Her voice is unique, unmistakable and timeless – The Los Angeles Times’ Robert Hilburn called her “arguably the most charismatic female performer in rock.” And about the Hollywood Bowl concert in 2012, The Hollywood Reporter wrote: Martha Davis, of the Motels, was still strong in voice and admirably delivered hits like “Only The Lonely” and “Suddenly Last Summer.”
For Martha Davis, the most important thing has always been the songs she writes. Martha began writing songs at the age of 15. Born and raised in Berkeley, California, she moved to Los Angeles in the early ‘70s, along with the first incarnation of The Motels. The band, Marty Jourard, Jeff Jourard, Michael Goodroe, and Brian Glascock signed to Capitol Records in 1979.
1983’s Little Robbers album went gold on the Top 10 single “Suddenly Last Summer” and the second Top 40 hit “Remember The Nights.” In 1985, the Shock album yielded the Top 20 hit, “Shame,” and 1987 saw the release of Martha’s first solo effort, Policy. In 1988, Martha took a sabbatical from the music scene, prompting the question, “where have you been?” “Looking for my sense of humor,” she says. “I seemed to have lost it somewhere around 1984. It’s not a business that one should be in without a sense of humor.” Though constantly writing, Martha left center stage to work on various collaborations with artists including Ivan Neville, Arthur Barrow (Frank Zappa), Jeff Daniel, Kiki Dee, Richard Feldman, to write songs for a new musical for the Civic Light Opera, and author a new musical of her own entitled Rebecca.
In 2005, Martha released a solo record, So The Story Goes. Recording and touring for that record brought on 3 of the current members of the Motels, Eric Gardner, Clint Walsh and Nicholas Johns. The band then recorded the 2008 release This, followed by another Martha solo record, Beautiful Life. More touring brought them to 2012 where original member Marty Jourard once again brought his saxophone and synth skills to the band. Also joining was bass player Brady Wills. Shows included a landmark performance at the legendary Hollywood Bowl, where she and the band shared the bill with The Go-Go’s, Psychedelic Furs and Bow Wow Wow.
2013 proved to be an exciting year for the band, with new recordings, a busy touring schedule in the US, and a return to Australia!! Martha began the year with the honor of performing at the NAMM convention in their “Living Legends” special concert series on their Main Stage with some of the most significant musicians of the 21st century backing her performance. Also a 4th of July headline show as the closing band for the final night of the San Diego/Del Mar County Fair.
The new album is highly anticipated, and details will be announced in early 2016.
1980 The Romantics released their debut LP. Anchored by “What I Like About You,” “When I Look In Your Eyes” and a cover of The Kinks, Ray Davies’ “She’s Got Everything.” The album is an exemplary pop-rock period piece. The Romantics evoked a youthful portrait, haunting in its innocence, a direct contrast to the tough world they know in Detroit. Now nearly 4 decades later they are still known for having created some of the most influential and beloved rock and roll of all time.
In late 1990, the Romantics added current Blondie drummer Clem Burke to the lineup, and also received an award for Outstanding Pop/Rock Recording Artists from the Motor City Music Awards in 1992.
In 1994 they released a 5 song EP titled “Made In Detroit” containing fellow Detroiter George Clintons’ Funkadelic songs, “You & Your Folks.” And “I Wanna Know,” along with three originals. The Romantics were also presented with the Distinguished Achievement Award at the Detroit Music Awards in 1999. “61/49” was released in the fall of 2003 and named for the storied crossroads near Clarksdale, Mississippi where bluesman Robert Johnson made his pact with the devil. “61/49” is intended as a tip of the hat to the roots of rock ‘n’ roll and forms the nucleus of The Romantics’ fervent pop.
2003 also came with the addition of Brad Elvis regaled by both critics and fellow drummers for his precision beat-keeping and showmanship.
2011 brought the re-emergence of original bass player, vocalist, Rich Cole and Mike Skill back to guitar. The band is now able to expand their set list and include more songs from their first two albums, and include new and unreleased material.
In addition to being a staple on classic and contemporary rock radio, television shows, commercials and movies; Sirius/XM Satellite radio has also embraced The Romantics. Their songs can be heard on
hundreds of stations around the world including Little Steven’s Underground Garage.
Once again much to the excitement of their fans worldwide, and the celebration of 4 Decades in February 2017, The Romantics Wally Palmar, Mike Skill, Brad Elvis, and Rich Cole will be touring the US and Europe in support of their recently released singles from their
highly anticipated new album release “Up From The Rubble”.