Desert Island Discs

BBC Radio 4

Society & Culture, Personal Journals

Chart Positions

Society & Culture 152
Personal Journals 28

Desert Island Discs was created by Roy Plomley in 1942, and the format is simple: a guest is invited by Kirsty Young to choose the eight records they would take with them to a desert island


Martin Carthy

January 13th, 2013

Episode 303 of 567 episodes

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is Martin Carthy. A highly influential figure in the world of traditional music, about fifty years ago he was at the forefront of the English folk revival - inspiring not just his fellow countrymen, but Bob Dylan and Paul Simon too. Now he's part of a folk dynasty. His wife is the celebrated singer Norma Waterson and their daughter Eliza is as renowned for her fiddle playing, as she is her voice. Martin, on the other hand, was brought up in an atmosphere that encouraged him to rise above his station - there was music in his Anglo-Irish background, but it wasn't encouraged and rarely if ever talked about. He says, "In my opinion there is no such thing as bad music. There may be bad players or bad singers but I don't like the idea of inferior music". The producer was Isabel Sargent.

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