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Allan Holdsworth & Gordon Beck — With a Heart in My Song (1988)

Allan Holdsworth & Gordon Beck — With a Heart in My Song (1988)

 Allan Holdsworth & Gordon Beck — With a Heart in My Song
»   British guitarist with a liquid sound and a two–handed attack that influenced future tapping specialists from Stanley Jordan to Eddie Van Halen.
Born: 6 August 1946, Bradford, West Yorkshire, England
Notable instruments: SynthAxe
Location: California
Genre: Fusion / Free Jazz
Album release: 1988
Recording date: May, 1988 — June, 1988
Record Label: JMS
Duration:     40:37
Tracks:
01. Equus     7:15
02. 54, Duncan Terrace     5:14
03. Ain’t No Grief     8:13
04. With A Heart In My Song     6:17
05. 999     4:23
06. Sundays     3:57
07. So, So, Calypso     5:31
Musicians:
»   Guitar, SynthAxe — Allan Holdsworth
»   Keyboards — Gordon Beck
Written by:
»   Gordon Beck     1, 3, 4, 5, 7
»   Allan Holdsworth     2, 6
Credits:
♠   Gordon Beck Composer, Keyboards, Performer
♠   David Coralnick Photography
♠   Thierry Dargent  Project Coordinator
♠   Laurent de la Croix Cover Design, Design
♠   Cécile Hicot Cover Design, Design
♠   Allan Holdsworth Composer, Engineer, Guitar, Mixing, Performer, Producer, Synthesizer
»   Gordon James Beck (16 September 1936 — 6 November 2011) was an English jazz pianist.
»   Beck was born in Brixton, London, and attended Pinner County Grammar School — the school Reg Dwight (Elton John) and Simon Le Bon would later attend. He studied piano in his youth, but decided to go into a career as an engineering technical draughtsman. Largely self–taught, he returned to music after spending time in Canada where he was exposed to the works of George Shearing and Dave Brubeck.
»   He joined the Tubby Hayes group in 1962 back in England he and later formed his own trio, made up of Tony Oxley, Jeff Clyne, and himself. From 1969 to 1972 he toured with Phil Woods’s European Rhythm Machine. He was a member of Nucleus during 1972–74 and after that formed the group Gyroscope.
»   He also recorded albums with Allan Holdsworth, Henri Texier, Didier Lockwood and others.
Review
By Jim Ferguson, jazztimes.com
♠   Recorded in 1988 and originally issued on vinyl, this album features Holdsworth on the Synthaxe guitar synthesizer and Beck on keyboards. But despite the electronic trappings, it’s fairly easy to distinguish one instrument from the other since Holdsworth’s characteristically long legato lines, frequently horn section–like comping, and volume swells contrast markedly with Beck’s fluent tinkling on keys. Nevertheless, the two approaches fit together like hand in glove.
♣   While the program (comprising seven originals) is relatively short by today’s standards, the quality of the music more than makes up for it. “Equus” is a fluid, bright–tempoed workout rife with highly musical interaction between the two voices, while the ballad “54 Duncan Terrace” sports rich, sustained harmonies and shimmering melodic phrases. “999” and “Sundays” are solo vehicles for keyboard and guitar, respectively. The former grooves in a robotic kind of way with the help of an active percussion sequence and is very different in mood from the latter, which is almost funereal as it begins eerily and then transforms into a somber hymn. In all, this reissue provides a nostalgic look back at the work of two of the ‘80s’ most creative technocratic improvisers.
Personal life:
♠   Holdsworth has lived in California permanently since the early 1980s, and often mentions cycling as one of his favourite pastimes. He is also a keen aficionado of beer, with a particular fondness for Northern English cask ale. Such is his taste for ale that he went as far as experimenting with brewing his own in the 1990s and inventing a specialised beer pump named “The Fizzbuster” which, in his own words, creates “a beautiful creamy head”. Holdsworth became a grandfather in December 2010 when his daughter Louise gave birth to a baby girl named Rori.
Solo albums:
Studio
♠   1976: Velvet Darkness
♠   1982: I.O.U.
♠   1983: Road Games (EP)
♠   1985: Metal Fatigue
♠   1986: Atavachron
♠   1987: Sand
♠   1989: Secrets
♠   1992: Wardenclyffe Tower
♠   1993: Hard Hat Area
♠   1996: None Too Soon
♠   2000: The Sixteen Men of Tain
♠   2001: Flat Tire: Music for a Non–Existent Movie
♠   2005: The Best of Allan Holdsworth: Against the Clock (compilation)
♠   2015: Tales from the Vault (previously unreleased material)
Collaborations:
♠   1980: The Things You See, with Gordon Beck
♠   1988: With a Heart in My Song, with Gordon Beck
♠   1990: Truth in Shredding, with Frank Gambale/The Mark Varney Project
♠   1996: Heavy Machinery, with Jens Johansson and Anders Johansson
♠   2009: Blues for Tony, with Alan Pasqua, Chad Wackerman and Jimmy Haslip (live double album)
Website: http://www.therealallanholdsworth.com/
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Allan Holdsworth & Gordon Beck — With a Heart in My Song (1988)

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