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Joe Boyd (1942 - )

Related: folk music - UK music


Joe Boyd (born August 5, 1942) is an American record producer.

He was born in Boston, Massachusetts. He first became involved in music promoting blues artists while a student at Harvard University. He made his first visit to Britain in 1964 and returned the following year to establish an overseas office of Elektra Records. He eventually settled in London.

He became best-known for his work with British folk and folk rock artists, including the Incredible String Band, Martin Carthy, Nick Drake, John Martyn, Fairport Convention and Richard Thompson. Some of these were produced by his own production company, Witchseason. He also co-founded London's UFO Club and worked with UFO regulars Pink Floyd (producing their first single "Arnold Layne") and the Soft Machine.

Boyd returned to the States in the 1970s, assembling footage for the eponymous film documentary on Jimi Hendrix (1973) and producing records by Maria Muldaur and Kate and Anna McGarrigle among others. He went on to found his own Hannibal label (now a part of Rykodisc) which released records by the likes of Richard Thompson and various discs of so-called world music. Boyd also produced R.E.M.'s third album Fables of the Reconstruction (1985), and records by Billy Bragg and 10,000 Maniacs. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Boyd [Jan 2006]

Joe Boyd and the sixties London underground

At the start of it all, two men pretty much controlled the music of the London underground John Hopkins and Joe Boyd. Hoppy was one of the founders of IT and, along with Joe Boyd, ran the UFO Club which was the Friday night, Tottenham Court Road, ground zero for the embryonic counterculture. Hoppy had long since decided that I was barking and seemed quite to like me. Boyd on the other hand had seen the band somewhere, pulled that face Lee Harvey Oswald made when he took the bullet, and swore that The Deviants would only play at UFO over his dead body. Joe Boyd was an American ex-pat who seemed to have a fixed idea that the music of the Brit underground should be a kind of neo-merrie folk rock, a philosophy from which, I can only think, stemmed his productions of The Incredible String Band and Fairport Convention. Nothing wrong in any of that, except it was one narrow view, and far too conventional for a man who, for a time, was in close to complete control of the music of the Revolution. --Mick Farren , MOJO Magazine October 1999, (originally published under the title "We Mean It, Maaan!); http://www.thanatosoft.freeserve.co.uk/supermarketfiles/deviantsfiles/deviantshistory2.htm

Nick Drake [...]

It is lucky and ironic that during one of his infrequent gigs he was spotted by a member of established English folksters, Fairport Convention, who convinced their producer Joe Boyd to give Drake a listen. Boyd was impressed enough with Drake's demo tape that he signed him to a contract in 1968 and set to working with Nick on his debut album. -- Dave Rosen, inkblotmagazine.com, accessed Feb 2004

Nightlife of Swingin' London, 1967 [...]

Chris Blackwell [...]

Island made a deal with Joe Boyd that incorporated into the company the best in English folk rock music Sandy Denny, Richard Thompson, Nick Drake and The Incredible String Band.

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