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Couldn’t Love Him More: John Martyn Box Set Due This Month

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John Martyn boxUniversal’s U.K. arm has made a nice habit in recent years of exhaustive box sets devoted to one artist. The Moody Blues’ Timeless Flight was an 11CD/6DVD overview of the British rock band; this fall includes box sets devoted to Sparks and Tears for Fears’ The Hurting. The upcoming The Island Years, an exhaustive box devoted to folk icon John Martyn, is 18 discs – 17 CDs and one DVD – that looks to be quite the knockout for anyone’s shelf.

Martyn was a notable figure in the British folk scene of the 1960s and a key act of Chris Blackwell’s Island Records for many years. With a distinctive vocal timbre and a lengthy list of collaborators from Eric Clapton to Phil Collins to Lee “Scratch” Perry, Martyn’s music and influence ran the gamut of styles in the 1970s and 1980s.

John Martyn box frontThe Island Years is packed with material both familiar and unreleased. Every one of Martyn’s studio and live albums for Island, from 1967’s London Conversation to 1986’s Piece by Piece, is included herein. Two unreleased shows – Live At The Hanging Lamp, Richmond – 5/8/1972 and Live in Sydney 8/14/1977 – are included, as well as, for the first time, the original mix of The Apprentice, a 1987 album that was controversially received by Island, resulting in his exit from the label the following year. (Martyn re-recorded and released the album at his own expense in 1990 to critical acclaim.) Numerous bonus tracks, including non-LP and archival material, are also appended to nearly every disc. A DVD rounds out the set with appearances on The Old Grey Whistle Test and others, as well as a complete concert at London’s Town & Country Club in 1986, part of which was released on VHS as Foundations in 1987.

Rounded out with the usual memorabilia, including a 120-page hardback book and replicas of original press kits and tour programs, The Island Years is out on September 30. The full track list and order links are after the jump!

John Martyn, The Island Years (Island/UMC (U.K.), 2013)

Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

Disc 1: London Conversation (Island ILP 952, 1967) and The Tumbler (Island ILPS 9091, 1968)

  1. Fairy Tale Lullaby
  2. Sandy Grey
  3. London Conversation
  4. Ballad of An Elder Woman
  5. Cocaine
  6. Run Honey Run
  7. Back to Stay
  8. Rolling Home
  9. Who’s Grown Up Now
  10. Golden Girl
  11. This Time
  12. Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright
  13. Sing a Song of Summer
  14. The River
  15. Goin’ Down to Memphis
  16. The Gardeners
  17. A Day at the Sea
  18. Fishin’ Blues
  19. Dusty
  20. Hello Train
  21. Winding Boy
  22. Fly On Home
  23. Knuckledy Crunch and Slippledee-slee Song
  24. Seven Black Roses

Tracks 1-12 from London Conversation. Tracks 13-24 from The Tumbler

Disc 2: John and Beverley Martyn, Stormbringer! (Island ILPS ILPS 9113, 1970) and bonus content

  1. Go Out and Get It
  2. Can’t Get the One I Want
  3. Stormbringer
  4. Sweet Honesty
  5. Woodstock
  6. John The Baptist
  7. The Ocean
  8. Traffic-Light Lady
  9. Tomorrow Time
  10. Would You Believe Me?
  11. John the Baptist (Alternate Take) *
  12. Go Out and Get It (Alternate Take) *
  13. Traffic-Light Lady (BBC Radio Session – 3/23/1970) *
  14. It’s One of Those Days (Demo) (from Island Remasters CD IMCD 317, 2005)
  15. I Don’t Know (Demo) (from Island Remasters CD IMCD 317, 2005)
  16. John The Baptist (Demo) (from Island Remasters CD IMCD 317, 2005)
  17. Traffic-Light Lady (Demo) (from Island Remasters CD IMCD 317, 2005)

Disc 3: John and Beverley Martyn, The Road to Ruin (Island ILPS ILPS 9133, 1970) and bonus content

  1. Primrose Hill
  2. Parcels
  3. Auntie Aviator
  4. New Day
  5. Give Us a Ring
  6. Sorry to Be So Long
  7. Tree Green
  8. Say What You Can
  9. Road to Ruin
  10. Say What You Can (Alternate Take) *
  11. Road to Ruin (BBC Radio Session – 3/23/1970) *
  12. Here I Am Now (Demo) (from Island Remasters CD IMCD 318, 2005)

Disc 4: Bless the Weather (Island ILPS 9167, 1971) and bonus content

  1. Go Easy
  2. Bless the Weather
  3. Sugar Lump
  4. Walk to the Water
  5. Just Now
  6. Head and Heart
  7. Let the Good Things Come
  8. Back Down the River
  9. Glistening Glyndebourne
  10. Singin’ in the Rain
  11. Glistening Glyndebourne (Alternate Take) *
  12. Go Easy (Alternate Take #2) *
  13. Head and Heart (Alternate Take) *
  14. Sugar Lump (Alternate Take) *
  15. Just Now (Alternate Take) *
  16. Bless the Weather (Alternate Take) *
  17. Go Easy (Alternate Take #3) *
  18. Singin’ in the Rain (Alternate Take) *

Disc 5: Live At The Hanging Lamp, Richmond – 5/8/1972 *

  1. The Easy Blues
  2. Bless the Weather
  3. May You Never
  4. Don’t Think Twice
  5. Back to Stay
  6. Head and Heart
  7. Singin’ in the Rain
  8. Sugar Lump
  9. I’d Rather Be the Devil
  10. Outside In
  11. The Glory of Love

Disc 6: Solid Air (Island ILPS 9226, 1973) and bonus material

  1. Solid Air
  2. Over the Hill
  3. Don’t Want to Know
  4. I’d Rather Be the Devil
  5. Go Down Easy
  6. Dreams by the Sea
  7. May You Never
  8. The Man in the Station
  9. The Easy Blues
  10. Solid Air (Alternate Take) *
  11. Over the Hill (Alternate Take) *
  12. I’d Rather Be the Devil (Alternate Take #2) *
  13. I’d Rather Be the Devil (Alternate Take #3) *
  14. Go Down Easy (Alternate Take #2) *
  15. Go Down Easy (Alternate Take #3) *
  16. Dreams by the Sea (Alternate Take) *
  17. May You Never (Alternate Take) *
  18. The Man in the Station (Alternate Take) *

Disc 7: Inside Out (Island ILPS 9253, 1973) and bonus material

  1. Fine Lines
  2. Eibhli Ghail Chiuin Ni Chearbhail
  3. Ain’t No Saint
  4. Outside In
  5. The Glory of Love
  6. Look In
  7. Beverley
  8. Make No Mistake
  9. Ways to Cry
  10. So Much In Love with You
  11. Make No Mistake (Alternate Take) *
  12. The Glory of Love (Alternate Take) *
  13. Fine Lines (Alternate Take) *
  14. Outside In (Alternate Take) *
  15. Beverley (BBC Radio Session – 10/15/1973) *
  16. Make No Mistake (BBC Radio Session – 10/15/1973) *

Disc 8: Live At Leeds (Island ILPS 9343, 1975) and bonus material

  1. Outside In
  2. Solid Air
  3. Make No Mistake
  4. Bless the Weather
  5. The Man in the Station
  6. I’d Rather Be the Devil
  7. Solid Air (Live @ Glastonbury 6/21/1986) *
  8. Bless the Weather (Live @ Glastonbury 6/21/1986) *
  9. Love of Mine (Live @ Glastonbury 6/21/1986) *
  10. Fisherman’s Dream (Live @ The London Palladium) *
  11. John Wayne (Live @ The London Palladium) *

Disc 9: Sunday’s Child (Island ILPS 9296, 1975) and bonus material

  1. One Day Without You
  2. Lay It All Down
  3. Root Love
  4. My Baby Girl
  5. Sunday’s Child
  6. Spencer the Rover
  7. Clutches
  8. The Message
  9. A Satisfied Mind
  10. You Can Discover
  11. Call Me Crazy
  12. Eight More Miles (Alternate Take) *
  13. Sunday’s Child (Alternate Take) *
  14. Root Love (Alternate Take) *
  15. Ellie Rhee (from Island Remasters CD IMCD 323, 2005)
  16. Spencer the Rover (BBC In Concert – 12/31/1977) *
  17. Anni (Part 1 and Part 2) – John Stevens’ Away (from John Stevens’ Away – Vertigo LP 6360 131, 1975)

Disc 10: Live in Sydney – 8/14/1977 *

  1. Outside In
  2. Spencer the Rover
  3. One Day Without You
  4. The Easy Blues
  5. My Baby Girl
  6. Make No Mistake
  7. Bless the Weather
  8. I’d Rather Be the Devil
  9. May You Never
  10. Over the Hill

Discs 11-12: One World (Island ILPS 9497, 1977) and bonus material

  1. Dealer
  2. One World
  3. Smiling Stranger
  4. Big Muff
  5. Couldn’t Love You More
  6. Certain Surprise
  7. Dancing
  8. Small Hours
  9. Dealer (Alternate Take) *
  10. One World (Alternate Take) *
  11. Smiling Stranger (Alternate Take) *
  12. Couldn’t Love You More (Alternate Take) *
  13. Small Hours (Alternate Take) *
  14. Black Man At Your Shoulder (Alternate Take) *
  1. One World (Alternate Take #3) *
  2. Smiling Stranger (Alternate Take #3) *
  3. Big Muff (Alternate Take) *
  4. Couldn’t Love You More (Alternate Take #2) *
  5. Certain Surprise (Alternate Take #2) *
  6. Dancing (Alternate Take) *
  7. Small Hours (Alternate Take #2) *
  8. Dancing (Alternate Take #2) *
  9. Black Man At Your Shoulder (Alternate Take #2) *
  10. Big Muff (Extended Remix) (12″ A-side – Island IPR 2046, 1981)
  11. Anna (single A-side – Island/Festival K 7450 (AUS), 1979)

Discs 13-14: Grace and Danger (Island ILPS 9560, 1980) and bonus material

  1. Some People Are Crazy
  2. Grace and Danger
  3. Lookin’ On
  4. Johnny Too Bad
  5. Sweet Little Mystery
  6. Hurt in Your Heart
  7. Baby Please Come Home
  8. Save Some (for Me)
  9. Our Love
  10. Hi-Heel Sneakers *
  11. Grace and Danger (Alternate Take) *
  12. Small Hat (Alternate Take) *
  13. Johnny Too Bad (Alternate Take) *
  14. After Tomorrow Night (Alternate Take) *
  15. Dead On Arrival (Alternate Take) *
  1. Running Up the Harbour *
  2. Some People Are Crazy (Alternate Take) *
  3. Untitled Instrumental *
  4. Our Love (Alternate Take) *
  5. Johnny Too Bad (Alternate Take #2) *
  6. Grace and Danger (Instrumental) *
  7. Johnny Too Bad (Version) (single B-side – Island WIP 6547, 1980)
  8. Sweet Little Mystery (Live on The Old Grey Whistle Test – 1/10/1981) (from Deluxe Edition reissue – Island 984 268-7, 2007)
  9. Some People Are Crazy (Live at Stirling University 3/2/1981) (from Deluxe Edition reissue – Island 984 268-7, 2007)
  10. Grace and Danger (Live at Stirling University 3/2/1981) (from Deluxe Edition reissue – Island 984 268-7, 2007)
  11. Save Some (for Me) (Live at Stirling University 3/2/1981) (from Deluxe Edition reissue – Island 984 268-7, 2007)
  12. Johnny Too Bad (Live at Stirling University 3/2/1981) *
  13. Hurt in Your Heart (Live on A Little Night Music – 8/12/1981)
  14. Sweet Little Mystery (Live @ The London Palladium 3/3/1986)

Disc 5: Sapphire (Island ILPS 9779, 1984) and bonus material

  1. Sapphire
  2. Over the Rainbow
  3. You Know
  4. Watching Her Eyes
  5. Fisherman’s Dream
  6. Acid Rain
  7. Mad Dog Days
  8. Climb the Walls
  9. Coming In on Time
  10. Rope-Soul’d
  11. Love in Your Life *
  12. Sapphire (Andy Lyden Mix) *
  13. Over the Rainbow (Andy Lyden Mix) *
  14. Fisherman’s Dream (Andy Lyden Mix) *
  15. Acid Rain (Andy Lyden Mix) *
  16. Mad Dog Days (Andy Lyden Mix) *
  17. Rope-Soul’d (Andy Lyden Mix) *

Disc 16: Piece by Piece (Island ILPS 9807, 1986) and bonus material

  1. Nightline
  2. Lonely Love
  3. Angeline
  4. One Step Too Far
  5. Piece by Piece
  6. Serendipity
  7. Who Believes in Angels
  8. Love of Mine
  9. John Wayne
  10. Advertisement #1 *
  11. John Wayne (Alternate Take) *
  12. Lonely Love (Alternate Take) *
  13. Angeline (Alternate Take) *
  14. Advertisement #2 *
  15. Piece by Piece (Alternate Take) *
  16. Who Believes in Angels (Alternate Take) *
  17. Love of Mine (Alternate Take) *

Disc 17: The Apprentice (Original Mix) and bonus material (previously unreleased except where noted)

  1. Live On Love
  2. The River
  3. Income Town
  4. Send Me One Line
  5. Deny This Love
  6. Hold Me
  7. Upo
  8. No. 9
  9. The Apprentice
  10. Lifeline
  11. The Moment
  12. Patterns in the Rain
  13. Patterns in the Rain (Live at the Island Records Birthday Party – 7/4/1987) (from Alright Now VHS – Island  IVA 007, 1988)
  14. The Apprentice (Live @ the Town & Country – 11/13/1986) (from Foundations – Island ILPS 9884, 1987)
  15. Send Me One Line (Live @ the Town & Country – 11/13/1986) (from Foundations – Island ILPS 9884, 1987)
  16. The Moment (Live @ the Town & Country – 11/13/1986) (from Foundations – Island ILPS 9884, 1987)

Disc 18: DVD

The Old Grey Whistle Test – 10/16/1973

  • Make No Mistake
  • Outside In

The Old Grey Whistle Test – 1/17/1975

  • You Can Discover

Sight and Sound: In Concert – 10/15/1977

  • Spencer the Rover
  • Dealer

The Old Grey Whistle Test  – 1/10/1978

  • Bless the Weather
  • Outside In
  • Spencer the Rover

The Old Grey Whistle Test – 1/10/1981

  • Sweet Little Mystery
  • Lookin’ On

A Little Night Music – 8/12/1981

  • One World
  • Johnny Too Bad
  • May You Never
  • Inside Out (Outside In)
  • Hurt in Your Heart

Live @ The Town & Country – 11/13/1986 (released in part on Foundations – Island Visual Arts, 1988 – * denotes unreleased performances)

  • Mad Dog Days
  • Angeline
  • The Apprentice
  • May You Never
  • Solid Air
  • Deny This Love
  • Send Me One Line
  • John Wayne
  • Dealer
  • Johnny Too Bad
  • Over the Rainbow
  • Sweet Little Mystery
  • Fisherman’s Blues *
  • Lookin’ On *
  • Outside In *
  • One World *
  • The Moment *

Written by Mike Duquette

September 4, 2013 at 12:35

7 Responses

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  1. A Little Night Music also included Small Hours, I recorded it via my TV’s earphone jack video not being for the likes of us poor types in those days. It was a beautiful performance, for the first few minutes at least, then it was faded out way before the end. I can see why it wasn’t included but it’s a shame they didn’t have a tape of the full performance.

    Alistair Burns

    September 4, 2013 at 13:00

  2. Looks like a lot of the additional content from the Island deluxe versions of individual albums was *not* included here, which is good in that more unreleased material is here, and bad in that compleatists will need to have both the deluxe editions and the box set. Um… maybe I’m just talking about myself here! And I am wondering if this is a limited run, like the immediately-OOP Sandy Denny box was.

    William Keats

    September 4, 2013 at 13:19

  3. Wish Island/Universal would do a similar box for Free. How about it? That’s the band Free for anyone who’s confused…

    Simon

    September 4, 2013 at 16:57

    • great call – can we lobby for this – ??

      steve gilmour

      September 4, 2013 at 22:59

    • I can tell you a 15 CD box of Free is in the works my friend.

      chudbeagle

      September 5, 2013 at 10:47

  4. Definitely a limited pressing, but I bet it will not sell out as fast as the Sandy Denny box

    Kevin

    September 5, 2013 at 08:35

  5. One month later and already out of print. The remaining stocks in distributor warehouses will soon be depleted and the price will likely skyrocket. Buy it now.

    Kevin

    November 5, 2013 at 10:42


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