RICHARD Thompson, or Sir Richard as I like to think of him (he’s been overlooked), is better than ever before.

At 68 this legend of songwriting and hybrid picking seems to have grown in vigour, his voice as rich and passionate as ever, his guitar playing taking songs old and new off into inspired new harmonic directions.

His gig at the Lighthouse last night saw him air a host of new or new/old songs released on this year’s albums, including rarities.

They Tore The Hippodrome Down, a swinging, bluesy number, was a highlight for me.

Thompson’s ever-charming rapport with the audience, seated in the concert hall, included a tribute to his former band Fairport Convention, formed 50 years ago, and a heartfelt performance of Who Knows Where The Time Goes? by the much-missed Sandy Denny.

The set included plenty of the classics - a virtuoso rendition of 1952 Vincent Black Lightning, Gethsemane, Beeswing and 70s duet (performed solo) I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight.

In a one man show, with just an acoustic electric in his hands and a twinkle in his eye, Thompson fills the room with rhythm, dancing and complex melodies and his distinctive vocal style. If you can see him perform anywhere, do.

Support for this tour came from singer Josienne Clarke and guitarist Ben Walker, the former with a strong, clear voice, at its best at higher volume, and it turns out a great line in self-deprecation and dry wit.

Walker, backing a series of quiet and reflective tracks with skilful fingering on acoustic and electric guitars, demonstrated a brilliant grasp of tone.