Blues for Davy Graham

I’m not sure that Davy Graham counts as a ‘historic figure’, but he was certainly historically important in the development of folk and blues in the UK in the 1960s. This is a song I wrote a few years ago, but recorded live at Watford Folk Club last week.


  1. Blue notes wafting, around the streets all day,
    He listened and he learned, taught himself to play,
    In the early days, he sang a different kind of song,
    Mixed up folk and blues …… and took them well beyond,
    Does anyone listen to Davy any more?

    Down at Cousins, he was revered by everyone,
    From Mike and Stefan, to Wizz and Bert and John,
    A lot of people tried to emulate that mix,
    They all tried, but no-one …… had his bag of tricks,
    Does anyone play like Davy any more?

    He travelled to Morocco, travelled all around,
    Picked up different rhythms, and a new set of scales and sounds,
    He retuned his guitar to make the music fit,
    Years before the time …… when everyone was doing it,
    Does anyone credit Davy any more?

    He reached a point where the music wasn’t quite enough,
    Sang about cocaine, but used the harder stuff,
    He retreated from the world, and lived inside his head,
    A casualty of self-indulgence ……. that’s what they said,
    Does anyone cherish Davy any more?

    I’ll never forget when I saw Davy play,
    Before he lost his focus, before he slipped away,
    I watched his fingers fly, and felt that I was blessed,
    While he was in the zone ……. like a man possessed,
    Does anyone remember Davy any more?

  2. Love the song. Many years ago I did a support for Davy down in Redruth in Cornwall. A small club and an audience that had come to hear the brilliant guitarist that had written “Angi”. I did a few songs and was followed by the other support. The owner of the club asked me to go and tell Davy that he would be on in ten minutes. I found him in his dressing room gazing at the flame of a candle. I called the club owner and between us we managed to get him and his guitar onto the stage. It was, I believe, when he was at the lowest point of his life and what followed was cruel and embarassing. We helped him off ten minutes later and I swear he had no idea about the evening. The club owner put him up for the night and, because he was a decent man, paid Davy his fee in full despite having also refunded most of the audience. It was one of the saddest nights of my life. The man that practically invented DADGAD and influenced Bert Jansch and Ralph McTell unable to perform for an audience that loved him.