Skip to Content Skip to Navigation

Martin Swinger: Reviews and Comments

Fan Mail

 

I loved your songs and the writing that went into them.
I consider myself lucky to have heard the work of such a talented and feeling person. Martin, keep writing those wonderfully unique and beautiful songs.
By the way your voice was beautiful when you harmonized with Carolanne (Solbello).

 

 

From Minstrel Coffee House - Unsolicited Fan Mail (Apr 2, 2013)

Acoustic Nirvana or Betty Boop & Buddha

 

There are accidents of time and place that put you in the presence of genius.  Hopefully you will have the presence of mind and soul to recognize it.  My story.

Day 3 of Ginger's birthday weekend.  Kennebunk Maine.  In a free paper we saw a notice for an Acoustic Guitar Concert at the River Tree Arts Center, admission $10.  I love good acoustic guitar and for $10 each, not a lot of risk, right.

We arrive at the River Tree Arts Center (http://rivertreearts.org/) and are able to park right in front of the facility.  Not a good sign.  We walk in and we are among a dozen people or so, nervous musicians wondering if anyone will show, nervous exec director wondering same.  We pay, browse and sit.  The crowd swells to maybe 20.

The opening act was Ed Desjardin.  A terrific player and songwriter.  His unique style seemed to be rooted in a delightful mix of great musical styles melded into his own.  After a short break the feature performer was Martin Swinger.  (http://www.martinswinger.com/) 

Martin Swinger, broad smile and commanding presence, drew us into the story of his song like a gripping novel that keeps the light on til 2 AM.  He knits silly with serious, petty with poignant, leaving you asking, "How did he do that?  How did we get from there to here? That was amazing!"  From the first song, in my heart I was on the little red chair in the front of the room in first grade class where we sat and listened to Mrs. Simpson read those incredible stories.  Time disappeared as you hung on the next phrase--only now it was set to music and delivered by tenor voice so clear it sparkled.  Our 20 sojourners in the audience could have been in Carnegie Hall and we would not have had more pleasure than we enjoyed at the River Tree.

I sat thinking between songs, "Who is he like?"  The complexity of sound and lyric were unlike anyone I had ever heard.  Songs of grief, love, and depression delivered with humor, hope and delicacy.  In one brief night at River Tree, I am a fan.  His song Betty Boop and Budha capture his approach to life and music by pairing the most unlikely couple--the silly and the serious--to show how they coexist and inform us each of the other.

If you love music and good songwriting, do yourself a favor and click on the link above and listen to some of his work like the "Consider the Oyster", or "Gravity" to get a feel for this master of the ballad.  You can buy his work in CD's or downloads from his website.  An artist of this caliber must be shared and supported.

Ginger and I stumbled into the presence of genius last night.  We are better for it. 

Rob Lytle commented on your status:

"Your brilliant song from this past summer is stuck in my head. One of the best songs I have heard in a very long time...."
Rob Lytle - Unsolicited fan mail (Dec 7, 2009)
I feel I have never heard anyone sing quite like that before. It was a truly spiritual experience for me. You just threw your head back and let your voice come out from someplace deep inside. It was so beautiful. You seemed so unself-concious and unnervous -- like you had this incredible gift to share with us and it was the most natural thing in the world.

This sharing led me to wondering if we all have such a voice deep inside that only needs our letting go of worldly fears that get in the way of sharing it with others.
Gail Henderson - Unsolicited Fan Mail (Jan 5, 1998)
Martin, your music and presentation make me smile all over. God bless you for noticing with your artist eye the incongruous and turning it into a party.
" Man, you sing the crap out of shit! "
Glen Loper, Extra-ordinary mandolin player (Oct 3, 2005)