S/D: Richard Thompson

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My girlfriend broke out Richard Thompson's RUMOR AND SIGH yesterday, the only album of his I have (apart from SHOOT OUT THE LIGHTS). I was struck by how lame lots of it is and how much I still love "1952 Vincent Black Lightning". If the whole album was like that song, that would be somethin'.

So: what else by the man should I keep my eyes open for or completely ignore?

doug, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

i still like 'i want to see the bright lights' by richard & linda thompson. i don't know anything else though

gareth, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Bees Wing

anthony, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Second the recommendation of "I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight." Also search some early Fairport Convention, esp. Unhalfbricking, Liege & Lief, Full House.

Douglas, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

In order of essentialness . . .


Unhalfbricking Liege and Lief What We Did On Our Holidays (the first three are all pretty essential really) Full House


I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight Shoot Out the Lights Pour Down Like Silver Hokey Pokey

Solo Rich:

Across a Crowded Room Hand of Kindness Small Town Romance (solo acoustic live--pretty hard to find these days, I think) Daring Adventures

I more or less lost all interest after Amnesia . . .

lee g, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Search: "Genesis Hall" off Unhalfbricking, arguably the key British song of its period. As with Dylan's "Positively 4th Street", a song that, brilliant as it is, would be the most bitter and vitriolic and self-loathing thing EVER with the references to "I" and "you" reversed.

Robin Carmody, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Funny, I've always been largely underwhelmed at the Richard & Linda releases. I was listening to Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight and I just can't get into it...

Joe, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I also vouch for Rumour and Sigh. The first two tracks are awesome, as is "1952 Vincent Black Lightning" and "Grey Walls"; "Psycho Street" is Hilarious!
Yeah, Imagine if Tom Waits had a decent voice or if Eric Clapton had something even remotely like a sense of humour...Thats Richard Thompson in a nutsack.

Lord Custos, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

He did a pretty thrilling version of Joni Mitchell's 'Black Crow' on some TV tribute a year or so ago. I just discovered it recently on Audiogalaxy, s'verygood. Also search for a new one called 'I Agree With Pat Metheny' in which he fantasizes about shooting Kenny G in the face.

clotion, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

You don't have Shoot Out The Light? Damn, that's one of my fave records. Essential. Take Lou Reed's word on it.

helenfordsdale, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I know that wasn’t the question but RT = Classic for certain songs, a lot of guitar strangling and above all for the assertion of a thoroughly British Rock & Roll. I don’t have access to all his work but herewith a very personal selection from what I do have. I took the liberty of including Fairport Convention numbers RT didn’t write but played on. So Search:

-Fairport Convention
Meet On The Ledge
Sailor’s Life
Genesis Hall
Who Knows Where The Time Goes
Walk Awhile
All of Liege & Leif

-Post FC
The Poor Ditching Boy
All of I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight (except The Great Valerio)
For Shame Of Doing Wrong
Night Comes In
The Dimming Of The Day
Jet Plane In A Rocking Chair
Never Again
Calvary Cross (live)
Wall Of Death
Shoot Out The Lights*
Bogie’s Bonnie Belle
When The Spell Is Broken*
Little Blue Number*
From Galway To Graceland
Tear Stained Letter
1952 Vincent Black Lightning
Feel So Good

+ the lead guitar on Nick Drake’s The Thoughts of Mary Jane (Time Of No Reply version)

(* made it just for the guitar playing)

Sorry for losing the chronology there.

David, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Tear Stained Letter is great, especially when he's in a rocking mood live. Other stuff features some lovely guitar playing, some folksy noodling, some terrific songs, some middle-aged sexism.

Martin Skidmore, Monday, 4 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

In addition to all the good stuff already mentioned, I like the pre- Sandy Denny Fairport recordings, esp. their BBC sessions - much more West Coast psych folk pop than their later recs. And the album RT made w/ Henry Kaiser, Fred Frith and John French - 'Live, Love, Larf and Loaf' - is good fun muso jam stuff (the silly sods do a really, really poor version of 'Surfin' USA' at one point...)

Andrew L, Tuesday, 5 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

'A HEART NEEDS A HOME' is one of my all-time favourite bleak heartbreak songs. 'THE END OF THE RAINBOW' ("I feel for you, you little horror/Safe at your mother's breast/No lucky break for you around the corner/'Cause your father is a bully/And he thinks that you're a pest/And your sister she's no better than a whore.") is one of my all-time favourite bleak songs.

'An introduction to Richard and Linda Thompson' on Island(?) is a good starting place.

Edna Welthorpe, Mrs, Tuesday, 5 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

"Has He Got A Friend For Me" from R<'s IWTSTBLT is the only song I have have ever heard played on the radio that made the DJ cry afterwards.

David, Tuesday, 5 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

one month passes...
excuse me, did someone say richard thompson? why, he's the only thing i've been listening to for the past month...well, he and andrew w.k. search: i want to see the bright lights tonight, shoot out the lights, "roll over vaughn williams," "for shame of doing wrong," "a heart needs a home," "dimming of the day," "jennie," and the 7 minute live version of "calvary cross" (not the execrable 13 or so minute vers.)

destroy: i dunno, the rest? mirror blue led to one of bob christgau's best dismissive reviews "i thought she loved me but she didn't--why does this keep happening?"

fred solinger, Tuesday, 16 April 2002 00:00 (twenty years ago) link

one year passes...
revive, just because

BLACKOUT '03! (Jody Beth Rosen), Thursday, 21 August 2003 17:57 (eighteen years ago) link

'Mirror Blue' is horribly underrated, as is 'You Me Us'. some striking songs on those two, along with some invetive production.

The latest, 'The Old Kit Bag', is incredible, and possibly the best combo of production and songs since 'Shoot Out The Lights'. It's honestly that good.

oh, I love Thompson. oh, and Great Valerio is SO KEY. lies!

derrick (derrick), Friday, 22 August 2003 06:19 (eighteen years ago) link

Has anyone seen his 1,000 years of music show? He's playing at Sadler's Wells next month.

James Ball (James Ball), Friday, 22 August 2003 07:49 (eighteen years ago) link

One of the best gigs I've ever seen in my life was yer man Thommo. Probably the best guitarist i've ever seen in my life.

Dadaismus (Dada), Friday, 22 August 2003 11:52 (eighteen years ago) link

First proper gig I ever went to was RT, promoting "Hand of Kindness", and it was fantastic even though he wouldn't play Devonside for some reason (one of the band yelled "we don't do that one" in response to half the audience yelling for it during every break between songs).

Billy Bragg was supporting, and he was pretty good too.

Andrew Norman, Friday, 22 August 2003 13:15 (eighteen years ago) link

nine months pass...
i like "first light" a lot too

amateur!st (amateurist), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:03 (seventeen years ago) link

I've been enjoying the reissues of "Pour Down Like Silver" and
"Hokey pokey". "Hand of Kindness" is indeed marvellous, too.
Hopefully "First Light" and "Sunnyvista" are soon to come
(come on island). "Henry the Human Fly" too. These I still
have to hear, but I doubt I'll dislike them (I've liked every record I've heard which featured Mr Thompson, eg Sandy Denny's solo records, Morris On, Albion Band etc).
I'm still kind of fascinated and bemused by his popularity in America. Not sure if I should be, or anything.

de, Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:17 (seventeen years ago) link

i think "first light" was originally released on chrysalis. am i wrong? i have no idea who owns the rights now. the only lp originally released on hannibal was "shoot out the lights," and that's still in print. "sunnyvista"...i have no idea what the situation is with that one.

those reissues are really pricey (in the states) and i am allergic to arbitrary bonus tracks.

"henry the human fly" is underrated. i like it as much as the records that followed. it is going to be reissued later this month, so head's up.

he has a sizable following in the states partly because he is a very dependable concert artist.

amateur!st (amateurist), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:21 (seventeen years ago) link

yup, title track to "first light" definitely rules

amateur!st (amateurist), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:27 (seventeen years ago) link

it's one those songs that trades in deliberate ambiguity: is it a devotional song or a romantic song? see also "heart needs a home" ... "beat the retreat" ... etc.

amateur!st (amateurist), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:31 (seventeen years ago) link

Ah thanks for the tip on "Henry". No the island reissues have
been comfortingly midpriced here, and are definitely worth it for the sound alone, but the live bonuses are pretty nifty.

"Shoot Out the Lights" hasn't been mentioned much on here; it is
excellent, but the R & L sound is more 'generic' than those 72-75 records, which have a ripe, sweet feel to them that "Shoot" tramples down. It's 'mature rock'. But bloody good.

de, Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:33 (seventeen years ago) link

i was surprised to find i liked Liege & Lief a lot less than i expected to. three or four of the songs are fantastic, but there are large parts of the album that make me picture morris dancers in my head and i can't cope

the surface noise is generally somewhere between 'in some spots' and 'throu (ele, Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:34 (seventeen years ago) link

think of the 'morris music' as english sufi music....or summat.
i love it anyway

de, Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:36 (seventeen years ago) link

"shoot out the lights" is some kind of pinnacle of rock songwriting. i used to be put off a bit by the relative slickness of the arrangements, as opposed to the more eccentric instrumentation of "i want to see..." but i think i value the later lp more nowadays.

also i still have really mixed feelings about linda's voice.

i've never seen a morris dance. the illustrations of "burr men" etc. on "liege and lief" are ace. but overall my love for fairport has really waned. i like "what we did on our holidays" and "unhalfbricking" more than "l&l" i think.

amateur!st (amateurist), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:38 (seventeen years ago) link

I can't really seperate Fairport's 68-71 records; it's just a fantastic body of work that makes me happy. No dudness whatsoever.

de, Wednesday, 9 June 2004 02:43 (seventeen years ago) link

ts: "walking on a wire" vs. "comfortably numb"

amateur!st (amateurist), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 04:10 (seventeen years ago) link

vs. "love hurts" (nazareth)

amateur!st (amateurist), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 07:05 (seventeen years ago) link

I quite like "The Old Kit Bag", too, but I'm a big fan.

Search: ALL of the live "guitar vocal," especially the smoldering workouts on "Calvary Cross" and "Night Comes In." Song favorites: "When I Get To the Border," "I'll Regret It All in the Morning," "Beeswing."

Someone needs to compile a definitive list of RT's guest appearances (actually, I'm sure some obsessive fan already has). Some nice ones: mandolin bit on John Martyn's "Over the Hill," the entire "Rise Up Like the Sun" album by the Albion Band, "Blackwaterside" off Sandy Denny's "Northstar Grassmen," "Claudy Banks" by Shirley Collins, SO many more.

Anybody rate the second French Frith Kaiser Thompson LP? I've never heard that one.

briania (briania), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 12:06 (seventeen years ago) link

The only one I really love is "Henry the Human Fly." I admire the man's other stuff, and having seen him live I can say he's great. But I don't listen to him at all, it's too dour for me or something. I regret this but that's the way it is.

eddie hurt (ddduncan), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 17:54 (seventeen years ago) link

I have a live version of "Calgary Cross" that contains, I swear, perhaps the best guitar work I've ever heard.

shookout (shookout), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 20:18 (seventeen years ago) link

The one with Randy Bachman??

briania (briania), Wednesday, 9 June 2004 20:50 (seventeen years ago) link

six months pass...
Meet me at the station, don't be late
I need to spend some money and it just won't wait
Take me to the docks and hold me tight
I want to see the bright lights tonight

57 7th (calstars), Wednesday, 22 December 2004 22:04 (seventeen years ago) link

One step for aching
Two steps for breaking
Waltzing's for dreamers
And losers in love

Sean Carruthers (SeanC), Wednesday, 22 December 2004 22:12 (seventeen years ago) link

Is that the live version of Calvary Cross that's on the Island Introduction To...R&L CD? Not heard it, but I really need to, cos the guitar intro of the orginal is pretty fucking amazing. The Strat can be a bit bright and session muso-ish, but Thommo, along with the likes of Dick Dale, Hendrix, Niles Rogers and Alex Chilton knows exactly how to use it.
I'll get back to my Guitarist mag now.

stew, Wednesday, 22 December 2004 22:17 (seventeen years ago) link

I should add that the live version of Heart Needs A Home from some BBC TV show, is utterly beautiful and devastating. Shivers down the spine every time. It sums up exactly how I felt about someone. Sniff, sob.

stew, Wednesday, 22 December 2004 22:19 (seventeen years ago) link

You can waste your time on the other rides
But this is the nearest thing to being alive
Oh, let me take my chances on the Wall of Death

Ken L (Ken L), Wednesday, 22 December 2004 22:19 (seventeen years ago) link

Full House is the beginning of the end for Fairport, but it's still 100% necessary for 'Sloth'

(Jon L), Wednesday, 22 December 2004 22:25 (seventeen years ago) link

The second FFKT has some really neat stuff, maybe 2/3 is really quite good with the rest just kinda silly. It's worth picking up for >$20. It's out on Windham Hill, of all things, and probably out of print, sadly.

Good to hear love for 'The Old Kit Bag', which I'm still enjoying. The power trio really suits him, and it's nice to hear a Christine Collister-surrogate again. I'll Tag Along, Gethsemane, Pearly Jim, and Word Unspoken, Sight Unseen stand out the most. Mock Tudor, on the other hand, is, well, almost without redemption. It's his only album since Sunnyvista that I'd delete wholesale.

If possible, track down the live versions of When the Spell Has Broken and Aint Gonna Drag My Feet No More from the Watching The Dark collection(which should be on your x-mas list anyway).

derrick (derrick), Thursday, 23 December 2004 01:29 (seventeen years ago) link

You forgot my favorite live version of WTD, You Can't Win just absolutely smokes.

Jim Reckling (Jim Reckling), Thursday, 23 December 2004 02:30 (seventeen years ago) link

yes, yes it does!

derrick (derrick), Thursday, 23 December 2004 02:49 (seventeen years ago) link

I posted this on ILM before but it would be nice to have it on this page as well:


Ken L (Ken L), Thursday, 23 December 2004 03:32 (seventeen years ago) link

Oh, and "1000 Years of Popular Music" is absolutly incredible - the version of Cry Me a River on here is my favourite, and he pulls out loads of rockabilly and Cole Porter, and what I BELIEVE is a Noel Coward song. It's a lot better than this description.

Johnney B (Johnney B), Thursday, 23 December 2004 16:07 (seventeen years ago) link

What the...first, why have I not heard of 1000 Years of Popular Music until today, and second, how is his version of "Oops! I Did It Again"????

Sean Carruthers (SeanC), Thursday, 23 December 2004 16:12 (seventeen years ago) link

The "Watching the Dark" collection is excellent. I've only had it, "Shoot Out the Lights" and "Rumor and Sigh". I got all three over ten years ago and have listened to them quite a bit, but never got any more Thompson records.

That version of "Calvary Cross" must be the same one on the boxed set. "Devonside" is an amazingly sad song. "Great Valerio" is another favorite of mine.

Earl Nash (earlnash), Thursday, 23 December 2004 16:40 (seventeen years ago) link

Stupid Beastie boys lyrics without "And I got more hits than Sadaharu Oh"

fatuous salad (symsymsym), Friday, 5 June 2020 01:06 (one year ago) link

Beastie's "Slow and Low" without the tempo.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 5 June 2020 01:45 (one year ago) link

Si Tu Dois Partir without the need to go

the burrito that defined a generation, Friday, 5 June 2020 01:57 (one year ago) link

Heart emoji

The little engine that choogled (hardcore dilettante), Saturday, 6 June 2020 06:36 (one year ago) link

two months pass...


If that doesn't show up, it's Live At Rock City: Nottingham 1986
Anyall heard this?

dow, Sunday, 16 August 2020 02:34 (one year ago) link

I've not heard it, but I can only assume it's great. Because Richard Thompson.

I picked up dinner somewhere last week and the guy handing me my food had a Jason Isbell shirt on. I made some small talk with him, and he told me he and a couple of folks from the restaurant had actually made a road trip out of seeing Isbell play some place down south. Maybe Knoxville? Possibly as far as Florida? Anyway, this date apparently had Richard Thompson opening, and I told the guy I suspected Isbell arranged it just to watch Thompson play every night. And the guy with my food said he and his friend were totally unfamiliar with Thompson until that night and were left absolutely speechless and for a bit confused, because it sounded like three guys on stage rather than just one.

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 16 August 2020 16:30 (one year ago) link

Oh yeah. And not just any three guys. I strung out, stalking him and his acoustic guitar around the world on Youtube, 2011--12, just sitting on park benches and what not, playing clubs, and yes totally amazing. This after seeing a rerun of some cable special, a monster opera house tribute to Joni Mitchell, who was presiding in a box seat: RT and some guys dashed off a very glib (though no worse than the original) "Raised On Robbery," and The Queen frowned, but later he came back all alone, to do an incredible "Woodstock," and she actually looked impressed, nodded, *maybe* even clapped (maybe he'd gotten the word).

dow, Sunday, 16 August 2020 20:21 (one year ago) link

I *got* strung out

dow, Sunday, 16 August 2020 20:22 (one year ago) link

Recommendation for Thompson obscurity hunters:


Hard Cash, Brit Folk compilation co-compiled by RT for a documentary series about work. He writes/performs 2, writes or plays on several others. Includes June Tabor, Martin Carthy, The Watersons, Gregson/Collister. Most songs good-to-great.

Hideous Lump, Tuesday, 18 August 2020 05:25 (one year ago) link

two weeks pass...

Richard Thompson
SUN, Sept 13, Sept 27th, & Oct 11 at 2PM PDT
Virtual Meet & Greet and Merch add-ons available

"Live From London – my Livestream Series will be three unique shows each with a completely different setlist and all professionally produced and as close to being at a live gig as we can possibly get it! The livestreams will be available for 48 hours after each show. The first show I will be playing my new EP, Bloody Noses, in full as well as classic hits. The second stream will be Fairport Convention Era music with a majority of songs from the 60’s and 70’s. The last show will be all requests so be sure to send in your requests ahead of time! I am very much looking forward to this series and I hope you can join me for one or all three shows." -Richard Thompson

More info: https://boxoffice.mandolin.com/collections/richard-thompson?rfsn=4651697.b3ce54 and https://www.richardthompson-music.com/

dow, Sunday, 6 September 2020 02:43 (one year ago) link

Oh and thanks for the xpost Hard Cash tip, Hideous Lump! Looks v. promising,

dow, Sunday, 6 September 2020 02:47 (one year ago) link

four weeks pass...

Bloody Noses, 6 songs on bandcamp:
This is an all-acoustic EP recorded at home during lockdown.
All instruments played by Richard Thompson, some harmony vocals by Zara Phillips.

"All acoustic" seems to incl. some deft use of pick-ups, something in the recording set-up allowing for some effects I associate more with per se electric guitar on strong closer "What's Up With You?", in which some of the guitars get percussive as hell, also one of 'em's tuning helps, and sounds like might be actual drums on "The Fortress," with Zara Phillips chiming in effectively on the chorus, "You had the whole world, wrapped around your fin-gah," also good on "Survivor."
Fave so far is "She's A Hard Girl To Know," which I had trouble following at first: so many details, scenes in his head, as he creeps through the rooms, putting it all together, maybe. She's still keeping him going, he knows that much.
Tunes are good, and it's all RT as hell, no surprises, but not just killing time either.
Must check some of the other stuff on here as well:

dow, Monday, 5 October 2020 22:59 (one year ago) link

two weeks pass...

been repeatedly blasting out Rumor & Sigh tonight, fucking sick album.

calzino, Wednesday, 21 October 2020 01:34 (one year ago) link

just did an hour's worth of RT electric live jams on Dublab: https://www.dublab.com/archive/radio-free-aquarium-drunkard-w-guest-chad-depasquale-10-18-20

Starts about two hours in.

tylerw, Wednesday, 21 October 2020 02:14 (one year ago) link

two months pass...

Seems he's got a memoir coming out, Beeswing.

Dog Heavy Manners (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 3 January 2021 19:17 (one year ago) link

yeah just saw that was on the Rough Trade upcoming page. But I thinnk it may not be out until April.
Sounds good anyway.

Stevolende, Monday, 4 January 2021 00:05 (one year ago) link

Yes, that date sounds about right

Dog Heavy Manners (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 4 January 2021 03:33 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

Yeah---RT's 'Beeswing' Memoir - Available April 6!

Very excited to be announcing the forthcoming publication of my book ‘Beeswing’. This is a memoir of the years 1967-76, an important, turbulent and world-changing decade in music. -RT Pre-order info via this:https://mailchi.mp/richardthompson-music/richard-thompson-frets-and-refrains-2018-on-sale-604114?e=3412af6338

Also on there:
We had great fun performing the Live From London shows, that streamed online recently. We felt the audio quality was so good that we wanted to pick the best of those tracks, and release them on Bandcamp. I tried to pick an interesting and less obvious selection - hope you like the ones I chose! -RT
Bandcamp sez: from his livestream series in 2020 from Kore Studios in the UK.
Out today, Bandcamp Friday, w several sample tracks kicking it off:

dow, Saturday, 6 February 2021 02:22 (one year ago) link

two months pass...

By no means a Thompson completist, I've only really been slowly digging my way into his non-Fairport work over the last few years, but I picked up the first French, Frith, Kaiser & Thompson dirt cheap on a whim - this is so great! Didn't realize how much I needed Thompson's guitars with Drumbo on the kit, but I love how silly and irreverent this is.

soaring skrrrtpeggios (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Monday, 12 April 2021 21:20 (one year ago) link

yeah, it's a very cool record!

just started RT's memoir — really good so far. Just Fairport's 1969 seems like it could be an entire book on its own.

tylerw, Monday, 12 April 2021 21:27 (one year ago) link

No doubt! Will have to get that. Reminds me that I just came across this passage in a chronicle of South Africa's Blue Notes interacting with European musos:

Now Cape Town meets Canterbury. This 2020 reissue (Dudu Phukwana & The “Spears”) from the indispensable Matsuli Music contains two albums: Dudu’s S.A.-only 1968 solo debut, which gives this package its misspelled name, plus a recently discovered session. Both feature Pukwana, McGregor, Feza, and Maholo, more S.A. expats (bassist Harry Miller, trombonist Jonas Gwangwa) and future members of the great London-based Ghanaian Afro-funk band Osibisa. Yet the newly found Joe Boyd-produced sessions add Fairport Convention guitarists Richard Thompson and Simon Nicol for freewheelin’ cross-cultural wonder. Highly swinging horn- and guitar-heavy Afro-pop and kwela grooves shed more light on Pukwana’s melodic brightness and his ability to bridge continental gaps without sacrificing personality.

dow, Tuesday, 13 April 2021 00:15 (one year ago) link


“A Blind Step Away” is easily in my all time top ten RT songs

covidsbundlertanze op. 6 (Jon not Jon), Tuesday, 13 April 2021 02:03 (one year ago) link

That's a great one, also love "Drowned Black Dog Night". The whole thing is really great though, so many unexpected moments - I love how the "Surfin U.S.A." cover starts out pretty straight before going completely off the rails when the backing vocals kick in. The CD reissue adds a couple of other terrific songs, including "DrumBo Ogie", essentially an excuse for Drumbo to have a solo, and ends with cover of Willie Dixon's "The Same Thing" that is surprisingly straight-faced, considering the rest of the album.

soaring skrrrtpeggios (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Tuesday, 13 April 2021 13:45 (one year ago) link

"DrumBo Ogie" is a great song title.

It Is Dangerous to Meme Inside (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 13 April 2021 15:05 (one year ago) link

There’s a live recording out there of French Frith Kaiser Thompson, maybe the only live show they did? It is great.

covidsbundlertanze op. 6 (Jon not Jon), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 00:30 (one year ago) link

The first FFKT album is really one of my all-time favorites (and I discovered it by chance... it was misfiled at Amoeba, decades ago).

Yawnsomely Literal Cover Band (morrisp), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 00:50 (one year ago) link

Watch for Roy Eldridge - "Little Jazz!" - around the two minute mark, which segment was deleted in the South for some reason back in the day.

It Is Dangerous to Meme Inside (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 00:51 (one year ago) link

six months pass...

Frets and Refrains, RT's guitar and songwriting camp, is back for its 10th Anniversary, in 2022:
...We hope you will be able to join us for what should be a special year. We will be joined by a couple of our most popular teachers from the past, Martin Simpson and Jill Sobule, and we will have our regular instructors, Happy Traum, Sloan Wainwright, Teddy Thompson, Jack Thompson, Zak Hobbs, Bobby Eichorn, Simon Tassano, and Annaliese Tassano. We are also expecting some very special guests to drop by!

We are proud of the community that has built up over this decade of camp, and love the fact that you can learn so much from fellow attendees, and that the atmosphere is supportive of every level of skill. The setting is Full Moon resort, in the picturesque Catskill Mountains, the food is excellent, and if you are any level of singer, songwriter or guitarist, we guarantee you will come away enriched and buzzing with ideas!

I hope you will join us.

Best wishes,

Richard Thompson
and the Thompson family, Zak, Teddy and Jack

More info and links:

dow, Thursday, 28 October 2021 01:18 (six months ago) link

Any of yall heard Serpent's Tears? Only one track streaming freely here: https://richardthompson.bandcamp.com/

dow, Thursday, 28 October 2021 01:21 (six months ago) link

four months pass...

For 40th Anniversary of Shoot Out The Lights, two sets of R&T w Simon Nicol etc. in NYC, at the Lone Star: https://doomandgloomfromthetomb.tumblr.com/post/678799150803042304/richard-linda-thompson-lone-star-cafe-nyc

dow, Thursday, 17 March 2022 00:52 (two months ago) link

Richard Thompson
The 45th Anniversary re-issue of RT’s 1976 Collection of Rarities with Fairport Convention, Linda Thompson, and solo will be releasing 3/25.

This remastered vinyl will also contain a download card and is available for pre-order from RT’s UK store now at http://richardthompson-music.com/ukstorevinyl


dow, Tuesday, 22 March 2022 23:17 (two months ago) link

Also, No Quarter is reissuing his soundtrack to Grizzly Man on May 6th:

Excited to announce a reissue of Richard Thompson's masterful soundtrack to Grizzly Man available May 6th on CD, LP and digital formats. Music From Grizzly Man is a remastered/repackaged set containing all of the music Thompson recorded for the Werzer Herzog-directed documentary about life and death in the Alaskan wilderness. Comprised of both solo compositions and material recorded in chamber setting, with Jim O’Rourke (piano, guitar), Danielle DeGruttola (cello), Damon Smith (upright bass) and John Hanes (percussion) joining Thompson to create tenderly detailed melodies and quietly visceral improvisations. The solo recordings are intimate meditations – from the acoustic opener “Tim & The Bears” to the long night of “Treadwell No More,” a harrowing darkness in slicing treble and tremolo shiver.


a superficial sheeb of intelligence (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Wednesday, 23 March 2022 14:42 (one month ago) link

four weeks pass...

So Beeswing is out in paperback, and Terry Gross is talking to RT, even got him singing "Adieu, Adieu" (he's in a carpark, birdwatching)--stream, download, even read:
https://www.npr.org/2022/04/20/1093709649/fairport-convention-band-cofounder-richard-thompson-looks-back-on-his-life-in-mu Also, "you have a drone and melody and not an awful lot of saying what the chord is. And just drone and melody is a very old tradition. A lot of pipe music, bagpipe music from all around the world - it's basically drone and melody. So it's a very ancient thing. And you don't have to develop that into a chord structure necessarily. You can keep that ambiguity going. So in Fairport, eventually we really tried to do a lot more of that." Short excerpts, but good assortment so far. Going to break with "1952 Vincent Black Lightning."

dow, Thursday, 21 April 2022 00:31 (one month ago) link

Wow, this is intense. And lucid as hell.

dow, Thursday, 21 April 2022 00:43 (one month ago) link

Re "Adieu Adieu": there's a lovely version by Eliza Carthy that I rather like.

She's using the same melody as Thompson but it's an appealingly bonkers arrangement.


Fifty Centaur (Ye Mad Puffin), Thursday, 21 April 2022 01:49 (one month ago) link

two weeks pass...

I interviewed Richard Thompson! https://aquariumdrunkard.com/2022/05/05/richard-thompson-the-aquarium-drunkard-interview-2/

tylerw, Thursday, 5 May 2022 15:59 (two weeks ago) link

Excellent interview

chr1sb3singer, Thursday, 5 May 2022 16:16 (two weeks ago) link


Wile E. Is President (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 5 May 2022 16:26 (two weeks ago) link

Thirded! That was great!

Anyone have any idea why Daring Adventures doesn't appear to be streaming?

Les hommes de bonbons (cryptosicko), Thursday, 5 May 2022 16:28 (two weeks ago) link

Great read. Thanks Tyler!

birdistheword, Thursday, 5 May 2022 16:34 (two weeks ago) link

Beeswing so good, although maybe it goes bad at the end as he described.

Wile E. Is President (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 5 May 2022 16:35 (two weeks ago) link


Was Hitler a Hobbit? (Tom D.), Thursday, 5 May 2022 17:40 (two weeks ago) link

Great interview. I recently picked up the expanded version of Dudu Pukwana's first solo album from 1968 or so, which has a whole extra disc of outtakes that includes a session with Thompson playing guitar. I guess he knew that whole crew of South African musicians working in London at the time, they introduced him to township music. You can tell listening to it that he's a bit out of his element, mostly plays kind of ragged rhythm parts. Certainly not his best playing but fun to hear.

yeah that is a great record — though yeah, Richard is pretty subdued on it, might not know it was him if he wasn't in the credits. I think Joe Boyd was involved with the Blue Notes, later got Chris McGregor to play on Bryter Later.

tylerw, Thursday, 5 May 2022 22:23 (two weeks ago) link

Yeah, thanks for interview T--also came across this last spring:

I just came across this passage in a chronicle of South Africa's Blue Notes interacting with European musos:

Now Cape Town meets Canterbury. This 2020 reissue (Dudu Phukwana & The “Spears”) from the indispensable Matsuli Music contains two albums: Dudu’s S.A.-only 1968 solo debut, which gives this package its misspelled name, plus a recently discovered session. Both feature Pukwana, McGregor, Feza, and Maholo, more S.A. expats (bassist Harry Miller, trombonist Jonas Gwangwa) and future members of the great London-based Ghanaian Afro-funk band Osibisa. Yet the newly found Joe Boyd-produced sessions add Fairport Convention guitarists Richard Thompson and Simon Nicol for freewheelin’ cross-cultural wonder. Highly swinging horn- and guitar-heavy Afro-pop and kwela grooves shed more light on Pukwana’s melodic brightness and his ability to bridge continental gaps without sacrificing personality.

― dow, Monday, April 12, 2021

dow, Friday, 6 May 2022 01:02 (two weeks ago) link

Yep! That's the one I just picked up on vinyl. Great, great stuff. The best is on the officially released album, but the outtakes are really good too.

great interview!

corrs unplugged, Friday, 6 May 2022 08:05 (two weeks ago) link

From Post-Fahey thread---thanks Evan!


Great stuff

― Evan, Friday, May 6, 2022

dow, Friday, 6 May 2022 18:19 (two weeks ago) link

Oh, very welcome! It's a beautiful record.

Evan, Friday, 6 May 2022 18:32 (two weeks ago) link

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