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Questions and Answers
11/29/2003 (updated 11/29/2003)

RT answers Flip Feij’s questions:

FF: At The Birchmere and onwards, you've been playing songs we haven't heard for quite awhile. Is there an explanation for picking them up again at this point? (With some of them you even seemed to be less happy for quite a while)

RT: I thought it would be fun to do a different kind of show at venues where I play a lot, and sometimes play multiple nights. So it's a Retro Show, or really a Chrono-Show, attempting to play songs in historical sequence. I did this performance 3 times, 2 shows at Birchmere, near Washington, and 1 at Princeton. I opened with 2 new songs, both about growing up - "Watch Me Go" and "Mutton Street". Third song was "Jack Of Diamonds" which I played with our school band - Hugh Cornwell on bass and Nick Jones on drums - Nick's dad was Max Jones, estemed jazz critic on Melody Maker, so Nick had access to all of MM's demos, and he found JOD and brought it to the band, in I suppose '65 or '66...I took it with me to Fairport. I wrote some new lyrics for some older songs as a way of giving them a life - it's hard to live with some of the things you felt and wrote when you were 18.

FF: Reports from Alexandria were talking about altered lyrics for some songs (Hokey Pokey, Walk Awhile), may we expect the new words on the Song-O-Matic soon?

RT: Whether they go in the Song-O Matic or not...they'll go in the projected song book as alternates - some folk are very conservative about the old stuff.

FF: Are you considering coming back with a retro show in the year to come and are there any plans to make a record (or other format) out of it?

RT: We recorded the Princeton show, but felt it wasn't quite long enough for a CD, it will take one or two more shows. I'm sure this concept was fun for some, but a lot of the audience seemed unresponsive to the earlier stuff, which leads me to believe that most listeners signed on for, or subsequent to, “Rumour and Sigh”. So there may not be too many Retro Shows to come, but perhaps it could become a regular segment, a Mini Memory Moment.

FF: Is it already possible to confirm if Australia/New Zealand/Japan are going to be options for public appearances in Spring 2004?

RT: Australia looks firm, NZ hopeful, Japan won't happen this time.

FF: Any chance still of a RTB 2003-DVD through Cooking Vinyl in early 2004? What's the curren t status?

RT: DVD still being worked on, I have no new info.

FF: And then, the 1000 Years show. Is it likely you'll be touring with Judith & Debra again? Where, when?

RT: We hope to do "1000 Years" as a tour in Autumn 2004. Princeton is confirmed!

FF: Who are the Boys Of Mutton Street?

RT: Well, I was in a little street gang when I was 10 years old, and we'd have skirmishes with neighbouring gangs - at an age when puny kids can pummel one another to no effect. The song is a small celebration of our achievements. At age 11, it all disappeared when I changed schools.

FF: How's Swarb?

RT: I haven't heard much in the last 2 weeks - please check Swarb's website for up to date Info.