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Allan Holdsworth, RIP

Guitarist Allan Holdsworth passed away on April 16th, 2017, the news from a post by one of his daughters on Facebook. Uniquely talented, I would steer anyone to Gong's Gazeuse! album for a prime example of his guitar technique. When I was a teenager, I went to my local record shop (Spec's Music) and asked if they had Holdsworth's Velvet Darkness album, or if they could order it for me. The manager said to me, "He's pretty good guitarist, how do you know about him?" I replied that I had a Soft Machine and Gong album that he played on.

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Esoteric set to reissue Patto catalog

Esoteric Recordings are set to reissue the entire Patto catalog, with a load of bonus material; SPOILER ALERT:

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Thirty-Three Essential Progressive Rock Albums

Essential: 33 Progressive Rock Albums
1. The Nice – The Thoughts Of Emerlist DavJack (Immediate 1967)
2. Soft Machine – Volume Two (Probe 1969)
3. Colosseum – Those Who Are About To Die Salute You (Vertigo 1969)
4. Jethro Tull – Stand Up (Reprise 1969)
5. King Crimson – In The Court Of The Crimson King (An Observation By King Crimson) (EG 1969)
6. The Pretty Things – Parachute (Harvest 1970)
7. Caravan – In The Land of Grey And Pink (Deram 1971)
8. Atomic Rooster – In Hearing Of (Elektra 1971)
9. Van der Graaf Generator – Pawn Hearts (Charisma 1971)

John Wetton, RIP

John Wetton has passed away after a lengthy battle with cancer. I had the honor of interviewing him via phone last summer, an interview that will feature prominently in the next edition of the book. Here's the portrait that Plastic Crimewave drew for it and an excerpt from my interview:

John spent the next few years in King Crimson as part of the monster rhythm section with Bill Bruford.

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Jaki Liebezeit, RIP

From Can's Facebook page: "It is with great sadness we have to announce that Jaki passed away this morning from sudden pneumonia. He fell asleep peacefully, surrounded by his loved ones. We will miss him hugely."

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The Strawberry Bricks Guide to Progressive Rock

Revised and Expanded edition, coming April 22, 2017!

Yes inducted to Hall Of Fame

Today, it was announced that the "Union Tour" lineup of Yes will be inducted this year to the Rock-N-Roll Hall Of Fame. Jon Anderson, Bill Bruford, Steve Howe, Tony Kaye, Trevor Rabin, Chris Squire, Rick Wakeman and Alan White will get the honors, Squire of course, posthumously. No mention of Peter Banks, their original guitarist who also gave the band their name, as well as the Buggle duo of Trevor Horn and Geoff Downes, and keyboardist Patrick Moraz.

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Greg Lake, RIP

Greg Lake lost his battle with cancer yesterday, December 7th, at age 69. RIP, Moonchild.
"Yesterday, December 7th, I lost my best friend to a long and stubborn battle with cancer. Greg Lake will stay in my heart for ever, as he has always been. His family would be grateful for privacy during this time of their grief. Many thanks, Stewart Young"

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Gilli Smyth, RIP

From Orlando Allen's Facebook page:

RIP, Roye Albrighton of Nektar

From Nektar member Derek "Mo" Moore,

"Nektar guitarist Roye Albrighton dies after a long illness.
It is with a heavy Heart I have to report that our music brother Roye Albrighton,after a long illness, died last night in Poole Dorset. His organs just gave out on him. He was fighting against the infection that grasped him until he could fight no more.