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John Martyn - The Man Upstairs [DVD] [2008]

4.8 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Format: Colour, DVD-Video, PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Voiceprint DVD's
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Jun. 2011
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000TSJVJ4
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 91,723 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Born in Scotland in 1949, John was the first white solo artist to be signed to Chris Blackwells Island records releasing his debut album London Conversation in 1968. A number of critically acclaimed albums followed over the years including two albums with his then wife Beverley (Stormbringer and The Road to Ruin). During this period John also worked extensively with Pentangle bassist Danny Thompson, the apex of this working relationship coming with the albums Bless the Weather and Solid Air although Thompson has continued to work with John Martyn extensively over the years. In 1975 John actually became an independent act releasing a live album, which he literally sold from his front door due to the fact that Chris Blackwell didnt think John should be releasing a live album at that point in his career. The Live at Leeds album however was a success and subsequently released in the nineties in expanded form. Island did however retain his services as a recording artist and even pressed the album up for John to sell. Following a split with Island in the early eighties John moved to the larger Warner records although returned to Island again briefly at the end of the contract. Following this coming and going John moved from between a number of smaller labels before setting up his own One World Label in order to release archive and live material. Man Upstairs is a concert film of a John Martyn performance for German television in 1978. This performance was captured just months after John s most recent album One World had been released. The concert features four songs from that recent album (Big Muff, Small Hours, Certain Surprise and Couldnt Love You More) alongside older material from albums such as Solid Air (Solid Air, May You Never and Id Rather Be The devil), Bless The Weather (Bless The Weather, Glistening Glyndebourne and Singin In The Rain) and Sunday s Child(One Day Without You). Coming from a classic period in John Martyn's career this DVD will be welcomed by the massive fan base John Martyn commands. Regular touring also ensures that interest remains high in John Martyn. 1.One Day Without You 2.Outside In 3.Bless The Weather 4.Certain Surprise 5.Big Muff 6.Couldn t Love You More 7.Small Hours 8.Solid Air 9.May You Never 10.Seven Black Roses 11.Singin In The Rain

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
If you've ever seen JM in the late 70's & early 80's and want something to remind you of great gigs gone by, buy this, play it through a decent sound system and project it onto a wall.
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Format: DVD
This is one of the best John Martyn DVDs and includes some wonderful performances from John. It does however show what a John Martyn concert in the 70's was really like, heavy drinking, endless tuning and the off the cuff comments. I doubt that anyone would get away with such a live performance in 2009 but its really a testament to the time and provides a good understanding of the wonderful but flawed musician who sadly passed away recently. Picture quality and sound very good in comparison to other videos from the same period, and the music is first class.
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Format: DVD
German TV from 1978. Great picture. Great sound. JM at the top of his game, totally live, absolutely solo. Essential. Indispensable. Get it.
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By Sebastian Palmer TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 July 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Watched an excerpt from the performance presented on this DVD on YouTube, in which Martyn performs Solid Air. Totally blew me away. Since first hearing it I've always loved that song (and the album), but nowt I'd heard of his had quite prepared me for this. Only saw him once live, right at the very end of his career, performing the Solid Air album. That was great (and rather sad too), but not a patch on this.

Whilst tuning his guitar he snaps a string, and then banters with the audience and a roadie/crew guy, whilst re-stringing and retuning. The effect is rather like one of those Tom Waits shaggy dog stories he would tell before hitting you with a heartrending ballad. The contrast heightens the effects of poignancy and pleasure. I love that Martyn is a total artist: to me he's as much a jazzer as a folkie. Hearing how he twists, turns, changes and just plain improvises with the vocal melody on this is just exquisite.

I've watched and listened to a number of versions of this song now, but at present this remains a firm favourite. In the afterglow of first seeing this on YouTube I did a quick bit of research, and then immediately ordered this DVD here on Amazon. I'd happily pay the current asking price of the entire DVD for this priceless performance alone. The fact that there's more great music and performances on it is just a fabulous bonus.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
His usual quirky rapport with the audience. Good set of his timeless pieces. Brings back happy memories of the many times I was fortunate enough to see him live from around the time of this recording up to a year before his death.
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