Exposé Online banner

Kevin Ferguson — Strad to Strat
(Debone Music CLCS795, 1995, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1996-03-01

Strad to Strat Cover art

An impressive effort, bringing the compositions of Paganini, Wieniawski, Vivaldi, Bach, Sarasate, and Rimsky-Korsakov from the realm of violins, string quartets, and orchestras to the world of the solo electric guitar – well, almost solo. Ferguson is from the Portland, Oregon area, and plays his '74 Stratocaster live with only synth orchestrations backing him up. Amazingly, he has tackled Paganini's complete violin concerto #1 – all three movements, no small feat by any means. His choice of material on the other tracks is equally compelling: Bach's violin concerto no. 1, part of Vivaldi's "Four Seasons," and "Zigeunerweisen" by Pablo Sarasate are among the album's eighteen tracks. At first listen I was a little annoyed by the orchestrations, and found myself wishing for some bass and drums, but after a few listens it became clear that Ferguson is not trying to take the music out of a classical context and into a rock format (a la Mastermind), but instead retaining the classical identity and merely substituting his stratocaster for the solo violin. With that he has succeeded impressively. Maybe next time he'll tackle Offenbach's Gaîté Parisienne. I'm waiting!


Filed under: New releases, Issue 9, 1995 releases

Related artist(s): Kevin Ferguson

Latest news

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart $amp; Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more

2017-09-06
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more

2017-08-22
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Electric Orange - Electric Orange – Although this is a new release, Dirk Jan Muller and company (aka Electric Orange) have faithfully turned the clock back almost 25 years, trapped in time around 1970. Indeed, this album evokes the...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues