YES THAT'S ME: DAVE MURPHY PLAYS THE BLUES
"There are precious few acoustic blues artists in NZ. While this country has produced many excellent bands whose well-spring has been Clapton, Mayall, SRV, Hendrix etc, there are few who have worked all their lives in pre-war blues styles. Dave Murphy is one who has, and who achieved strong skills at playing and singing in the style, as well as writing original songs in the genre.
In the 80s, Murphy was a full time musician, touring regularly as a solo acoustic blues player or sometimes with other musicians, such as Wellington's blues Diva, Marg Layton. Then clinical depression overtook him and his career faltered. Often wanting to give up but occasionally performing at the behest of other muso mates, he went back to the profession he first trained in. In 2007 he still works as a gardener for Wellington City. Somehow over this extended time he came out of those dark years and all of this is told in the documentary "Yes That's Me".
The film features Murphy recording eleven songs. The songs are complete, mercifully without voice over or flashbacks as many such documentaries do. The songs are interspersed with in-studio chatter between Murphy and the engineer, and interviews in the park while Murphy is at work gardening. This makes a heart warming contrast between the humility of the gardener and the power of the studio performer. While pruning the odd rose head, Murphy makes some apposite comments about blues, life in general and his depression years in particular. In the studio he covers some classic prewar blues on acoustic and resonator guitars, showing finesse at anything from ragtime through delta slide to gospel."
Duration: 52 Minutes
PAL, REGION FREE
"The blues is a music made by people who have struggled, have hard and true stories to tell and do so in a voice that is compelling. Dave Murphy, 35 years a journeyman on New Zealand's blues highway, is one of those characters and this film captures him at his essence: unadorned, honest and live as he records his long overdue debut album."
Graham Reid www.elsewhere.co.nz
“The vastly experienced Wellington based documentary maker Costa Botes takes a wry and affectionate look at blues musician Dave Murphy. Murphy is a New Zealand blues institution, and Botes’ film does the man, and especially his music, great justice. Botes is happy to include full and uninterrupted takes of Murphy doing what he does best - singing it as only he can, and picking at a selection of guitars with a casual virtuosity that would send a lot of the international acts back to their bedrooms to practice for a few more years. 'Yes That's Me' is a smart and affectionate biopic that knows to let the music do the talking. If you're a follower of New Zealand music, or a fan of traditional blues, then this film will be an hour well spent. Nice one.”
Graeme Tuckett, Dominon Post