I had been living in Bergen for a very short time when my friend Vegard Nørstebø told me that the local student radio station, Studentradioen i Bergen, were interviewing - and that they were looking for engineers. Studentradioen was an all volunteer radio station - the only paid members were the editors - and I had background from Radio Ung in Trondheim, both as an engineer and a DJ, so I thought it sounded like a good idea. Vegard had already been working there for some time (we had both background from Radio Ung) and was enjoying it, so I saw it as a great way for me to get to meet people as well. I was able to join them, and among the shows I was the engineer for was Plog (the norwegian word for Plow - the noun, not the verb). Plog was an eclectic music program, drawing heavily from traditional music from all over the world - I envision the name as an indication that the music was whatever turned up after one had plowed all corners of the earth. It was hosted by cantankerous Thomas Ekrene - at least he appeared cantankerous to me initially - and I have to admit that I was a little afraid of him. After the show was over, both of us would walk separately down to the bus terminal, get on the same bus (still separately), and take it to Fantoft Studentby, where we both would walk separately to our rooms. Except his room turned out to be right next to me - and he was the guy who had been playing ZZ Top when I first moved in.
After a few weeks of walking separately to the same bus and then the neighboring dorm rooms, we finally started talking to one another. How it happened I don't remember, but the endresult was that we became fast friends - we played together in ad hoc bands assembled for Christmas parties and we eventually became roommates. And in the midst of all this, Thomas introduced me to Richard Thompson, the spectacular British guitarplayer who is a "musician's musician," one who rarely gets the acknowledgment he deserves by the general public, but who is revered by musicians in a variety of genres. The first song I heard was Shoot Out The Lights, and the first album I heard was You? Me? Us?, an ambitious double album produced by Mitchell Froom featuring an electric disk (voltage enhanced) and one acoustic disk (nude). The first Richard Thompson album I bought was Watching The Dark, a 3-cd set stretching from 1988 back to his beginning in a British folk-rock band called Fairport Convention. Among the songs from that time was a song written by Richard Thompson and Dave Swarbrick, Now Be Thankful, a beautiful ballad that seems to be a fitting song for Thanksgiving.