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Reviews

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  Denverdag, Holland - June 14 2009

We had a great Denverday in Holland this Sunday, and Mark's high quality performance certainly added to everyone's enjoyment of the day. Maybe more than anything else, this first peformance in Holland was a very brave one. Only having learned our language for two days, Mark sang the last chorus of Another Sunrise in Dutch. And in the last song, Heart To Heart, Mark sang a duet after a two minute rehearsal. Most songs were John Denver songs, from his own songs Mark also sung Someday Somehow and Peace On Christmas Day. I'm sure everyone who was present hopes for a return visit soon!
                                                                                                                                           
      Click
here for Youtube video                                                                                                  Michiel ten Brug

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The Griffin Inn - January 23 2009

The skittle-alley at The Griffin Inn in Swithland (near Leicester ) may sound a rather unlikely venue for an evening of music dedicated to John Denver and Jim Reeves. But, not a bit of it - in fact it was the perfect backdrop to a tremendous concert that took place there on Friday 23rd January.

Mark Robinson, along with Tony Wall, gave us an occasion to remember, as they plied their craft admirably, amidst a triumphant combination of unusual surroundings, interesting atmosphere, and the delightful warmth and eagerness of a receptive audience. Serendipity doubtless had a seat amongst them, for the concert was a sell-out, the ‘alley’ full to capacity.

Whether or not you are a fan of John Denver or Jim Reeves, it would have been hard not to be drawn into the magic these guys wove as they alternately took centre stage – then joined together for the occasional short but sweet interlude, guitars and voices swelling in harmony to fill the room. John Denver and Jim Reeves may not have been an alliance that readily sprung to mind at one time, but Mark’s excellent, soaring voice and Tony’s warm, velvety tones proved most definitely otherwise, as they intermingled and complemented each other perfectly.

And Jim Reeves could well have been there in person, as Tony himself took us gently and comfortingly back to a more mellow time with such songs as ‘Welcome to my World’, ‘I Love you Because’, and ‘Distant Drums’.

In true spirit, Mark gave us many of the songs that John Denver made so famous – ‘This Old Guitar’, ‘Country Roads’, ‘Calypso’, and his wonderful trademark, ‘Annie’s Song’, to name but a few – and these came with a sprinkling of lesser-known gems, such as ‘Follow me’, ‘Healing Time’, ‘Flying for Me’, ‘Heart to Heart’ – and, very poignantly, the last-ever song John wrote – the evocative ‘Yellowstone’. As an ardent John Denver fan, I can honestly say that Mark delivers amazing renditions of the man’s songs – his voice sensitive and tender one minute, powerful and formidable the next. And no less did he give to ‘Another Sunrise’ – as he introduced the audience to what has possibly become his own signature song. Composed at the time of his father’s passing, it is a very beautiful and moving tribute. The audience was rapt.

This splendid evening of music was complemented perfectly by the serving of a delicious hot meal during the interval – and all at the very welcome inclusive price of £10.95. Impossible to beat, I’d say.

So, with stomachs and souls already well-nourished we were treated to an edifying second act, which drew reluctantly to a close with Mark’s inimitable thanks to us all as he sang just one more of his own compositions, ‘The Sweetest Voice of All’. In it he claims that we, as the audience, indeed have the sweetest voice – simply because we were there to listen to him. John Denver would have had these words for him - ‘And exactly where it comes from is where it’s going to’.

There is a belief that a ghost resides at The Griffin Inn. If that is so, then he was in excellent company that night – and his luck may well be in again on Friday March 13th, when Mark and Tony take to the boards once more.

See you there!
                                                                                                                                                             
Veronica Watson

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The Crown Inn, Alrewas, Staffs - June 14 2008

“It was a lovely setting for Mark`s afternoon concert at The Crown Inn. The audience totalled around 35 to 40 people. The landlord kindly allowed us to use the lounge bar for the  whole afternoon and excellent bar lunches were enjoyed before the concert. The music show started around 2.30 pm, Mark being accompanied by two other musicians, Tony Wall and Mark Holley. We were given an afternoon of wonderful music. The sound system quality was brilliant. Mark was in excellent voice and performed around 25 songs, most of which were his own compositions. He also performed wonderfully a selection of John Denver songs which were greatly enjoyed by the audience

I particularly enjoyed the tracks ‘Once In A Bright Blue Moon’, ‘Everything Leads To This’, ‘The Space That Lies Between’, ‘The Sweetest Voice of All’ and (of course) - ‘Another Sunrise’. It amazes me how Mark continually writes so many high quality new songs. The lyrics and the music are always to a high standard. I would strongly recommend others to see and hear Mark ‘live’. A professional and original production is guaranteed. The other two musicians, Tony and Mark, performed some enjoyable solo pieces and proved to be experienced and proficient. There was a short interval and the complete show finished at 6 pm, with the audience calling for more.

See you all at the next concert!”
                                                                                                   Seamus Vickers, Northampton

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     Supporting David Mallett, Barton-under-Needwood, April 23 2005

“Mark is a performer of professional standard who puts heart and soul in the writing and delivery of his songs. I have witnessed the concentration and effort that goes into making each piece of work sound as good as possible..............I can sit back in any of his concerts in the knowledge that I am going to hear a quality performance.

Well done Mark. Your poetry and lyrical quality together with unique voice is a treat for any audience.”
            
                                                                                                             Steve Brook, FoJD Newsletter, Spring 2005

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Coventry - St. Joseph the Worker Church Hall, Canley, Dec 18th 2004 guest artist - Steve Brook

“..........what a real treat we had. Mark sang some of his own songs one which was ‘Peace on Christmas Day’ a song which he had written regarding the soldiers in the first world war having a game of football amidst all the killing on Christmas day. How lovely it was to sing along to some of the beautiful Christmas carols and some of John’s  [Denver] Christmas songs.   Mark’s rendition of ‘Oh Holy Night’ was just wonderful.

Steve Brook opened up the second half of the concert with a fun rendition of ‘Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer’. He also sang a few of his own songs.

As well as Mark doing the concert with Steve as guest, they both sang together - this was truly beautiful, especially ‘The Peace Carol’ in which they harmonized perfectly.Mark finished the concert with his beautiful song ‘The Sweetest Voice of All’ and I am sure with the applause and standing ovation he got - he knew how much he was appreciated.”

                                                                                                                    Irene Kavanagh

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Coventry - St. Joseph the Worker Church Hall, Canley, May 15th 2004

“Yet again at this concert, Mark confirmed his status as a very competent performer and songwriter - his voice seems to get stronger and better each time I see him!

I first met Mark at a Denver Day some 2 years ago, we got chatting about JD’s guitar playing and I said I had always wanted to play Rhymes and Reasons . . . .PROPERLY . . . .I had my guitar with me and Mark showed me the intro . . . ( - something I had been trying to find for years!)

Later that day Mark said he would probably be playing a few songs. Sure enough later Mark went up ‘on stage’ and started setting up . . . I noticed people stopped talking and were turning their chairs round to face the front . . . I thought ‘this may be good then’ . . .

At the Coventry gig on 15th May, Mark played for over 2 hours and he showed us that he can write some very moving songs. He can also ‘deliver’ a song, which is not an easy task. Great concert Mark, and let there be more!”

                                                                        Pete Harcom, FoJD newsletter, Summer 2004

“The concert was fantastic. Mark had structured it so that it told us something of his life story. Almost all of the songs were his own, most we had never heard before. There were a few John Denver songs and some by David Mallett.

He began with Follow Me which he said he first heard on a coach trip with his parents as a young boy....

He took us through his early life. He told us how The Garden Song had helped him to apppreciate being outside and was also a metaphor for life.......Mark sang it differently from the way John used to do it. There was more variation in the melody. I don`t know if he had been influenced by David Mallett’s version, who, of course, wrote this song.....I loved the way he sang it.

As well as the David Mallett songs Garden Song and You Say That The Battle Is Over, he sang a beautiful song written by him called Summer of My Dreams.

He told us that he had written three tribute songs to John Denver.....and sang one of them...that was inspired by something that Erma [John’s mother] had said to him.

Towards the end he sang Calypso and, of course, everyone joined in with gusto.

He ended the concert with his beautiful song Another Sunrise, and then a new special song he had written for all of us. This was such a lovely thing to do. At the end there was a standing ovation and he looked rather overwhelmed, but it was no more than he deserved.”

                                                                      Sylvia Ashton, FoJD newsletter, Summer 2004

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CD Reviews

Another Sunrise

“Thank you so much for your CD....it IS BEAUTIFUL !! I've played it about three times today but one song in particular I have played about twenty times........ "Another Sunrise" which I first heard you sing in Aspen. It made me cry then and I'm not ashamed to tell you that I cried again today, what a beautiful song. Although all the songs are lovely the ones that really stand out for me are,"The Golden Sun", All My Love", "You Know Me Now","For a Long Time" and "The Winds of War". I've heard you sing a few before but it's lovely to be able to keep playing them.
 
                                                                                          
Lynne Groves

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“It made me cry, then..... I cried again today; what a beautiful song”

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“This is a very peaceful CD....it really relaxed me...I love it”

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“The songs are all so great that it is hard to pick favourites”

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A Life More Beautiful

Another great CD from Mark, from the moving “Another Star in Heaven” to many beautiful love songs, from the brilliant “Peace on Christmas Day”, to the song that he wrote for us all, “The Sweetest Voice of All”, Mark's beautiful voice, music and lyrics shine through.

A CD not to be missed.
                                                                                   
Lynne Groves, FoJD

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Many thanks for the CD.  I have played it many times in the last few days and am enjoying it more each time.

I feel that we are on the same wavelength, it must be the John Denver
influence!!

‘The Keeper of Your Dreams’ is one of the best John Denver tributes that I
have heard - excellent stuff;
The two songs relating to the disgusting waste of life in the First World War (civilised countries involved in barbaric acts), in fact any war, are wonderful, poignant songs;
‘Small’ is a beautiful tribute to the Tsunami victims and shows the
insignificance of mankind (and his petty conflicts) compared to the
powers of Nature and the Universe;
The fells of the Lake District are my 'Mountains of Wicklow' and my
spiritual home.  A superb track.  (I have also visited Ireland which is
a beautiful country);
‘Who I Am’ is a great self portrait;
‘Star in Heaven’ is deeply moving and I feel for your loss.  I am
fortunate to have both parents alive to whom I am close.

This is a truly wonderful album. 

Keep up the JD spirit.

                                                                                         Martin Elford, UK

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10.11.16 - Beautiful music. Looking forward to buying more - Richard Rogers

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