Vintage Trouble

Vintage Trouble.

1973 was a remarkable year for music, but few had a greater annus mirabilis than folk alchemist JOHN MARTYN who devoted the year to the crafting of two strange masterpieces. On the 40th anniversary of Solid Air, MAT SNOW speaks to friends, fellow travellers and bruised survivors to discover the pain, power, joy and sadness behind a master musician’s quest for freedom.

Vintage TroubleQUADROPHENIA AND CATCH A Fire. Innovations and A Wizard, A True Star. Tubular Bells and Raw Power. Dixie Chicken and Dark Side Of The Moon. Band On The Run and Berlin. For Your Pleasure, Let’s Get It On, Countdown To Ecstasy.

Just off the top of your head, 1973 was a vintage year for the album. And then there’s Solid Air by John Martyn.

Released exactly 40 years ago, here was a platter to warm the cockles of the college circuit cognoscenti, a dope-head’s delight which bottled a moment; a moment which then faded with its generation to become a period piece with only the faintest afterlife beyond its particular time and place. Or so it seemed. Then, in the 1990s, Solid Air found fresh followers. Paul Weller and Beth Orton were among those to praise it as not only an ancestral voice of the chill-out/trip-hop thang but also as compelling a constellation of songs as ever to coruscate head and heart. Nor has Solid Air ceased to resonate since, not least its title track, a mirror held to the troubled soul who inspired it, Nick Drake, whose rediscovery by new generations paralleled that of his friend John Martyn. But where the stage-shy Nick Drake hid from view, condemning his three

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Discography Update

A major update with many new old releases added to the discography for all you collectors of everything John!

The Promotional section has expanded considerably and we are still working our way through more! If you know of a release that doesn’t appear on the website or spot one we’ve missed, then please send us an email with all the details so that we can gather them together, happy collecting!


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Acoustic Compilation

Universal Music have announced the release of a two CD set celebrating John’s acoustic music; Head And Heart The Acoustic John Martyn.

Gathering together thirty five songs (including four previously unreleased takes) accompanied by a booklet, sleeve notes and memorabilia.

Due for release on 28 April 2017.

Further details including the press release and track listing are in the discography section here.

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Art Tribute

fullerwebThis beautiful four colour silk screen print of a hand drawn tribute to John by Fuller is printed on 410 gsm Somerset satin fine art paper.

Each copy is signed, numbered and stamped by Fuller.

Featuring gold this stunning print reveals new textures under different lighting conditions.

£25 of every print sale is officially donated to

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2017 Vinyl Reissues

For all the vinyl fans out there Universal Music have announced that a number of John’s classic albums are to be reissued on 180 gram top quality vinyl. All are straight forward reissues of the original albums and artwork without any additions on freshly pressed top quality vinyl.

Release date of 12 May 2017 – Inside Out and Sunday’s Child.

Released on 14 April 2017- Bless The Weather and The Tumbler.


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Budget Compilation

May You Never: The Essential John Martyn was released by Universal Music on 25 November 2016. A budget priced compilation of previously released album tracks, alternate takes and mixes.

This imaginatively titled ‘essential’ compilation from Universal (following 2013s Sweet Little Mystery: The Essential John Martyn) includes 58 songs over 3CDs in a fold out digipack and is part of a series of releases in the same format that includes Status Quo, Dusty Springfield and Diana Ross amongst others.

Nothing new here for the majority of John fans. Further details in the discography section here.


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Caught On The Hop

Incredibly it is 20 years since John released his album And. In this article Mark Cooper reviews the album and briefly interviews John.

Caught On The Hop

John Martyn, now label mate with Portishead, has been checking out the Chicago house scene, and revising his wardrobe. Mark Cooper salutes his return to eccentricity.

JOHN MARTYN – AND on Go! Discs
Martyn’s debut for Go! Discs home of Paul Weller, Portishead and Gabrielle.

AndOne of the great maverick stylists of  British music, John Martyn has been out on a limb in recent years, marooned first by some increasingly safe albums for Island in the mid ’80s and then by a deal with Permanent, who appeared to hide everything he recorded. Latterly, he seemed doomed to play out his middle age on an endless circuit of Britain’s town halls and arts centres, raging at his long suffering fans and churning out increasingly perfunctory readings of the likes of May You Never. Fortunately, Martyn’s finally been picked up by a label which fosters home grown talent, and promptly returned his best work in many a moon.

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