Richard Thompson’s “1952 Vincent Black Lightning” tells the story of a boy, a girl, and a very special motorcycle. While motorcycle activists, who get outraged at any portrayal of motorcyclists as something other than fine, upstanding citizens, will undoubtedly bristle at the lead character being a criminal who’s “fought with the law since [he] was seventeen,” the love story that this trio shares should resonate with any motorcyclist: “Says James, in my opinion, there’s nothing in this world/Beats a 52 Vincent and a red headed girl.” Add in Thompson’s incredibly complex folk guitar picking style, and you have a prescription for a classic motorcycle song worthy of runner up status in a top ten list.
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