David Gilmour

Born: March 6, 1946
Grantchester, Cambridge, England

David Gilmour was raised in a wealthy career family. His mother was often away fulfilling her career as a film maker and editor, and his father was seldom home because of his groundbreaking work as a doctor in the field of genetics. This left David and his brothers a lot of time to themselves. Mischief became their main priority. They were often caught in local pubs and taverns checking out the bands and listening to the new sound that was coming from America, rock and roll. David became interested in the guitar, and was ecstatic when a neighborhood friend let him borrow his acoustic model. Gilmour ended up buying the guitar, and spending many hours in his room, practicing until the ends of his fingers were raw. He began listening to American rock albums, especially influenced by Elvis Presley. His school chum, Syd Barrett, was also interested in rock music, and the two became great friends because of their common interest. Together, they idolized the Beatles and the Stones, and tried to play just like them. In David’s 16th year, he began to join bands, trying to find his niche in a world of quick changes. He was briefly a member of the Newcomers, then he was in a band called the Joker’s Wild. Both of these bands were considered very good to all who heard them, mostly because of Gilmour’s very fluid and melodic guitar style. Eventually, the Joker’s Wild disbanded, and Gilmour moved to Spain for a brief time while he worked at several menial jobs. He lived on the streets in Paris for a while, and almost starved to death. When he returned to London, however, he was delighted to see the success of his former classmate, Syd Barrett, and his band he called the Pink Floyd. Barrett was definitely onto something with this new psychedelic sound, and he was glad to invite Gilmour to come to the recording studio. Due to Syd's increasing drug abuse, however, he barely recognized Gilmour. The rest of Pink Floyd confronted Gilmour about possibly stepping in to help their ailing guitarist, and Gilmour was happy to oblige, as he was worried about his friend’s health. He began gigging with the band, and he recorded an album with them entitled A Saucerful of Secrets, which featured both Barrett and Gilmour on guitar. Eventually, though, Barrett was left out of the band altogether, as his mental condition continued to deteriorate. While Roger Waters, the bassist of Floyd, was more than adequate enough to step up and fill the shoes of “band leader”, he and Gilmour had differing musical visions in general. Waters was much more ruthless in his pursuit of a conceptual masterpiece, while Gilmour wanted to retain beauty in his music, forever the melody lover. This is the friction that would both drive and destroy the band in it’s first incarnation, yet the band stayed together well into the eighties decade, releasing such classic rock and roll staples as 1973’s Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, and 1980’s The Wall. In 1978, to release an album that could more properly express Gilmour’s melodic side, he produced a solo effort he called David Gilmour. Pink Floyd finally succombed to its inner struggles when Waters left the group in 1985, and he did not expecting them to continue on without him. Much to his dismay and outrage, however, Floyd did continue on under the new leadership of Gilmour. The first album they produced was the brilliant Momentary Lapse of Reason. Waters tried to stop Floyd from continuing without him by threatening Gilmour with court hearings and injunctions, which did nothing but make the headlines of tabloid magazines and cost both sides a bundle of money in legal fees. Floyd supported the new album with a hugely successful world tour, and a live album and video spun off of the tour. In 1994, Floyd hit again with the release of Division Bell, and supported the album with yet another monster tour. Gilmour also continued to release solo albums and produce other artists as well. He now spends much of his time helping to run his company, Intrepid Aviation, and he spends all of the time that he can flying jet fighters.

Instruments Played / Skills:
Guitar Vocals Songwriter Lap Steel Guitar Producer Engineer Backup Vocals

Psychedelic Rock Guitar Masters Stadium Rock

Bands That David Gilmour Has Played For:
Pink Floyd

David Gilmour Has Worked With:
Roger Waters Richard Wright Syd Barrett Nick Mason Guy Pratt Alan Parsons Jon Carin Gary Wallis Tim Renwick Dick Parry Bob Ezrin Roddy Lorimer

David Gilmour Was Influenced By:
Jeff Beck Bill Haley Buddy Holly B.B. King Elvis Presley

Artists That Were Influenced By David Gilmour:
Adrian Belew Chris DeGarmo Tyler Duane Matt Malley Mama Paula

David Gilmour's Discography:
About Face
Release Date: 1984
David Gilmour
Release Date: 1978
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"There are more love songs than anything else. If songs could make you do something we'd all love one another."

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Works Consulted:

Portugese website entitled "Danzka's Love On the Air", biography written and copywritten by Vicky Owen.