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villastrangiato View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Holdsworth's Popularity in Prog Circles
    Posted: November 30 2009 at 21:15
I routinely see people mention the influences of Hackett, Fripp, Gilmour and other well known names in prog rock in general - but rarely see Alan Holdsworth's name come up even though people like Lifeson have readily acknowledged his influence - do people know who this guy is or is the work he did with Bruford too obscure? Also, what's up with the apparent disparity in recognition given to Fripp over Belew. I've been a Crimson fan since Levin joined and I can't understand why Belew hasn't received more attention for both his technical skills and vivid imagination from an acoustical standpoint. I've admired both Fripp and Belew's contributions and the amazing skill they bring to an exciting interaction in live performances - but why doesn't Belew seem to get the respect he deserves as an innovator and inspiring musician?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 21:22
Holdsworth's name is well, more popular in fusion circles really, heh, and he also tends to get a very regular mention on metalguitarist.org, sevenstring.org, and petrucciforum.com (John Petrucci's official forum board).
It's unfortunate not as many people as should be recognize Holdsworth's influence and talents around here.
Personally I think he's a far more expressive solo guitarist than Lifeson, Gilmour or Hackett
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 21:36
I wouldn't say  Holdsworth is  "more expressive" - especially more expressive than Gilmour. After all, that is what Gilmour has been known for throughout his career. Holdsworth technically could probably run circles around Gilmour like Di Meola or McLaughlin. Frankly, in terms of "expression", my biggest problem with Holdsworth over the years has been the lack of structure and coherence in his playing. He tends to take a more freeform jazz oriented approach to soloing - obviously - his focus has been largely jazz.  But some of the sounds he's produced and the execution has been mesmerizing. And Lifeson is no slouch at breathing soul into his playing - anyone who's heard Necromancer  or seen the live version of Bravado from Rio can vouch for that.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 21:45
Originally posted by villastrangiato villastrangiato wrote:

I routinely see people mention the influences of Hackett, Fripp, Gilmour and other well known names in prog rock in general - but rarely see Alan Holdsworth's name come up even though people like Lifeson have readily acknowledged his influence - do people know who this guy is or is the work he did with Bruford too obscure? Also, what's up with the apparent disparity in recognition given to Fripp over Belew. I've been a Crimson fan since Levin joined and I can't understand why Belew hasn't received more attention for both his technical skills and vivid imagination from an acoustical standpoint. I've admired both Fripp and Belew's contributions and the amazing skill they bring to an exciting interaction in live performances - but why doesn't Belew seem to get the respect he deserves as an innovator and inspiring musician?

Nah, I think his work with Soft Machine and Gong are too obscure, not to mention his solo career. Tongue
I'm a little with you on Belew not getting the recognition he should have.  But then again popularity in prog circles isn't all it's cracked up to be.Big smile
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 21:47

Pat Metheny,Santana,Van Halen,,,
A variety of guitar players admit the talent of Holdsworth. And, the performance of Holdsworth might know and the listener always know it to be reformative.

However, he is not rich in a money part.
It worked at the factory of the beer, and the house was rented and it recorded.

He visits well also for Japan where I live and is doing live. However, he sold the guitar to the Japanese instrument shop because he had not had room in money. Three guitars already.

It is felt that it is a misfortune.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 22:00
any 'prog circle' [sounds like something you'd discover in a corn field] that doesn't know or appreciate Holdsworth is no prog circle worth its weight.. I mean c'mon, he was on the first U.K. record fer cryin out loud







   

Edited by Atavachron - November 30 2009 at 22:03
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 22:06
Originally posted by Atavachron Atavachron wrote:

any 'prog circle' [sounds like something you'd discover in a corn field] that doesn't know or appreciate Holdsworth is no prog circle worth its weight.. I mean c'mon, he was on the first U.K. record fer cryin out loud


   


David?  Is that you?  Confused

But yes, agreed.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 22:07
yes it's me..no good?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 22:14
Originally posted by Atavachron Atavachron wrote:

yes it's me..no good?


It's fine, just that this could turn out worse than when Ivan changed his avatar.  Wink
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 22:19
I don't think I'm that popular (at least I hope not )
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 22:31
OMFG...David changed his avatar!
 
Shocked


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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 23:05
I found the pear had a soothing effect. I don't know if I can bear this aggressive chaos.
if you own a sodastream i hate you
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 30 2009 at 23:07
hmm, yes, it is unsettling
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 01 2009 at 00:06
Originally posted by villastrangiato villastrangiato wrote:

I wouldn't say  Holdsworth is  "more expressive" - especially more expressive than Gilmour. After all, that is what Gilmour has been known for throughout his career. Holdsworth technically could probably run circles around Gilmour like Di Meola or McLaughlin. Frankly, in terms of "expression", my biggest problem with Holdsworth over the years has been the lack of structure and coherence in his playing. He tends to take a more freeform jazz oriented approach to soloing - obviously - his focus has been largely jazz.  But some of the sounds he's produced and the execution has been mesmerizing. And Lifeson is no slouch at breathing soul into his playing - anyone who's heard Necromancer  or seen the live version of Bravado from Rio can vouch for that.


Fair enough, but I personally don't consider that "soulful" style of playing to be necessarily more emotive.
Holdsworth may be technically accomplished, but I listen to phrasing, note choice and nuance first and foremost and as far as I'm concerned, Holdsworth has all 3 in spades.
That being said, I'm not particular a huge fusion nut and prefer rock guitarists as such. Think more Guthrie Govan and you're on the money of the stuff I particular enjoy the most when it comes to solo electric guitar.
Guys that can play that Gilmourish slow stuff, but also have the sheer technical command of "shred" techniques are the pinnacle of expression on electric guitar for me personally
And anyway, part of good technique is good vibrato, intonation and bending, and Guthrie IMO is even better than Gilmour in both the bending and vibrato department, although both are equally in tune.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 01 2009 at 01:03
I really like Holdsworth's playing on the debut UK album and Gong's Gazeuse, but apart from those two, find his phrasing, articulation and monotonous timbre elsewhere, very predictable.
 
As for Belew, I agree that he is probably always going to be cast rather unfairly, in the shadow of Fripp. The reasons for this are probably manyfold, but one significant factor is that he lends a more accessible, commercial flavour to Crimson that perhaps some of the hardline Red serfs deem inapropriate or populist ?
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 01 2009 at 02:47
Originally posted by villastrangiato villastrangiato wrote:

I routinely see people mention the influences of Hackett, Fripp, Gilmour and other well known names in prog rock in general - but rarely see Alan Holdsworth's name come up even though people like Lifeson have readily acknowledged his influence - do people know who this guy is or is the work he did with Bruford too obscure?
 
The casual fan does not know who he is.  These are the guys who are convinced that there is no better guitarist out there than the one from their favorite group.  The serious prog fan is aware of him and knows how good he is.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 01 2009 at 08:03
Whenever Holdsworth's activities are too often concentrated on fusion or jazz-fusion related music (ok, UK debut is different), it's nothing strange, that he is not as well-known, or more forgotten, than heavy-prog guitarists or Gilmour. Do you think that now is time for jazz-rock/fusion popularity top? Don't think so. So, I think it's a main reason in Holdsworth case.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2009 at 10:30
Strange nobody above has acknowledged the term 'Holdsworthian' being accepted in the guitar shred lexicon, i.e. for guitarists who adopt Holdsworth's legato, playing at a tangent to a tune's main theme(s), and those fast runs. We've done it before at PA, listing a couple of dozen guitarists who have or still are Holdsworthian, both in the prog and jazz fusion fields, ranging from Francis Dunnery to Frank Gambale .
 
As to "fame", Holdsworth has never gone after this - you only have to attend a concert  and discover the man is uncomfortable by the attention fans put on him and he would much rather be playing perfection (at the end of the show,  you can see in his face that was unobtainable yet again that night). But  fame is also more likely obtained sticking to one genre, but this isn't Holdsworth thing. AND having a publicity machine, e.g. being with one of the big record labels; again the antithesis of Holdsworth. His non-jazz fusion involvement including prog bands & records, can be readily listed: Tempest, UK, Bruford (surely Bruford drifted between jazz rock and Canterbury prog), Soma, K2, Riptyde, Neverwasneverwillbe, Stu Hamm, Jack Bruce (indeed Holdsworth's solo on Bruce's Obsession, is to me emotional perfection  - it takes Gilmour to play the blues before he gets to me), even the metal of Krokus, etc. etc.
 
Holdsworth  paid his dues in the 70's and for what ever reason, ever since been his own man wrt to the music he plays, without gaining the riches - but serious guitarists and serious guitar music fans respect this (Metheny, McLaughlin, Satriani, Van Halen are on record...) and know of him. Because Mojo, Rolling Stone or Classic Rock music media hacks fail to includes his name in their lists of top 100 guitarists, is a reason to doubt the innovation and importance of Holdsworth.
 
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2009 at 11:10
Holdworth the the Godfather of legato shred, which is the style I subscribe to. Eddie Van Halen's style is basically Holdsworth and Clapton + his own tricks and any guitarist who's been around awhile is well aware of Holdsworth.
 
At the same time, some of his stuff is just too soft jazz for me, despite some impressive guitar work.
 
And to punch the same card for the 10000th time. If you like Holdsworth, check out Chris Poland's Ohm.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2009 at 11:33
There was a period in time when he was really pimped on this forum. Things go through trends and bands rise and fall as the centerpieces of discussion.

I actually thought this was going to be a thread asking why he's so revered on this site.
"One had to be a Newton to notice that the moon is falling, when everyone sees that it doesn't fall. "
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