Stereophile founder, J. Gordon Holt (1930 - 2009)

by admin on July 23, 2009 · 4 comments

in Audiophiles and Musicians

It has been reported that Stereophile founder Gordon Holt has died. Holt was instrumental in developing high end audio journalism and its concomitant lexicon. Along with The Absolute Sound’s founder, Harry Pearson, Holt promoted the missionary work of garage designers into the mainstream of electronics. The following is the obituary by Stereophile editor, John Atkinson, Holt’s long time collaborator and friend.

Anthony Kershaw

July 22, 2009 — It is with immense sadness that I heard of Gordon’s passing, in an announcement from his long-time friend, Bob O’Neiil: “A few minutes after 12 noon mtn time, July 20, 2009, J. Gordon Holt passed away in his home in Boulder, Colorado. A memorial service will be held in a week or two. There will be, of course, martinis and the music of Ralph Vaughan Williams.” According to his son Charles, Gordon had suffered a long fight with COPD/Emphysema and he died in his home with his family around him.

It was in 1962 that Gordon decided to start a magazine devoted to the then-revolutionary concept that the best way to review audio components was to use them for their intended purpose, ie, to listen to them—see his own words on his motives. All of us, not just those of us who keep Stereophile true to Gordon’s vision, but everyone involved in high-end audio, are in his debt.

We will have an appreciation of Gordon’s life and achievements by Larry Archibald, who owned Stereophile from 1982 to 1998, in our October issue. In the meantime, it’s worth reading the tribute to Gordon Ed Dell wrote on the occasion of Stereophile’s 25th anniversary in 1987 and the 35th-anniversary interview conducted by Gordon’s friend Steven Stone.

And, as Charles Holt wrote in the magazine’s on-line forum, you can pay Gordon your respects “by having a good martini and complaining about the weather.”

Cheers, Gordon, and thank you.

Original link
Photo credit

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

marvin fox 07.23.09 at 6:52 pm

He was a pioneer in the audio field and will never be forgotten by all of us audiophiles around the world.I for one enjoyed his articles immensely.

admin 07.23.09 at 9:56 pm

So true, Marvin. What a sad day.

Donald 07.27.09 at 1:52 pm

RIP Mr. Holt - you will be missed by many fans.

dalethorn 08.03.09 at 4:52 pm

Some of Gordon’s sayings are legendary - speaking of one equipment reviewer who was ever-reluctant to pan a tested product “his ratings ranged from ‘well worth consideration’ to ‘among the very best’.” Gordon’s appreciation of some products like the Beyer DT-48S were unique, I think. Gordon’s microphone tests on the Stereophile CD were real ear-openers. And Gordon’s fearless review of the Bose 901 was to be seen to be believed. Amazing stuff.

Leave a Comment

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>