XPN Welcomes Teddy Thompson (with special guest, Katie Frank)
Thompson is a native Englishman who has adopted New York City as his home; famously the son of singer-songwriters Richard and Linda Thompson, he emigrated to the states more than a decade ago, barely out of his teens, to embark on a career of his own.
If you recall, Richard Thompson did one of his first shows in Delaware in Arden 6 years ago. That show sold out with little publicity, this show is already selling well!
Opening for Teddy is Katie Frank, an up and coming young singer songwriter from Philly - she will be appearing solo. Info on her work is here: http://www.katiefrankmusic.com/
Here is info on Teddy's latest LP - Bella - a new one is on the way soon!
On previous discs, singer-songwriter Teddy Thompson always relied on one of the songs he's written to provide him with an album title and a central concept to build the rest of his work around. This time it's different: you won't find a tune named "Bella" on his fourth Verve Forecast effort yet the idea of "bella" Italian shorthand for "beautiful" is everywhere. Says Thompson, "I like the word, the meaning of it. It spoke to the lushness and beauty I was going for."
Recorded in New York City and produced by David Kahne (Regina Spektor, Paul McCartney, the Strokes), Bella combines lean rock and roll with lush string arrangements on material that is both disarmingly catchy and often startlingly frank. Since 2008's A Piece Of What You Need, which London's The Guardian called "one of the year's best," this has become something of a Thompson trademark, teasing the listener with immediately addictive melodies then pulling the rug out from under them with unsparingly confessional or darkly amusing lyrics. Thompson agrees:
"I felt, as I've developed some kind of style, that what I had to offer, that what came naturally, was my sense of humor, my sensibility. It's very English, very sarcastic, self-deprecating, In one way, that's just how my songs come out; in another way, that's my favorite style: a pretty melody with a twist."
Throughout Bella, Thompson is a refreshingly candid Romeo: On upbeat lead-off track, "Looking For A Girl," he lists all the qualities he wants in a woman "I'm looking for a girl who drinks and smokes/Who takes a lot of work but can take a joke" along with everything he needs to warn a prospective lover about. He's never less than honest, revealing bad-boy inclinations alongside his kindlier attributes, with all of it sung in Thompson's singularly stirring voice, one that musically and emotionally can never render a false note.
Thompson is able to poke fun of himself on a track like "The One I Can't Have," but he can also turn more bluntly self-lacerating. On "Over and Over," the starkest arrangement on Bella, he enumerates the ways he falls short as strings circle ominously around his hauntingly tortured vocal. Admits Thompson,
"That's my specialty. I love to do that. I still feel that songwriting is really an introspective thing. For most people it's all about themselves, but it depends on how you lay it out. Even people who write songs that aren't so obviously autobiographical are still working from themselves. I don't try that hard to disguise it. I take the easy way out: I write exactly what comes to mind. I'm the person I know the best, the one I like the best and hate the best, so I can get right in there."
Though in conversation Thompson doesn't elaborate too much, Bella also examines the end of a relationship, the afterimage of a woman he left behind or let slip away. On songs like "Delilah," a country-inflected slow dance, and "Take Me Back Again," which boasts a gorgeous Phil Spector-style production, Thompson ruminates about a romance gone wrong and contemplates the position of a guy left to endlessly yearn. This heartbreak theme reaches its apotheosis in "Tell Me What You Want," a duet with friend and fellow singer Jenni Muldaur;. Thompson cajoles but Muldaur brushes him off, as twanging guitars, strings and percussion swirl around them; the vocals soar to Roy Orbison-like heights by the final chorus.
Arden Gild Hall
2126 The Highway
Arden, DE 19810
|Kid Friendly: Yes!|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|