“Little Martha” is a fingerstyle acoustic guitar instrumental piece created by Duane Allman. Duane recorded it as an acoustic guitar duet with Allman Brothers bandmate Dickey Betts in October, 1971. “Little Martha” was released on The Allman Brothers’ album Eat A Peach in 1972.
In his younger days, when fingerstyle guitarist Leo Kottke set out to learn “Little Martha,” he was not aware that the music he was hearing on The Allman Brothers’ recording was being performed by two guitarists.
I’d say that Leo Kottke worked out a pretty good rendition of “Little Martha” anyway.
Check it out for yourself.
This recording is from Leo’s 1995 album, Live. It was recorded in April, 1995 at the Fox Theatre in Boulder, Colorado.
If you’ve never heard Leo Kottke before, I highly recommend this CD. Live captures Leo Kottke on a very, very good night. That means that this collection is full from beginning to end with Leo’s simply mesmerizing fingerpicking virtuosity on six and twelve-string acoustic guitars. There are also several songs that feature his much-better-than-he-thinks-they-are vocals and a couple of tracks that contain examples of the kind of ramblingly hilarious and delightful stories that Leo regularly tells during his concerts.
Leo Kottke’s guitar music was first preserved in the grooves of a vinyl disc in 1969. That first album was called 12-String Blues. Leo’s superb, who-needs-two-guitars rendering of “Little Martha” first made it onto vinyl on his 18th LP, A Shout Toward Noon in 1986.
Leo Kottke was born this day, September 11, 1945, in Athens, Georgia.
Happy birthday, Leo!