GOLDMINE: I am enjoying your sixth album Fabulous Day which is truly fabulous.
PATSY THOMPSON: Oh, thank you so much.
GM: I had been looking forward to this album after your vinyl single late last year, which preceded the album, “I Think About You” with “Dreamin’” on the flip side.
PT: This was the first time that I had ever pressed vinyl. People seem to like the the seven inch vinyl, for sure, and I have released the new album on vinyl too.
GM: On the A side of the single, “I Think About You,” which is a bit of a Christmas song, Mike Sanyshyn’s violin is a lot of fun. I reached out to him and he shared one of his songs “Kansas City Kitty” with me that has that same type of bounce. I also learned that he has performed with The Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, who I have seen.
PT: Mike is a great guy, plays a variety of instruments and sings too. We didn’t record “I Think About You” as a Christmas song to start with. After a producer heard it and felt it sounded like a Christmas song I rewrote the lyrics a little bit and it metamorphosed into a Christmas song, but one that we can play on stage even when it is not Christmas.
Flip side: Dreamin’
A side: I Think About You
Patsy Thompson Music
GM: When I flipped the single over, heard “Dreamin’,” and thought about your name, it reminded me of Patsy Cline’s flip side “Strange,” which Laura Pursell has recorded in recent years. Your voice is so smooth. The recording has a beautiful and traditional sound and is my favorite song on your new album.
PT: Thank you. It is one that I have been playing for a long time and the musicians gravitate to that song with its melody. It is planned to be on a compilation album with other Vancouver area musicians, as it was also the favorite song for the producer of that project. It reaches people in my concerts, although people are home right now, streaming on the internet. It is a weird world right now isn’t it?
GM: It is and I assume that when your concerts do roll around that fans can check out your web-site for the latest information.
DT: Absolutely, but there are no show dates there at the moment.
GM: What I did find online is the photo of you with your two dogs.
PT: Sadly, the big black one, Tank, is gone. He died two years ago, this time of year. He was seventeen and both are dogs that I found in Texas when I was living there. I rescued Tank, who was abandoned at The Home Depot parking lot in San Antonio when he was eight weeks old. The other one is Otis, who is sitting at my feet right now as we speak. He is fourteen and is also a dog I found in Blanco, Texas when I was swimming in the river and he was just a little guy, six weeks old. Someone had left him there and he has been with me ever since, thank God, or I would be going crazy here on lock down if I didn’t have him. He looks like he may have a little cattle dog in him and a little Corgi with a big chest and tiny little legs, poor guy. He may have a bit of Red Healer in him too. I never bothered with DNA testing on Otis. Now he is having a hard time getting up and down the stairs. I had lived in the Austin area for fifteen years around Lake Travis and the hill country and I moved to Blanco, which is on the way to Luckenbach, which is further out in the country. It is a quaint little town with wonderful folks there. I loved it. I had a little cottage on the river. I ended up buying a building and turning it into a bar. So I had a live music venue and a beer and wine restaurant and coffee shop for five years there. I met a lot of people and hired a lot of artists with music every night. I met the whole gang of Edie Brickell and The New Bohemians. All those musicians live out there and raise all of their kids together. It is a wonderful community of people. Otis got his name at my bar. He was still tiny, and could fit in the palm of your hand. Six bikers showed up and sat at one of the picnic tables outside and I just put the dog, still unnamed at that point, on the picnic table with them. He went around to each of their draft beers and put his tongue in their glasses until he couldn’t reach the beer anymore and went around to everyone at the table, had a sip of their beer, and then took a nap. One of the guys said you should call him Otis from The Andy Griffith Show, the drunk that locks himself in the jail, ha ha ha. What a character. My mother is in a nursing home, with dementia, but still remembers Otis.
GM: He certainly is cute. Now, back to your new album, Fabulous Day. With my five year old Goldmine Fabulous Flip Sides series, I was so thrilled to see someone finally use the word “fabulous.” The title song is beautifully sung.
PT: Oh, thank you. What a fluke on our “fabulous” connection. I released the song to Canadian radio stations, and they said that I had to cut off the whole introduction, so the radio version begins right when the vocals start. They wanted it to get quicker to the chorus. The melody and chord changes were turning around in my head for about a year.
GM: When I hear the chorus line, melodically, “It’s a fabulous day” reminds me of Sly and The Family Stone’s “It’s a family affair.” I know that is an unexpected reference, but so is the case with “Neon Lights.” The storytelling approach in your opening verse reminds me of Bad Company’s “Shooting Star.”
PT: I used to listen to “Shooting Star” all the time when I was a kid. I have a friend in California who I met in Nashville at the Americanafest last year. Of my songs, this guy who works for Neil Young, said that “Neon Lights” was his favorite. It is so hard to pick which ones to release.
GM: Speaking of Neil Young, someone who has sung with him and has recorded many of his songs is Linda Ronstadt. When I listen to your “I Can’t Be with You Tonight,” I hear the chorus resolving itself musically, augmented by background vocalists, which is an approach on par with Linda Ronstadt’s version of “Poor, Poor Pitiful Me.”
PT: Thanks. That’s a lovely reference for sure. I appreciate it lots. Gord Maxwell sang the background vocals on that one, has an amazing voice and is the go to guy in the Vancouver area.
GM: Another musical reference for me is Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide” when I listen to the gentle opening of your song “Joy Ride.”
PT: That is a big compliment. Thank you. When I was playing live here in British Columbia, and down in Washington state too, “Joy Ride” was the No. 1 most requested song of mine from people who had heard it previously and gravitate toward it.
GM: You mentioned living years in Texas. We did too, where you may hear Tex-Mex music, as a I do a bit on your new song “Passion.” In addition to violin, is there an accordion on the recording?
PT: Yes there is. Andy Smyth plays accordion on that one. It is more sultry and dreamy in style than how I have played it before, slowing it down for this new album.
GM: I have also spent a lot of time in Canada and love Canadian music. You and I share at least one B.C. music friend, Prism’s Henry Small.
PT: It is truly a small world, ha ha.
GM: Unfortunately Prism had only one Top 40 hit in the U.S., “Don’t Let Him Know,” just like Stonebolt, also from your area, achieved with only “I Will Still Love You.”
PT: I know some of the Stonebolt guys. I know David Wills quite well, who is their lead singer, and a couple of the other guys. David is now the President of the British Columbia Music Association. He needed to come in and rock things up a little bit. I hope that during these dark ages people will keep music alive and visit me on my web-site. I also hope that Goldmine readers will enjoy my music and reach out to me if they want a vinyl version of the Fabulous Day album. It has been wonderful talking to you and Otis said “bye” too.