Gladsome Revisited

Gladsome humour and blue (revisited) 

Was recorded in 1987 at Ridge Farm studios, Rusper in Surrey 

A wonderful studio, the engineer was Tony Phillips (All about Eve, Joni Mitchel) and producer Paul Samwell Smith ex bassist with the Yardbirds and producer to (Cat Stevens, Art Garfunkle, All about Eve) 

And old farmhouse where musicians boarded, with a beautiful barn converted to a 24 track recording studio 

Ironically the night watchman at that time was Speedy Keen (Thunderclap Newman) 

We had many fun nights with Speedy who had many tales from the 60’s, considering he had a number one in 1969 with his classic hit ‘Something in the air’ 

The Daintees were a very strong band at that time with Paul Smith on drums (Chris Rea, Shirley Bassey, Tommy Cooper, Tony Christie) who was quite a bit older than me and brothers Dunn, and he really raised our game from Boat to Bolivia, we were touring constantly and were super fluent and tight, I was also hitting the height of my powers as a committed non commercial songwriter and was already steering our ship far away from pop consciousness and the yuppie mentality of the selfish 80’s, 

It was super easy and such a joy to record and I was very proud of the outcome, Paul Samwell Smith and Tony Phillips were brilliant to work with and it had a real atmosphere recording in deepest Surrey, England in the late autumn and early winter of 1987 

We recruited some great friends and fellow musicians to join us on the sessions, I had teamed up with Australian blues guitarist Gipsy Dave Smith the year earlier and also invited good pal Virgina Astley on flute, who brought her lovely daughter Florence with her who was only one and a half, we all took turns nursing Florence, these days she is a master harpist and concert pianist and works with her mother Gini in the house of Thomas Moore on their beloved river Thames 

Also joining us was the lovely Anne Stephenson, Gini’s first violinist who I had down since early 85 when playing guitar for Gini, 

Also Indian master percussionist Pandit Dinesh, and our regular session musician Mickey Watson, who wrote out all the string parts and played keyboards, and finally joining us on backing vocals were Cheryl and Sheila Parker (BGees, All about Eve) 

The songs were very important, there were some very powerful messages programmed into the songs, the content was that of compassion and understanding 

The Daintees were an unusual band, appearing fun and light live but the cargo they carried was very enlightened and powerful 

They could never have been a famous pop band, they would appear self sabotaging in that era but that was purely down to them as a group having a different mission, they were naturally anti-industry and a virus checker against greed and narcism 

I don’t mean that to sound arsey, it’s just something I encountered time and time again being a part of it since 1982,  I was definitely trying to follow guidance from love and kind non competitive spirit  which in the 1980’s was like wearing a loincloth and appearing foolish, I think the Daintees message is still gaining momentum and carries as much weight today 

Important note: 

On Gladsome humour and blue, there were two songs produced by old pal Dave Brewis 

Those songs were ’Slaughterman, There comes a time and Nancy (pretty important tracks on the album) 

Dave was the guitarist with Kitchenware label mates The Kane Gang, and a very close friend of Prefab Sprout’s Paddy Macaloon, producing their first album ’Swoon’ 

He also produced loads of Daintees demos between 82-90 

Songs produced by Paul Samwell Smith: 

There comes a time 

This song was written on a pool table at a London recording studio whilst a producer and session musician worked away recording a single ‘Boat to Bolivia, we as a band felt really isolated from this project and hung out mainly in the pool room and were very upset, the track sounded nothing like the band and could’ve been anybody,  those guys were just looking for material success and didn’t really understand the fragility and beauty of the band, There comes a time was written in revolt, it’s an old story that has gone on for years, bring the session guys in and have a hit, it’s a lazy fast forward that breaks up bands, divide and conquer 


A song written for local footballer Tommy Mason who lived in my village, most folks thought it was about someone working in an abattoir but the slaughterman was actually the football pundits Jimmy Greaves and Ian St John 

The Wait 

I was very proud of, it is about power consciousness in a relationship, the narrator is the escapee 

I can see 

Is a very loaded and beautiful song about spiritual growth and creative freedom, a very hopeful song 

I did most of the musical arrangements on these songs, I had very strong ideas to how they should sound 

The good thing about Paul Samwell Smith is he would listen, he respected the band’s brotherhood, I loved him for that, sure he leased with the management and record company, but he valued the band’s vision very much 

The Old Church 

Perceived as a gospel song but actually was written for a building not an organised man made religion, it’s for the shell they inhabit not the doctrine they preach 

Even the night 

This song was my Dad’s favourite, I wouldn’t say he liked loads of my songs but he liked the old church and this one, I actually played it at his funeral with my daughter Phoebe and comrade Jim Hornsby in 2015 

Wholly Humble Heart was written for my pal Malcolm Hutchinson who happened to be gay, he was the childhood friend of my soon to be wife Angela Maria Cape, Thatcher was at the height of her evil devising Clause 28, the anti gay legislation of the 80’s, trying to retard the whole nation, faking idiot, when she wasn’t doing shit like that she was giving shelter to insane murderers like General Pinichet form Chile, the worst of the worst was Thatcher, no doubt 

Me and Mathew 

The song about spending special time in the greenhouse with my grandfather, it was particularly interesting for Paul Samwell Smith who had earlier produced Cat Steven’s ‘Mathew & Son’ some 21 years earlier, my albums were always next to Cat’s in the record stores too and he was someone I truly respected for his truthfulness as an artist which is second to none, as they were the people I admired, Cat, Syd Barrett, Peter Green were my favourites 

Gipsy Dave and I nailed that song in one take and the spirit felt very good 


A song about female teenage rebellion through the perspective of the father 

Probably inspired by my own sister who always took my Dad on fearlessly with new ideas and her independence 

Goodbye John 

Was deffo an exercise in automatic writing of which I just grabbed a snippet from reams and reams of outpours 

But I kinda dedicate it to John Steel who left the band after Boat to Bolivia and I often sing it for John Martyn 

I was really into lucid dreaming at the time and astral travel, meditation 

I pray 

I think it is a cousin of Goodbye John, again it’s just automatic stream of consciousness and bending surreal words into a jazz blues type turnaround, the music is merely a vehicle for anyone disinterested in what I might be bleating on a bout 

But reading it nowadays it looks like a young person’s self assessment in song, objective I suppose 

Get get gone 

Gipsy Dave and me banged this one down straight after Me & Mathew then Goodby John, they were done 1st take straight after one another on an sunny late morning, it was a joy and I remember Tony Phillips really enjoying this part of the session 

There comes a time 


The Wait 

I can see 

The old church 

Even the night 

Wholly Humble Heart 

Me & Mathew 


Goodbye John 

I pray 

Additional song recorded on the session 

Get Get Gone 


I’m proud of this album for all kinds of reasons 

Im glad there’s no point where it’s proclaiming to be the biggest feking mother fuka bra bla bla 

It is a cosmic humanitarian effort executed by a beautiful, intelligent band that were totally in the wrong decade 

But the songs are timeless will always be relevant and caring 

The daintees are from the non ambitious, cosmic song club 

Fighting for kindness, sharing and caring 

Forming nice as the new nasty 

Let the demigods keep their fame trophies of manufactured cool 

For it doesn’t mean shit in the garden of love 


Martin xxx