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1,000 Years review in Penguin Eggs Magazine
10/2/2006 (updated 10/2/2006)

Richard Thompson
1000 Years of Popular Music

"This project started as a bit of a lark – a list of the greatest songs of the Millennium for a Playboy poll. Thompson’s submission was ignored. Songs from 1205 A.D., that never charted, is not what its editors had in mind, apparently. Still, the evidence here suggests he could easily have been a balladeer in a medieval court or a honky tonk singer in the fifties. The barriers come tumbling down as he covers carols, English traditional melodies, country heart breakers, show tunes to classic rock, and even a very creditable nod to some pop schmaltz. On top of all that, add an obscure track from Ray Davies, songs covered by pioneering singers like Nat King Cole, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Buck Owens. And he also includes the Squeeze classic Tempted, and the Easybeats’ Friday on My Mind. Shenandoah, however, is the showstopper that digs deep into the heart of his interpretive spirit. It all fits. I don’t know how; it just does. The DVD, with its seamless camera movements, makes this one of my favourite performance discs. The legacy of Richard Thompson as a great artist continues to flourish. The more I listen, the more I smile and grow in my respect for his artistry. This one’s a keeper, to be viewed and listened to time and time again."

– By Tom Coxworth
reprinted with kind permission


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