Martin Simpson


Booking throughout 2019. Martin is working on next album out on Topic Records in summer 2019, with UK touring Sept + Nov/Dec.

Please enquire re festival bookings.


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“Martin Simpson has transcended borders and oceans to quietly become a superb storyteller and musician of great depth and unquestionable taste.” Stephen Fearing

The remarkable intimate solo performances Martin gives go from strength to strength – every gig is a masterclass. He travels the length and breadth of the UK and beyond, giving rapt audiences passion, sorrow, love, beauty, tragedy and majesty through his playing.

“What’s it like being the best guitar player in the world…?” Martin’s modesty and grace prevented him from answering this BBC Radio 4 interviewer’s question recently, but the facts speak for themselves.

40 years after he recorded his first album, Golden Vanity, in 1976, Martin is known as a guitarist of formidable talent. Equally at home playing English traditional folk, American folk and blues and his own compositions, he is consistently named as one of the very finest fingerstyle guitar players in the world.

He is listed in Gibson Guitars’ Top 30 Acoustic Guitarists of all time, and Acoustic Guitar readers voted him number 12 guitarist in the world in 2005.

Universally acclaimed as one of the finest ever acoustic and slide guitar players, and a fine banjo-picker to boot, his solo shows bear witness to an artist at the very top of his game. Whether interpreting material from tradition or singing his own potent self-penned songs, Simpson is a remarkable storyteller: captivating and profoundly moving. His own songwriting produced the poignant ‘Never Any Good’, from Prodigal Son, 2007’s Folk Album of the Year.

Martin continues to collaborate with a dazzling array of people from across the musical spectrum: Jackson Browne, Martin Taylor, June Tabor, Richard Hawley, Bonnie Raitt, Danny Thompson, David Hidalgo, Danú, Richard Thompson and Dom Flemons are among the great musicians he has worked with.

In recent years, he has been a lynchpin in the award-winning Full English, The Elizabethan Sessions and, in 2015, recorded Murmurs, an exciting new album with Andy Cutting and Nancy Kerr. Martin’s eagerly awaited new solo album entitled Trails and Tribulations will be released 1st September 2017 on Topic Records. Album guests include Andy Cutting, Kathryn Tickell, Nancy Kerr and John Smith.

He has had the most nominations of any performer in the 18 years of the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, an astonishing 32 times, 13 of those as Musician of the Year, winning that particular accolade twice.

A virtuoso player without question, but above all Martin Simpson conveys his diverse treasure trove of material from the heart, performing with rare subtlety, intensity and honesty. A true master of his art.

“Martin is in a class of his own. He is such an expressive player; he is ingenious in his use of the guitar. You can listen to one of his songs and three or four minutes in, he has only used the top four strings and not even played a bass note yet, and when he does, it feels like an orchestra coming in. His clarity of playing is just amazing.” Jackson Browne

“One of the virtuoso instrumentalists of the English music scene” ‘Sounds better than ever’ **** 4 Stars The Guardian

“Simpson has become a fine interpreter of traditional and other songs, as well as a notable writer of his own.” The Times

‘Simpson’s latest is a potent blend of the highest calibre…Simpson has never sung or played better’ Acoustic Magazine

‘One of our finest traditional musicians, Simpson’s latest album offers a roving overview of his talents’ **** 4 Stars Uncut

‘An excellent collection of material drawn from both sides of the Atlantic handled with loving care by Simpson and aided by some of the biggest names in folk’ **** 4 Stars Maverick

Tour Dates

15/03/2019Vivacity Key TheatrePETERBOROUGH
22/03/2019Molière TheatreBRUSSELS (Belgium)
23/03/2019vzw WespLANGDORP (Belgium)
24/03/2019Stichting Podiumkunsten OisterwijkOISTERWIJK (Holland)
26/03/2019National Centre for Early MusicYORK
28/03/2019Bridgwater Arts CentreBRIDGWATER
29/03/2019Kings PlaceLONDON
30/03/2019The Corn HallDISS
31/03/2019Lincoln Performing Arts CentreLINCOLN
27/04/2019Storey's Field CentreCAMBRIDGE
03/05/2019Wath FestivalWATH-UPON-DEARNE
05/05/2019Todmorden Folk FestivalTODMORDEN
19/05/2019Wardrobe TheatreBRISTOL
25/05/2019Coronation HallULVERSTON
07/06/2019Ropetackle Arts CentreSHOREHAM
08/06/2019St Neots Folk FestivalST NEOTS
09/06/2019Freshwater Memorial HallFRESHWATER
28/06/2019Reeth Memorial HallRICHMOND
20/07/2019Music On The MarrBRAMPTON
22/07/2019Croydon Folk ClubCROYDON
10/08/2019Fairport's Cropredy ConventionCROPREDY