Swing by Goodramgate drinking house The Habit almost any night of the week and there’s a pretty good chance you’re going to come across one of York’s most devoted blues disciples, a Mr Mark Wynn. Unassuming and modest, over the best part of a decade this talented guitarist has carved a cosy niche for himself in the ale-tanned timbers of our city’s acoustic venues and beer-halls. Wynn belongs to the same burgeoning americana/folk/blues scene that has been a long-term home to influential local acts such as Cardboard Radio (RIP) and Boss Caine, and in spite of whatever doubts he may possess, and in spite of his (refreshingly) ego-free approach to his trade, he finds himself pretty much at the forefront of one of York’s most popular and enduring musical movements.
Wynn’s songs are rooted in traditional blues structures, generally executed (as far as I can tell) in a finger-picking chord-heavy playing style and accompanied by understated vocal lines which seem heartfelt without being gushing. Sounds like heartbreak without the hysterics, expressed joyously through – as Wynn puts it – “hitting a piece of wood with strings on it”. As far as my limited understanding of the blues will allow, I’m pretty confident that this is what its all about. Wynn quite openly lets listeners into his world through his music. Like any good storyteller he makes it pretty tough to leave, and that’s one of the reasons why he has a major contingent of York’s musicians and music fans with him along for the ride. And quite a ride too as Wynn’s music takes him around the UK and around his active mind day in day out. A few weeks ago he released an album and accompanying poetry booklet ‘Some Poems and Some Songs’. Honest art presented unpretentiously. It speaks volumes of the man behind it.
Mark Wynn’s next performance in York is on February 15th at his regular haunt The Habit
Listen to/read about him here.
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