Bill Holland takes the Blindfold Test

Around 2009, I went over to Bill Holland‘s house with the idea of recording him taking the famous Downbeat Magazine Blindfold Test, or my version of it. Originated by famed jazz critic Leonard Feather in the ’40s, the idea was to get prominent musician’s reactions to records of the day.

Like Feather, Bill Holland is one of the most knowledgeable musicians around. He was the Washington, D.C., bureau chief for Billboard, as well as the leader of one of D.C.’s finest bands, Rent’s Due.

I planned to do a series of blindfold tests, but with music from my collection, or songs that resemble music.


After I got the tape home I discovered that the image had the time code visible. Annoyed at myself, I put the tape away and never did another blindfold test.

Of course, I could have just put an ID graphic covering the time code, as I have now done. Sigh.

Anyway, I finally transferred the tape and you can see Mr. Holland’s exquisite knowledge and wit on display. Enjoy.

Side note: This includes a track from Tina Louise, of Gilligan’s Island fame. I did another video about a reel-to-reel tape of her album, not remembering that I had featured her in this video. Crazy.