A Shirt on Sunday: Richard Thompson - 31/01/2006 - Reading Hexagon

in shirtonsunday •  16 days ago 

20060131 Richard Thompson Hexagon 20191027.jpg
My first memory of hearing Richard Thompson is from a Saturday afternoon radio show in 1991, promoting a soundtrack album. The soundtrack stuff was okay, but the songs from ‘Rumour and Sigh’ were incredible.

I remember Glastonbury Festival 1992, where he was on the Pyramid Stage one afternoon. I don’t recall the music, although I think ‘Vincent Black Lightning’ got an airing, but I recall being hugely impressed and that Christine Collister(?) sang a couple of songs.

I recall buying the ‘Watching The Dark’ 3-CD box set a year later, in Lewes (the little record shop halfway down the hill, near the brewery) and it becoming a regular listen for many years (unlike the Ozzy Osbourne Live CD I bought the same day, which went to a 2nd-hand shop not long after).

In 1997 I dragged Janet to the Enmore Theatre in Sydney, where Thompsons Richard & Danny (no relation) were playing songs from ‘Industry’ and Loudon Wainwright III was the support.

Three years later it was the Union Chapel for the ‘Old Kit Bag’ tour. We sat in the front row and Janet was fascinated by the tendons in his arm moving as he played.

After that it got silly and in all I’ve seen Richard Thompson twenty-seven times. For all of those 27 gigs I can recall something, even if it’s just an image in my head of Thompson on stage.

RT Band.jpgOnce of my favourite ever Thompson gigs - Cropredy 2017, with Simon Nicoll David Mattacks (hidden behind drums) Christine Collister and Dave Pegg. A mini Fairport, similar to the lien-up he had in the late 80's. Fantastic!

From this 2006 concert at the Reading Hexagon, I remember…
Not a bloody thing.
This gig is notable because we saw Jeb Loy Nichols there, and Janet became a fan. The Thompson fans stayed in the bar, as Thompson fans are wont to do, and missed some fine music from this American living in Wales.
As for the rest of the evening? Nuffink!

I know I didn’t particularly like the album Thompson was touring - ‘Front Parlour Ballads’ was a massive drop in quality from the preceding ‘The Old Kit Bag’, which I still consider Thompson’s last great album.

In September this year, I went with Paul V. to the Royal Albert Hall for RT’s 70th birthday shindig, where we were blown away by a duet with Martin Carthy that was a masterclass in finger-picking. We were wowed by the contrast between RT and Dave Gilmour - both playing Fender Stratocasters but otherwise with no similarity whatsoever in their solos. We gloried in Bob Mould’s howling rendition of ‘Turning of The Tide’ and RT’s pogoing to ‘Peaches’ with Hugh Cornwell, and on and on and on.
No t-shirt for THAT night though…

Videos

Vincent Black Lightning


A 2006 recording, so same era as the t-shirt

Turning of The Tide


From 1992 - there's a load of videos I never knew existed from this gig.

Dimming of The Day / Fat Old Sun


From the Albert Hall gig mentioned above. This is a compilation of various phone videos, and the best audio I could find.

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Does 27 times count as stalking? Is that the most you have seen anyone? I know some of his music, but have not delved into his albums yet.

It is the most I've seen anyone, and you could add a couple of appearances with Fairport at Cropredy as well.
Show of Hands, Fairport Convention, Roy Bailey, Paul Kelly, Bob Mould, and Oysterband all score more than 10 gigs in the list.
The list has 1200 acts on it, mind you, although there's a huge number of artists I've seen via TwickFolk and People's Voice Cafe, or stewarding at festivals so aren't gigs I paid money to attend.
The t-shirt blogs are skewed, because they depend on the artists having shirts (most small acts of the folk persuasion don't have them) and me buying them (that's a high likelihood, but I didn't buy one for Divine Comedy last week as it was a duff design).

There are shirts I did not buy as I didn't like them. I am not generally into those with the artist's face on as they tend to be not that nice looking :) I do have a Steven Wilson shirt with his face that @slobberchops bought for me.

I may do a shirt post today. It will probably get downvoted, but I am happy to soak up his flagging power.