Seminal rock and jazz guitarist
6 August 1946 – 15 April 2017

Holdsworth has been cited as an influence by many renowned rock and jazz guitarists. Frank Zappa once lauded him as “one of the most interesting guys on guitar on the planet“, while Robben Ford has said: “I think Allan Holdsworth is the John Coltrane of the guitar. I don’t think anyone can do as much with the guitar as he can.”

Although he rarely remained a group member for long, his playing enhanced the music of many outstanding groups including Nucleus (1972), Tempest (1973), Soft Machine (1975), (Bill) Bruford (1979) …… discography

His restless soul, a quest for expressing himself through his talent, means that for many he was a difficult man on a personal level, yet it is his playing in performance which marks his true eminence and how he should be remembered.

IndoJazzia is saddened by his passing, but his music will live on, with a short-term boost to album sales. For completists, you are welcome to download a live set from our archives. The recording date is unknown, but this was broadcast on BBC Radio 1, presumably Jazz Club, on 25th May 1980.

Pat Smythe Quintet
Pat Smythe: piano,
Ray Warleigh: alto sax, flute
Allan Holdsworth: guitar
Chris Laurence: bass
John Marshall: drums

1. Letters of Marque (Holdsworth)
2. Announcer (Peter Clayton)
3. Reflection (Smythe)
4. Announcer
5. Out From Under (Holdsworth)
6. Announcer
7. Steppes (Pat Smythe)


Horace Parlan, a hard-bop pianist and composer with an angular yet gospel-infused style heard on albums by luminaries including Charles Mingus, Clark Terry, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Archie Shepp and others, and on numerous releases as a leader from the 1960s through 2000s, died Feb. 23 in Denmark. He was 86, and in recent years had been in a nursing home due to multiple ailments including blindness and diabetes.
fr. Jazz Times

April 2, 1943 – February 19, 2017

1969. Elementary Guitar Solo #5
1975. 11th House (at The Village Gate on November 10th 1975, streamed from Gordon Skene’s site Past Daily.)
1979. Mediterranean Sundance (w. Paco De Lucia, John McLaughlin)
1985. I Want You (Zakir Hussain’s Peshkar)

1994. Solar (Coryell – Vitous 4tet)
2004. Tricycles (w. Paul Wertico & Marc Egan)
2011. The Night Has a Thousand Eyes (w. Kenny Drew, Jr.)

2nd November 1963 –  13th January 2017

It is with great sadness that we have learned of the passing today of Riza Arshad, keyboardist extraordinaire, at the early age of 53.

I first heard his name in 1995 when a student of mine learning English told me that she was learning jazz piano from Riza. We later met on 22nd October at the first Pat Metheny gig in Jakarta, and she told me that Riza was there too, and she gave me a copy of simakDialog’s ‘Sampler Tape’.

It wasn’t until 2008 that I got to meet Riza at the launch of their album Demimasa and was suitably blown away at the blend of free jazz and Sundanese percussion. Following that, I interviewed Riza* through an email exchange, some of which I incorporated in the second edition of Culture Shock! Jakarta.

What came through was his wide musical interests, not just in jazz pianists, and that his “efforts [were] devoted for the growth of jazz in Indonesia.” He was the curator of Serambi Jazz at Goethe Haus in Jakarta, a bi-monthly gig “featuring loads of talented musicians that have always dedicated their lives to music.”

Away from simakDialog, Riza recorded a number of albums which demonstrated his willingness to spread his musical wings.

Riza played accordion on Ubiet’s Kroncong Tenggara (’07), around the same time that he was playing ‘subtle fusion’ with Trioscapes, with Arie Ayunir, the first drummer in simakDialog, later replaced by Aksan Sjuman, and Yance Manusama on bass.

Riza was a link with the early jazz generation – he felt honoured to play with Bubi Chen – and was a mentor to the next.

There was W/H/A/T with Sandy Winarta, Sri Hanuraga, Riza Arshad and Indrawan Tjhin. “I think it’s natural and normal that we like to work with the young stars. They have high energy, high idealism and are amazing with their instruments.

Later, with Tuslah (yet to release an album), with Sri Hanuraga, Elfa Zulham and Adra Karim, he was playing music of outstanding quality. Riza told me after one of their gigs that he was very happy playing with younger musicians because he felt energised by them.

IndoJazzia offers condolences to Riza’s immediate family and his many friends who are immensely saddened by his premature passing.

In his memory, we offer simakDialog’s ‘Sample Tape’ from 1995.

1 Time Has Changed
2. On The Way Home
#1, 2 by Riza Arshad
3. Conscience
4. Remember
#3, 4 by Tohpati
Download from here.

*Note: Read Jazzuality’s interview from 2010 here

Terry Collins on behalf of IndoJazzia.

Jean-Baptiste Frédéric Isidor, Baron Thielemans, commonly known as Toots Thielemans, died in his sleep yesterday (22nd). He was 94, and retired from performing two years ago.

He is best known for popularising the harmonica as a jazz instrument, although his one ‘hit’ was Bluesette on which he played guitar and whistled.

He performed and recorded with Benny Goodman, Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Oscar Peterson, Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones, Pat Metheny, Jaco Pastorius, Stephane Grappelli, J.J. Johnson, Bill Evans, Shirley Horn, Joe Pass, Paul Simon,  Billy Joel ….

Seminal jazz musician Ireng Maulana died early yesterday morning of a heart attack aged 71.

He was raised in a musical family: his father was a guitar player and his mother a piano playing singer. His love of jazz, shared with his elder brother Kiboud, who passed away in June last year, probably came from their bass playing uncle Tjok Sinsoe who was active in the 50’s and 60’s jazz scene.

In 1960, aged 16, with his brother Kiboud, he joined Joes & His Band; they played at music festivals, which served as ‘competitions’ and they occasionally won.

Then, in 1963, he joined Eka Sapta which also featured Benny Mustapha, Bing Slamet, Idris Sardi and Eddy Tulis.  This popular band played at the Hotel des Indes, the high end hotel popular as a venue in pre-war Batavia. They were also regular backing musicians for singers such as Titiek Puspa, and featured on many recordings.

Ireng had a prolific career in writing and producing songs through to at least 2005, most notably with Margie Segers.

In 1978, he founded the group Ireng Maulana All Stars with, among others, Benny Likumahuwa, (trombone), Hendra Wijaya (piano), Maryono (saxophone), Benny Mustapha (drums), Karim Test (trumpet), Roni, (bass) and himself on guitar and banjo.

Later he established Ireng Maulana Associates which promoted jazz music and was responsible for the first International jazz festival in Indonesia, JakJazz ’88 held at Ancol.

More recently the ‘Largest International Jazz Festival in Asia’, now known as Java Jazz, has been organised by the Gontha family, and JakJazz has promoted gigs at various smaller venues throughout Jakarta.

The passing of Ireng is especially sad as that is one more broken link with the senior generation of Indonesian jazz musicians. Yesterday was the last night of Java Jazz 2016, and it seemed appropriate that a group of Indonesian All Stars was due to play. Among the senior jazzers were Benny Likumahuwa, Benny Mustafa, Oele Pattiselano, Jopie Item, Jeffrey Tahalele, and Margie Segers, and they paid their respects with their playing.

This is the generation which has inspired and mentored those musicians who are now beginning to make waves on the international jazz scene. Pak Ireng will be missed.

Mad Rotter has many albums featuring Ireng available for download here.

A genuine jazz visionary

In the final reckoning, the influence of Paul Bley over the last 50 years of jazz – and it continues – will be enormous….

“Deeply original and aesthetically aggressive, Mr. Bley long ago found a way to express his long, elegant, voluminous thoughts in a manner that implies complete autonomy from its given setting but isn’t quite free jazz.

The music runs on a mixture of deep historical knowledge and its own inviolable principles.”

News that British jazz pianist, composer, teacher, and mentor extraordinaire died aged 72 of a heart attack on Friday night while playing at Saveurs Jazz Festival fills us with sadness.

His discography dates back to the late sixties, a time of free-form improvisatory sounds in the London jazz scene. In the early seventies, this began to merge with the ‘Canterbury Scene‘ and became jazz-fusion with such groups as Soft Machine, National Health and Ian Carr’s Nucleus.

For some, John Taylor was first noticed when he recorded for the ECM label as a sidesman on Jan Garbarek’s Places (1977) and Photo with Blue Sky, White Cloud, Wires, Windows and a Red Roof (1978). But then there was the trilogy of albums by Azimuth, with the trumpeter Kenny Wheeler, a Canadian long resident in the UK, and the incomparable singer Norma Winstone both of whom had emerged in the sixties.

It says much about Taylor’s personality that although his playing was integral as a sidesman, he also gave space to each member of his own groups. He had a northern European sensitivity, and every recording of his, and that includes the many shows that have been unofficially released as bootlegs and/or videos, demonstrates that he was not so much an entertainer as an explorer of his instrument, a true artist and a natural fit with ECM whose artists have a similar integrity and desire to let their chosen instruments speak for them, to us.

That he never came to Indonesia is of little matter now. After all, we have YouTube to offer such delights as this one ….

Thank you, John.