REVIEWS Wednesday April 28 2004, 1:00 AM

"Indisputedly the finest song-writer in Scotland. His musical vision is extremely wide, melding 50's pop, church music, Dr. John and a Randy Newmanesque eye for beauty in the commonplace" The List.

Have a read of these from a mixture of music critics, fans and ordinary punters who have witnessed Michael's performance and have been moved to write about it. Courtesy of

Time was when it would have been unkind to review a Marra record next to Randy Newman, long thought to be the Dundonian's dominating influence.

In this instance it is unkind, albeit to Newman, even if he is constrained by working on a soundtrack. This is Michael Marra's most robust work to date, while retaining much of the previous pop diarist's charm in the shape of "Frida Kahlo's Visit to the Taybridge Bar" and "Bob Dylan's Visit to Embra". He moves comfortably into the gentler slopes of Tom Wait's terrain in "The Butterfly Flaps its Wings", which also embodies some of the powerful discordant jazz themes lurking here and there.

The title, not atypically, is but half the story, coming from the wonderfully titled closing track "Scribbled Down Drunk (But Posted Sober)".
review of Michael Marra : "Posted Sober" (Inner City Sound Recordings) chosen as his Album of the Week for 7 January 2001 by Scotland on Sunday reviewer Colin Somerville.


...Marra has been compared to Tom Waits - but he doesn't sing in the Yankee drawl that's universal in rock - and with Randy Newman for his acute powers of observation on life. But in truth he's unique - and that's a word we're not often allowed to use in this paper..
Shetland Times

...If The Moon Can Be Believed is a truly original production that boasts a number of brilliantly written songs written by the renowned Dundee artiste, writer and musician, Michael Marra ...
The Courier and Advertiser

... he rocks, he's smart, and his tunes walk a razor's edge of wit.
A man with piercing eyes, MARRA looks into the soul, his songs as big as life, his characters scarred and inadequate, his images irksome ...
Folk Roots

MARRA ... a.k.a. the Randy Newman of The North ... astonishing talent for lyrics
... a first-class writer who avoids all the trappings of MOR sterility ...
Blue Juice

... a poet in blue-suede shoes ...
The List

... the only reason I did a Scots album was to annoy the London boys
... has been described as a Scottish Jacques Brel ...
TLN Magazine

... a 25-year-over-night sensation(!) when Deacon Blue and Hue and Cry discovered MARRA and invited him to tour internationally ...
Dirty Linen, USA

... (another) one of Scotland's best-kept secrets ... lyrically rooted in Scotland, its culture, history and literature, but MARRA cannot be pigeoned-holed with a "folkie" image; his musical palette is too varied for that; a love of jazz and sophisticated pop is always to the fore ... a poet's ear for detail and a nimble wit; given an incident MARRA will depict it from an angle that illustrates most effectively the daftness and vanity of humankind ... how can a man who turns the unlikely subject of King George III's return to sanity into a neat, easy-going boogie-woogie, go unrecognised? ...

... expelled from school amongst the high-rises of Dundee's Lochee at 14 as a tearaway
... gigged a bit around Dundee in the 1960s
... played with "legendary" 1970s rock-band Skeets Bolivar (remember them?)
... London ... Polydor Records ... management disputes ... home
... later/eventually 1985 solo album, Gaels Blue, on own label ... filled with a glittering array of songs
... MARRA's music is soaked in the Scottish experience, strained through a gauze of ragtime blues-piano and shot with filaments of traditional folk and American voices
... a ghost-white MARRA sits at piano and microphone, delivering caustic visions of the Scottish past and wickedly funny
and sometimes achingly poignant, parables of the present in vocals from a Woodbined voice
... fans include Barbara Dickson, Deacon Blue, Pate Kane of Hue and Cry, Gary Clark (ex-Danny Wilson lead singer), Billy Connolly, and Eddie Reader
... covers by Kiki Dee, Maddy Prior, June Tabor, Leo Sayer,Frankie Miller, Rab Noakes and Fairport Convention
... worked as MD on John Byrne's BBC TV series, Your Cheating Heart ...
Scotland on Sunday