Martyn Joseph at Cecil Sharp House
The concert hall at Cecil Sharp House is a ship. In the words of Martyn Joseph during his concert: “The good ship Cecil Sharp has set sail.”
The audience was so enthralled, you could hear a pin drop under the gentle guitar strumming and vocal cooing. On tour to promote his 18th studio album, Songs for the Coming Home, Martyn Joseph should surely be considered a veteran in the folk-rock genre and, with indie folk acts cropping up on the musical radar in recent years, he shows how it’s really done.
The Welsh-born artist opens his set with the optimistic Feels Like This, capturing the audience’s attention from the start. Running through tracks from his new album during the two-hour-long set, the intimacy of the night is amazing. The cosy venue is perfect for Joseph’s folksy blues melodies and his soft lyrics and tunes create a beautiful, warm environment for fans both old and new. All This Time in particular is heartbreakingly wonderful.
Joseph encourages audience harmonies and his lyrics evoke a sense of nostalgia as he layers into a short but sweet cover of The Beatles’ Here Comes the Sun. Now is Not a Good Time for God is a stand out; its witty cynicism tells the audience a tale of political and religious struggle. After thirty years in the business, you would think that Joseph might have become cynical or bored, but it is clear on his face and in his stories that he humbly loves what he does as one man and his guitar with nothing to prove and nothing to gain, just a few heart warming tales to share.
If you haven’t heard Martyn Joseph’s music before, go out and buy his album, and make sure witnessing him perform is on your bucket list. Martyn Joseph, like the best folk artists, is a storyteller; his songs, his conversation, everything about him is a rambling, whimsical story that will stand the test of time and enthral audiences for years to come.
Watch the video for Beyond Us here: