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

2017-05-19
First ProgStock Festival Set for October – October 2017 will see the inaugural edition of a festival called ProgStock in Rahway, New Jersey at the Union County Performing Arts Center. With a definite slant towards neo-progressive music, the event is sure to please many fans with the inclusion of such artists as Echolyn, Glass Hammer, and Aisles. The festival will take place October 13-15. » Read more

2017-05-05
Clive Brooks RIP – Word reaches us today of another sad passing in the music world. Drummer Clive Brooks, best known as a member of such Canterbury bands as Egg, Uriel / Arzachel, and Groundhogs, has died at the age of 67. Details are sketchy at this point. The news was reported on Nick Mason's Facebook page — Brooks was Mason's drum tech. » Read more

2017-05-02
Col. Bruce Hampton RIP – The phrase "He died doing what he loved" is almost a cliche, but in the case of Col. Bruce Hampton, it couldn't be more true. Hampton, who was born Gustav Berglund III, collapsed on stage at his own 70th birthday celebration and later passed away. The event took place at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. » Read more

2017-04-16
ProgDay 2017 Announces First Bands – Flor de Loto, Sonar, and Infinien are the first three performers to be announced for the 2017 edition of the long-running ProgDay Festival. The 23rd ProgDay takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. » Read more

2017-04-16
Allan Holdsworth RIP – Surely in the list of artists who have contributed to the sound of modern music, there is a special spot for guitarist Allan Holdsworth. His name is known to virtually every student of the instrument in jazz and rock, and his style has been so widely emulated that it's hardly worth mentioning anymore — we can just assume that every guitarist has Holdsworth as an influence. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Trygve Seim - Sangam – If there was ever a time for a new jazz icon, composer and saxophonist Trygve Seim surely fits that bill. His ensemble's well received performance at the 2007 Portland Jazz Festival was a jaw-dropper,...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues