So what is Richard Thompson up to these days? Aside from having a dynamite new album, for which he has been on tour, and which tour is coming here next year (with many shows already being sold out, including here in London, such that an additional show at the Royal Festival Hall had to be added)? In fact, I’m glad you asked. Because Thompson just keeps going and going. Being one of the half dozen premier songwriter/guitarists of the past four and a half decades isn’t enough. For the past several years he’s been touring with his solo “Thousand Years of Popular Music,” which really is a must-see. And tonight here he was at Cadogan Hall in London, with Philip Pickett, doing a concert of old London Broadsides—sixteenth century London street songs—called Nutmeg and Ginger—Spicy Ballads from Shakespeare’s Time. The guy just never stops.
Thompson needs little introduction, but Pickett does. He’s about Thomson’s age, but has a different, but slightly overlapping, pedigree. He’s been at the heart of early music in England for the past several decades, having run the Early Music Weekend at South Bank for the first six or seven years we were here, and then was canned or something (it’s never really been made clear). Continue reading