Q&A March 2012, Part II
4/24/2012 (updated 4/24/2012)

Having read with interest your views on films like Easy rider and Woodstock I'm curious as to whether you've seen Withnail & I - and if so, did you find it an accurate portrayal of those times? Max Cuthbert - Portland,OR

It's a very enjoyable film, and I recognize a lot of the time, place and spirit in it. It's very hard to make a piece of art that reflects accurately an era, and maybe that's too much to ask, and not always on the agenda of the filmmaker. Woodstock reflects a certain time pretty well - it is a documentary after all. Easy Rider is pushing an agenda. I didn't associate with either film very much, feeling rather outside all that hippie stuff (hair, kaftan and beads notwithstanding).

I would like to ask Richard what his thoughts are about the recent Thea Gilmore album - Don't Stop Singing (Featuring lyrics by Sandy Denny). (Presuming he has heard it , of course.) Regards, Bob Seymour

I enjoyed it, and thought it was a noble effort. It shows Thea to be a fine artist, and if it points people in the direction of Sandy, that is also a good thing.

I recently read on your website about one of your guitars appearing in a Bob Dylan exhibit. Why is a Richard Thompson guitar in a show about Bob Dylan? (Personally, I think a Bob Dylan guitar should be appearing in a Richard Thompson exhibit.) Thanks, Chris

I didn't ask too many questions about which exhibit this was for, and the relevance. Maybe they were short of leopardskin pillbox hats, rainy day women, and spangled dwarves with bowties?

Have you ever considered recording the songs from Henry the Human Fly as a live set? - Brian Coxon

Well, no. I'd have to like them all. Perhaps another of my best-selling albums?

1. During a previous Q&A session it was mentioned that you (with Linda) played on the same bill as one of my other great heroes, Kevin Coyne, at the Rainbow in 1975. As I recall, you said that it was 2,000+ gigs hence and that you really couldn't remember much about it. Did your paths cross much with Kevin Coyne around this period before he took himself off to Germany? How did you rate him as a songwriter? a singer? Like yourself, he seems to have been criminally disregarded/underappreciated by the masses, particularly during this incredibly creative mid-70s period.

As you say, very underrated, and better appreciated in Germany. I really saw him very little - that Rainbow show might have been the only time.

2. What are your thoughts on Rangers going into administration ? Do you share the view of some commentators who believe that Celtic FC actually (if perversely)  "needs" a healthy Rangers FC ?

3. Vicar St last July was awesome... hurry back!!!! Aido, Dublin

I don't think Rangers will cease to exist. If their ability to spend on players is impaired, that would be a problem for the SPL in terms of balance, the Scottish league being a real two horse race most seasons. I still have dreams of Rangers and Celtic playing in a UK league, or at least having one of the English cup competitions broadened to include Scotland - the League Cup ends up being a duplicate of the FA Cup most of the time - scrap it and replace it with a UK and Ireland Cup, and add a bit of nationalistic excitement!

I came across Richard Thompson's version of When I Am Laid in Earth (Dido's Lament) and was wondering it it were at all possible to get the guitar chords for this rendition? I'm a singer looking to perform this for a vocal exam and my accompanist is struggling to work out what tuning Richard was in and the subsequent chords played.

Any help you can give would be appreciated. Regards, Bryce

I can't find my score of Dido and Aeneas to do a transcription, and from memory, there are things in the rhythm I'm confused on. I basically condensed the 4 string parts into a 'lute' style accompaniment, which I also can't find - sorry, but I can't give it as a 'chord' chart without leaving too much out. Also, it fits guitar in the key of G minor with drop D very well, maybe not so well other keys?

Is there a piano accompaniment to Crazy Man Michael? I would like to sing it for the male voice choir to which I belong, but I am not a musician myself, and rely on the accompanist to back me. Andrew Makin

Sorry, I don't have any of my songs with piano arrangement, but it would be reasonably easy for a pianist to transcribe it.