David Beckham just kicks a football about. Yes, and Martin Carthy is just an English folk singer and guitarist".
If the English folk revival of the 1960s had a single "father" and guiding spirit, then, that entity is called "Martin Carthy".
He has remained one of the most influential figures in British traditional music.
His settings of traditional songs with guitar have influenced artists for over 50 years from Bob Dylan and Paul Simon to Richard Thompson.
He's a ballad singer, a ground-breaking guitarist and an authoritative interpreter of traditional and newly-composed material.
His guitar technique belongs to him alone. His picking style, mainly in the unusual tuning CGCDGA, ensures that the guitar follows the song, rather than the other way around. The rhythm, often complex, mirrors the words and phrasing of the intricate ballads sung in his inimitable style.
Trailblazing partnerships with, amongst others, Fairport Convention, Steeleye Span, The Watersons and Dave Swarbrick have produced numerous albums.
"It helps me feel better about being English, at least for a while...."
John Peel on the music of Martin Carthy, his wife Norma Waterson and their daughter, Eliza Carthy
"Martin Carthy - the sage, the mentor and the political conscience of English folk music"
"Martin Carthy has been performing for more than 50 years and, almost inexplicably, seems to be getting better in his advancing years"
Sam Martyn (Hull)
"....Martin Carthy is a legend in global folk circles..."
Davie Gardner (Shetland)
Croydon Folk Club is organised by Brian and Jenny Dalton, 07703210795 or 02086605919 (not on Monday nights)