David Gilmour’s 1955 Fender Esquire “The Workmate”

This 1955 Fender Esquire originally belonged to Seymour Duncan, who modified it by adding a neck pickup. As far as one can tell from looking up online, Seymour never specified the exact model of the pickup that he used, so given that he actually makes pickups, this could’ve been something he custom-made.

In any case, he sold this guitar to David around 1975-76, and at point, it already had all the wear on its body. Inspired by the guitar’s look, David to decided to nickname it “The Workmate” – since it was obvious that this was someone’s work guitar for many years.

David first used the guitar on the album The Wall, to record the song “Run Like Hell”. Later on, he was photographed with it on the cover of his solo album About Face released in 1984.

Also interestingly, this is one of the few guitars that David decided not to sell in 2019, when he auctioned off the majority of his guitar, including his Black Strat.

There are a few things. I’m keeping a lovely old Gibson steel guitar that has a really beefy sound. I’m holding on to a black Gretsch Duo Jet that I really love, along with a 1945 Martin D-18. I also couldn’t bear to part with my ’55 Fender Esquire that I nicknamed ‘The Workmate’. It’s the one you see on the cover of my About Face album, and it was used on “Run Like Hell” from The Wall among other things.

David Gilmour : Guitarist Magazine Interview April 2019


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