Five Fave Tracks From the John Martyn Covers Disc

Have dug John Martyn since hearing “John the Baptist” from the enchanting Stormbringer (Warner Bros) way back when. The folkie picking, the jazzy approach, the eerie moods – the best of his work is an insightfully stirred mix of several sounds. From 1971’s Bless the Weather to 1980’s Glorious Fool, he had one of those runs of making fully impressive albums. I remember going record shopping with Joshua Redman as the backdrop for a DownBeat piece, and basically foisting Martyn’s Solid Air on him. Yep, after living with it for a bit, he loved it too.

Martyn passed in 2009, and like many underacclaimed musicians, he’s starting to be rediscovered these days. That process will be furthered by the August arrival of Johnny Boy Would Love This… (Hole In the Rain), a multi-artist tribute disc that gives everyone from Snow Patrol to Beth Orton to David Gray a chance to saunter through the Brit singer’s songbook.  HERE’S MY REVIEW FROM THE BOSTON PHOENIX 

Who does the best job? Like most trib records, especially double-disc affairs, it’s hit and miss. I’ve spun the album several times and have come up with five faves (so far). Only one question: why didn’t anyone choose “John the Baptist”? Check Robert Smith’s spin in this SoundCloud clip.


1. Beck, “Stormbringer”

2. The Emperors of Wyoming, “Bless the Weather”

3. Robert Smith, “Small Hours”

4. Vashti Bunyun, “Head and Heart”

5. Jim Tullio, “Road To Ruin”

01 “Let The Good Things Come” – David Gray
02 “Glorious Fool” – Clarence Fountain And Sam Butler (Formerly The Blind Boys Of Alabama)
03 “Small Hours” – Robert Smith
04 “Stormbringer” – Beck
05 “Over The Hill” – Ted Barnes Featuring Gavin Clark
06 “I Don’t Wanna Know” – The Swell Season
07 “Bless The Weather” – The Emperors Of Wyoming
08 “Couldn’t Love You More” – Lisa Hannigan
09 “Go Easy” – Vetiver
10 “Solid Air” Skye – Edwards
11 “You Can Discover” – Cheryl Wilson
12 “The Easy Blues” – Joe Bonamassa
13 “Dancing” – Sonia Dada
14 “Certain Surprise” – Sabrina Dinan
15 “One World” – Paolo Nutini
16 “May You Never” – Snow Patrol
17 “Go Down Easy” – Beth Orton
18 “Fairytale Lullaby” – Bombay Bicycle Club
19 “Fine Lines” – Syd Kitchen
20 “Head And Heart” – Vashti Bunyan
21 “Run Honey Run” – Morcheeba Featuring Bradley Burgess
22 “Angeline” – Nicholas Barron
23 “Walk To The Water” – John Smith
24 “Hurt In Your Heart” – Judie Tzuke
25 “Road To Ruin” – Jim Tullio
26“John Wayne” – Oh My God
27 “Rope Soul’d” – The Blackships
28 “Back To Stay” – Ultan Conlon
29 “Anna” – Brendan Campbell
30 “Tearing And Breaking” – Phil Collins


One response to “Five Fave Tracks From the John Martyn Covers Disc

  1. Get into John Martyn..

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