Infinity Music Hall & Bistro
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Richard Thompson: Ship to Shore Tour 2024



Thu, April 04, 2024
Hartford, CT
Doors: 7 PM
Show: 8 PM

Ticket INFO

Member Presale: 1/17/24 12 PM
Public Onsale: 1/19/24 12 PM

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Richard Thompson: Ship to Shore Tour 2024

Richard Thompson

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Artist Bio

“To be moving is better than to be standing still,” Richard Thompson says, and Richard
Thompson should know. The influential singer-songwriter and virtuosic guitarist has
been on a singular musical journey for over a half century, from his days in the ‘60s as a
pioneer of British folk rock with Fairport Convention, to his seminal ‘70s duo work with
Linda Thompson, to the exploratory, deeply emotional music of the solo career that has
been his primary concern ever since.

Along the way he has been touted as one of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time by
Rolling Stone, covered by everyone from Robert Plant, R.E.M. and David Byrne to
Sleater-Kinney, Bonnie Raitt and Emmylou Harris, bestowed with the Ivor Novello
Award for songwriting, and even appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire
by the late Queen Elizabeth II.

And much like a ship to shore himself, the artist was instinctively drawn to his own
musical roots, employing them in the service of fashioning a deep and diverse 12-track
collection that pulls from various styles, genres and eras, but remains unmistakably
Richard Thompson. “I liked the idea of having a strong base to work from and reaching
out from there,” he says. “And I think of my base as being British traditional music, but
there’s also Scottish music, there’s Irish music. There’s jazz and country and classical. As
far as I’m concerned, once you establish your base you can reach out anywhere. It’ll still
be you ringing through, wherever you decide to go musically.”

As for where he started? Naturally, at the start. “Freeze,” the leadoff track on Ship To
Shore, is also the first of the new songs Thompson composed. And it’s classic RT, with a
bounding rhythm – “a strange cross between Celtic and African,” he says – punctuated
by nimble, curlicue guitar licks and dark (at times, darkly humorous) lyrics, in this case
of a man so paralyzed by his life that he can’t even bring himself to end it. Hesitating on
a ledge, Thompson sings, “A friendly breeze there might push you / Make up your
troubled mind for you.”

To craft Ship To Shore, Thompson retreated to Applehead Recording in Woodstock,
New York, where he was joined by his longtime band – guitarist Bobby Eichorn, bassist
Taras Prodaniuk, and drummer Michael Jerome – along with harmony vocalist Zara
Phillips, fiddle player David Mansfield, and Applehead engineer Chris Bittner. The team
worked quick – roughly a week to track, and another three or four days to mix – and
recordings were mostly live takes, vocals included. “There was a slight feeling of being
under the gun, which isn’t a bad thing,” Thompson says. “We spend a lot of time playing
together, so we can knock tracks off pretty quickly.”

And if you’re looking for some of that patented Thompson guitar dazzle? Look pretty
much anywhere on Ship To Shore. But maybe linger just a bit on “Maybe,” a sharp,
snappy ditty that sees our protagonist losing his mind over the girl of his dreams… or
nightmares. As the song reaches its fervid climax, Thompson’s guitar goes as haywire as
the poor guy’s brain, spitting hot licks, playful note bursts and madcap phrases across
the sonic spectrum. “That’s one that will be great to play live,” Thompson notes,
“because the possibilities are quite open. It'll be fun to just be improvising on that every

Finally, the album wraps with a sort of red herring: a countrified road-dog number titled
“We Roll,” which, on first listen, comes across as a farewell of sorts. “We thank you for
all your love down the years,” Thompson intones over a dusty rhythm. “We hope we
brought you some joy and some tears.”

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