Pink Floyd Band Member Biographies
David Gilmour is one of the World’s most popular guitarists. As part of Pink Floyd and as a solo artist, he is easily recognisable by his soaring Fender tone and beautifully crafted guitar solos. Gilmour has a vast collection of Strats and Teles, including a 1954 Strat (The first year of production) with the serial number ‘001.’ (Although it is not the first production model.)
David Gilmour was born in Cambridge on 6th March 1946. As a child, David grew up listening to the likes of Rock Around The Clock by Bill Haley and the Comets and Jailhouse Rock. During his time as a student at Cambridge College of Arts and Technology, the young Gilmour first met future Pink Floyd founder, Syd Barrett. The pair became good friends and spent their lunchtimes in the college’s art department playing Beatles and Stones riffs.
Between ’63 and ’66, Gilmour played in a number of bands and had a variety of odd jobs including a fashion model and a van driver. In 1967, he was invited by Syd Barrett to the Sound Techniques studio in Chelsea, London to see Pink Floyd record their second single, See Emily Play.
During this time, Syd Barrett’s mental health began to deteriorate due to excess drug experimentation. After Pink Floyd’s first album, Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Gilmour was approached by Floyd drummer, Nick Mason to replace Barrett. Hence, the second album, A Saucerful Of Secrets, featured both Gilmour and Barrett. (Although they never recorded their parts together)
The next Floyd album was the adventurous Ummagumma, which featured Gilmour’s first attempt at lyric writing and some beautiful guitar work, including his song, The Narrow Way (Parts 1–3)
This was followed by a fertile period that saw the band experiment and Gilmour’s stature grow as a guitarist, singer and songwriter. During this period, Floyd recorded the soundtrack, More (1970) the very psychedelic Atom Heart Mother and Meddle, (1971) as well as compilation album, Relics (1971) and Obscured By Clouds. (1972)
It was the next album, Dark Side Of The Moon (1973), which was to be the biggest success of Pink Floyd’s (and Gilmour’s) career. The album, which was originally going to be called Eclipse, spent 294 weeks on the U.K album charts and over 1,000 weeks on the U.S Billboard chart, selling in excess of 23 million copies worldwide. To this day, it remains the biggest selling album by a British band. Gilmour highlights include the solos on Money and Time.
The next album, Wish You Were Here (1975) contained one of Gilmour’s finest works, Shine On You Crazy Diamond. This was written for his old college friend and band founder, Syd Barrett, who, ironically, turned up at Abbey Road studios in London as it was being recorded. Gilmour has never seen him since.
In 1977, the band recorded Animals, which the critics greeted with a mixed reception and featured some excellent guitar work from Gilmour.
In 1978, he released his first solo album, David Gilmour, and worked as a producer on Kate Bush’s landmark album, The Kick Inside.
The hugely successful album The Wall followed in 1979. During this time, tensions within Pink Floyd were becoming unbearable and after the album was released, keyboard player Rick Wright left the group, leaving Gilmour and Roger Waters to fight it out.
The following year saw the release of Gilmour’s second solo album, About Face, accompanied by a world tour from March to July of 1984 and an appearance with Bryan Ferry at Live Aid in July 1985.
Gilmour finally won the right to use the Pink Floyd name after Roger Waters had left the band. This led to their first album as a trio, A Momentary Lapse Of Reason. (1987) The newly invigorated Pink Floyd toured the world thereafter and released a live album and video, The Delicate Sound Of Thunder (1989) to massive worldwide acclaim.
Following a long spell, the band released their next studio album, The Division Bell (1994) followed by a live album, Pulse. (1995)
Gilmour did a small acoustic tour in 2001, which was released as a DVD/VHS in October 2002.
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