Colin “Iley” Levy, singer, songwriter, producer, began his musical pursuits at an early age. Born into a family that had owned a sound system Colin, from the age of three would accompany his father, Reginald Levy, on gigs and was always beside his father when he was “sounding out” his collection of music. This was the norm for Colin, growing up in Hanover, Jamaica.
Colin’s mother, Veronica Sterling, made a strong impact in Colin’ life … “Everything she was doing, whether washing, cooking or cleaning, she would be singing,” Colin always reminisced with a heartfelt smile.
At age nine, Colin was inspired by artists like Bob Andy and the late Dennis Brown, who, encouraged him to pursue his dream to write and sing. Along with sound advice from Delroy Morrison of Dynamic Sounds, Colin found the courage to focus on his talents.
While working at Rainbow Ites, a family owned restaurant, Colin wrote songs for and produced some of the young talent that was featured in the local talent shows put on by the Rainbow Ites. Honing his own talent for performing, he participated in some of the shows himself. In 1994, Colin was introduced to Bevin Jackson, the owner of Bulls Eye Recording label. Bevin encouraged Colin to record his own material and start his own production company. The birth of Kings of Kings Productions ensued in 1995. Bevin became Colin’s mentor producing quite a number of songs for Colin – five of which were part of Colin’s first album – A Friend for Life. This association was cut short because of the untimely passing of Bevin due to injuries he received in a motor vehicle accident. (Colin’s first single, Flowers in My Garden, which was a runaway hit, earned the best title, Best Reggae Song, in the Canadian Juno Awards in 1998.)
A Friend for Life was released in 2001; this album featured appearances from Glen Washington, Lady Saw, Louie Culture, Luciano, Chrisinti and Norris Man, among others. A Friend for Life spawned popular hits such as Rise Up This Morning, Flowers in My Garden, World Crisis and Mamma, which is still enjoying heavy rotation on music television and radio stations internationally. In 2002, A Friend for Life was nominated for a Juno Award by the Canadian Academy of Arts & Sciences in The Best Reggae category.
Colin takes great pride in the lyrical content of his songs and his material reflects his deep-rooted spirituality with heart-warming sensitivity. Not only has Colin made strides as an artist, but also as a songwriter; he has penned and produced many a song for Michael “Grammy” Rose, Beenie Man, Everton Blenda, Sizzle and the late Dennis Brown along with a host of other reggae artists. Colin Levy was awarded the Canadian Award of Merit at the Canadian Reggae Music Awards in March 2001. In March 2003, Colin Levy was awarded The Bob Marley Memorial Award.
Colin Levy has made even more positive inroads into the European markets. Unite the People album, his second release, has picked up where A Friend for Life had left off, and is currently in heavy rotation on radio all over the world as well as on television on both sides of the Atlantic. His music videos can be seen worldwide in many music platforms and most social media platforms.
Continuing on the path of producing quality musical works, Colin Levy has released his 3rd album titled “Unleashed”. This new Colin Levy a.k.a. “Iley Chardavid” album, reflects the deep commitment and inspiration and contains some of Colin’s best music. The album reflects Colin’s life story of his childhood to his present life that will stir the soul from his trials, triumphs and his personal views. Colin is also authoring a autobiography he calls Zion Road. This book is not only his personal story; it is a road map to be told from his music, inspirations, personal views and life experiences.