The Abingdon Chasp
"The Abingdon Chasp" is a tune first released on Bruford's "One Of A Kind". Later, an early demo version would be released on "Tales From The Vault".
“Usually I have an idea for the title of a piece first, before composing the music. The Abingdon Chasp was an exception to this approach. The piece had been sitting around for a long time without a title. In my travels seeking out fine ales, friends and I would frequently drive many miles to Oxforshire to a Morland house - that is a pub which exclusively serves ale from the Morland brewery - which is located in the small town of Abingdon. Morland was one of the best ales available in that part of the country. The Morland trademark is a little fellow holding an artist's paintbrush in one hand. In the other hand he holds a glass of Morland ale, which he is studying carefully. Often in England, guys are called chaps, and after they've had a few pints, "chaps" might be pronounced "Chasp." Hence, the Morland brewery trademark came to be known as "The Abingdon Chasp." | named the tune after that fictional character who lives on the walls and signs of Morland houses - it was written at a time when friends and I would drive a long way to taste the Abingdon Chasp's brew.” (Reaching for the uncommon chord, p. 30)
"The Abingdon Chasp" was originally written for a potential Allan Holdsworth solo project for the British Label, Virgin records. Allan first recorded the demo track with Bill Bruford, Dave Stewart, french bassist Francis Moze, and his long-time friend, saxophonist Ray Warleigh. Several months later Bill Bruford formed the band Bruford. Bill said he would like to include "The Abingdon Chasp" for the group's album project, One Of A Kind. Bruford, Stewart, and Jeff Berlin played on the second version with Allan. "On the original track," Allan remembered, "there was a great sax solo in the middle where my guitar solo is in the Bruford version." (Reaching for the uncommon chord, p. 30)