Gordon Waller

Jun 04, 1945
Jul 17, 2009

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From Wikipedia:

Gordon Trueman Riviere Waller (4 June 1945 – 17 July 2009) was a Scottish guitarist, singer and songwriter, best known as Gordon of the 1960s pop music duo Peter and Gordon, whose biggest hit was the no. 1 million-selling single “A World Without Love“.


Waller was born in Braemar, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, the son of a prominent surgeon. The family later moved to Middlesex, when Waller was a child, where Waller gained entrance to Westminster School. While attending Westminster School, he met fellow student Peter Asher, also the son of a doctor, and they began playing together as a duo – Peter and Gordon. Asher mentioned in a 2006 interview that “Our voices are quite different, Gordon’s and mine, but we tried singing together experimentally and we found that we could achieve this very nice harmony.”

Asher is the older brother of actress and businesswoman Jane Asher, who in the mid-1960s was girlfriend of the Beatles’ Paul McCartney. Through this connection he and Waller were often given unrecorded Lennon–McCartney songs to perform, most notably their first and biggest hit, “A World Without Love” (1964).

Peter and Gordon disbanded in 1968. Afterward, Waller attempted a solo career with little success, releasing one record, …and Gordon. On this album Waller used a New York-based group White Cloud, featuring Teddy Wender on keyboards. He also appeared in a production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat as Pharaoh in 1971, a performance that he reprised on the LP. Waller first performed “Joseph” at the Edinburgh Festival, later reprising the role at the Albery Theatre in London’s West End. In the mid-1970s Waller worked as a photocopier salesman with Rank Xerox in Leicester whilst living in Everdon, Northamptonshire.[citation needed] In 1995, he moved to Los Angeles, California, and started a publishing company, Steel Wallet International. Ltd., with his longtime friend and girlfriend, Georgiana Steele. After his divorce from Gay Robbins was final, he and Georgiana married on 15 August 1998, although they divorced in 2007.

Waller returned to recording in 2002 as part of the He’s a Rebel: The Gene Pitney Story Retold project produced by Gary Pig Gold. In 2007, Waller released a solo album Plays the Beatles, featuring a new recording of “Woman”, which Paul McCartney wrote under the pseudonym of Bernard Webb, and which had been a Peter and Gordon hit in the mid-1960s. In 2008, he followed up with the release of Rebel Rider. On 19 July 2008, Peter and Gordon performed together at The Cannery Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Also on the bill that night were Chad & Jeremy. Both duos sang the final concert song (“Bye Bye Love”) together for only the second time. On 21 August 2008, they performed a free concert on the pier in Santa Monica, California, briefly accompanied by Joan Baez. On 2 February 2009 Gordon performed with Asher at the Surf Ballroom as part of a tribute concert marking the 50th anniversary of “the Day the Music Died”. […]

The connection had started with Peter Asher’s friend and musical partner Gordon Waller, who had dated Jenny Dunbar, from nearby Bentinck Street. Through Jenny they got to know her brother, John Dunbar, who had studied science and art at Cambridge and married singer Marianne Faithfull in May 1965. He wrote a weekly art column for the Scotsman and had a knack of being the first to pick up on emerging trends. He would become an important mentor to both Paul and John.

A frequent guest at Wimpole Street, Dunbar knew a lot about contemporary art, music from other cultures, American and European literature, and psychedelic drugs. A friend of his was Barry Miles, an art college graduate (Gloucestershire College of Art) and expert on Beat generation writing who knew the poets Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso and the novelist William Burroughs. At the time he was introduced into the Wimpole Street circle he was managing Better Books on Charing Cross Road, a shop inspired by Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s bohemian City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco.

From “Beatles ’66: The Revolutionary Year” by Steve Turner

Last updated on November 29, 2023

Recording sessions Gordon Waller participated in

Recording "Woman"

December 1965 • Songs recorded during this session appear on Woman / Wrong From The Start

Albums, EPs & singles which Gordon Waller contributed to

Nobody I Know / You Don't Have To Tell Me

By Peter and Gordon • 7" Single

Contribution: Performed by • 1 songs

I Don't Want To See You Again / I Would Buy

By Peter and Gordon • 7" Single

Contribution: Performed by • 1 songs

Woman / Wrong From The Start

By Peter and Gordon • 7" Single

Contribution: Performed by • 1 songs

The Songs Lennon and McCartney Gave Away

By Various Artists • LP

Contribution: Performed by • 1 songs


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