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My Guitar

Read "My Guitar" reviewed by Jeff Fitzgerald, Genius

This Christmas marked a very important anniversary in the history of Your Own Personal Genius. Thirty years ago, I received a gift that would change the course of my life forever: a Korean-made Starforce Strat-copy guitar, along with a small Fender practice amp. I got with it a small book of basic blues scales, plus 12-bar ...

ARTICLE: EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Woodstock—Back to the Garden: 50th Anniversary Experience

Read "Woodstock—Back to the Garden: 50th Anniversary Experience" reviewed by John Kelman

First things first. For all but the most committed of fans, knowledge of what transpired, how it transpired and when it transpired at the now-legendary 1969 Woodstock Music & Arts Fair has, despite a variety of initial, 25th and 40th Anniversary audio and video releases, been severely limited. As engaging, entertaining and well-constructed as these various ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Soft Machine: Hidden Details

Read "Hidden Details" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Hidden Details celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of Soft Machine's 1968 eponymous debut, a seismic event in the British psychedelic, jazz and rock music landscapes that still reverbates as the Canterbury scene/sound. This anniversary studio celebration also brought about Soft Machine's first tour of North America since 1974, with several 2018 shows featuring Gary Husband as guest ...

Big Bands, Orchestras and Soft Machines

Read "Big Bands, Orchestras and Soft Machines" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Randy Brecker & NDR Bigband
Rocks
Piloo Records & Productions LLC
2019

The easiest answer isn't always the best answer, but sometimes it is. So it's both easy and proper to point out that trumpet and flugelhorn master, composer, and bandleader Randy Brecker was kind enough ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

Gov't Mule at Red Rocks

Read "Gov't Mule at Red Rocks" reviewed by Geoff Anderson

Gov't Mule
Red Rocks
Denver, CO
September 14, 2018

Many musicians like to collect instruments. Certainly guitarists collect guitars. Pat Metheny is a case in point. Over the years he has added a synth-guitar as well as the exotic 42 string Pikasso guitar to his recordings and live performances. Not ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Soft Machine: Hidden Details

Read "Hidden Details" reviewed by John Kelman

Following a series of releases for Moonjune Records under the moniker Soft Machine Legacy, beginning with 2005's Live in Zaandam and concluding, most recently, with 2013's Burden of Proof, this quartet consisting largely of members from the classic Canterbury group Soft Machine has finally decided to drop the “Legacy" and go it with the original name ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Travis & Fripp: Between the Silence

Read "Between the Silence" reviewed by John Kelman

Having reformed in 2013 with its distinctive three-drummer frontline and hitting the road for the first time in over a decade the following year, King Crimson's guitarist/keyboardist and only remaining original member Robert Fripp is another example of a musician in his senior years maintaining a more active schedule than, perhaps, at any other time in ...

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

John Kelman's Best Releases of 2017

Read "John Kelman's Best Releases of 2017" reviewed by John Kelman

For those who may have noticed, there have been no best of lists coming from yours truly since 2014; sadly, the chronic health problem that has reduced my previous writing pace to a crawl continues without much respite. My best of the year lists have always been predicated upon having reviewed the releases chosen, and with ...

Guitars on Three Continents

Read "Guitars on Three Continents" reviewed by Geno Thackara

Gonzalo Esteybar
One Look
River Flow Records
2017

Even when you can glean a lot from a first glance, it still usually means just scratching the surface. Gonzalo Esteybar knows his way around the instrument enough to have studied in Robert Fripp's Guitar Circle and repeatedly toured with its ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Theo Travis: Open Air

Read "Open Air" reviewed by John Kelman

It's been a very busy decade for Theo Travis. The British reed/woodwind multi-instrumentalist has appeared, to varying degrees, on literally every album that Steven Wilson has released since turning to a solo career in 2009--from Insurgentes and 2011's Grace for Drowning (Kscope), through 2013's best-selling The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories), 2015's commercial ...