NEM#217: Richard Thompson’s Moments in Time

Richard started as guitarist in the folk-rock staple Fairport Convention in 1967 but left in 1970 after five albums. He then recorded his debut solo album, six as Richard and Linda Thompson, and has since recorded 20 more solo albums of lyrically inventive, stylistically varied tunes that nearly always feature very skilled guitar work.

We discuss “Freeze,” the first single from his new album Ship to Shore, “The Ghost of You Walks” from You? Me? Us? (1996), and “Don’t Take It Lying Down” from Still/Variations EP (2015). End song: “When I Get to the Border” by Richard and Linda Thompson from I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight (1974). Intro: “1952 Vincent Black Lightning” from Rumor and Sigh (1991). More at

Check out his autobiography Beeswing, which I think is especially great as author-read audiobook (listen to a preview).

Listen to all of “Vincent Black Lightning.” Watch a live version of “The Ghost of You Walks.”  Another of the ballads he often plays live is “Beeswing.” And “Meet On the Ledge,” which dates back to Fairport Convention. Here he is with a live cover of “Oops I Did It Again.” Watch a full concert with a band in 2004. Here he is reuniting with Fairport Convention in 1985.

Here’s a video from his US heyday. Some of the other songs we mention include “I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight,” “Broken Doll,” “Keep Your Distance,” “I Misunderstood,” and “Persuasion” (also released by Tim Finn).

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