Offline Rob S

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Andy Powell
« on: October 15, 2013, 10:27:51 AM »
No surprises that I should bring this gentleman to the table I suppose? Anyone who knows anything of my taste in music will be rather less than surprised that I should mention him in passing.
However..... I am concentrating on him alone here, not the band.
When I first heard Wishbone Ash, it was on what was to become a much quoted John Peel Show. It was the band's first Radio One airing and Peel made the immortal comment "I have not been so relatively impressed by a young band in quite a while". Obviously what initially caught my ear was the use of what was to become the trademark harmony guitar work, but there was something else, it was their sound.
I had never heard anyone produce such a warm, organic, clean sound before, yes there was some distortion in there, but of a sort that I had never knowingly heard before. There was a glorious growl to the guitars, it was a sound that I was to spend many a year trying to replicate with varying degrees of success. The other thing that few realised at the time, was that Andy Powell was actually playing a Home Made Guitar, as was Martin Turner, The Bass Player.
I waited, but not that long admittedly, and then the magic happened, Wishbone Ash made their first appearance on The Old Grey Whistle Test, the only changes that had happened were that Martin Turner now sported a Rickie Bass and Andy Powell had literally just got the Flying Vee. Their second album "Pilgrimage" was about to be released, so we were treated to two tracks, "Vas Dis" Opened and what an opener, thanks to youtube, here is that very broadcast.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/Ia73dAETiGk" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/Ia73dAETiGk</a>

They then closed with "Jailbait"

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/wsdXh8eBcts" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/wsdXh8eBcts</a>

Just listen to that Flying Vee !! That was THE guitar sound that was to become my eternal quest.

The band went on to become a very major force and it says a lot that Andy Powell is still out there with W.A. some 40 years on, in fact, they are touring the UK right now, tonight (Tuesday) finds them at the Stables at Milton Keynes.... coff coff.

As the band's stature grew, so did Andy's guitar playing. Listen to "Throw Down The Sword" from their 3rd Album "Argus" and tell me that it didn't move you? It completely blew me away, only for it to bettered (some may disagree) when it was captured and released on the band's first Live album "Live Dates".
By this time, Andy's style was changing, he had become very influenced by Richard Thompson's playing and it showed as he started to develop a very fine Hybrid Picking style, something that highlights his playing to this day.

Many years have passed, Wishbone Ash now has Andy as the sole original member and still the albums keep coming out. He still has retained "that" sound that first caught me, though these days it is produced with the aide of a pedal or two, as he commented in a recent issue of Guitarinteractive whilst being interviewed by Mike Casswell, playing smaller venues these days means that the amps can't have the volume they once did, so now a pedal or two compensates. But.... believe me, when the twin guitar assault starts, the one thing that hits you right between the eyes is TONE!

Here is a more recent concert, listen to that Flying Vee go!!

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/0MqXb5n5Kvk" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/0MqXb5n5Kvk</a>

I will be mentioning others whom have been in the band as this thread grows (hopefully), so fear not, Ted Turner, Laurie Wisefield, Roger Filgate, Ben Granfelt and Muddy Manninen  will all get their mentions too. :thumb:
"I am not a lunatic. I have the psychiatric report to prove it. A slender majority of the panel decided in my favour."

If you lend someone ?20 and never see that person again, it was probably well worth it.


Offline Mark Abrahams

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Re: Andy Powell
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2013, 02:30:33 PM »
I was Wishbone Ash play in Holmfirth on Friday night. . Andy has still got it, he was just awesome!!

His highlight of the night was an amazing version of "Lifeline" from Just Testing!