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John Martyn

John Martyn

49 articles


Up To Date With John Martyn

Interview by Andy Childs, ZigZag, March 1977

ONLY SIX WEEKS or so gone, and already it looks as if 1977 is going to be a cracker of a year for rock music! ...

John Martyn: Mad Dog Days

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Uncut, September 2004

Two-CD set of mainly live jazz-folk genius from the early ‘70s to the mid-‘90s, with bonus DVD interview from last year. ...


John Martyn (1998)

Interview by Chris Smith, Rock's Backpages Audio, June 1998

We start with Smith's second attempt at interviewing Martyn: the Scottish bard on his covers album The Church of the One Bell; on starting out as a musician; on his influences such as Davey Graham and the impressionist composers; on writing 'Solid Air' for (and about) Nick Drake. Following that, we present Smith's first attempt at the interview, in which a soused Martyn slurs about impressionism, drink and religion, and tells incomprehensible jokes.

File format: mp3; file size: 38.2mb, interview length: 39' 49" sound quality: ** (phoner)


Is John Martyn Still A Folk Singer Or Not?

Report and Interview by Jerry Gilbert, Melody Maker, 28 February 1970

THIS IS A TOTALLY irrelevant question, and one which I'm glad I didn't bother to ask. For in this age of musical categories, John draws ...

John And Beverley Martyn

Profile and Interview by uncredited writer, Beat Instrumental, May 1970

JOE BOYD has been responsible for bringing to our attention a number of brilliant musicians. People don't talk much about 'discovering' artists these days, but ...

John Martyn: Solid Air (Island)

Review by Andrew Means, Melody Maker, 3 March 1973

HOW DO you begin to describe a guitarist as sensitive and accomplished as John Martyn? Every new album expands one's appreciation of his ability. ...

John Martyn: The Stormbringer Comes Into The Sun

Interview by Ian MacDonald, New Musical Express, 21 July 1973

"Love me with your head and heart.Love me from the place it starts;Love me from your head and heart.Love me like a child." ...

John Martyn: Inside Out (Island)

Review by Ian MacDonald, New Musical Express, 29 September 1973

YOU COULD SAY that the post-decadence rock scene is structured rather like the society of ants: a hangover of old drones twittering away behind last ...

Fire and Water: The Elemental, Avant-Garde John Martyn

Comment by Dave Laing, Let It Rock, 1 December 1973

1967: "SO THERE I WAS on this barge on the river wearing nothing but denims and a smile…" so runs the sleeve note on London ...

Talking with John Martyn

Interview by Andy Childs, ZigZag, April 1974


John Martyn: Sunday's Child

Review by Andy Childs, ZigZag, March 1975

FOR ME, THE release of a new John Martyn album is always among the most noteworthy events of the year. ...

John Martyn: Blood, Sweat And Cheers

Report and Interview by Vivien Goldman, Sounds, 5 March 1977

JOHN MARTYN rivets attention performing. You'd be wrong in assuming that just because he's one-man-with-a-guitar he doesn't make every crevice of the stage swing. ...

John Martyn: This Man Is A Walking, Playing Bag of His Own

Interview by Chris Salewicz, New Musical Express, 24 December 1977

"ACTUALLY," ADMITS John Martyn, as he gives in to one of the great groundswells of spluttering, infectious laughter that carry along his speech, "I see ...

John Martyn: One World (Island)

Review by Steven X Rea, Crawdaddy!, April 1978

JOHN MARTYN'S music is a blur of blues and jazz and rock: Bessie Smith's emotiveness, Hoagy Carmichael's mellowness, Skip James' growl and bellow, and Martyn's ...

John Martyn: London School of Economics, London

Live Review by Ian Penman, New Musical Express, 18 November 1978

YOU DON'T need me at all – you know what happened, what will happen. ...

John Martyn: The Exorcism

Profile and Interview by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, 29 November 1980

After the breakdown of his marriage, John Martyn spent seven months on a complete bender, but the result of that desperation was his finest album for years. Nick Kent ...

John Martyn: Martyn's Identity Papers

Interview by Karl Dallas, Melody Maker, 6 December 1980

ACCORDING to the official biog, John Martyn was born in New Malden, Surrey, but was brought up for the first 15 years of his life ...

At Home With The Stars Special: So Tell Us Phil, How Do You Feel About Solo Success?

Interview by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, 21 March 1981

The remarkable Mr. Collins stays awake long enough to cure NICK KENT of his insomnia. ...

John Martyn: Making Tracks to the Top

Profile and Interview by Mick Brown, Guardian, The, 23 May 1981

John Martyn, in concert in London tonight, has been a cult figure for far too long. Now he plans to change all that, as Mick ...

Johnny Done Badly

Interview by Chris Salewicz, New Musical Express, October 1981

DRINKING CHAMPAGNE and orange juice, a belated present for his 33rd birthday two days previously, the bright-faced John Martyn flails every way about his end ...

John Martyn: Well Kept Secret

Review by Danny Baker, New Musical Express, 4 September 1982

I LIVE WITH THE constant nagging worry that my house will soon burn down. ...

Sunday's Child Tame 'n' Tired

Live Review by Richard Cook, New Musical Express, 30 October 1982

John Martyn: Hammersmith Odeon, London ...

John Martyn: Solid Heir

Interview by Hugh Fielder, Sounds, 13 November 1982

"SO SOUNDS think I'm an old hippie, do they?" muses John Martyn as we stand in the hotel lobby waiting for the limo (the manager's ...

John Martyn: Philentropy (Body Swerve)

Review by Ian Penman, New Musical Express, 3 December 1983

THERE ARE those – and they are many in today's athletic Popular-hypertrophic music field – who can impress a vocal line upon a certain heavily ...

John Martyn: Tha Man Who Put The Sap In Sapphire

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, New Musical Express, 22 December 1984

COSMIC JOHN MARTYN at the Dominion a fortnight ago was the first time I’d seen this beer-swilling beat hippie since I snuck in the back ...

Sade: Diamond Life (Portrait); John Martyn: Sapphire (Island)

Review by Richard C. Walls, Creem, May 1985


John Martyn: Piece By Piece

Review by Len Brown, New Musical Express, 8 March 1986

ONLY A HEARTLESS bastard would knock old John. I mean. 20 years of love-drugged poetry, dedicated to ideal earth mothers, cossetted in an Arcadian atmosphere ...

John Martyn: Starting again at the bottom

Report and Interview by Sean O'Hagan, Sunday Correspondent, 18 March 1990

TWO YEARS AGO, after Island Records rejected his last LP; John Martyn entered a "black period" that lasted six months. In an alcoholic haze, he ...

John Martyn: Same Again?

Interview by Mark Cooper, Q, May 1990

Sober, wiser, more than a little weather-beaten, John Martyn hassurvived 20 turbulent booze-fuelled years pursuing a romantic image ofthe lone folk troubadour. But the "rebel ...

Johnny Too Bad: John Martyn

Book Excerpt by Mark Cooper, 'Love is the Drug' (Penguin), 1994

HE'S A JAZZ MAN, he's a folkie and he's been a drinker. Singer songwriter John Martyn has been most things, apart from commercially acceptable. Now ...

John Martyn: The Boy Can't Help It

Interview by Nick Coleman, MOJO, October 1994

Rambunctious loons, Soave-swilling romantics, tireless anarchists, people who fill baths with dead fish, all detect in him some sort of kindred spirit. John Martyn by ...

John Martyn: And

Review by Mark Cooper, MOJO, August 1996

ONE OF THE GREAT maverick stylists of British music, John Martyn has been out on a limb in recent years, marooned first by some increasingly ...

John Martyn: And

Review by Phil Sutcliffe, Q, September 1996

HE MAY be 30 years "in the business", 25 albums down the line, and possessed of all the fans his idiosyncratic body of work is ...

John Martyn: Felling Gravity's Pull

Interview by Rob Young, Wire, The, June 1998

After rising to prominence with the late 60s electric folk renaissance, John Martyn uprooted songform and subjected it to a serious sonic makeover on a ...

John Martyn: Glasgow Walker/Classics

Review by Chris Ingham, MOJO, July 2000

30th-odd album plus old song collection from Glaswegian songwriter. ...

John Martyn: Emotional Rescue

Retrospective by David Stubbs, Uncut, December 2000


Sister Bliss & John Martyn

Interview by Dan Gennoe, 7, 21 February 2001


John Martyn: NTL Studio, Waterfront Hall, Belfast

Live Review by Colin Harper, Irish Times, The, 28 February 2001

JOHN MARTYN MADE some very beautiful and distinctive acoustic-based records in the '70s, most notably Solid Air –reputedly a "chillout" fave for today's clubby types. ...

John Martyn: The Lowry, Salford

Live Review by Dave Simpson, Guardian, The, 8 May 2004

IF JOHN MARTYN hadn't become a folk/blues/rock legend, he could have knocked out a career as a mimic. At one point, he perfectly impersonates Alf ...

The Gentlest Circus: One World

Sleevenotes by Daryl Easlea, Universal/Island Records, Fall 2004

YOU WOULD THINK one of the last characters to survive the supposed punk rock cull of 1976/77 would be John Martyn. To outsiders, he was ...

John Martyn: I've Had a Wonderful Time

Report and Interview by Graeme Thomson, Herald, The, November 2005

IT IS FAR from unusual to discover whole fathoms of deep blue sea between the artist and their art. Nothing, however, quite prepares you for ...

John Martyn

Interview by Mat Snow, MOJO, August 2006

THERE AREN'T too many singers who've been shot, stabbed, burst their pancreas, and had their right leg amputated at the knee. Fewer still whose career ...

There's mystery in the air as John Martyn revives a classic

Report and Interview by Robert Sandall, Daily Telegraph, 7 September 2006

FOR AN ALBUM that had no noticeable commercial impact here when it first appeared in February 1973, John Martyn's Solid Air has enjoyed a remarkable ...

John Martyn: The Barbican, London

Live Review by Nick Coleman, Independent on Sunday, 17 September 2006

"Burble burble burble... President Bush... flffle mffle wffle... 'kin 'ell... urgle wurgle gurgle... I'm trouble too! Heheheheheh..." ...

John Martyn

Interview by Johnny Black, R2/Rock'n'Reel, August 2008

All my life I've thought of you as Scottish but you were actually born in England weren't you? ...

Ain't No Saint: 40 Years Of John Martyn

Sleevenotes by Daryl Easlea, Island Records, September 2008

"Love finds a way, just let it stay From day to day, just let it flow, just let it grow It will get you together ...

John Martyn: Still Wide-Eyed and Increasingly Legless

Retrospective and Interview by Johnny Black, R2/Rock'n'Reel, September 2008

INTERVIEWS ARE like minefields. Amidst the chummy showbiz chat, there's almost invariably at least one potential hair-trigger moment when someone like me has to ask ...

May we never forget the genius of John Martyn

Obituary by Pete Paphides, Times, The, 30 January 2009

FOR MANY MUSIC fans, one lingering image of John Martyn, the British singer-songwriter who has died at the age of 60, remains preserved in the ...

Empire of the Sun: Island at 50

Retrospective and Interview by Tom Doyle, Q, June 2009

The grand scheme of a gambler with a taste for chicken blood, Jamaican label Island Records introduced Bob Marley and U2 to the world. On ...

see also John and Beverley Martyn


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