Four years ago John Martyn came south from Scotland, and next February he will be moving back with his wife and family. Those four years have been a constant struggle against the oppression of the city, but considering his abject aversion to this kind of environment, he has succeeded in his task.
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 that's what Boyd did for the Incredible String Band and Fairport Convention. His latest venture has been to produce the first album by John and Beverley Martyn, Stormbringer!, a record which has been hailed by the discerning as one of the best to emerge this year.
I found one reference to a BBC session for Top Gear that is supposed to have taken place 4 April 1970 but I haven't been able to confirm that yet.
Are you ready for the stormbringer
STORMBRINGER has not been conceived in the folk idiom nor does it bear much resemblance to anything John has done in the past.
Some time ago we were mightily impressed with an album called The Tumbler by a Glasgow-born folksinger/ guitarist named JOHN MARTYN. John, a quiet sensitive boy, wrote gentle songs of love and birds, flowers and trees, and he sang them to his guitar as he travelled the country. Then he met Beverley who came from Coventry and who also sang pretty songs. They fell in love, married, and now they're making music together. All of which brings us to this new album Stormbringer on Island ILPS 9113. It's by John and Beverley and it's an attention-grabber from beginning to end.
Is John Martyn still a folk singer or not?
This is a totally irrelevant question and one which I'm glad I didn't bother to ask.
The first L.P. from John and Beverley Martyn together is called Stormbringer! and is released on Island this month.
Glasgow-born John and his wife Beverley with what proves, after a few plays, to be a powerfully hypnotic folk-based song.
Storm by Bev and John
JOHN MARTYN is really Iain McGeachy, from Langside, Glasgow.