August/September Questions, Part I
10/6/2009 (updated 11/7/2009)

Why are there no songs from Front Parlour Ballads on the new Walking On A Wire Boxset? Yet other albums are represented with several songs. Surely there was room for at least one or two songs from FPB? It's an excellent album. Why ignore it? Jerry Berman

Those good folks at Shout Factory must have failed to notice it. It was a little obscure.

One of my favourite cover versions of a RT song is Eric Andersen and Kirsten Bråten Berg's duet of "Dimming of the Day" on the Danko/Fjeld/Andersen album Ridin' on the Blinds. Does RT know the version, and does he know Kirsten Bråten Berg's music or Norwegian folk music in general, and what does he think of it?

I like that version of the song. I don’t know anything else about Kirsten, and my knowledge of Norwegian music is mostly confined to the Hardanger fiddle. Eric Anderson is an old friend.

I was wondering, if the rather excellent Across A Crowded Room Video will be released in the (near) future. I have only seen the clips on Youtube and think that it is great. Daniel

I don’t own this, and have no control over its release. I’m not aware of any plans to reissue it.

How do you maintain a dependably firm grip on the plectrum when your right hand gets sweaty? (Given your use of teardrop jazz style picks one would imagine this to be especially important during an uptempo tune like Valerie.) Have you ever lost your grip on a pick during a show, and if so, how did you handle the situation given your droll sense of humor?

Some embossing helps. I used to get Gibsons, with the maker’s name on one side, and with my signature on the other – excellent! They don’t do those any more, so now I use Fenders, only embossed on one side – not so good. Sometimes I do drop picks, and the choice is whether to carry on fingerstyle or grab for the nearest spare, in pocket (solo tour) or on mic stand (band tour). Neither is perfect, but may elicit guffaws from the crowd, and help to generate a relaxed air of bonhomie.

With Red Bull coming to the fore, Brawn slipping, and Ferrari and McLaren showing signs of their old selves, do you still think Jenson Button can hang on to win the World Driver's Championship?

Because of the rule changes, and a few other factors, it’s been a fascinating F1 season so far….I’ll back Jenson to hang on by his fingernails.

Given your propensity for all things British, why don't you own a classic English car, e.g. a Morris Minor woody, an Austin Healy 3000 (in BRG of course!), an MG-B, a REAL Mini Cooper, vintage Land Rover..... I was surprised when you revealed in 2003 that you owned an old Ford pickup and a Lancia Integrale.

Did I mention the Daimler Dart? Not the one for driving the kids to school (that’s the Volvo) but nice for a run over Mulholland Drive.

Has Jack given up playing soccer for bass? Do you miss coaching the kids (especially young Wolfie!)

Jack left the local AYSO league, where the dads can get involved, for the school team, where they hate the dads getting involved, for the hockey league, and currently seems burned out on team sports. Where did I go wrong? It’s all music and girls now – what kind of a life is that?

With all the political and economic trials and tribulations being experienced in the U.S. and U.K. have you considered dusting off "Time to Ring Some Changes" for solo gigs? And though the song's lyrics are timeless, have you ever considered updating them with contemporary references? Hope your summer is going well. Cheers, Douglas Alan Feinstein

It’s a thought.