Opinions On Mike Rutherford As A Guitarist/bassist?

Discussion in 'What's left to Talk About?' started by toomanycats, Jun 13, 2018.

  1. toomanycats

    toomanycats Well-Known Member

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    Michael John Cloete Crawford Rutherford is not somebody you'd expect to see on a list of great guitarists or bass players, though I have this incredible admiration for him. For those of you here who are familiar with my tastes, musical inclinations, and stated influences, this probably seems like an odd statement.

    The funny thing is, I can't specifically say that this or that Rutherford song influenced my guitar playing, but there's a sensibility to what he has done that runs deeper in my veins. I mean, I can't play you a guitar lick and say, "That's one of Rutherford's," though I can honestly say that things the man has played have deeply touched my soul, thereby informing my total sensibility as a musician. This guy has moved my emotions more than a hundred shredders.

    Any other admirers of Rutherford's twelve, six, and four string work here?

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  2. backinit

    backinit Well-Known Member

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    He is under rated somewhat mainly because he plays to the song, IMO. His Mike and the Mechanics material was stellar.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
  3. RedLesPaul

    RedLesPaul Well-Known Member

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    I've never been a big Genesis or Mike & the Mechanics fan, but he is a great player.
     
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  4. Gergo

    Gergo Well-Known Member

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    I think he is very underrated. Some of his guitar work in Genesis went unnoticed simply because he was playing with Anthony Phillips and playing with Steve Hackett after that. He was doing some really neat stuff behind those two guys.
     
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  5. Mark W

    Mark W Well-Known Member

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    Dude has a lot of name.
    Genesis popped to mind immediately. Yeah I dig.
     
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  6. Razzle

    Razzle Well-Known Member

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    I LOVE Genesis... as a guitarist he's just okay, c'mon, be honest. But you don't have to be a great guitarist to be in a great band, look at Keith Richards!
     
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  7. Mossman

    Mossman Well-Known Member

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    I like Genesis, up to (but sometimes not including) 'Duke'. I think Steve Hacket was more 'out there' than Rutherford, and when Hacket left, Rutherford didn't try to fill his shoes... He just kept doing what he was doing. Which is not a put down. I regard him in the same way I regard Andy Summers... That's as a highly competent and inventive musician, but more part of the whole than a stand-out attraction on his own. But there'd be a lot missing if he wasn't there... structurally... atmospherically... texturally (I guess that's not a word)...

    I don't really think of Genesis as a guitar band, per se, but a group of highly creative, multi-instrumentalists and composers. Hell, I don't even think of them as a rock band.

    I think I listen to them differently than other bands. I'm not paying particular attention to one instrument or another, I'm just taking it all in. I don't think any one of them are a 'virtuoso', but their whole thing was a bit more theatrical, with emphasis on having a narrative... Telling a story (at least when Peter Gabriel was in the band) than strictly a musical performance. It was a 'show'.

    By the time of the aforementioned 'Duke' and subsequent albums, Genesis took a turn down the road to Top-40, radio-friendly, pop stardom... That's where we parted ways, so I can't really comment on anything after that. I did have a Mike and the Mechanics album on cassette once. I don't remember which one. I think I listened to it twice. Not that I thought it was bad, it just wasn't where my head was at musically at the time.
     
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  8. JeffBeck

    JeffBeck Baldy McBaldhead Staff Member

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    I don’t get excited at the prospect of listening to him but I DO like him. His work in Mike and the Mechanics was a bit more guitar-centric than Genesis and I thought it was pretty cool. But my favorite thing he’s done is the guitar work in Genesis’ That’s All. Love that guitar sound and how tasteful the licks are.

    Now someone will tell me he didn’t play in that one.
     
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  9. toomanycats

    toomanycats Well-Known Member

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    Thanks everybody for all the feedback and analysis. I've come to think of you fellas who were into the rock scene when I was still watching Sesame Street as something like the, "big brothers I never had." You always give me great insight in music that pre-dates me.

    Genesis is one of the many bands who I was just too young to experience during their artistic peak. Though I believe that The Lamb Lies Down is their greatest work, I still have a soft spot for stuff like Duke and Abacab.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2018
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  10. RedLesPaul

    RedLesPaul Well-Known Member

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    I love Abacab (the song)
     
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  11. toomanycats

    toomanycats Well-Known Member

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    I believe Rutherford was the first guitarist I ever saw playing a Steinberger. That would have been 85.

    My first thought was, "That's so uncool and not rock and roll." But then the next year EVH shows up on stage with one. :)
     
  12. Gergo

    Gergo Well-Known Member

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    By the way, I think that the post Duke, 80's era Genesis stuff is killer too. It's just different. Approach with an open mind, don't expect hard core prog rock, and there is a lot to enjoy. Some of their extended jams from that era were great too.
     
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  13. Mossman

    Mossman Well-Known Member

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    And if you know the title, you know how to play it. :)
     
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  14. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    I am a big fan of Genesis, from the 1st album to ABACAB. They lost me a bit with 1983's 'Genesis.' Selling England by the Pound is one of my favorite albums of all time, especially when i am in the mood for clever, complex music.

    I saw Genesis for 'Then there were three...', 'Duke' and 'ABACAB'. Mike was spot on his parts, which the early stuff is complex.

    I did not realize how complex, until I caught Steve Hackett at the Keswick Theater in Pennsylvania. I was about 40 feed from the guy doing Mike's parts. "Hustling" is the word that comes to mind. Very complex bass lines, then switching in various parts of the song to dissimilar 12 string parts. Sometimes while also playing a Moog Taurus pedal to hold the bass part down! There are parts where his bass line is in a different timing from the drums and they converge when the two timing signatures are mathematically aligned. That is very difficult.

    Steve Hackett's parts sound simple and almost like 'music landscape.' I can tell you from watching him and tring to play his parts - he is a treasure trove of jazz chords and unorthodox playing (tapping, slamming the guitar, etc.). I am a big Hackett fan, but understand why he is not popular.
     
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  15. Rollin Hand

    Rollin Hand Well-Known Member

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    I have liked Mike Rutherford from the time I became aware of him. Another one of those guys that just never seems to put a note wrong. He sounds like himself, if you get my meaning.

    And, like others, I have a real fondness for the first Mike and the Mechanics album. I especially like his work on "Silent Running."
     
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  16. Stig

    Stig Well-Known Member Supporting Member+

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    My guilty pleasure (because I despise Collins-as-frontman-era Genesis) is Illegal Alien, and it's delightfully racist video.
     
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  17. tonebender

    tonebender Well-Known Member

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    I like him just fine, thank you very much.
     
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  18. Perfect Stranger

    Perfect Stranger Well-Known Member

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    I don't know him
     
  19. OMB

    OMB Well-Known Member Supporting Member+

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    I don't know if he wrote a lot of their stuff but I thought for some reason he had and if so he is a very talented guy.
     
  20. wrappedinsky

    wrappedinsky Well-Known Member

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    I gotta say that Three Sides Live is one of my all-time favorite albums. Rutherford gets songwriting credit on most every one of the songs, and is the guitar player on all but "It/Watcher of the Skies." My college roommate and I wore that record out! The entire band sounds absolutely frantic on "In the Cage." A link, if you'd like:
     
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