Allan Holdsworth BBC sessions

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Allan recorded a number of sessions with various groups for the BBC. This is a listing of known sessions that have not been officially released. In addition, recordings made by Tempest, Soft Machine, John Stevens and Bruford for the BBC have been officially released, and are listed under the Allan Holdsworth Discography. Dates for these sessions have not been 100% confirmed. Details on the BBC sessions can be found at

Allan Holdsworth/Ray Warleigh Quintet (1974)

Sounds of Jazz, BBC Radio
9th June 1974

Presented by Dave Gelly

1. Paris Thoughts (Allan Holdsworth)
2. New Dawn (Pat Smythe)
3. Kinder (Allan Holdsworth)
4. Plummet Airlines (Allan Holdsworth)

Allan Holdsworth (electric and acoustic guitar, violin)
Ray Warleigh (alto saxophone, alto flute)
Pat Smythe (piano)
Ron Mathewson (bass guitar)
Bryan Spring (drums)

This session is notable as it contains two original Holdsworth compositions not found on any officially released album. "Paris Thoughts" is also notable as it contains a violin intro where Allan displays considerable skills for a self-proclaimed amateur. This is also the first known recording of "Kinder".

Pat Smythe and Allan Holdsworth Quartet (1977)

"Sounds of Jazz"
August 14, 1977

Allan Holdsworth: Guitar
Pat Smythe: Piano
Ron Mathewson: Bass
Martin Drew: Drums

1. Forever Until Sunday (Bill Bruford)
2. Wayley Wayley/The Water is Wide (Scottish trad.)
3. Drumbilical Cord (Martin Drew)
4. Kibby Fowler (Allan Holdsworth?)

Pat Smythe and Allan Holdsworth Quartet (1978)

"Sounds of Jazz"
November 26, 1978

Allan Holdsworth: Guitar
Pat Smythe: Piano
Darryl Runswick: Bass
Harold Fisher: Drums

1. Questar (Keith Jarrett)
2. Smatter (Kenny Wheeler)
3. What Am I Doing With You? (Pat Smythe)
4. White Line (Allan Holdsworth)

This contains an early version of "White Line", which would later be recorded for "I.O.U." Another early version from around the same time is found on the "Sherwood Forest Demos" with Jack Bruce and Jon Hiseman.

Holdsworth & Co. (1979)

"Jazz In Britain"
November 14, 1979

Allan Holdsworth: Guitar
Gordon Beck: Piano
Ray Warleigh: Alto/soprano Saxophone
John Aue: Bass
John Marshall: Drums

1. The Things You See (When You Haven't Got A Gun) (Allan Holdsworth)
2. Every Little Breeze (Allan Holdsworth)
3. Sunday (Allan Holdsworth)

"The Things You See" would ultimately be recorded on "I.O.U." "Every Little Breeze" is an overdubbed guitar duet, dedicated the recent birth of Allan's daughter Louise. "Sunday" features material found in the U.K. song "Nevermore".

Ian Carr’s Conversation With The Blues (1980)

March 17, 1980

Ian Carr: Trumpet
Allan Holdsworth: Guitar
Brian Smith & Tim Whitehead: Sax/Flute
Geoff Castle: Keyboards
Chucho Merchan: Bass
Nic France: Drums
Chris Fletcher: Percussion

1. Conversation With The Blues 1
2. Conversation With The Blues 2
3. Sidewalk

Pat Smythe Quintet (1980)

May 25, 1980

Allan Holdsworth: Guitar
Pat Smythe: Piano
Ray Warleigh: Alto saxophone, Flute
Chris Laurence: Bass
John Marshall: Drums

1. Letters of Marque (Allan Holdsworth)
2. Reflection (Pat Smythe)
3. Out from Under (Holdsworth/Steve Robinson)
4. Steppes (Smythe)

I.O.U. (1981)

"Jazz In Britain"
October 20, 1981

Allan Holdsworth: Guitar
Paul Carmichael: Bass
Gary Husband: Drums, piano

1. White Line (Allan Holdsworth)
2. Shallow Sea (Intro) (Allan Holdsworth)
3. Where Is One? (Allan Holdsworth)
4. Prayer (Gary Husband)/Drifting Into The Attack (Allan Holdsworth)
5. Letters Of Marque (Allan Holdsworth)

Paul Williams was unable to attend this date, reportedly due to being overseas at the time. All these versions are therefore instrumentals, but very close stylistically to the ones that appeared on the "I.O.U." album. "Prayer" is a Gary Husband composition and piano solo that was a regular part of the band's set list at the time.

Gordon Beck Quartet with Allan Holdsworth (1981)

December 2, 1981

Allan Holdsworth: Guitar
Gordon Beck: Piano
Jeff Clyne: Bass
Gary Husband: Drums

1. Diminished Responsibility (Allan Holdsworth).
2. Sans Melodie Too (Gordon Beck).
3. For C.W. (Gordon Beck).