Pink Floyd was formed in London in 1965 and it marked a changing course in the history of Rock. Heavily based on the psychedelic path, they came in as a major contributor to it. Among the bandmates, one name that stands out is David Gilmour.
Gilmour joined the band two years afterward in 1967 and the funny thing is he wasn’t even the first option of the band. Back then they tried their best to recruit Yardbirds guitarist Jeff Beck but he declined the offer to join the band.
It’s funny because now, it’s hard to think how Pink Floyd would have sounded without David Gilmour. He has contributed to the success of the band and has left his mark on many albums like ‘The Wall’. David’s guitar playing has made a significant contribution to the rock genre of music. David was inspired by guitarists like Pete Seeger and Lead Belly. In his earlier days, his family also pushed him to be who he is today. And he comments that Jeff Beck is the most significant British guitarist.
A little bit of insight on Jeff Beck…
Jeff Beck made massive headlines after being in the band Yardbirds in the mid-1960s. His tenure on the band was short but his work there was the Yardbirds’ greatest hits. Beck is a guitarist who had his own style of playing and David Gilmour was one of many who was inspired by him. But as we all know, Jeff was invited to join Pink Floyd. And regarding the matter, David Gilmour spoke back in 2002. It was with French Guitarist magazine and he said,
“Yes, that’s right. I’m not sure they contacted him. But they considered calling him. They always said they would have loved to recruit Jeff. He’s an amazing guitarist. But I don’t know if he would have been perfect for this job. We’ll never know. But the story would have been quite different.”
In 2009 during a conversation with Mojo magazine, he again remembered the story. This time he commented, “Yes. It’s true. Before I joined he was maybe the only other choice they were thinking about. It would have been a bit more explosive (If he’d joined). I suspect Jeff would have left after six months. So I don’t think the compromises that one has to make to be in a group. I don’t think Jeff is that interested in compromise.”
For David Gilmour, Jeff has always been a person with a great personality. He shared how he follows his own path rather than revolving around the record industry’s demands. David Gilmour made an appearance in Jeff Becks’ new Still On The Run Documentary and revealed his thoughts on how he is the greatest British Guitarist.
“For many people, musicians and fans alike, Jeff Beck is the greatest ever British guitarist. For more than 50 years, he has blazed an uncompromising trail across the musical landscape. Always an innovator, never a follower, Jeff has steadfastly refused to pander to the demands of the record industry.
This maverick attitude required some difficult career decisions; he left the Yardbirds at the height of their popularity, deserted his own group days before their billed appearance at Woodstock, and often shifted his attention to his other great passion of building hot rods rather than continuing a tour or returning to the studio.”