Thursday, 13 June 2013


It is with great personal sadness that I heard of the death of Gavin Taylor, an outstanding director in the world of live music TV, and a man I was honoured to call a friend. Gavin Taylor was one of the few directors who could capture both the intimacy and the theatrical power of the world's greatest performers live on stage. He started his career as a cameraman with the fledgling Tyne Tees Television, and ultimately Gavin established a reputation for directing high quality offerings like "Alright Now" for the ITV network and "Saturday Shakeup" for the ITV regions. By 1982 Gavin Taylor was helming Channel 4's anarchic music flagship programme "THE TUBE", directing every major solo and band act live on a Friday night for 5 years - beginning with The Jam on November 5 1982 and ending with Duran Duran in the final 1987 transmission.  Whether it was PIL, Tina Turner, Cameo, or Twisted Sister, Gavin was a true professional.

His friend Chris Phipps writes: It was U2 live at Red Rocks in 1983 that put Taylor’s name in the music history books and Gavin was the go to choice  for the world's top acts and broadcasters. His visual flair is epitomised in the definitive Queen Live at Wembley 86 and Gavin enjoyed an especially creative relationship with Queen. Gavin filmed  Eric Clapton and Friends, as well as gigs by everyone from  Michael Jackson to Bob Dylan to Dire Straits . Gavin's talents also ranged beyond classic rock – his credits included the Princes Trust Rock Galas,  Les Miserables, The Royal Variety Performance, the first live coverage of Glastonbury on Channel 4 in 1994 and 1995, and many Montreux Jazz  Festival performances . Gavin pioneered a unique style where he dispensed with vision mixers and literally cut the images live himself, co-ordinating up to 18 cameras , most memorably for  Freddie Mercury and Montserrat Caballet in Barcelona in 1992. Gavin Taylor - director and colleague extraordinaire. Gavin was 72 and will be so missed by his wife Margaret, his two daughters, friends, family, and many many of us in music and television.

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