Father and Son, Barry and Emile… The Martyn Maestro Drummers

My visit to Mandeville’s Dew Drop Hall back in 2010
was more than magical.

It was the inspiration for two of my jazz portraits recently posted here on Jazz&Jazz – Leroy Jones and Dr Michael White. But more than that, it was my first opportunity to present to Barry Martyn the fine art Giclée prints of a portrait I had painted of him back at The 100 Club* in London, and of his son Emile on drums at “Jazz in the Barn” in Throwley, Kent, with his “Fallen Heroes”.

Barry’s reaction? I will never forget it. He held up both portraits for the audience to see and declared “Peter has just given me these two remarkable portraits of myself and my son, Emile. Take a close look at them and you’ll see Emile is already going grey!”

Later Barry wrote a letter to me urging me “to keep doing what you are doing for jazz”. I’m still striving to, Barry.

I penned two poems to accompany the Giclée Prints of the portraits:

For Barry

Barry Martyn at the 100 Club
Hail to a Legend of Jazz
And showman supreme
Whose flare and pizzaz
Revived the New Orleans Dream

(* This was during Barry’s very last visit to London and appearance at The 100 Club. I will never forget his departing words to his UK fans … that despite his New Orleans’ drawl he was a Londoner – “In fact I was conceived under that grand piano!”)

For Emile

Emile on Drums
Good time Jazz in deepest Kent
With New Orleans beat to turn up the heat
Emile on drums, inspired, intense,
A Fallen Hero with the world at his feet.

(To this day I am grateful to Emile for supporting my efforts for jazz over the last decade.)

Peter M Butler
Editor & Proprietor Jazz&Jazz

(Photos & Prints © Peter M Butler, Jazz&Jazz)

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