• The Early Years part 1, 1968-69

    Today is David’s birthday and I though it would be great to celebrate with a new article, – part 1 of “The Early Years”. Hope you enjoy it and do feel free to share your birthday greetings with a comment!

    Although David’s rig was pretty basic during his first five with Pink Floyd, both his tone and technique played a significant role in shaping the band’s sound after Syd’s departure. In this first of two articles I’ll look at David’s guitars, amps and effects between 1968-1969 and how he created his tone.

    The article includes YouTube clips. Please allow a couple of seconds for them to load. You may need to refresh your browser if you’re experiencing any problems.

    The Hiwatt/WEM article and the gear guides for A Saucerful of Secrets, More and Ummagumma are also updated with this article. Be sure to take the tour!

    Part 2 of this article will be posted in a month or so. Then we’ll look at David’s rig and tone from 1970-72.

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44 Responsesso far.

  1. Will says:

    I have seen Dave using custom Herco picks with his name on them and I was wondering where he got them, if you would know.

    [You can still get Herco picks but the ones with his signature is custom made for him. – Bjorn]

  2. Ernest Peske says:

    Looks interesting this new BYOC “ping pong” delay…
    Thanks Bjorn.

  3. Ernest Peske says:

    This clip shows my DE-7 delay settings for RLH: YouTube link.

    (different from my first clip)

  4. Ernest Peske says:

    Pavan: [Tell me what you think. I think I got some decent Gilmour tones on Any Colour You Like and Run Like Hell…. Its a pain getting the RLH setting on the DE-7 though…]

    I did it with my DE7: YouTube Link.

    The delay is a bit too fast + I should play the chords a bit louder.
    The clip itself is terrible, forgive me :-(

    My DE7 R.L.H. settings are: Echo mode, Delay at almost 1, Repeat 12 and level 1+

    Maybe it would be easier/better to play this with a Delay unit that can repeat two echo’s, like – – – OO – – – OO – – – OO …

    You can hear this kind of delay when David is testing in the beginning (after 40 seconds) : YouTube Link.

    Am I right Bjorn…???

    PS: Christian Bourichon !
    How does your Analogman mod DD-6 sound?
    It has a three way switch, “normal”-“mild”-“echo”
    Is it close to the DE7 or better….?

    I am also considering a T-rex or Nova delay (in the future)…
    Although I am still very happy with the DE7

    [You should be able to get the right type of delay with just a single repeat at about 380ms. Here’s a clip I recorded with a Boss GT-3 processor. Check out this new BYOC kit .. Looks very nice! – Bjorn]

  5. Pavan says:

    Hey Bjorn, I’m really diggint the new articles!!!

    BTW in my Name I Linked to my YouTube page which features me playing my red Standard Strat witha band of various family members with 15 minutes of experience on Bass and Keyboards.

    My Rig is
    Small Stone Nano-> Tube Works Tube Driver 910 -> (Black) Sovtek Big Muff Pi-> EH Deluxe Electric Mistress-> Ibanez DE-7-> 1976 Fender PA 135

    Tell me what you think. I think I got some decent Gilmour tones on Any Colour You Like and Run Like Hell…. Its a pain getting the RLH setting on the DE-7 though…

    Cheers!
    Pavan

    [Thanks for sharing the clip. What did the neighbours say to this? I haven’t managed to get a accurate RLH setting with the DE-7. I think a unit with a digital display, like the Boss DD20, would be better for stuff like Another Brick 1, RLH etc… Cheers! – Bjorn]

  6. Ernest Peske says:

    [Bjorn, i was reading the amp section on your Buyers Guide and theres a part where you say that David has used Fender Champs]

    There is a “new” Fender amp with 5Watt Amp available.
    The Vibro Champ XD.
    I did read very positive reviews about it.
    Could be a good 5 w tube amp for playing at home / recording.
    (I wouldn’t use the DSP functions, just the clean amp).

    Ernest

  7. Oscar says:

    Very good article, Bjorn! I think that the video where you wrote “Let There be More Light” Surprise Partie TV special, Paris France September 7. 1968 should be “Live at Tous En Scene, ORTF TV, Paris, France October 31. 1968” :) I have it on DVD so I think that’s correct.

    Thanks for an informative article with great clips!

    [Oh… My mistake! I the “French TV 1968-1969” DVD and I mixed up the dates. Thanks! – Bjorn]

  8. bernhard says:

    bjorn,

    a belated thank you for this new gear guide. absolutely remarkable, the video links make it even more comprehensive! great work, looking forward to part II!

    all the best,
    bernhard

    [Thanks Bernhard! I’m working a couple of things right now but I hope I can be finished with part 2 in a couple of weeks… – Bjorn]

  9. Whalen says:

    Happy Birthday Dave!

    Excellent article as always Bjorn.

    [Thanks Whalen! – Bjorn]

  10. Leandro says:

    Bjorn, i was reading the amp section on your Buyers Guide and theres a part where you say that David has used Fender Champs….on what albums did he used them? and do you know what kind of champ was it (blackface…silver….tweed..)?

    Leandro

    [In an interview with Guitar World in ’88 David mentions that he used a Fender Super Champ on Sorrow. I think it was a 1984 blackface model. Here’s what I’ve written in the Momentary album gear guide:
    Distortion signal for rhythms and solo; Steinberger guitar/ Boss HM2/ Boss digital delay/ Fender Super Champ combo (clean)/ Gallien Krueger amp using its distortion channel – Bjorn]

  11. Frails says:

    Just got a 12″ Weber Thames for $43 to boot. Not sure how the Fane Legend Series speaker is, in the Hiwatt and I wanted another speaker in my 2 x 12 cab anyway (as we’ve talked about). Now I’m def covered. WOOT!

    [Cheers Frails! I love my Weber Thames! – Bjorn]

  12. Frails says:

    Finally got my hands on a Hiwatt, albeit a pcb version Lead 50R Combo. Was wondering if you (Bjorn) or anyone else have ever played thru one? The reviews on Harmony Central are a stellar 9.8 and I can’t wait for it to arrive!!!

    [Congratulations Frails! I need to pass this forward… anyone? – Bjorn]

  13. Mike says:

    This article is amazing!

    Have you gotten any backing tracks sent in lately? I’ve been dying for more.

    [Thanks! There doesn’t seem to be too many BT left out there… I’ll post whatever I get. Cheers! – Bjorn]

  14. brett says:

    Great Article !

    5/5

    just amazing cant wait for the next one

    -jimmy watts

    [Thanks! – Bjorn]

  15. Adrian says:

    Thanks Rafal for the picks looks like I actully use one of those anyways

    Here is a video I just made of me playing echoes no backing tracking or anything but I am using my new Fender Strat American Standard Series…. With black pickguard of course

    Enjoy

  16. Rafal says:

    [Do u know what Picks David uses???]

    Mostly Herco Flex 75 in the 70s and Fender 354 heavy since ‘The Wall’ tour. During OAI tour he had various picks in the pick holder: Herco Flex 75, D’Andrea custom 354’s (white), Fender 354 (tortoise) and Fender 351 (medium)…

  17. Scott Wilson says:

    Nice one Bjorn and bit late but Happy birthday for the 6th David lol my band played Comfortably numb in our school that night just for him hehe shine on !

  18. Adrian says:

    Hello

    Do u know what Picks David uses???

    [He’s mostly using Herco heavy gauge 351 tear drops. – Bjorn]

  19. charaf says:

    many thanks Bjorn, a real wonderful job. I’m now excited to read about what i call the golden period especially with dsom and wywh.

    Cheers,
    Charaf.

    [Thanks! I have only planned to write about 1970-72… at least for now. Here you’ll find Gear Guide for DSotM and WYWH. Cheers! – Bjorn]

  20. Lorenzo says:

    Buon Compleanno David!

  21. João Francisco says:

    I wonder if David knows so much as you about his old own gear! ;-)
    I must remind your incredible research and the work you have to write all these stuff!! A lot of work, a lot of time! A great sense of art in the pictures, and in all of the art work in the site… this is the only place I’m sure that are no mistakes!
    No much to say!! Congratulations again and again!!!

    [Thanks João! Well, hopefully there aren’t any mistakes :) – Bjorn]

  22. Collin says:

    In celebration of David’s birthday, I completely Floyded out. I just listened and listened and listened. I am so gald that even at 62, David is still a fairly active musician.

    Alright! I’ve been excited about this article ever since I saw it slated to be posted! Nice that you’ll give us a part 2, as well! Once, again, a great, informative article. You teach me so much!

    [Thanks Collin! – Bjorn]

  23. Paul_C says:

    Hi Bjorn
    Already posted my birthday wishes for David on DG.com so I’ll reserve this space to thank you one again for a great, well written and informative article. I hope the donations are coming in and helping fund such a fantastic website.

    Shine on my friend!

    Paul (UK)

    [Thanks for your support Paul! – Bjorn]

  24. Leandro says:

    Great Article Bjorn…..I’ve been waiting this for a long time!! I see you’re using You Tube as a resource…thats awesome.

    Happy Birthday to David!

    and Happy Birthday to you too!! (a bit late)

    Cheers

    Leandro

    [Thanks Leandro! I’m working on part 2 and hopefully I’ll be finished for a late March/early April publishing. – Bjorn]

  25. saint seiya says:

    o man thnx for that tip on the green is the colour CMaj7 chord. im gonna make a new video lol . thnx bro

    [Cheers! – Bjorn]

  26. Brad says:

    Great Article. Currently I am reading through Nick’s “Inside Out” and I am only as far as the late 60’s so your article was timely and a great compliment to the book, ESPECIALLY with the videos!

    Keep up the hard work, it is truly appreciated.

    Ohio Brad

    [Thanks Brad! The book is amazing! I recommend getting the audio book as well where Nick is reading in his usual upper class manner :) – Bjorn]

  27. erol says:

    Happy B-day Dave!

    Very cool article as always Bjorn, love that pic with him and the 335.

    [Thanks Erol! – Bjorn]

  28. Liz says:

    Happy Birthday David! :D

  29. Brad says:

    Happy Birthday David!

    And the new article is awseome Bjorn, Very cool how you put videos on there. Keep up the good work!

    [Thanks Brad! – Bjorn]

  30. stallion09 says:

    Another great article

    Thanks

    [Thanks! – Bjorn]

  31. saint seiya says:

    hey dude i love your site. the pre dark side era is my favorite. I also have a sound city 50 plus and i love it. check out my setup yo.

    [Thanks! Great clip! A little tip if you don’t mind… The verse is G and CMaj7. The chorus is a straight C. Makes it a bit more… airy :) Cheers! – Bjorn]

    —–3—– e
    —–5—– b
    —–4—– g
    —–5—– d
    —–3—– a
    ———– e

  32. Silvan says:

    Hey Bjorn nice trip back to the psychedelic era of the band !!
    Loved that youtube clips !!
    Btw who’s playin trombone at the rehearsal clip, is that Wright ?!?

    Thanks for the nice article it’s always a pleasure to get lost on your site !!
    greetings from germany, Silvan

    [Thanks Silvan! Yes, Wright is playing the trombone. – Bjorn]

  33. Darran says:

    Great article again Bjorn. I am really enjoying this site, very informative. I have been inspired enough to buy a black usa strat, fit a black pickguard, seymour duncan ssl-1, switch mod next if i can work it out!!!

    Keep it up Bjorn as your work is widely appreciated by Gilmour fans as “the” resource for Gilmour. I hope you get as much pleasure putting in the hard work as we do reading it!!!

    Kind regards from England,

    Darran

    P.S> Many happy returns David!!!!

    [Cheers Darran! Your support makes all much more fun! Thanks! – Bjorn]

  34. raphael says:

    joyeux anniversaire David !!!!!

  35. Adrian says:

    Well Great Article enjoyed reading that makes a little smarter everytime i come on the site. Happy 62nd to David and many more(including a tour in canada would be nice)

    What kind of tubes does david use???

    [He used and uses old Mullards in his Hiwatts. Check out JJ Electronics for a close match. – Bjorn]

  36. ørjan says:

    Happy Birthday David!:)

  37. Thomas says:

    Happy birthday David!

    And congratulations to Bjorn. Your new article is great again. I can´t wait to read the next part.
    I´ve been watching your site for several years now and took a huge amount of its inspiration for my personal advantage. Whether information about gear or new ideas to create Dave´s space sound – it´s all there. Thank you so much for your work, Bjorn. Sometimes I think you do not sleep at all.

    Shine on

    Thomas

    [Thanks Thomas! Your support is much appreciated! – Bjorn]

  38. Gary Halloran says:

    Many Happy Returns David! Looking forward to the live cd.

    Planet Rock radio station needs a new owner – anybody interested?

    Great site, the only place to look for all your Floyd/Gilmour needs!

    [Cheers Gary! – Bjorn]

  39. Franck Machu says:

    Happy birthday to Mr. Gilmour.

    Great article Bjorn… As usual. Full of details very interesting.
    You perfectly highlight some important things about Gilmour and the Floyd of this era. The sound of Gilmour from this period is really not conventional and so different to the music from this period dominated by the Stones and Beatles sound.
    I really share your opinion about Hendrix influence even if their style are apparently so different. Hendrix is my other preferred guitarist and I think it is not by chance. They are both experts to produce emotions with their notes and tones. In both guitar playing, the guitar really seems to be extension of their mind. I know we could say that for almost any guitarist but these two genius are the quintessence of this amazing feeling, coming from great bluesmen. The comparison of their extensive use of bends is another evidence of musical connections. Their music are based on extraterrestrial phrasing. Gilmour is rarely compaired to hendrix as an emule (or a cousin) and I am happy to read this from a Gilmour expert like you.
    Looking forward to the Part 2.

    [Thanks Franck! Well, I don’t think there’s any doubt that David was and perhaps still is influenced by Hendrix. Don’t forget that Hendrix started out in the UK with the Experience band. I think what some might forget when one talks about who is influenced by who is that to be influenced doesn’t necessarily mean that one is a duplicate. It means that one picks up bits and pieces here and there… consciously or unconsciously. Hendrix and Gilmour both shared the same passion for 1930s, 40’s and 50’s delta blues and rhythm & blues and the fact that they both played a Stratocaster made them so much more similar. Yet there are subtle similarities and as I’ve written in the article, Hendrix had that powerful in-your-face tone while David produced haunting, echo soundscapes. Tonewise, David is closer to Hendrix now. A great example of how similar they were/are is how David often is singing along with his solos, like on Wish You Were Here and early versions of Any Colour You Like. Perfect phrasing and a unique technique. Not many do that and this was something Hendrix mastered and it became one if his definitive trademarks but the technique is something they both picked up from their old blues heroes like Leadbelly, Pete Seeger etc. Anyway, I think the early years is a great era to research and quite fascinating as the band was struggling musicians and David’s rig wasn’t anything over the top. – Bjorn]

  40. Ignazio says:

    Happy birthday to David,
    thank you Bjorn for the article and especially for the videos.
    Ciao!

    [Cheers Ignazio! – Bjorn]

  41. Frails says:

    Happy birthday to all my Pisces brothers and sisters!!

    [Thanks bro! – Bjorn]

  42. Daniel Krause says:

    First of all…..Happy birthday David!!!

    Great article Bjorn!
    Really nice to see this sort of timeline. Looking forward to the next part.
    Very nice picture you made there again…any chance you got that one bigger? (And the gearguide pic too?)

    Cheers,

    Daniel

    [Thanks Daniel! Sorry… I keep forgetting.The banner is small I’m afraid. I’ll try to make some new wallpapers soon. Cheers! – Bjorn]

  43. Rob k says:

    Happy Birthday David, nice new topic Bjorn!

  44. Rick says:

    Happy Birthday David!!