9324 (Jan 1973)
Heartbreaker (3:40)
B2 Traffic Uninspired 3:24 Island – SW-9323 (Feb 1973)
Shoot Out At The Fantasy Factory (10:01)
B3 Mike Harrison Smokestack Lightning 5:32 Island – SW-9321 (Nov 1972)
Smokestack Lightning (12:28)
B4 John Martyn Don't Want To Know 3:00 Island – SW-9325 (1 Feb 1973)
Solid Air (3:02)
B5 The Wailers Stir It Up 5:30 Island – SW-9329 (13 Apr 1973)
Catch A Fire (5:30)

Side A has a total playing time of 20:10, side B takes 21:29.
Track times on the labels are mostly accurate, Traffic's Evening Blue lasting 15 seconds longer.

Mold numbers

The track info is printed on the labels, while the outer sleeve carries the following text, which is practically identical to the one used in a two page advert intended to boost sales during the stadium tour with Traffic and Free.
The copy clearly being targeted to shop owners.

IT'S ISLAND (eye-land) MONTH

... with a fantastic release of new product, massive merchandising and sales support, and a magnificent tour.
The tour began January 17 and will continue through February... featuring, on one bill:

  • TRAFFIC, who have a new album, SHOOT OUT AT THE FANTASY FACTORY (SW-9323).
  • FREE, who have a new album, HEARTBREAKER (SW-9324).
  • JOHN MARTYN, who has a new album, SOLID AIR (SW-9325).

Beginning January 19th is another tour, featuring Badfinger and

  • AMAZING BLONDEL, who have a new album, ENGLAND (SW-9327).

The two remaining new albums are also very special.

  • MIKE HARRISON'S new one is SMOKESTACK LIGHTNING (SW-9321), which MELODY MAKER calls more than a cut above the first. It was completed just prior to Mike's reforming Spooky Tooth with Gary Wright. Especially listen to the 12½ minute version of Smokestack Lightning, the Chester Burnett (Howlin' Wolf) classic.

Last, and by no means least,

  • THE WAILERS with CATCH A FIRE (SW-9329). The very special package encases a very special music -some will call it Reggae, but we prefer to call it Jamaican Underground Music- it's the music of the people in Jamaica. This form of music has enjoyed wide popularity in England, and has been reflected here in Paul Simon's Mother & Child Reunion and Johnny Nash's I Can See Clearly Now. The Wailers have toured in England with Johnny Nash, and produced the hit Stir It Up, written for him by Bob Marley of The Wailers. Listen to Catch A Fire a couple of times - it'll make you do more than smell salt air...

Island Month is also an excellent time to re-stock past Island product:

From Traffic, Jim Capaldi's OH HOW WE DANCED (SW-9314) and Reebop's REEBOP KWAKU BAAH (SW-9304). Don't forget our first (and still best-selling) TRAFFIC Lp, LOW SPARK OF HIGH-HEELED BOYS (SW-9306).


As noted, support for this major label release is massive, including complete store merchandising kits (for windows and in-store), lots of print and broadcast advertising, touring, extensive press and PR plans, and some of the best new albums from anyone... anywhere.

Related to: 
Vinyl: Island SPRO-6619 | SPRO-6620