Sleevenotes

The Man Upstairs

Date: 
11 Sep 2007
Written by: 
John Hillarby

Melody, harmony, and rhythm; music is a deeply mysterious phenomena. Something to cherish, to be enjoyed from the inside out, to be looked after, absorbed and listened to over and over again. It makes us who we are. Music is part of our heritage like literature, art, architecture and our environment; it moulds us and forms us as human beings; our spirit and our soul. Or is it? At the risk of appearing far older than my 41 years young, modern trends in computer generated music make it a throw away item - a disposable commodity staggeringly inferior to traditionally crafted offerings.

Related to: 

Cooltide

Date: 
27 Aug 2007
Written by: 
John Hillarby

Predictably unpredictable John Martyn's music is dynamic and full of life. Every album is a collection of songs that encapsulate his life at the time it was recorded; a musical diary. Released on 9th September 1991 Cooltide was recorded and mixed in less than 3 weeks. John articulates his personal anti-war beliefs in the title track Cooltide, which condemns politically and religiously fuelled confrontation, in the same year that Operation Desert Shield became Operation Desert Storm to liberate
Kuwait when Iraq failed to comply with United Nations Resolution 678. The 200,000 strong allied forces led by US General Norman Schwarzkopf lost 250 lives whilst an estimated 35,000 to 100,000 Iraqi troops never saw their families again.

BBC Live In Concert

Date: 
4 Jun 2007
Written by: 
John Hillarby

ANYTHING was possible amidst the social revolution that gripped the UK and overturned accepted protocols and preconceptions in the late 60s and early 70s. Music, fashion and life itself had no immunity to change. In 1971 decimal currency was introduced into the UK, Philips launched the Video Cassette Recorder and platform shoes, cheese cloth and bell bottoms were all the rage as eclectic tastes pushed back accepted boundaries. Even Royal Ascot relaxed its dress code to allow hot pants! Folk music became an industry as the record companies seized on Bob Dylan's success and eagerly signed acoustic guitarists Michael Chapman, Donovan, Roy Harper, Bert Jansch and a young English born but Scottish bred artist; John Martyn.

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Sixty Minutes With John Martyn

Date: 
16 Apr 2007
Written by: 
Jon Kirkman

John Martyn is an important and influential figure in both British folk and rock music. Over a career that spans thirty seven years John Martyn has managed to explore a variety of styles woven together to become a style all of its own. Based around a catalogue of songs second to none John Martyn continues to explore his own particular niche.

Anthology (rerelease)

Date: 
26 Feb 2007
Written by: 
Anonymous

Born in Glasgow in 1948, John Martyn has now ploughed a determinedly individualistic path as a constantly evolving artist for over forty years. As a teenager he began playing on the local folk scene, strongly influenced by the traditional singer Hamish Imlach, but also by great bluesmen like Robert Johnson and Skip James, already forging his own style with laidback vocals complementing his precocious mastery of the guitar.

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Grace & Danger Deluxe Edition

Date: 
12 Feb 2007
Written by: 
Daryl Easlea

PRETTY IN AN UGLY SORT OF WAY

GRACE & DANGER BY JOHN MARTYN

"Grace & Danger was very cathartic, and really hurt, I was really in love with that woman."
John Martyn

"There was no point in to go and make a jolly, fairground album."
Martin Levan

THE currency of popular music is frequently that of love and despair. However, these emotions are often in the abstract and, although prurience may dictate otherwise, the listener is frequently reminded to keep the public utterances of an artist and their private lives strictly compartmentalised. With John Martyn's Grace And Danger, this it is absolutely impossible.

The One World Sampler

Date: 
6 Nov 2006
Written by: 
John Hillarby

Inspirational, influential and above all progressive John Martyn has now entered his fifth decade as a renowned singer-songwriter. His timeless music has influenced whole generations of new artists including Everything But The Girl, Morcheeba, Sade, The Verve, Paul Weller and U2's The Edge. His song craft is recognised the world over with Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Ralph McTell, Wet Wet Wet, Courtney Pine, Dr John and Beck having all recorded their own renditions of his songs.

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