Follow Your Heart
Walter Kolosky
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Buy *Follow Your Heart: John McLaughlin Song By Song* by Walter Kolosky online

Follow Your Heart: John McLaughlin Song By Song
Walter Kolosky
Abstract Logix Books
332 pages
November 2010
rated 4 1/2 of 5 possible stars

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Guitarist John McLaughlin was one of the founding fathers of rock fusion. When he formed The Mahavishnu Orchestra in the early 1970s, he created a style of instrumental music based on soaring and complex guitar techniques, intricate rhythms, and melodies that looped, dived and doubled back on themselves. Prior to The Mahavishnu Orchestra, the accomplished musician had played with everyone from Miles Davis to Tony Williams and would go on to play with Jeff Beck, Chick Corea, Carlos Santana and many others.

Here in Kolosky's book, you can follow that journey song by song as the author lays out the building blocks of John's career. This was no easy task. The instrumentalist has recorded hundreds of songs appearing on dozens of albums, and finding every song on album, CD, and download was daunting enough.

The book begins with McLaughlin's Extrapolation album (recorded in 1969) and runs through his 2009 album, To The One. Each of the hundreds of songs contained here are broken down melodically, harmonically and rhythmically, and Kolosky dissects solos and discusses ensemble sections.

Here, the author talks about the purpose of the book:

"Follow Your Heart can be utilized in several ways.

"First and foremost, Follow Your Heart. is a lisener's guide for John McLaughlin fans, music students and musicians. It is best read while listening to the music.

"Second, Follow Your Heart can be read straight through to serve as a history of John McLaughlin's recordings. I recommend everyone do this at leasts once. There ae many forward and backward-looking references in the book that will give you insight. It is better to be aware of them.

"Third, Follow Your Heart is also designed to be a quick reference guide. Each entry is written so it can stand entirely on its own. You simply choose an album or song of interest, look it up in the table of contents, and read about it."
There you go. So put on The Birds of Fire CD, turn to page 40, and start reading. Kolosky knows this music backwards and forwards, and it's a joy to read these pages because so much effort and care went into the writing of them. Also check out the author's previous book, Power, Passion and Beauty: The Story of the Legendary Mahavishnu Orchestra.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at Steven Rosenn, 2011

Also by Walter Kolosky:

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