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Clarky

Thank you to BC'ers for pointing me to John Martyn

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This link was posted in the "Bass tracks to listen to before you die" thread. Never having heard John Martyn before (I had dismissed him as 'just a folk guitarist' without ever listening) I was completely blown away by the beauty of the song and the utterly sublime DB playing by Danny Thompson. Prompted by several other BC'ers links I have listened to several more songs overnight and this morning and done my usual OCD googling. I am really enjoying what I hear - particularly the 70s acoustic stuff (not so wild about his more electric later stuff).

So thank you to BC for expanding my musical horizons yet again :)

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Good innit. :)

Also maybe listen to the bass parts Danny Thompson did for Nick Drake around the same time.

Danny Thompson and John Martyn apparently, although very good friends, also used to fight like cat and dog at times. They did a rather amusing interview about their relationship.

Edited by Marvin

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This may be heresy but generally I prefer the John Giblin fretless electric years (although Danny also played a lot of these songs live and I've been known to mix the pair of them up before!).

I've got stacks of JM stuff at home and rotate them around on my regular listening 'playlist', always finding new things to enjoy :)

Edited by molan

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[quote name='BottomEndian' post='1294408' date='Jul 6 2011, 10:11 AM']And a gorgeous bit of electrickery/tape-delaytastic loveliness:[/quote]
Actually that is also very lovely in a somewhat different way. Thanks! Duly added to my 'to download' list

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That particular recording of Solid Air was the reason I picked up the double bass.... Danny Thompson has amazing feel in everything he does. I've never heard anyone wring so much out of just one carefully placed note as he does. He's definitley my No1 double bass influence - both in his playing and his philosophy.

He gave an interview in the literature tent at Greenman festival a few years ago and was talking about his time with Pentangle in the late 60s. They has just played the Albert Hall on a Thursday night and Danny had a gig with his jazz band on the Friday in a pub just around the corner from The Albert hall, Pentangle's manager was horrified that Danny was going to play a tiny pub the day after playing the Albert hall - he thought it would look bad for the band's image. Danny went ahead with the jazz gig as he had a policy of never turning down a viable gig, no matter how big a 'star' people thought he was, as you never knew where the next giog was coming from. He also noted that he got paid for the pub jazz gig, but not for the Albert hall one.

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I saw John Martyn live at Glastonbury in one of the 'small' venues in either 1999 or 2000 sat on the grass in a tent about 10ft away from John.
Can't remember if Danny Thompson was on bass but it was one of the most powerful and moving live sets I have ever seen and reduced me to tears.....

'No Little Boy' , would be my choice of first listening to anyone wanting to get to know JM's work.

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[quote name='Prosebass' post='1294765' date='Jul 6 2011, 02:16 PM']I saw John Martyn live at Glastonbury in one of the 'small' venues in either 1999 or 2000 sat on the grass in a tent about 10ft away from John.
Can't remember if Danny Thompson was on bass but it was one of the most powerful and moving live sets I have ever seen and reduced me to tears.....

'No Little Boy' , would be my choice of first listening to anyone wanting to get to know JM's work.[/quote]
I saw him at Salisbury Arts Centre in the late nineties. Very intimate venue - very powerful performance. He got bladdered during and after the gig but didn't effect his performance.

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Not anything to do with bass, but a modern artist in this kinda vain that I like is David Ford. Check out all his albums, but start with the tune 'Song For The Road'...beautiful!

Si

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[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFhhb5LbRkU&feature=BFa&list=PL4977DC3D5507F395&index=12"]Whatever[/url]

In fact pretty much anything with Danny Thompson on!

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And thank you back Clarky - have been lying in the sun for the last hour or so with the 4CD compilation 'Ain't no Saint' on the iPod.

Working my way through the live stuff at the moment - I saw him live many times and he could be a very 'patchy' performer at times but on his good nights he was just mesmerising :)

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I was lucky enough to have seen John Martyn a couple of times when he was in his pomp in the seventies. He was the first person I saw use loop pedals.
Solid Air was a massively influential album I've always thought that every subsequent British singer/songwriter sounded different after it.
Anyway, the main point of this post was to remind people that Dave Pegg also plays bass on the album, as well as Danny Thompson. I think Peggy is a very underrated player.

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[quote name='Marvin' post='1294326' date='Jul 6 2011, 09:07 AM']Danny Thompson and John Martyn apparently, although very good friends, also used to fight like cat and dog at times. They did a rather amusing interview about their relationship.[/quote]

I've met Danny a couple of times when he was in Belfast with the Transatlantic Sessions On Tour - he's a wonderful bass player and a top chap. He tells a story about one time John and him went into a bar for a drink, John ordered a couple of pints and a couple of whiskeys and overpaid the barman by about double what the round cost, telling him to 'keep the rest for the damage'. The barman was stumped but later in the evening Danny and John had a huge ruckus and wrecked the entire bar!

I actually followed a recommendation on Basschat about a year ago now to listen to the Solid Air album - wish I could remember who it was so I could thank them, ever since I've been a huge John Martyn/Danny Thompson fan. Fantastic, moving stuff. My recommendations for a first time listener would be Small Hours, Discover The Lover, Hurt In Your Heart and Bless The Weather.

John Giblin too, check out his fretless playing on the Grace and Danger album! Amazing!

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I was also lucky enough to see him in the late 70s or early 80s at some festival in NZ when I was a teen. Solo performance with lots of loop/echoplex going on. He had everything really, great playing, voice and songwriting. I saw him a year or two before he died with Danny Thompson in Leeds at the City Varieties and he still had it.

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A friend thankfully turned me on to John Martyn a couple of years back with the 'late night john' album. It's brilliant. Bought the album solid air after that, equally as nice. Beautiful basslines and songs.

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[quote name='TheRev' post='1294735' date='Jul 6 2011, 01:53 PM']Danny Thompson has amazing feel in everything he does. I've never heard anyone wring so much out of just one carefully placed note as he does.[/quote]

That's really nicely put, Rev.

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If you can get past the folky bit, this is the first track I heard Danny Thompson. From Pentangle's Basket of Light album....£2.99 delivered on Amazon UK!

Edited by bode

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Small Hours is most definitely a John Martyn magic moment...

Check out Danny Thompson's playing with Richard Thompson btw, he plays some pretty cool stuff with RT. I saw them at the Colston Hall in Bristol a few years ago on the Mock Tudor tour, great concert. Danny plays some stellar stuff on RT's The Old Kit Bag.

ficelles

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No doubt, you have heard the recorded version of 'Solid Air' by now, but for those who haven't ... it's like falling through treacle ...

(has anyone mentioned that this song was written about his friend, Nick Drake?)

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[quote name='bode' post='1297864' date='Jul 9 2011, 12:17 AM']If you can get past the folky bit, this is the first track I heard Danny Thompson. From Pentangle's Basket of Light album....£2.99 delivered on Amazon UK![/quote]

Absolutely LOVE Pentangle! Jansch and Renbourn are complete monsters on the guitar, McShee is a wonderful vocalist and of course Danny's playing is outstanding ('In Time' being a personal favourite, or some fantastic bow work on 'Let No Man Steal Your Thyme')

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I've loved John Martyn's music since I first saw him in the 70s, just him alone with his acoustic and loops - amazing. I saw him again a few years later but he had a band with him and I didn't like that so much. I still listen to his Solid Air album a lot.

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Another great album with Danny on is Darrell Scott - Live in NC.

It's a trio with Kenny Malone on drums and Darrell Scott on gtr & vox. Some may know Darrell Scott better as the pedal steel/banjo/mandolin/guitarist/backing singer in Robert Plant's Band of Joy but his solo albums are well worth a listen IMHO. There's a wonderful bass solo in Wayfaring Pilgrim that gets me every time.

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When asked by a singer I was working for who might be a good bassist to use on his solo CD,(he didn`t want to use the bands regular bassist) I suggested someone like Danny Thompson might be the way to go,meaning someone [i]like[/i] that.
Didn`t seem like the suggestion made an impact till a couple of months later I heard the demos for this:


[url="http://www.amazon.co.uk/Navigating-Stars-Justin-Sullivan/dp/B000089CFK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1310318707&sr=8-1"]Justin Sullivan-Navigating by the stars[/url]
Apparently he was a real gentleman, accommodating and amenable to work with, and cared about the songs, even though some might say it was a come down from previous career highs.
A musicians musician.
MM

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