Martyn Joseph is a performer like no other: Shades of Springsteen, John Mayer, Bruce Cockburn and Dave Matthews there may be - but he stands in his own right, built on a reputation for giving what thousands have described as the best live music experience of their lives delivering his "songs of lyrical intelligence" according to BBC Radio 2's Bob Harris.

December 7, 2000 1:44 pm

Subterranea, Swansea – Nige and Martyn

My hometown. Good ol’ Swansea. We arrive for soundcheck at around 5pm. Ade and Tony(two of my Bestest Mates) are doing the sound tonight. It sounds good in the soundcheck. All that is left is Homos puntaris(People to you or I) to arrive. A host a friends and Family arrive to watch me tonight. Before we start, We find out that the club upstairs has it’s opening night. The music is Pounding through the Walls.I feel quite annoyed as I know the fans have come to listen to Martyn sing songs and to hang on his every word. Tonight they would have to do it between breakbeats and 4 to the floor rhythms.

We started our first half off in Great style with “Kiss the World Beautiful”. It was at this point that I noticed the Collage of Drumbeats emanating from upstairs. It became so difficult to play the songs with Martyn that I fluffed a couple of notes( Conservative estimate) concentrating too hard on my timing and rather timidly moving through the songs like a robbers Horse.I was appalled at the managements attitude towards the Racket that was now growing in volume.They wouldn’t turn the level down to compensate for Martyns Quiet songs. I paid a small visit upstairs and opened the door to the bar where the staff would throw black bags out(but leave it open to reveal the musical intelligence of half of the Swansea 18-24 population). I said in no uncertain terms that they should turn it down or I’d call up Big Mike. I didn’t work. They only understand me talking Gibberish and Shouting across a crowded bar into their ears…….. 1st Girl” Have you seen my new Hairdo?…..Had it done today by Vidal Baboon. Oh! and my new necklace that Delroy Bought me”(shouting at the top of her voice). “He told me it was pure Gold.Cost him I think….about” 2nd Girl”Yes I’ll have a drink” the other replies.”I’ll have a Babycham and Lime”. (Over the Noise of….Dunce….Dunce…..Dunce……Dunce…..)the 1st Girl replies “I know, awful innit. and she’d only been with him about a week and 9 days”. Anyway, whilst meandering through my fantasies, back to the plot

The Second half was no quieter. I felt awful for Martyn. The monitors needed to be tweaked louder as the night progressed. By the end of the evening, you speak to people and they we not aware of the problems that we had encountered on the stage. They all enjoyed. So the proof that it takes Gorilla intelligence to run a club inhabited by…..Gorillas and Gorilla essess and to view some of these dance techniques leaves me wondering whether the girls have their underwear one size to small and the guys have trusses on. Next time, Take a look at these Clubbers. To go out on probably the wettest night of the year with very little clothing on proves that the Manufacturers are running out of cloth and yet still sell it at Extortionate prices. I rest my case (full of Bricks) Preferably on the Managers Head. Subterranea, a paradise for unintelligible youngsters with dancing difficulties. Nige

PS It was a good night though and best backdrop ever. I shall insist there are drawings of naked women behind me at all times from now on!! ( see pic). Martyn

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