British Art Rock I
|What you learn:
UK - Alan Holdsworth Style
|Teacher: Michael Johnson
Michael: This interactive lesson covers the style of the band UK featuring Alan Holdsworth
(guitar) on their self titled debut album UK (1978). UK was basically a
keyboard-bass-drums trio, but added guitar to avoid sounding to much like
Emerson Lake & Palmer. UK incorporated classical, jazz and rock into their sound
and consisted of Eddie
Jobson (keyboards, violin), John Wetton (bass, vocals), Bill Bruford (drums) and Alan Holdsworth
(guitar). Holdsworth is a master at the guitar incorporating unique phrasing, extended/altered scale patterns and a very legato type sound.
This lesson is going to be challenging for
most of you, but try to take it one guitar lick at a time and use the Riff tools, check out the lesson
Michael: Let's start
with our opening lick.
Michael: You use the
tremolo bar to achieve the slur sound on the first note, here's a video
Lick 1 -
Here's a jam track in B.
Looping Jam 1
You can also use the tremolo bar for the vibrato as well, Alan used all kinds of
interesting techniques to create his unique sound.
appreciate his work you have to see him live!
No kidding, he's amazing, he sounds a
lot like a horn, here's the B Lydian.
Michael: OK here's
our next lick.
transitions for the phrase of this lick, you shift from a B Maj arpeggio,
to A Maj arpeggio, then back to the Lydian. This is a very musical type
line, here's our next
Now this is played over A. Notice the cool whole-tone scale run at the
beginning. I love the sound of that scale in a run! Here's the whole-tone scale
Teacher: You play over the D using the last
lick, here's the jam track.
Looping Jam 2
Alan would use altered scales like this quite a bit. Here's our next
Michael: This is a
common chromatic run using a descending and ascending line. It uses pull-offs
and hammer-ons to get the legato type sound. Here's the jam
These chromatic notes play over the A in this
case, notice how you incorporate slides as
well. Here's our next lick:
I really like this run, you hammer and pull-off using the Bb Phrygian, the open
notes allow you to sound faster when using the hammer/pull-offs. Here's the
jam track in Eb.
Looping Jam 4
This is a common Holdsworth run, here's our next lick.
Here's the jam track.
Michael: Hey thanks Ralph, I give all the credit to listening to Alan Holdsworth all day
8-) This lick basically repeats some of the
themes you played earlier, you have chromatic hammer/pull-off runs and the
Listening is a huge factor!
It is very important, you have to
yourself in the music. Here's the next
This run uses the whole tone scale on a single string, basically using all
Ralph: Very sick
Talk about a great practice exercise, these scales and runs will make your hands
hurt after awhile. Alan Holdsworth has the largest hands! Now, let's put most of these licks
Here's the entire jam track as
Track - Main
See how it all fits together? This is not easy to play, but a great challenge for you.
Just take it a phrase at a time and repeat and slow down using the Riff
Last jam track is very Holdsworthy when you put it all
Thanks, I had fun doing this lesson. UK
actually was responsible for launching Alan career. I remember the first time I
heard the first album from UK and thinking Wow! who is that on
guitar!!! He had such a unique
sound, that struck me right away, his
I loved it as well, you
nailed his phrasing
Hey thanks, this wasn't an easy lesson to pull together, it took some thought.
Ralph: Great job
Thanks, well time to go, it was great
seeing all of you, good
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