FUN ON THE DARKSIDE WITH RICHARD THOMPSON
RICHARD AND LINDA THOMPSON PHOTOS - FAIRPORT CONVENTION PHOTOS
DVD Review: Tony Palmer's Film of Fairport Convention & Matthews Southern Comfort
In theory, Richard Thompson's muse is pretty dark. His most reknowned song tells the angst of a Taliban sniper waiting in the dark hills for Soviets he can shoot. [They were good guys in those days. Sort of.] The "Wall of Death" ranks as one of his most cheerful songs. His funniest song comes from the mouth of a young orphaned female amputee begging in the streets for change. Marital infidelity, betrayal, and death are favorite themes. Linda Pettifer must have really enjoyed being married to this fellow.
Yet somehow he makes you feel good. Some alchemy in his ego seems to take such pleasure in his strength for overcoming life's indignities as to totally dwarf the original pain. Every Richard Thompson fan I've met finds his work exhilirating. When you see him live, he is witty and engaging and having a great time - not brooding or exorcising demons. We gather to celebrate, not commiserate.
Hey, if I were the world's greatest living guitar player, I'd be pretty happy too. It would be hard for a fan to feel anything but excited by being in the presence of such total mastery of songwriting form and technical virtuosity on his instrument. It wasn't hyperbole when my hometown hero John Mellencamp said "Richard Thompson could say more in one line than I could in a whole song." He's just that damned good.
For Allah's sake (Richard is Muslim), don't miss a chance to see him live. If you're lucky (and you will be just by seeing him), hopefully he'll play some of these, his best songs.
Outside of the Inside
Shoot Out the Lights
The Little Beggar Girl
1952 Vincent Black Lightning
Don't Sit On My Jimmy Shands
Al Bowly's in Heaven
God Loves a Drunk
Don't Renege on Our Love
Wall of Death
Put It There Pal
End of the Rainbow
I Feel So Good
The Great Valerio
Man in Need
Tear Stained Letter
Walking on a Wire
When the Spell Is Broken
Withered and Died
When I Get to the Border
Did She Jump or Was She Pushed?
The New Me
Down Where the Drunkards Roll
Has He Got a Friend for Me?
Back Street Slide
I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight
Richard Thompson - Live, 2-19-2004
Richard Thompson - Live, 5-24-2005
Richard Thompson's Missing the Stew
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