Welcome to Gordon Giltrap's Website
Ritchie Blackmore from Deep Purple and Blackmore's Night says:
"Anyone who asks me knows, that I think that Gordon Giltrap is one of the best acoustic guitar players in the world.
He gave me lots of hints on how to approach the acoustic guitar as opposed to the electric guitar.
He was always way ahead of his time. His concerts and playing are breathtaking. He’s also very witty, and I love the fact that he has not cut his hair!"
Thanks to Malcolm Welch for the photo above
As far back as I can remember I have had an awareness of time passing and the need to leave my mark somewhere in life. The obvious path was, of course, music. Since 1966 and my first album release in 1968 I have tried with each subsequent release to improve on what came before.
I have always been involved in passing on guitar techniques to anyone interested in my work. This work in the main has taken on the form of guitar instrumental pieces and my involvement with prominent guitar publications here in the UK. As I write this I’m currently embarking on a new series of columns for Acoustic Magazine.
Many of you over the past few years would have seen me perform many successful concerts in village halls dotted around the UK. You will also know what a great fondness I have for these venues with their local communities and their stripped down honest approach to bringing artists of long standing “out to the sticks” so to speak. Pretty much every village in the UK has its own village hall, and I bet there is one close to you!
How do you feel about approaching your own local village hall committee about booking a certain Gordon Giltrap or Giltrap & Burley to perform there? Many of these halls are under used and many are quite lovely places to play. I have written some of my finest tunes during sound checks at these venues and I find them quite inspirational. This is all part and parcel of my desire to continue playing in intimate venues and selected folk clubs.
Do us all a great favour and give it a go. Get the powers that be to ring Sue Webster on 01905 312016 to make this happen.
Guitars and related equipment
A few years ago saw the release on to the musical instrument market my Rob Armstrong designed JHS GG Vintage 2000 signature guitars. 6 and 12 string versions are offered along with a mahogany model and of course my beautiful Trev Wilkinson designed signature electric. The acoustic models eventually received the prestigious MIA award for outstanding design and value for money. There are more models planned for release in 2013.
I’m also proud to be associated with Exploraudio and Rob Atchison’s wonderful invention the Gordon Giltrap signature H clamp. This device allows a microphone of your choice to be mounted on to your chosen instrument for either live or recorded work keeping the microphone firm and thus ensuring a perfect microphone position at all times. I couldn’t do without it now and use it for all my recordings!
I am also a great devotee of British handmade instruments and have been using Fylde guitars since the very early 70’s and can be seen using my GG signature model on stage and in the studio. The other British maker of note is my friend Roger Williams who has made me two lovely guitars.
I have been using Martin SP strings for years now and just love their bright crisp sound and string life. Not having particularly strong hands I favour their 11 to 52 sets which suit my style perfectly.
I continue to try and break new ground and look for new challenges. Evidence of this has been my collaboration with that outstanding musician Oliver Wakeman. We have an album and tour planned for 2013, so “watch this space” as they say.
Be well all and “haste ye back”.
PRESS RELEASE 5TH MAY 2013
Summers End Festival Announces "Ravens and Lullabies"
with Gordon Giltrap, Oliver Wakeman and the FULL ELECTRIC BAND...
The Summers End Festival, which takes place on October 4-6th at Lydney Town Hall, are thrilled to announce a very special event on the Saturday Evening of the Festival.
"Ravens and Lullabies" will be a unique electric performance by Gordon Giltrap (electric and acoustic guitars) and Oliver Wakeman (keyboards). Joining them in this exclusive one-off event will be two old friends of the festival, Paul Manzi (Arena, Oliver Wakeman Band - vocals) and Johanne James (Threshold - drums) plus a bassist to be named.
Gordon will be best known to Prog fans for his trio rock albums in the late 70s, and for his hit single "Heartsong" while Oliver's eclectic career has involved several solo albums, two albums with Clive Nolan, appearances with The Strawbs and Bob Catley and an eventful three and a half years in YES.
Although the two of them have been touring extensively as a duo, this will be Gordon's first full electric performance for over 30 years, while Oliver will be playing his first major concert with a full band since his departure from YES in 2011. The set will revolve around a performance of their superb album "Ravens and Lullabies" released earlier this year on Esoteric Antenna, which mixes intimate acoustic performances with full-blown Prog, but will also contain some pieces from both men's back catalogue.
Festival co-promoter Stephen Lambe says:
"This is a huge coup for the festival and it's thrilling that we have been able to persuade Gordon and Oliver to bring the "Ravens and Lullabies" band together and play this amazing and unique concert just for us. Little did I know when I saw the Gordon Giltrap band in 1979, or indeed Oliver with Yes in 2009 that I'd end up welcoming them onto the Summers End Stage in 2013."
The current line up:
Ravens and Lullabies with Gordon Giltrap and Oliver Wakeman (UK) www.oliverwakeman.co.uk
Focus (Holland) www.focustheband.com
Sylvan (Germany) www.sylvan.de
Fragile featuring Claire Hamill (UK) www.yestribute.com
Landmarq (UK) www.landmarq.net
Overhead (Finland) www.overhead-band.com
Deeexpus (UK) www.deeexpus.com
Jump (UK) www.jumprock.co.uk
Thumpermonkey (UK) www.thumpermonkey.com
Silhouette (Holland) www.silhouetteband.nl
Sean Filkins (UK) www.seanfilkinsmusic.co.uk
Hero and Sponsor tickets are already available from: www.summersend.co.uk Standard weekend tickets will go on sale very soon, Stay posted for updates!
Purchase tickets here... www.summersend.co.uk/ticket_sales.htm
Update 1st May 2013 Ravens and Lullabies VINYL
At the risk of being a bore. Ravens and Lullabies continues to garner wonderful reviews, and for that Oliver and I are of course very pleased. We hope you respond favourably to the following.
We have been asked on a number of occasions whether the new 'Ravens & Lullabies' album is going to get a vinyl release in addition to the single and double CD versions.
We have had a conversation with the record company who are quite prepared to press the album on vinyl but because of the expense involved they need to have an idea as to the number of people prepared to pre-order to make it cost effective.
So this is your chance! Please let us know if it is something that interests you and if we get enough replies we'll be able to go ahead.
No money is needed at this stage - just an email to RavensVinyl@gmail.com registering your interest will be enough to start. The cost for the vinyl is expected to be between £18 and £23.
We'll keep you informed of the progress!
Update 4th March 2013 -Ravens and Lullabies OUT NOW
You can now place an order for the 2CD Signed Limited Edition from Cherry Red Records for £11.99 + P&P Release date is confirmed as 4th March.
Update 15th Jan 2013 -Track listing for Ravens and Lullabies
There will be two different releases of the album. A standard single CD with the following 13 tracks:
- Fiona's Smile
- From the Turn of a Card
- Maybe Tomorrow
- Wherever There Was Beauty
- Is This the Last Song I Write?
- A Mayfair Kiss
- Anyone Can Fly
- A Perfect Day
- Credit Carnival
- One For Billie
- Ravens Will Fly Away
The 2CD signed limited edition will have a second CD featuring the following tracks
Live recordings taken from the 2012 tour:
- Nature's Way
- Isabella's Wedding
- Progress of the Soul
- On Camber Sands
- Lutey and the Mermaid
New studio recordings:
- Praeludium (from the Well Tempered Clavier)
- The Forgotten King
13th Dec 2012. Ravens and Lullabies album press release...
Guitar Legend and the next generation of keyboard wizardry join forces for a new record!
March 2013 will see guitar legend Gordon Giltrap and keyboardist Oliver Wakeman (following his years of touring with the classic progressive rock band YES) release their debut collaborative album 'Ravens & Lullabies' on theEsoteric Antenna label.
The album is a 13 song collection of hard hitting memorable rock pieces coupled with thought provoking lyrics alongside acoustic duets featuring their fine instrumental interplay.
The project was initiated with a phone call from Gordon to Oliver in early 2012 requesting Oliver's keyboard services for a new rock album. Within 24 hours Gordon had phoned again suggesting a full collaboration instead and the 'Ravens & Lullabies' concept was born.
Gordon and Oliver spent 2012 writing and recording the album which features a return for Gordon to his rock roots following a 30 year absence and Oliver's first recorded works since his departure from both Yes and Strawbs.
It has been recorded and mixed by 'Threshold' guitarist Karl Groom (who also mixed the Yes 'Live In Lyon' record which featured Oliver on keyboards).
The album will be available in two formats, a single CD featuring 13 new pieces and double pack special edition featuring a Bonus CD of live recordings taken from their 2012 tour and re-recordings of pieces from Oliver and Gordon's past catalogue.
The new album features performances by the following well respected musicians.
Paul Manzi - vocals
Paul has performed with the Oliver Wakeman Band for the last 6 years (appearing on the live DVD 'Coming to Town') and is the current vocalist for the rock band Arena.
Steve Amadeo - Bass Guitar
Steve, an in demand Jazz/Blues/Rock session bass player, is currently performing with Blues guitarist Aynsley Lister.
Johanne James - Drums
Johanne has been the Threshold drummer for the last 12 years.
The album also features a special vocal appearance by Benoit David, Oliver's old band mate from Yes, on the track 'From the Turn of a Card' written by Oliver during the Yes recording sessions of 2010.
Many of the pieces were debuted and refined during their acoustic duo tour in September and October 2012 where they performed sell out concerts across the UK. The tour will resume in March 2013 to coincide with the release of the new album.
One of the most innovative acoustic guitarists in the UK today, Gordon Giltrap has developed his own unique style, much copied, but never bettered. It is impossible not to be awestruck as he coaxes incredible melodies from his instruments; you almost suspect a second pair of hands. He is well known for his varied musical output and 'Heartsong' (a hit single from the album 'Perilous Journey' in 1977) is instantly recognized as the theme for the BBC TV's long running 'Holiday' programme.
Following ten solo albums in a variety of styles, Oliver Wakeman joined the legendary band 'YES' in 2008, touring with them up until mid-2011. A live CD and triple vinyl release, 'In The Present - Live from Lyon', was a fitting bookend to his period in the band. He also worked with the folk rock band 'The Strawbs' and appeared on their last studio album as well as their 40th Anniversary CD release. Appearing in venues across North and South America, Europe and the UK with YES, Strawbs and as a solo artist, he has become a well respected live performing musician to add to his other talents as composer, songwriter, lyricist and producer.
Gordon says "Working with Oliver is like a breath of fresh air. I knew of his reputation as a fine musician, and it made perfect sense for me to tap into his creative energy, not only to bring out certain elements of my musical gifts but to create something new and exciting, at the same time giving a nod in the direction of our respective Progressive Rock roots"
Oliver adds, "After working with YES, the chance of working with another legendary artist was an opportunity too good to miss. I am having a wonderfully productive time working with Gordon and feel we are creating something genuinely unique in our 'Ravens & Lullabies' project."
Many of Gordon's fans have been asking for years when he is going to return to his rock roots and others wondered what Oliver would write after the Yes experiences...
In March 2013 they'll know...
Giltrap and Wakeman Tour Update 1st Nov 2012
The tour is now finished and received great reviews - read Keith Meredith's report on Huntingdon Hall HERE or view Lee Millward's photos HERE. Webmaster Sue Holton filmed that first night and put together a trailer to give people the feel of the show. If you enjoy this, why not try to get along to a show ? More dates and the CD to come in 2013.
Update 9th April 2012
Gordon joins Twitter
You can now keep up to date with all the latest happenings by following Gordon on Twitter @GordonGiltrap
Update 1st Dec 2011
Vintage Gordon Giltrap signature acoustic wins MIA's Acoustic Guitar Of The Year award.
The winner of The Guitar Techniques 'Acoustic Guitar of the Year' in the annual MIA (Music Industries Association) Music Awards was the Vintage Gordon Giltrap Signature acoustic model by John Hornby Skewes & Co. Ltd which beat off stiff competition to take the victory.
The annual MIA (Music Industries Association) Music Awards were held at the London Marriott Grosvenor Square Hotel on November 30th, with leading musical products and MI groups vying for top prizes.
The VE2000GG (£499rrp) is a deserving winner, having achieved ace reviews from magazines around the world, as well as an receiving an overwhelmingly positive response from players worldwide, including high profile names like John Parr, worldwide 12-string authority Paul Brett, and Billy Hawkins of the award-winning Fishermen’s Friends.
Guitar players clearly appreciate Gordon’s Vintage signature guitar, as they voted for it in their droves on the MusicRadar website, demonstrating that the VE2000GG is a winner with the public and music dealers.On the victory for his signature model, Gordon Giltrap said: “Getting this award is a great honour, and for me ranks alongside the Ards Festival lifetime achievement award and my Ivor Novello award nomination. Credit must surely go to the guitar's designer, Rob Armstrong, and to Dennis Drumm and all the team at JHS.”
Dennis Drumm, JHS's Managing Director, said: “Awards are great of course, and the fact that a public vote produced this result makes it an even more welcome accolade, and highlights some of the cornerstones of the Vintage brand: great design, great quality, and, of course, great value.”
The MIA Music Awards have become a major celebration for the whole music products industry, honouring the best-selling and most reliable and innovative products and retail initiatives in the UK and celebrating the top individuals and organisations within the musical instrument industry.
The awards ceremony was supported by media partners Classic FM, Future Publishing and MI Pro, and featured 25 categories in total celebrating and rewarding success in every sector of the industry.
Vintage guitars are distributed worldwide by John Hornby Skewes & Co. Ltd. For more information, visit the JHS website
There is a full review of the event by Gordon in the January News page and more on the full guitar range HERE.
After Dinner Speaking
Gordon has successfully embarked on a new aspect of his career, and that is as an after dinner speaker!
Those of you who have witnessed one of Gordon's concerts will know what a great raconteur he is with a wealth of anecdotes and stories from a career that spans 45 years.
The after dinner speaking consists of music and stories. In essence this is a mini version of a Gordon Giltrap concert but with a tad more chat!
Please contact the Gordon Poole Agency 01275 463222 for more information.
Update 1st Feb 2011
Heartsong has been voted number 4 in the top 50 greatest instrumental pieces of all time in Acoustic Magazine’s Readers Poll. The number one spot went to Rodrigo's Adagio from Concierto de Aranjuez, and list includes some major names. Number 4 is an honour though methinks. Glad I wrote it!
Read more about Heartsong in the Feb News page.
Acoustic Magazine Readers Poll Top 10
01: Adagio from Concierto de Aranjuez - Joaquin Rodrigo
02: Heart Of Gold - Neil Young
03: The Times They Are a-Changin' - Bob Dylan
04: Heartsong - Gordon Giltrap
05: Big Yellow Taxi - Joni Mitchell
06: Hurt - Johnny Cash
07: Pink moon - Nick Drake
08: Yesterday - The Beatles
09: Father And Son - Cat Stevens
10: You've Got a Friend - James Taylor
Update 1st June 2010
Read the News Update pages for extra details on these items and more.
GET UP CLOSE AND INTIMATE WITH GORDON
During his 40 year career, Gordon has played in pretty much every kind of venue in the UK from the grandeur of Birmingham's Symphony Hall to tiny, out of the way village halls. He enjoys performing in all types of venues and particularly loves the challenge that the smaller venues present where the front rows of the audience are 'up close and intimate'.
This is where YOU come in. If you would like Gordon to perform a private concert especially for you and your friends in your home (or at a venue of your choice) then call or email Sue Holton (details on the Contact page)
Why not make your personal concert with Gordon even more memorable by having a CD recording as a memento of your exclusive event?
Subject to availability, Mike Stranks, one of Gordon's regular sound technicians, will accompany Gordon and make a recording to professional standards of Gordon's music and chat. He'll also include any short speeches from the occasion as well as audience reaction and applause. The recording will then be mixed, edited and mastered and presented to you as two copies of an audio CD with appropriate artwork and in library cases. (Further CDs can be produced at additional cost.)
To find out more about this permanent reminder of your private concert please ask Sue Holton for details when you first contact her.
We guarantee you and your guests an exclusive night to remember with personal entertainment from one of the UK's top guitarists.
You will read it first here on the website, but make sure you don't miss anything by signing up for Gordon's email newsletter "Airwaves" Click the link in the column to your right.