Answers to your November Questions, Part II
12/2/2010 (updated 12/2/2010)

Re: Who knows where the time goes - Liege and Leaf
Hi Richard - I just love your style of lead on this.  Also on Nick Drake's 'Time Has Told Me'.  What tuning did you use please?  Thanks for the tunes and passing them on. Many thanks, Paul

Tuning is standard. I recorded both of those tracks on my old Les Paul gold top. HKWTTG was through an Ampeg Reverberocket.

Although in your customary modesty you'll deny this, several of your solos ("Al Bowlly" comes to mind, as well as some of the "1000 Years" numbers) show that on top of everything else you're an excellent jazz guitarist. You've covered Duke Ellington a couple of times. Any thoughts of doing a more extended project along these lines? Love to hear what you'd do with "Round Midnight" for example. C.B., Madrid

If you don't play jazz all the time, you are a bit of a poser, and don't have enough vocabulary. I'm good for two choruses, and then I run out of ideas.

Please pass this along to Mr. Thompson.

My family and I caught the Dream Attic show at the Pabst in Milwaukee.  We have seen Mr. Thompson many times, including several live shows, but that was a show for the ages.  Any chance there will be a DVD release of any of the shows on the tour?  If not, and although it may seem redundant, are there any plans for a live disc (perhaps two-disc set) of the show?  I thought that the first set sounded even tighter live than it did on the live album.  And, the second set was something special.  I feel that Mr. Thompson perhaps played the best iteration of “Can’t Win” I have ever heard and I can’t stand the thought of my memory of it fading.  It would seem a shame if the second set were lost in the ether.

Now, before you answer, recall there is a whole European leg of the show left to rectify the situation. Regards, Norm

We have recordings of the second set.

Throughout the new record I've very much appreciated Joel Zifkin's violin playing. So I wondered if you ever considered reviving some wonderful but rarely performed songs such ad "Devonside" or "Why Must I Plead" onstage. Or aren't you particularly fond of them? All the best. Alfredo Marziano

Excellent suggestions! I forget sometimes what's in the catalogue. I'll bear these in mind.

Was wondering that since you did a great "See My Friends" in Thousand Years, were you contacted by Ray to work on his compilation album? It’s Ray’s loss if you weren't. Don Lennon NY,NY

I have no contact with Ray. Big fan though...

Just wondering: Are you going to play "Fire in the Engine Room" on the Camayo cruise, now that the Carnival Splendor has limped back into port? Just curious. Chris

You are about the fifth person to ask that. We'll see how the Camayo holds up.

As I told you at the first Cabaret of Souls (Wearing that lovely Slayer shirt), I have been trying to emulate your playing for some time (Rather, incorporate your style into my own). I have asked you a few questions on here before, but I feel I should stop trying to figure it out for myself, and just ask: How do you emulate reels and sounds of folk instruments, such as bagpipes, on the guitar? There are no lessons for such a style, as yours is very original. Also, how do you manage to bend notes with vibrato, and even play traditional-blues/rock licks and not sound bluesy? Is that an aspect of your tone or approach? I bend notes and sound like Clapton. I even spent a long time studying Jerry Donahue's country style in order to come closer to yours. Robert Fripp's influence helps with the dissonance of some of your playing, but it's simply not enough. Help me, wise one! - Patrick

When you study your influences, it is good that you never achieve true impersonation, and end up as a clone. You always should wish to sound like yourself, no matter what bits and pieces you grab from other places. As to specifics like bent notes with vibrato, it's just a matter of practice.