September 2013 Q&A, Part III
11/23/2013 (updated 11/23/2013)

Thank you for the two fantastic shows at the Birchmere and for granting my request for "Hokey Pokey" on the first night! Regarding "Hokey Pokey", I was wondering what the inspiration was for rewriting the lyrics to it on versions you were performing a few years ago. Were you trying to come up with something that might once again get banned by the BBC? John Hecht

I was never happy with the original lyric, so I did a wee re-write. Result below. Hopefully more lascivious and objectionable:

Hokey Pokey revised version 2004

Little boy running and the little girl too
Got the money tucked up in their hands
Over the wall and down into the street
Give your money to the hollering man

Everybody runs for Hokey Pokey
Hear the ringing on the ice cream bell
He's got the stuff that'll cool you right down
It's the best that they ever did sell

Maestro he says to Sweet Little Angel
Don't you sing to the boys in blue
Or you won't need no more Hokey Pokey
By the time we're through with you

Down in the prison number 999
Wishing he was home on the range
He's still fretting for what he's not getting
And love behind bars is strange

Fellas in the alley all walk that walk
It's a style that really pays
Cos' there's some poor Joe out there doesn't know
The door can swing both ways

Dead to the world? Says Frankie to Annie
Girl you haven't moved an inch all night
But she wriggled her hips when he kissed her on the lips
Hokey Pokey made her fell all right

Lick it on the bottom, lick it on the top
Suck it just hard enough
Open up wide when it drips down the side
You want to catch all that good stuff.

Words and music by Richard Thompson, Beeswing/Bug Music

visited Garth Hudson's website a while back. it made mention of you playing on the first track of a new album he's been working on. this was absolutely crazy to me, since you and Mr Hudson are my only musical heroes. my question is, what was it like working with Garth? he strikes me as a quiet genius, with musical ideas constantly coming and going. very intrigued about the meeting of these musical masters. peace and love, Tyler - Alexandria, VA

Garth is a great musician, 'quiet genius' I would not disagree with. I've worked with him here and there over the years, and been a fan since 'Big Pink'. The project he mentioned is 'The Beautiful Old', put together by Paul Marsteller, and featuring a stellar array of artists.

i'm curious if richard has ever considered an acoustic/electric split tour. usually it's solo acoustic or electric with a few acoustic songs thrown in. a while back when he toured electric doing the whole new album in the first set and oldies but goodies in the second set. how about a two set show with an all acoustic solo first set followed by an electric set with the trio or whatever the current band line up might be. not that i'm comparing musically but hot tuna did this successfully with jorma kaukonen doing a solo acoustic set followed by a hot tuna electric set. thanks and keep up the good work. dave tamarkin
ps-great show in albany ny!

This is a very reasonable idea, and one I like, and have tried from time to time. We always try to have acoustic elements anyway in band shows, but a true split show could be fun. My only hesitation is the idea that the band is getting time off during the whole first half, while I am up there slaving; also, this leaves open the possibility of heckling at the beginning of the electric set, cries of 'Judas!', etc.

Re: Martin Taylor and Martin Simpson
I saw The Two Martin's at The Stables in Milton Keynes and it was great. I know that you have played with Mr Simpson on many occasions, and he was a tutor at the Frets and Refrains this year, but have you ever played with Mr Taylor, and how do you rate his playing compared to the other greats you have heard? Ta muchly, Doug Moody

Never played with Martin Taylor. He is a fantastic jazz guitarist. It says a lot about Mr. Simpson's accomplishments that he can hold his own sharing a stage with him.

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