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David Gilmour
Live At Pompeii
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David Gilmour
David Gilmour
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David Gilmour
Live At Pompeii
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David Gilmour
Rattle That Lock
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Live At Pompeii
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David Gilmour
Live in Gda, et al
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David Gilmour
About Face
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On An Island
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Pink Floyd - A Momentary Lapse of Reason
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David Gilmour: Remember That Night - Live At The Royal Albert Hall [Blu-ray]
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David Gilmour. (2009, January 26). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 04:41, January 27, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=David_Gilmour&oldid=266459377

David Jon Gilmour CBE (born 6 March 1946),[1] is an English musician, best known as the guitarist, lead singer, and one of the main songwriters in the band Pink Floyd. In addition to his work with Pink Floyd, Gilmour has worked as a record producer for a variety of artists, and has enjoyed a successful career as a solo artist. Gilmour has been actively involved with many charity organisations over the course of his career. In 2003, he was appointed CBE for services to music and philanthropy and was awarded with Outstanding Contribution title at the 2008 Q Awards.[2]

Gilmour was born in Cambridge, England. His father, Douglas Gilmour, was a senior lecturer in zoology at the University of Cambridge and his mother, Sylvia, was a teacher and film editor.

Gilmour attended The Perse School on Hills Road, Cambridge, and met future Pink Floyd guitarist and vocalist Syd Barrett who attended Cambridgeshire High School for Boys, also situated on Hills Road. He studied modern languages to A-Level, and along with Syd, spent his lunchtime learning to play the guitar. They were not yet bandmates however, and Gilmour started playing in the band Joker's Wild in 1963. Gilmour left Joker's Wild in 1966 and busked around Spain and France with some friends. However, they were not very successful, living virtually a hand-to-mouth existence. In July 1992, Gilmour stated in an interview with Nicky Horne on BBC radio that he ended up being treated for malnutrition in a hospital. In 1967, they returned to England, driving a van with fuel stolen from a building site in France.

Gilmour was approached in December 1967 by drummer Nick Mason, who asked if he would be interested in joining Pink Floyd, which he did in January 1968, making Pink Floyd briefly a five-piece band. He was used to fill in for Syd Barrett's guitar parts when the front man was unable to take a consistent part in Floyd's live performances. When Syd Barrett "left" the group (the band chose not to pick him up one night for a gig due to his erratic behaviour), Gilmour by default assumed the role of the band's lead guitarist and shared lead vocal duties with bassist Roger Waters and keyboard player Richard Wright in Barrett's stead. However, after the back-to-back successes of The Dark Side of the Moon and then Wish You Were Here, Waters took more control over the band, writing most of Animals and The Wall by himself. Wright was fired during The Wall sessions and the relationship between Gilmour and Waters would further deteriorate during the making of The Wall film and the 1983 Pink Floyd album The Final Cut.

After recording "Animals", Gilmour thought that his musical influence had been underutilized, and channeled his ideas into his self-titled first solo album (1978), which showcases his signature guitar style, as well as underscoring his songwriting skills. A tune written during the finishing stages of this album, but too late to be used, became "Comfortably Numb" on The Wall.[3]

The negative atmosphere surrounding the creation of The Wall album and film, compounded by The Final Cut's virtually being a Roger Waters solo album, led Gilmour to produce a second solo album, About Face (1984). The "About Face" tour suffered from weak ticket sales; a similar situation confronted Waters' tour for The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking.

In 1985, Waters declared that Pink Floyd was "a spent force creatively". However, in 1986, Gilmour and drummer Nick Mason issued a press release stating that Waters had quit the band and they intended to continue without him. Gilmour assumed full control of the group and produced A Momentary Lapse of Reason in 1987 with some contributions from Mason and Richard Wright. Wright officially rejoined the band for a lengthy world tour and helped create 1994's The Division Bell as well. Gilmour explained:

In 1986, Gilmour purchased the houseboat Astoria which is moored on the River Thames near Hampton Court, and transformed it into a recording studio. The majority of the two most recent Pink Floyd albums, as well as Gilmour's 2006 solo release On An Island, were recorded there.

On 2 July 2005, Gilmour played with Pink Floyd "" including Roger Waters "" at Live 8. The performance caused a temporary 1343% sales increase of Pink Floyd's album Echoes: The Best of Pink Floyd.[4] As a result, Gilmour vowed to donate all of his resulting profits to charities that reflect the goals of Live 8 saying:

Shortly after, he called upon all artists experiencing a surge in sales from Live 8 performances to donate the extra revenue to Live 8 fund-raising. After the Live 8 concert, Pink Floyd were offered *150 million to tour the United States, but the band turned down the offer.[5]

On 3 February 2006, he announced in an interview with the Italian newspaper La Repubblica[6][7] that Pink Floyd would most likely never tour or write material together again. He said:

He said that by agreeing to Live 8, he had ensured the story of Floyd would not end on a sour note.

On 20 February 2006, Gilmour commented again on Pink Floyd's future when he was interviewed by Billboard.com, stating, "Who knows? I have no plans at all to do that. My plans are to do my concerts and put my solo record out."

In December 2006, Gilmour released a tribute to Syd Barrett, who had died in July that year, in the form of his own version of Pink Floyd's first single "Arnold Layne". Recorded live at London's Royal Albert Hall, the CD single featured versions of the song performed by Pink Floyd's keyboard player (and Gilmour's band member) Richard Wright and special guest artist David Bowie. The single entered the UK Top 75 charts at number nineteen and remained steady for three weeks.[8]

Since their Live 8 appearance in 2005, Gilmour has repeatedly said that there will be no Pink Floyd reunion. However, in a 2007 interview with Phil Manzanera, he stated that he's "not done with yet" and that he plans on doing "something" in the future.[citation needed] With the death of Pink Floyd keyboardist Richard Wright in September of 2008, another reunion of the core group members became impossible. Gilmour painfully mourned the death: "In the welter of arguments about who or what was Pink Floyd, Rick's enormous input was frequently forgotten. He was gentle, unassuming and private but his soulful voice and playing were vital, magical components of our most recognised Pink Floyd sound. Like Rick, I don't find it easy to express my feelings in words, but I loved him and will miss him enormously. I have never played with anyone quite like him."[9]

Taking time off from Pink Floyd's schedule, Gilmour also took up various roles as a producer, sideman and even concert sound engineer for a wide variety of acts which included former bandmate Syd Barrett, Kate Bush, Grace Jones, Tom Jones, Elton John, B. B. King, Paul McCartney, Seal, Sam Brown, Jools Holland, Bob Dylan, Pete Townshend, The Who, Supertramp, Levon Helm, Robbie Robertson, Alan Parsons, and various charity groups among others. In 1985, Gilmour performed with Bryan Ferry at the Wembley Live Aid concert.

He has also recorded four solo albums, all four of which charted somewhere in the U.S. Top 40 (2006's On an Island peaked at #6 in 2006, 2008's Live in Gdansk peaked at #26, his 1978 self-titled solo debut peaked at #29 in 1978 and 1984's About Face peaked at #32 in 1984) thus making him the only member of Pink Floyd to have a commercially successful solo career.

In 1994 Gilmour played guitar for the video game Tuneland, along with one of the additional guitarists for Pink Floyd, Scott Page.

In 2001 and 2002, he held a small number of acoustic solo concerts in London and Paris, along with a small band and choir, which was documented on the In Concert release. In 2003, Rolling Stone included Gilmour in the list of hundred greatest guitarists of all time.[10]

On his 60th birthday, he released his third solo album, On An Island, on 6 March 2006, and a day later it was released in the US; it debuted at #1 in the UK charts.[11] The album reached Top five in Germany and Sweden, and Top six in Billboard 200.[12][13] Produced by Gilmour along with Phil Manzanera and Chris Thomas, the album features orchestrations by renowned Polish composer Zbigniew Preisner. The album features David Crosby and Graham Nash on harmonies on the title track, Robert Wyatt on cornet and percussion and Richard Wright on Hammond organ and vocals. Other contributors include Jools Holland, Phil Manzanera, Georgie Fame, Andy Newmark, B. J. Cole, Chris Stainton, Willie Wilson, Rado "Bob" Klose on guitar and Leszek Możdżer on piano. The album also features Gilmour's debut with the saxophone.

Gilmour toured Europe, US and Canada from 10 March to 31 May to promote On An Island. There were 10 shows in the US and Canadian leg of the tour. Pink Floyd alumnus Richard Wright, and frequent Floyd collaborators Dick Parry, Guy Pratt and Jon Carin also accompanied him on the tour. More shows were held in Europe during from July through August in 2006.

In a press release to promote the tour, David Gilmour stated:

On An Island peaked the UK charts by reaching number one. On 10 April 2006, the album was certified platinum in Canada, with sales of over 100,000 copies. The album also gave Gilmour his first US Top 10 album as a solo artist.

A video recording of a show from Gilmour's solo tour, entitled Remember That Night - Live At The Royal Albert Hall[14] was released on 17 September 2007. The double DVD, directed by David Mallet, contains over five hours of footage, including an on-the-road documentary and guest appearances by David Bowie and Robert Wyatt. The two and a half hour concert features band members Richard Wright of Pink Floyd, Phil Manzanera of Roxy Music, Steve DiStanislao on drums, and various Pink Floyd regulars such as Dick Parry, Guy Pratt and Jon Carin. The 20-page booklet accompanying the DVD, features over 80 photos selected from studio recording and touring. The album is now available on Hi-Definition Blu-ray Disc with TrueHD surround sound. As TrueHD is not a mandatory format for Blu-ray players, and the disc carries no other surround channel, some players will only play it in stereo.

The final show of David Gilmour's On an Island tour was held at the Gdańsk Shipyard on 26 August 2006. The concert was held before a huge crowd of 50,000, and marked the twenty-sixth anniversary of Poland's 1980 revolution. The concert was notable for the inclusion of "A Great Day For Freedom" as part of the encore.

The live album marking the Gdańsk show was released 22 September 2008 and is called Live in Gdańsk. The album was recorded during the last concert of Gilmour's 2006 summer tour, which was held in front of 50,000 people at the shipyards in Gdańsk, Poland. The concert was the only occasion on which Gilmour performed the tour material with an orchestra, using the 40-strong string section of the Polish Baltic Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Zbigniew Preisner, who was responsible for On An Island's orchestral arrangements.

Gilmour is best known for his lead guitar work. Rooted in blues, Gilmour's solo style is noted for its economy and melody.

Although mainly known for his guitar work, Gilmour is also a proficient multi-instrumentalist. He also plays bass guitar (which he did on some Pink Floyd tracks), keyboards, banjo, harmonica, drums (as heard on the Syd Barrett solo track "Dominoes", and other songs where he opted to play all the instruments) and lately, the saxophone.[15]

In his early career with Pink Floyd, Gilmour played a multitude of Fender Stratocasters. One of his popular guitar solos ("Another Brick in the Wall Part 2") was played on a Gibson Les Paul guitar.[16][17] In 1996, Gilmour was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Pink Floyd. Gilmour's solo on "Comfortably Numb" was voted the greatest guitar solo of all time in several polls by listeners and critics.[18]

Gilmour's first marriage was to American-born Virginia "Ginger" Hasenbein and he had four children from this union, Alice (born 1976), Clare (born 1979), Sara (born 1983), and Matthew (born 1986). They originally attended a Waldorf School, but Gilmour called their education there "horrific".[19] He has four children from his second marriage to Polly Samson - Charlie (Samson's son with Heathcote Williams) whom Gilmour adopted and Joe, Gabriel and Romany. Charlie's voice can be heard on the telephone to Steve O'Rourke, at the end of "High Hopes" (The Division Bell).

Gilmour has been associated with various charity organisations. In May 2003, Gilmour sold his house in Little Venice to the ninth Earl Spencer and donated the proceeds worth *3.6 million to Crisis to help fund a housing project for the homeless. Apart from Crisis, other Charities to which Gilmour has lent support include Oxfam, the European Union Mental Health and Illness Association, Greenpeace, Amnesty International, The Lung Foundation, and Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy.

Apart from music, Gilmour is also an experienced pilot. Under the aegis of his company, Intrepid Aviation, he had amassed an impressive collection of historical aircraft. He later decided to sell the company, as his venture, which had started as a hobby was becoming too commercial for him to handle. In an interview to BBC, he stated:

On 22 May 2008, Gilmour won the 2008 Ivor Novello Lifetime Contribution Award [21]

Later, he was awarded for outstanding contribution for music by Q Awards. He dedicated his award to his late bandmate Richard Wright.[2]

The following is a list of equipment Gilmour either has used on his solo or Pink Floyd recordings, as well as on current or previous tours.

In November 2006, Fender Custom Shop announced two reproductions of Gilmour's "Black" Strat for release on 22 September 2008. Gilmour's website states the release date was chosen to coincide with the release of his "Live In Gdansk" album. [28] Both guitars are based on extensive measurements of the original instrument, each featuring varying degrees of wear. The most expensive will be the David Gilmour Relic Stratocaster[29] which features the closest copy of wear on the original guitar. A pristine copy of the guitar will also be made, called the David Gilmour NOS Stratocaster.[30] Both guitars feature:

David Gilmour. (2009, January 26). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 04:41, January 27, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=David_Gilmour&oldid=266459377

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