Answering readers’ questions, the troubadour recalls inspiring meetings with Neil Young, Fiona Apple and David Chase – and reveals his new music with Burt Bacharach

Best gig ever: 3.30 in the morning, sun coming up, watching from the front as you played to an uninterested crowd at Oxford’s Trinity College May ball, 1981. You must have thought you’d sold your soul to the devil. kiwisimmo

The fee was good and we needed new amplifiers. I remember lots of “girls” – as they might have called them in an upper-class novel – being sick in the bushes and people tearing around in outfits. They made the mistake of giving us rooms and free champagne. Pete [Thomas], our drummer, was an enthusiastic drinker in those days and took off into the night wearing a gown and a tiara.

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