Declared by Rolling Stone as one of the Top 20 Guitarists Of All Time and considered one of the UK’s most outstanding songwriters, musician Richard Thompson returns with a brand new, guitar driven record titled ELECTRIC for Proper Records on Monday, February 11th.

After taking the bold step of recording his last album of new songs live, when it came to recording ELECTRIC, Thompson turned to Buddy Miller (Robert Plant’s Band Of Joy, Solomon Burke, Emmylou Harris, Patty Griffin) to produce, recording at Miller’s home studio in Nashville, TN. Miller who himself is renowned for his guitar skills recently told Rolling Stone: “I played along on the record, playing rhythm guitar for him, and I got a two-week guitar lesson while he camped out in my house.”  The record was recorded as an electric trio with Thompson, drummer Michael Jerome and bassist Taras Prodaniuk, who both sing background vocals. Jerome and Prodaniuk formed part of the band which recorded and toured the UK Top Twenty album DREAM ATTIC, released in August 2010.

They make up the trio, with Thompson, on his forthcoming UK dates, his first extensive tour in two years.

Guests on ELECTRIC include the legendary Alison Krauss who joins Thompson on “The Snow Goose”, while English singer-songwriter Siobhan Maher Kennedy (formerly with River City People and now resident in Nashville) adds vocals on several tracks as well. Fiddle great Stuart Duncan also plays on the record; one of America’s leading bluegrass musicians he played on recent albums by Robert Plant/Alison Krauss and Elvis Costello and will be familiar in the UK from BBC4’s Transatlantic Sessions.

Richard Thompson himself commented that: “We did it ridiculously quickly. But it sounds great. It turned out surprisingly funky, sort of a new genre – folk-funk. It’s quite snappy, somewhere between Judy Collins and Bootsy Collins.”

ELECTRIC will be released as a Standard CD, Deluxe two–disc set and on 180 gram vinyl.

As a folking treat for you, we have a free stream of Good Things Happen To Bad People from the album below…


1. Stony Ground

2. Salford Sunday

3. Sally B

4. Stuck on the Treadmill

5. My Enemy

6. Good Things Happen To Bad People

7. Where’s Home?

8. Another Small Thing In her Favour

9. Straight and Narrow

10. The Snow Goose

11. Saving The Good Stuff For You

Recipient of a BBC Lifetime Achievement Award, Mojo’s Les Paul Award and curator of the prestigious Meltdown Festival at the Southbank in 2010, Thompson was most recently honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award for Songwriting by the Americana Music Association.

ELECTRIC was recorded earlier this year, 2012 marking the fortieth anniversary of Richard Thompson’s debut solo album, HENRY THE HUMAN FLY. Thompson has now released some forty albums, played on countless other classic recordings, and written more than 400 songs, some of which have been covered by R.E.M., Robert Plant, Elvis Costello, The Futureheads, Bonnie Raitt, Dinosaur Jr., Linda Ronstadt, Los Lobos, and many more.

Rolling Stone has hailed him as “a perennial dark horse contender for the title of greatest living rock guitarist.” The Independent recently described him as “probably the best guitarist this country has produced, an utterly sui generis talent…”

Thompson says of his fellow trio members: “Michael Jerome has been with me for about 12 years. He’s actually from Texas; he is a great musician, able to respond to anything that’s put in front of him.  Taras Prodaniuk worked a lot with Dwight Yoakam, and more recently with Lucinda Williams. His roots may be in country music, but he’s another extremely gifted and versatile musician.”

THE GRAND SLAMBOVIANS – Gandalf Murphy And The Slambovian Circus Of Dreams – Live Review

West End Centre, Aldershot -1 June 2012

I tried to discover if this is a permanent name change and received the sort of answer you always get from a Slambovian – polite, detailed and revealing absolutely nothing.

This was the band’s second tour gig with new drummer Eric Puente, a player of the early Gerry Conway school – not that Tony Zuzulo was a shrinking violet. Joziah Longo’s fist-bumping with the band and ritual “good luck everybody” was perhaps rather more apt than usual. A Slambovian set-list is usually merely a series of guidelines but Joziah was actually rather restrained, probably for Eric’s sake, and although there were alternatives actually written down he didn’t go off on any flights of fancy apart from a verse of the ‘The Motorcycle Song’ before they started the encores. Even so, there were a couple of on-stage seminars as they discussed a number.

This show was core Slambovia as they mixed old and new songs, opening with ‘The Grand Slambovians’, ‘Sunday In The Rain’ and ‘I’m Very Happy Now’. The latter was described by Joziah as a cross between The Ramones and Donovan which is a pretty good description of the band’s music come to think of it. There were the greatest hits like ‘Talking To The Buddha’ which gives Sharkey McEwen the chance to show what he can do as does their final encore, ‘Look Ma No Hands’. There was a new song which may be called ‘I’m Not Ready’ and obviously The Grand Slambovians provided a lot of material but so did Flapjacks From The Sky. Their last song was ‘Alice In Space’ from their debut album and there was a feeling that they had looked upon the line-up change to expand their live repertoire. The sound balance was immaculate, I should add: Tink Lloyd’s ukulele has to be audible over Sharkey’s Les Paul and it was.

The looseness and the impression that the Slambovians were having as good a time as we were was infectious and after the show lots of people were talking to each other as if they were old friends. The band always talk to the audience in the interval and afterwards anyway and the idea catches on. Probably because I was fairly obviously wielding a notebook and camera people assumed I was in the know and were asking me questions and enthusing about the band – a slightly surreal experience. My message to them was simple: “spread the word”.

Dai Jeffries

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