Martha Tilston

Martha Tilston
Martha Tilston
Origin Brighton, East Sussex
Genres Folk
Years active 2000-present
Labels Squiggly, Other Tongues
Associated acts Mouse
Martha Tilston and the Woods
Website Martha Tilston Official Website
Martha Tilston

Martha Tilston (born 1975 or 1976[1]) is an English folk-based singer-songwriter.



Martha Tilston is the daughter of singer-songwriter Steve Tilston and stepdaughter of Irish folk performer Maggie Boyle. Trained as an artist and dramatist, she began her musical career in 2000 as an active presence in Britain's alternative festival scene, particularly as part of the traveling troupe called "The Small World Solar Stage".[2][3] She formed the duo Mouse with guitarist Nick Marshall, releasing two albums, "Helicopter Trees" (2000) and Mouse Tales (2001) and touring as a supporting act with Damien Rice. Her first solo album "Rolling" was issued in 2002 on her own label, Squiggly, followed by Bimbling in 2004.

Her next album Ropeswing (2005) featured an expanded group of backing musicians named The Woods, and was available as a free download. It contains her two most politically-explicit songs, "Artificial", which speaks of the deadliness of office life, and "Corporations" which is a critique of corporate rule and the corporate-education complex. She has also appeared on several compilations, including her song "The Saddest Game" about child soldiers in Africa, on The Big Issue's "Peace Not War" CD.[4] Her song "Good World" is among several that she has written and performed on environmental subjects.[5] However, much of her work is not political, focusing instead on personal freedom, love, inner peace and the natural world. Songs such as "Simple" on Ropeswing, "By the Lake" on Mouse Tales, and "Firefly" on Bimbling are examples of these.

Her album "Of Milkmaids and Architects" was released in late 2006. She was nominated for "Best New Act" in the 2007 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards contest.[6]

Throughout her career she has played regularly throughout Britain, ranging from unaccompanied solo gigs to larger concerts with up to 6-piece backing band The Woods. She also toured Australia in spring 2008. Following a maternity break she resumed playing live in April 2009, appearing on the fourth Zero7 studio album Yeah Ghost.

Her third solo album Lucy and the Wolves was released in April 2010.



  • 2000 Mouse: Helicopter Trees (with Nick Marshall)
  • 2001 Mouse: Mouse Tales (with Nick Marshall)
  • 2003 Rolling
  • 2005 Bimbling
  • 2006 Ropeswing (credited to Martha Tilston and The Woods)
  • 2007 Of Milkmaids and Architects
  • 2008 Till I Reach the Sea (compilation EP)
  • 2010 Lucy and the Wolves


  1. ^ Kirstie May (25 July 2010). "Martha Tilston". Morning Star. Retrieved 13 June 2011. "At 34, Tilston …" 
  2. ^ Small World Solar Stage [1] accessed 18 February 2008
  3. ^ Biographical details found at Irwin, Colin [2] Martha Tilston Biography at, accessed 18 February 2008; Irwin, Colin, interview in fRoots Magazine #297, March, 2008; Tilston, Martha [3] official website
  4. ^ Peace Not War [4] accessed 18 February 2008
  5. ^ Friends of the Earth UK [5] Interview, accessed 18 February 2008
  6. ^ Peter Culshaw Martha Tilston: The folk singer who's come in from the cold The Guardian, 21 January 2007. Accessed 18 February 2008.

External links


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