Fishman Artist // Gordon GiltrapGordon Giltrap is an acoustic and electric guitarist and composer, whose musical styles cross multiple genres, including folk, blues, folk rock, pop, classical and rock.
Giltrap started to learn the guitar at the age of twelve. Never receiving any formal tuition on the instrument, he gradually developed his own style and technique.
His musical career started to take off in the 1960s, when he played the folk scene in London alongside contemporaries such as Bert Jansch, John Renbourn and Mike Oldfield. Giltrap cites Jansch as a great influence.
At the age of eighteen Giltrap signed to Transatlantic Records and between 1968-1971 released a folk album (guitar + vocals) every year. While popular on the folk and university circuit, Giltrap reached a turning point and received much greater recognition during the 1970s. During this time Giltrap started to concentrate on more purely instrumental pieces, and in 1976 released the album Visionary, based on the art and poetry of William Blake.
The success of this album prompted Giltrap to move on from the singer-songwriter approach and form the Gordon Giltrap Band, which toured extensively in the UK at that time. A follow-up album, Perilous Journey, consolidated his success, being named at one of the best albums of 1977 by The Sunday Times. It peaked in the UK Albums Chart at #29. A single taken from the album, "Heartsong" received extensive airplay and reached #21 in the UK Singles Chart. The track was later used as the signature tune of the BBC TV series Holiday. Giltrap's next album Fear of the Dark was released in 1978.
By the end of the 1970s he was commissioned to write a number of notable pieces, such as the classically inspired The Brotherhood, based on the art of the Pre-Raphaelites, and The Eye of the Wind Rhapsody,an orchestral work celebrating the exploration of the New World by British sailing ships. In the 1990s, Gordon played a key role in Cliff Richard's Heathcliff musical, playing the musical narrator. He also composed a number of pieces for the show.
In late 2009, Giltrap started "Three Parts Guitar", a four date world tour with classical guitarist Raymond Burley, and jazz guitarist John Etheridge.For two years Giltrap wrote a regular acoustic column for Total Guitar magazine. An anthology of 26 articles is published in Total Giltrap, a book with an accompanying CD upon which Gordon plays the studies and pieces. Giltrap is a regular columnist for the Acoustic magazine.