Richard & Linda Thompson Box Set, ‘Hard Luck Stories’ Set For September Release

This first ever comprehensive career retrospective, the multi-disc set was personally curated by the artists and compiled and mastered by Andrew Batt.

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On September 11, UMC / Universal will release Richard & Linda Thompson Hard Luck Stories (1972 to 1982), an expansive 8 CD set featuring all 6 studio albums remastered from the original tapes, with 30 previously unreleased recordings including outtakes, demos and rarities along with live concerts from 1975 and 1977. This first ever comprehensive career retrospective was personally curated by Richard and Linda and compiled and mastered by Andrew Batt.

Alongside the 3 classic Island Records releases, I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight, Hokey Pokey and Pour Down Like Silver, the box set also includes the long out of print albums, First Light and Sunnyvista (both new transfers from recently relocated masters) as well as their final LP, Shoot Out The Lights. Disc one, called ‘Sometimes It Happens’ compiles their formative collaborations as solo performers with The Bunch and Brian Patten and disc five, ‘The Madness of Love’, contains 5 stunning live performances recorded at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in April 1975 and a further 5 songs recorded live at The Theatre Royal, London in May 1977.

I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight

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This comprehensive box set covers the couple’s entire career and is a must-have for fans of Richard and Linda Thompson as well as a definitive introduction to a body of work which resonates, and is still revered today. Hard Luck Stories also contains a 72-page hard cover book featuring brand new essays plus many rare and previously unpublished photographs by some of rock’s greatest photographers including Keith Morris, Gered Mankowitz and Pennie Smith, as well as images from Richard and Linda’s own archives. Sleeve notes for the box set are written by Patrick Humphries and Mick Houghton.

During the 10 years they officially performed together, Richard and Linda Thompson created a seminal body of work, ground-breaking in its time and, as this new box set demonstrates, still sounding fresh and relevant today.

Richard And Linda Thompson Hard Luck Stories (1972 To 1982) is out on September 11. Scroll down to read the full tracklist and pre-order it here.


“Sweet Little Rock and Roller”– The Bunch – Alt version (Previously Unreleased)
“The Locomotion” – The Bunch from Rock On
“My Girl In The Month of May” – The Bunch from Rock On
“When Will I Be Loved” (duet with Sandy Denny)
“Amazon Queen” (Previously Unreleased)
“Shaky Nancy” (from Henry The Human Fly)
“The Angels Took My Racehorse Away” (from Henry The Human Fly)
“Embroidered Butterflies” (from Brian Patten’s ‘Vanishing Trick’)
“After Frost” (from Brian Patten’s “Vanishing Trick”)
“Sometimes It Happens” (Demo – from ‘Dreams Fly Away’)
“Restless Boy (Demo – from ‘Give Me A Sad Song’)
“The World Is A Beautiful Place (from ‘ Give Me A Sad Song’)
“Shady Lies” (Live at London University College, 25/10/1972)
“Napoleon’s Dream” (Live at London University College, 25/10/1972)


“When I Get To The Border”
“The Calvary Cross”
“Withered and Died”
“I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight”
“Down Where The Drunkards Roll”
“We Sing Hallelujah”
“Has He Got A Friend For Me ?”
“The Little Beggar Girl”
“The End Of The Rainbow”
“The Great Valerio”

“Mother and Son” (Previously Unreleased)
“Down Where The Drunkards Roll” (Take 1 – Previously Unreleased)
“The End Of The Rainbow” (Linda Thompson vocal version – Previously Unreleased)
“A Heart Needs A Home” (Demo version – Previously Unreleased)
“The Great Valerio” (from Live at the Rainbow 16/03/1975)


“Hokey Pokey Song (The Ice Cream Song)”
“I’ll Regret It All In The Morning”
“Smiffy’s Glass Eye”
“Egypt Room”
“Never Again”
“Georgie On A Spree”
“Old Man Inside A Young Man”
“The Sun Never Shines On The Poor”
“A Heart Needs A Home”
“Mole In A Hole”

“Hokey Pokey” (Live on Marc Time – 1975  – Previously Unreleased)
“A Heart Needs A Home” (Alternate 1976 version)


“Streets of Paradise”
“For Shame Of Doing Wrong”
“The Poor Boy Is Taken Away”
“Night Comes In”
“Jet Plane In A Rocking Chair”
“Beat The Retreat”
“Hard Luck Stories”
“Dimming Of The Day / Dargai”

“Wanted Man” (Previously Unreleased)
“Last Chance” (Previously Unreleased)
“Dimming Of The Day (Demo version – Previously Unreleased)
“Things You Gave Me” (Live at Oxford Polytechnic, 27/11/1975)
“It’ll Be Me” (Live at Oxford Polytechnic, 27/11/1975)
“Calvary Cross” (Live at Oxford Polytechnic, 27/11/1975)

DISC FIVE – THE MADNESS OF LOVE – LIVE – * Previously Unreleased

“Dargai” – Live at Queen Elizabeth Hall 25/04/1975
“Never Again” – Live at Queen Elizabeth Hall 25/04/1975
“Dark End Of The Street” – Live at Queen Elizabeth Hall 25/04/1975
“Beat The Retreat” – Live at Queen Elizabeth Hall 25/04/1975
“The Sun Never Shines On The Poor” – Live at Queen Elizabeth Hall 25/04/1975
“If I Were A Woman and You Were A Man” – Theatre Royal, London, 01/05 1977
“The Madness of Love” – Live, Theatre Royal, London, 01/05 1977
“Night Comes In” (Linda vocal) – Live, Theatre Royal, London, 01/05 1977
“A Bird In God’s Garden” – Live, Theatre Royal, London, 01/05 1977
“The King of Love” – Live, Theatre Royal, London, 01/05 1977
“Layla” – Live, Theatre Royal, London, 01/05 1977


“Restless Highway”
“Sweet Surrender”
“Don’t Let A Thief Steal Into Your Heart”
“The Choice Wife”
“Died For Love”
“Strange Affair”
“House of Cards”
“First Light”

“Strange Affair” (Demo version – Previously Unreleased)
“Drunk” (Demo version – Previously Unreleased)
“The Dust Of Your Road” (Demo version)
“Layla” (Demo version – Previously Unreleased)
“Died For Love” (Demo version – Previously Unreleased)
“First Light” (Demo version)


“Borrowed Time”
“Saturday Rolling Around”
“You’re Going To Need Somebody”
“Why Do You Turn Your Back ?”
“Lonely Hearts”
“Justice In The Streets”
“Traces Of My Love”

“Georgie On A Spree” (7” single version)
“Lucky In Life”( Demo version – Previously Unreleased)
“Speechless Child” (Demo version)
“Traces of My Love” (Demo version)
“For Shame Of Doing Wrong” (Demo version)
“The Wrong Heartbeat” [Gerry Rafferty version]
“Back Street Slide” (Gerry Rafferty session, 1996 remix) ( 4:27 )


“Don’t Renege On Our Love”
“Walking On A Wire”
“A Man In Need”
“Just The Motion”
“Shoot Out The Lights”
“Back Street Slide”
“Did She Jump Or Was She Pushed ?”
“Wall of Death”

“Living In Luxury” (7” single version)
“The Wrong Heartbeat – Shoot Out The Lights version – Previously Unreleased)
“I’m A Dreamer” (Gerry Rafferty session – 1996 remix)
“Walking On A Wire (Gerry Rafferty session – 1996 remix)
“Pavanne” (Live, 2nd Story, Bloomington, Indiana 29/5/1982 – Previously unreleased)
“High School Confidential” (Live, 2nd Story, Bloomington, Indiana 29/5/1982)



  1. David Gaule

    August 6, 2020 at 11:18 pm

    Absolutely marvellous.Really made my day.Night comes in with Linda on vocals and Richard on fantastic guitar solo.Exquisite.Speechless child .Another great song

    • don bacon

      September 11, 2020 at 12:49 am

      I pre ordered the box set for the grand total of 108.00(includes shipping) and than I find out this site was hacked and my order was cancelled. I contacted Customer Service to see if they would honor the $108.00 pre order price and was told No. The order number was if someone at WEA and/or discover would honor the original price I would love to make the purchase.Thanks, Don Bacon

  2. Jon

    September 16, 2020 at 1:37 pm

    Discs 5 & 6 are faulty and stop playing part of the way through. This seems to be a common complaint. I hope that UMC do the decent thing and offer to replace them free of charge, as happened with the Pink Floyd Early Years, Soft Cell & Heaven 17 box sets.

  3. Keith Wright

    September 20, 2020 at 4:09 pm

    Discs skipping,serious issues with the rips as well.

    Please could you replace the CDs.

    Regards Keith Wright

  4. Laura Stavropoulos

    September 24, 2020 at 8:40 pm

    A message from the record label: We are aware of issues affecting some CDs in a small number of the Richard & Linda Thompson 8CD boxed set, ‘Hard Luck Stories 1972-1982’. Having spoken to the manufacturer, it appears likely that these were caused during handling. If you have been affected please email, including proof of purchase, and we will send you a download code for the full contents of the package. If you request them, we will also arrange to send replacement discs to you. Please note, this box set is now sold out. If you return your box to the store you purchased from it will only be possible to get a refund.

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