Martin Simpson

In the 18 year history of the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, Martin Simpson has been nominated an astonishing 31 times – testament to the reputation and work of this acoustic guitar legend.

His remarkable intimate solo performances go from strength to strength – every gig is a masterclass. Four decades after he recorded his first album, Golden Vanity, he’s equally at home playing English traditional folk, American blues and his own compositions. Listed in Gibson Guitars’ Top 30 Acoustic Guitarists of all time, Martin was voted number 12 guitarist in the world by readers of Acoustic Guitar magazine in 2005.

He continues to collaborate with a dazzling array of artists: Jackson Browne, Martin Taylor, June Tabor, Richard Hawley, Bonnie Raitt, Danny Thompson, David Hidalgo and Richard Thompson among them.
In recent years, he has been a lynchpin in the award-winning Full English: The Elizabethan Sessions – and his 2017 solo album Trails and Tribulations (on Topic Records) has attracted rave reviews.

‘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