Tamara Parsons-Baker began her career in Tokyo, Japan. Having taught herself the basics of guitar and written a batch of tentative but already unconventional songs, she returned to her hometown of Oxford and took on its expansive and competitive open mic scene. Wherever she performed, the verdict was the same: she had a VOICE, and one that wasn't easy to forget. Over the next few years she produced new material that took its formulaic cues from jazz and the blues, and populated her songs with characters and observations that display wit and wisdom beyond her years. Sometimes she is part Amanda Palmer, part Anita O'Day; other times she is part Tom Waits, part Jeff Buckley. And you are invited to try and keep up.
Tamara's right-hand men are Humphrey Astley and Tommy Longfellow, who made names for themselves as the formidable rhythm section of Sextodecimo. This notorious doom quintet pushed the boundaries of its genre and scene for almost a decade and was recently awarded the title of Oxford's greatest ever metal band by Nightshift magazine. Tom Sharp, lead guitarist of Smilex, joined The Martyrs in October 2011 and the band was complete.
Astley, Longfellow and Sharp's now intuitive musical rapport, combined with the chemistry they and Parsons-Baker established during their time as three-quarters of the explosive (and inevitably implosive) Huck and the Handsome Fee, makes for a tight and focused core around which collaborators and guest members can confidently orbit.
In the words of the Real Bad Lover...'Don't you want some?'
Tamara and the Martyrs recording their debut album 'Girl Jokes about Boy Parts' which was released in late 2013. Read some reviews of the band.