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Vagrant Stanzas (Deluxe Limited Edition) [Deluxe Edition]

Martin Simpson Audio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
Price: 15.78 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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In stock on August 3, 2014.
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Vagrant Stanzas (Deluxe Limited Edition) + The Full English
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Product details

  • Audio CD (29 July 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Deluxe Edition
  • Label: Topic
  • ASIN: B00CC68PTI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 8,582 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Diamond Joe
2. Jackie And Murphy
3. Shepherds Rejoice
4. Come Down Jehovah
5. Molly As She Swings
6. Palaces Of Gold
7. Blue Eyed Boston Boy
8. Delta Dreams
9. Waly Waly
10. North Country Blues
See all 14 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Fair Annie
2. Kaga Re
3. Blind Willie McTell
4. Old Paint
5. The Bell
6. Diamond Joe (Reprise)
7. The Death Of Queen Jane
8. The Green Linnet

Product Description

Product Description

2CD - 21 track Deluxe limited edition, 7,500 copies only, with 20 page booklet containing extensive track notes by Martin Simpson With 'Vagrant Stanzas' Martin Simpson makes a career defining statement – solo, intimate performances captured in jewel-like recordings. A splendid new recording from a world class finger-style guitar maestro. collaborations with some of the best producers and engineers in the business, including multi-Grammy Award winning mastering engineer, Silas Brown. The CD has been co-produced by Martin alongside American producer Peter Denenberg and, our own, Richard Hawley, who has produced the UK part of the CD in Sheffield, at the legendary Yellow Arch Studios. Vagrant Stanzas is made up of a mixture of Martin's original compositions, including a song commissioned by BBC Radio 2 for their award winning Radio Ballads series, alongside classic songs by Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Chris Wood, Leon Rosselson and, of course, the ubiquitous 'Anon' of Folk ballad fame.


"The best songs are his own" -- Robin Denselow The Guardian ****

"Dazzling fingerstyle technique" -- i FROM THE INDEPENDENT****

"Finely calibrated ruminations" -- The Daily Mirror ****

"..an expertly crafted collection of originals, traditionals and covers - sheer class" -- The Sun

"Exquisitely played and delivered" -- Neil Spencer Uncut 8/10 August 2013

"Slide sovereign and fingerstylist Martin Simpson delivers more tender-toned wonderment" -- Guitar and Bass August 2013

"I wouldn't have anyone support me who I wouldn't pay to go and see."

--Bonnie Raitt

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection 2 Aug 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I had to come up with an alternative to exquisite so perfection will have to do. This is the 19th Martin Simpson that I now have in my collection and all are brilliant, in my view. Vagrant Stanzas has something extra. There's something about the guitar playing which reaches into a resonant mellowness repeatedly through this album. The singing interprets the songs as if old friends have got together in a pleasant conversation to remember past experience. A beautifully packaged album, Martin's sleeve notes giving background to each song, always acknowledging his influences and inspirations and all his friends.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite 2 Aug 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is a recording by and of an artist who is at the top of his game. It takes everything I like about Martin Simpson, distils it and and bottles it. His playing is sublime: his technique is never allowed to dominate but is always subordinate to the presentation of the song or the tune. His vocal phrasing is spot on as is his selection of songs. In the two days I have had them (I bought the two cd set)the discs have barely been off the player.

If you already know his work then you will want to buy this; if you don't know him you should take a punt and be prepared to be seduced by this exquisite recording.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First class folk album 7 Sep 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This release from Martin Simpson is truly a great one. The performance is very engaging and I might dare to say the best performance on CD. The unique finger style is at its best here. The whole album covers his career so far but is not a compilation, It is a new recording with the finest of versions of some great pieces of folk music.
The sound quality is just brilliantly clear and perfectly balanced. The selection of pieces also makes a great programme of Folk music. There is Martin's own pieces along with great songs by other famous writers and of course a big chunk of Traditional pieces.
The CD is neatly packaged and there is a good booklet and a great deal of music spread over two discs,
Martin plays Acoustic and slide guitars as well as five string banjo. Combine this with his brilliant vocals and it is pure magic,
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Faultless 6 Mar 2014
By C McKee
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
As expected, it was superb. But I prefer Chris Woods' own version of Jehovah. Interesting to hear him plucking a banjo.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Passionate 'hommage' 28 Dec 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
These songs obviously mean a lot to Martin Simpson and are very skillfully rendered, but I can't quite connect with them emotionally; Maybe I'm stuck in his 'Sad or High Kicking ' era.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Refined and earthy - brilliant 9 Oct 2013
Format:Audio CD
This collection shows Martin in his prime. It could be his best work to date.
His excellent vocal phrasing and expressiveness are spiritually wedded to the songs. As an instrumentalist he has a unique and refined touch. His Tone, range of timbre and dynamics are masterful. He plays finger-style accompaniments which are seamlessly woven into the vocals using guitar or banjo. He interpolates some exquisite slide guitar in places, sometimes plucking head-side of the slide.

There isn't a mediocre track on the CD and as I listen new favourites worm their way into my ears. A few highlights are 'Diamond Joe' with banjo; 'Delta Dreams', an atmospheric road song; an elegantly crafted reworking of a great Dylan song I had forgotten, 'North Country Blues' - plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose.

I went to see Martin in duo with Martin Taylor at Ashington folk club on Sunday 06/10/2013. Now I'm a big fan of Martin Taylor, but here's not the place to praise him. The duo worked beautifully together and they plan to record a CD together so watch out for it. On the night Martin Simpson sang three songs from this CD; a superb version of Dylan's 'Blind Willie McTell', 'Waly Waly' and his own song telling the true story of two heroes of Gallipoli, 'Jackie and Murphy', a Geordie and a donkey respectively, written at the insistence of June Tabor. They saved over 300 wounded under deadly fire. The donkey got a medal but the man was denied a posthumous VC for being nominated "under the wrong category of heroism." In the highly unlikely event that I was ever so brave as Jack Simpson Kirkpatrick, I'd rather have the song thanks.

I bought the CD on the night on the strength of this song alone. Do as I did, buy this deluxe edition with an 8 track bonus CD of equally wonderful material.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Quality Songwriter 1 Oct 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Martin Simpson never fails to impress with the quality of his writing and playing.Maybe some tunes on this collection aren't as memorable as recent efforts but they just may need mope listening
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Esquisite II 2 Aug 2013
Format:Audio CD
I pondered long and hard to come up with an alternative to "exquisite" but I failed. Yes, this album truly is just that. Martin's playing (as ever) is faultless. Sometimes soft, other times hard, sometimes even harsh, but always fluid, and entirely appropriate to the song. His vocalisation? again entirely appropriate to the song. The combination of the two can be almost too much to take at times, because there is so much of the artist flowing out. I've never caught Martin live... the experience must be truly breathtaking.
A mixture of his own renditions of other craftsmens songs and his own, what an eclectic mix this is. His own "Jackie and Murphy" is an incredibly moving tribute to a well-documented but unrecognised hero. "Waly Waly", with it's numerous renditions by other masters (and mistresses) of the genre, is a heart-rending balad. I could go on...there simply isn't a single track out of place here.
I don't have all of Martin's albums, just a few of the most recent. Based on this, I would agree...Vagrant Stanzas does indeed stand up there with Prodigal Son.

Edit, 6th Sept; I saw Martin last night at The Artrix, Bromsgrove.
The experience was, indeed, breathtaking. An evening with this iconic artist is so close and personal, you could be sitting opposite him, listening at the kitchen table. One of the most intimate "concert" experiences of my life, and it made the album even more special. Vagrant Stanzas has to be Martin Simpson at his best.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Guitar hero.
Love this man and his work. He can do no wrong.
Published 7 days ago by Molly Stephenson
5.0 out of 5 stars How to play a guitar
Every time I listen to Martin Simpson (which is a lot) it reminds me why I never learned to play the guitar: I would never, ever have been able to play like this. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Basket Press
4.0 out of 5 stars vagrant stanzas review
Enjoyed the Album by Martin Simpson,not his best but still full of good numbers and great guitard playing, Martin plays and sings with great feeling. Great stuff, Bert.
Published 3 months ago by B. S. Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars Martin Simpson, you have a new fan.
Lovely album, I have to say, after listening to Martin on the drive time show on radio 2, I had to get the album and I love it all.
Published 6 months ago by Gedmeister.
5.0 out of 5 stars Martin in good form
When you buy a Martin Simpson CD you expect the guitar playing will be top notch. Not let down with this. As good as ever. Read more
Published 6 months ago by R. W. Wells
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical
Truly, truly magical, this man is incredible. The quality of the playing, the voice, the songs, the arrangements - simply gorgeous. Get a copy now, listen to the Master!
Published 7 months ago by Chris George
5.0 out of 5 stars Martin Simpson
Another one brought for my husband and has been played an awful lot. Brilliant CD. Recommend it to Martin Simpson fans
Published 8 months ago by Susan Rushmer
5.0 out of 5 stars Top Man Martin
Anything this artist puts out is bound to be good. The CD arrived on my doorstep in good condition and it will be given many a good listening too.
Published 8 months ago by Mr Timothy J Greenwood
3.0 out of 5 stars Vagrant stanzas
Reluctantly I must say that this cd did not do it for me. It is as always beautifully played. Martin's guitar work is faultless but we have heard it all before. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW this is so good
Brilliant balance of voice and instruments.

A top class musician at the top of his game, yet again. Read more
Published 9 months ago by oldfogey
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