JOHN MARTYN, Sunday Colour supplement smart in a white three-piece suit, is sitting in a newly-painted Sunday Colour supplement shining room in Island Records offices.
Talking with John Martyn
SS:- What sort of things have influenced you?
JM:- Alcohol, drugs, everyday life and all the music I've ever heard. I don't have any major influences at the moment. I can tell you the records I listen to more than any others, Alice Coltrane1 mostly. If I want to dance and get drunk I listen to Tamla [Motown records] and I listen to Stevie Wonder if I want to bop about and get nicely stoned; I feel most comfortable, most harmonious, must musical with Alice Coltrane, that's really the one that's on all the time. My desert island disc. And also Leon Thomas' record, the one with Wayne Shorter.... oh, and Weather Report are the best band in the world. Just exceptional.
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 year's plump queens - and a few lean workers here and there trying to rebuild the crumbling territory.
JOHN MARTYN is one of the richest musical performers on the current scene. His roots meld traditional folk and blues aspects with the frontiers of jazz.
Edinburgh Festival: Reports by Stuart Hoggard, Ian MacDonald
Front Row Reviews
An in-depth view of John Martyn by Jerry Gilbert
AN EERIE presence of nocturnal energy filled Island's No. 2 studio - an energy that had probably found its peak around 3 a.m. but which was beginning to wane as the sun came up over the Westway.
JOHN MARTYN has made six albums, two with his wife Beverly, and after seven years he's just coming out into the sun. Critics in both Britain and America have been talking about him for a long time, and groups and singers record his songs - numbers like Would You Believe Me?, Bless The Weather, John The Baptist, Stormbringer, and his signature-tune Head And Heart.
John Martyn at the Shaw Theatre
Last night the Shaw theatre was packed to capacity for his solo concert, and be demonstrated both the reasons why he is so admired, and the reasons why he has not done any better.
Good version of Rather Be The Devil with stereo effects, recorded BBC Langham Studios, London.
BBC6 claimed 2004 this 'Devil Got My Woman' to be the oldest surviving recording in their archives.
John Martyn, whose solo spot opened the show, fared quite well in the face of appalling sound.