John Martyn

Some people love Roy Harper, he’s good. Some people love Nick Drake, he was great and died to soon. I love John Martyn.

Whilst I heard John in the late seventies and early eighties. The first time I saw him was at Glastonbury in 85/86. He was the most singularly independent and original artist to come out of the UK folk scene. Rude, uncompromising, rebellious and so exceptionally talented as a song writer and performer its hard to place him.

It’s a little over a year since he passed away and I can only recommend watching the ‘Johnny To Bad’ BBC documentary if you can find it, or read ‘Some People Are Crazy’ which you can get for a couple of quid.

Here’s some late era John doing what he did best…..

I was lucky enough to see John a dozen times in various conditions of ability including his ‘Solid Air’ revisited tour. Unfortunately I missed the final ‘Grace & Danger’ tour even though (despite dubious eighties production) it’s one of his best albums.

I can however offer this. As far as I can tell it’s his last show from November 2008 at Vickers Road in Dublin. He passed away the following January whilst working on his final album which will hopefully be released this year.

This is the set list. Follow the link. 

John Martyn and Band
Vicar St., Dublin 25th Nov. 2008

01. Cooltide (Part)
02. Some People
03. Grace and Danger
04. Lookin’On
05. Johnny Too Bad
06. Sweet Little Mystery
07. Hurt in Your Heart
08. Baby Please Come Home
09. Save Some (for Me)
10. Our Love
11. Jellyroll Man
12. I Don’t Want to Know
13. May You Never
14. Solid Air
15. Rock, Salt and Nails
16. Never Let Me Go

I have no info about the taper. It’s an historic show, perhaps not the best quality but for anyone who knows his music its a must.

Visit the website for more about the final album and a new tribute recording.

A hero of real music.

UPDATE 09-02-11

It makes some sense to let the serpent eat it’s own tail and post the earliest recording I’ve been able to find of John Martyn.

Its Here….

Live at Les Cousins

Seven tracks, all from a little Soho Club in the late 60’s. It gets a mention in the biog.

01 Back Again – Dont Think Twice

02 Goin Down To Memphis

03 Winding Boy

04 Woodstock

05 Traffic Light Lady

06 Would You Believe Me

07 Jelly Roll Baker

…..again, not the top quality audio it’s nice to have but give history a go….


Filed under Music, Uncategorized, Video

2 responses to “John Martyn

  1. Mark Ward

    Solid Air was written for John’s friend Nick Drake,
    18 months before he died of an anti-depressant overdose I believe.
    The lyrics on Solid Air certainly make sense in the light of that information.

    Note from Mr. Pedantic:
    To whom it may concern.
    If it sounds like 2 as too does it has 2 letter, “O”s in it.
    You may punch me now!!!

  2. Thanks for joining in. I have a great Nick Drake set of early sessions and a couple of old BBC radio doc’s. I’ll look them out.
    ….and this isn’t a land of pendantry. They are my typo’s and I love them like my children. Apologies for any suffering caused.

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