As one of the most unique and respected guitarists in the world, Allan Holdsworth has influenced countless others, including legendary artists. If you’re a wee bit confused, you’re in luck because Holdsworth explains it all in the video. In the process, he identifies 10 “really usable scales”. Well, Allan Holdsworth not only mastered horn-like phrasing and tone, but he managed to do it whether he used Gibsons, Fenders, Charvels.

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You turn the amp down, and we turn it up in the control room.

I often get into problems if I try to think ahead. I throw them in a suitcase, and off I go. Allan Holdsworth Interview with Guitar Player. As identifiable as Holdsworth’s reedy lead tone is, his expansive clean tone is just as much a signature.

I felt my improvising during that time was okay, and I’d occasionally hear stuff that I’d never played before. To get anywhere near that ideal with a plank of wood and six strings is a Herculean task, because guitarists don’t have the steady stream of wind that a horn player uses to nimbly deliver lines that dance across measures with an Astaire-like grace.


Do you feel such a high level of self-criticism has helped you evolve your playing, or has it hampered you? For the lead sound, I just use the Lead One preset, and I have five different patches with varying degrees of gain that I’ll cycle through on any given night. And even though Holdsworth hates live recordings, there is holdssworth better setting to hear a modern master at work. I don’t know if they were paranoid about them being stolen or what, but I’ve worked in studios where people have been fired for moving mics.


We were going to record two nights.

Sometimes, I make the most progress when I haven’t touched the guitar for weeks. We were working with an incredible engineer named Bruce Botnick, and he was great at understanding exactly what I was looking for. I try to play every day, but it may only be for 15 minutes. I don’t know what it’s like for everybody else. Now, Carvin and I are in the process of making a headless version of my signature model, because I really like the way the headless guitar hangs on me. By that time, most engineers had come around to recording a loud amplifier.

Most of them are gideo composers such as Ravel, Debussy, Stravinsky, Copland, and Bartok—particularly his string quartets. I never sit with it for long periods of time unless I’m recording.

Are you getting more comfortable with your huge influence on modern guitar? Things haven’t changed a whole lot.

Allan Holdsworth – REH Instructional

It tears me up. So rather than predicting any particular motion with my fingers during warm up exercises, I’ll just wiggle them in hot water until they’re loose.

Couple that with the fact there are hundreds of bootlegs of my gigs out there, so it’s like, why bother? I can’t empty my head.


REH Video (Instructional) – a Video release by ALLAN HOLDSWORTH artist / band

I like talking to the fans, but, before the gig, I start thinking more about their concerns, rather than my own. Newer Post Older Post Home. Actually, I learned that really vifeo on. This is because I already know I don’t know what I’m going to do! I start with a hairy sound, give it a shave, and see what’s left.

I’m happy with my sound to a certain extent, but you get frustrated a lot easier the older you get, and you grow weary of the chase. Hopefully, I motivated some players enough for them to move the guitar forward and take it to yet another level.

Distortion gets in the way. It can do both.

Allan Holdsworth – Guitar Instructional Video (1992)

I’ve always insturctional this sound—and I can hear it in my head, which is a good thing—where I’ve got all the sustain and beef one gets with a dirty sound, but without all the crud you have to deal with. I haven’t toured the States for more than ten years.

Then, three hours later, I’ll pick it up again for another 20 minutes.