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|Born||28 May 1963|
Harrow, Middlesex, England
Gavin Richard Harrison (born 28 May 1963) is an English musician. He is best known for playing with the progressive rock bands Porcupine Tree (2002–2010; 2021–present), King Crimson (2008, and 2014–present) and The Pineapple Thief (2016–present). Harrison's drumming has received many awards from music publications and earned praise from other musicians.
Gavin started to work professionally in 1979. He worked as a freelance session drummer on records and tours for the following artists: Incognito, Lisa Stansfield, Lewis Taylor, Artful Dodger, Paul Young, Iggy Pop, Level 42, Porcupine Tree, OSI, King Crimson, Shooter, Dizrhythmia, The Pineapple Thief, The Kings Of Oblivion, Sam Brown, Tom Robinson, Go West, Black, Gail Ann Dorsey, B J Cole, Dave Stewart and Barbara Gaskin, Nathan East, Yasuaki Shimizu, Camouflage, Kevin Ayers, Claudio Baglioni, Franco Battiato, Chizuko Yoshihiro, Renaissance, Mick Karn, Eros Ramazzotti, Nick Johnston, Randy Goodrum, and Fates Warning.
In 2002 he joined Porcupine Tree and played on the band's last four albums: In Absentia, Deadwing, Fear of a Blank Planet and The Incident, with each receiving critical acclaim and raising the band's status to one of the most influential modern progressive rock bands. He remained a permanent member of the band until an indefinite hiatus was announced in 2010.
In 2008, Harrison joined King Crimson as part of a dual-drummer line-up with Pat Mastelotto. He played a number of shows in the United States in August with the band. He also recorded drums on Steven Wilson's debut solo album, Insurgentes.
On 23 August 2011, he was a featured performer on the 'Late Show with David Letterman' as part of their second "Drum Solo Week", along with such players as Sheila E, Stewart Copeland, Neil Peart, and Dennis Chambers.
As of September 2014, Harrison plays live in the new formation of King Crimson, as one of the three drummers.
In 2016, he joined The Pineapple Thief as a session drummer for the band's 11th studio album Your Wilderness, which received widespread critical acclaim and an overwhelmingly positive fan reception. He joined the band on the tour following the album in January 2017. In August 2018, just prior to the release of Dissolution, the band announced that Harrison had officially joined the band as a full member. He has since been actively involved and credited in the band's songwriting and album production together with the founder Bruce Soord.
Influences and awards
Harrison won the Modern Drummer readers' poll for "best progressive drummer of the year" consecutively from 2007–2010 and again in 2016 and 2019. He won "Best Prog Drummer" in DRUM USA magazine 2011. Prog voted him best drummer in 2011, 2012, 2018, 2019 and 2020. He is the featured cover story on Modern Drummer January 2009 and February 2015. Rolling Stone polls rate him as the third best drummer in the past 25 years. In 2014, Modern Drummer magazine placed Harrison in the "Top 50 Greatest Drummers of All Time".
Comments from other artists
Many artists have cited Harrison as an influence, including Chad Szeliga, Chris Pennie, Ryan Van Poederooyen, Dirk Verbeuren, Andrew Spence, Raymond Hearne of Haken, John Merryman of Cephalic Carnage, Jamie Saint Merat of Ulcerate, Aaron Stechauner of Rings of Saturn, Baard Kolstad of Leprous, Francesco Paoli of Fleshgod Apocalypse, Matija Dagović of Consecration,Vishnu Reddy of Crypted and Abhay Rathore (former Mocaine). 
In addition, other artists have been quoted expressing admiration for his work including Neil Peart, Bill Bruford, Mike Portnoy, Devin Townsend, Steve Smith, Martín López, Matt Garstka, Dave Bainbridge, Hannes Grossmann, Blake Richardson, Kai Hahto, Jimmy Keegan, Ian Mosley, Dan Presland of Ne Obliviscaris, Evan Sammons of Last Chance to Reason, Bodo Stricker of Callejon, Joshua Theriot of Abigail's Ghost, and Blake Anderson of Vektor.
Harrison authored two instructional drum books entitled Rhythmic Illusions and Rhythmic Perspectives. He also wrote and produced his own instructional DVDs, Rhythmic Visions and Rhythmic Horizons, at his home studio. 2010 saw the release of Rhythmic Designs, a book of transcriptions by Terry Branam, and a 3-hour DVD of Gavin's explanations and demonstrations. It won 'Best in Show' at the summer NAMM show in the USA. 2014 sees the release of Rhythmic Compositions a book of 20 detailed drum transcriptions (by Terry Branam) of recorded Porcupine Tree performances – plus photos and stories of the recording and creative process.
|King Crimson||2021||Washington & Albany|
|Porcupine Tree||2021||CLOSURE / CONTINUATION|
|The Pineapple Thief||2021||Nothing but the Truth - Live|
|Gavin Harrison & Antoine Fafard||2020||Chemical Reactions|
|Fates Warning||2020||Long Day Good Night|
|Claudio Baglioni||2020||In Questa Storia, Che E La Mia|
|The Pineapple Thief||2020||Versions of the Truth|
|Randy Goodrum||2020||Red Eye|
|Jakko Jakszyk||2020||Secrets and Lies|
|The Pineapple Thief||2019||Hold Our Fire|
|The Pineapple Thief||2018||Dissolution|
|Dave Stewart/Barbara Gaskin||2018||Star Clocks|
|King Crimson||2017||Meltdown: Live in Mexico City|
|Gianluca D'Alessio||2018||Sunrise Markets|
|Gleb Kolyadin||2018||Gleb Kolyadin|
|King Crimson||2016||Live In Vienna|
|The Pineapple Thief||2017||Where We Stood|
|King Crimson||2017||Live In Chicago|
|King Crimson||2016||Radical Action to Unseat the Hold of Monkey Mind|
|The Pineapple Thief||2016||Your Wilderness|
|Nick Johnston||2016||Remarkably Human|
|King Crimson||2016||Live in Toronto|
|Fjieri||2016||Words Are All We Have|
|Franco Battiato||2015||Anthology - Le nostre anime|
|King Crimson||2015||Live At The Orpheum|
|King Crimson||2014||The Elements of King Crimson|
|The Tangent||2013||Le Sacre Du Travail|
|Lo-Fi Resistance||2012||Chalk Lines|
|Porcupine Tree||2012||Octane Twisted|
|Fusion Syndicate||2012||The Fusion Syndicate|
|Franco Battiato||2012||Apriti Sesamo|
|Kompendium||2012||Beneath The Waves|
|Harry Shearer||2012||Can't Take A Hint|
|Dario Zeno||2010||L'incoscienza di Zeno|
|Alice||1992||Mezzogiorno sulle Alpi|
|B. J. Cole||1989||Transparent Music|
|B. J. Cole||1995||Heart of the Moment|
|Carlo Fimiani||2007||Too Early|
|Chizuko Yoshihiro||1993||Conscious Mind|
|Claudio Baglioni||1995||Io Sono Qui|
|Claudio Baglioni||1996||Attori e Spettatori|
|Claudio Baglioni||1997||Anime in Gioco|
|Claudio Baglioni||1999||Viaggiatore Sulla Coda del Tempo|
|Claudio Baglioni||2003||Sono Io|
|Claudio Baglioni||2005||Cresendo e Cercando|
|Claudio Baglioni||2006||Quelli Degli Altri Tutti Qui|
|Claudio Baglioni||2013||Con Voi|
|Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin||1990||The Big Idea|
|Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin||1991||Spin|
|Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin||2009||Green & Blue|
|Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin||2009||TLG Collection|
|David Devant & His Spirit Wife||1996||Ginger|
|Donna Gardier||1990||I'll Be There|
|Ed Poole||2008||ED 4|
|Eddie & the Tide||1986|
|Eros Ramazzotti||1995||Più Bella Cosa Live|
|Eugenio Finardi||1990||La Forza Dell'amore|
|Fiorella Mannoia||1992||I Treni a Vapore|
|Peter Cox||2004||Desert Blooms|
|Franco Battiato||1993||Caffe' de la Paix|
|Franco Battiato||1996||L'ombra Della Luce|
|Franco Battiato||2012||Apriti Sesamo|
|Gail Ann Dorsey||1988||The Corporate World|
|Gavin Harrison||1997||Sanity & Gravity|
|Gavin Harrison & 05Ric||2007||Drop|
|Gavin Harrison & 05Ric||2009||Circles|
|Gavin Harrison & 05Ric||2012||The Man Who Sold Himself|
|Gavin Harrison||2015||Cheating the Polygraph|
|Heraldo Zuniga||2001||Triangulo de Musgo|
|Iggy Pop||1986||Ritz N.Y.C Live / Real Wild Child Live|
|Jakko Jakszyk||2006||The Bruised Romantic Glee Club|
|Jakko Jakszyk||1994||Kingdom of Dust|
|Jakko Jakszyk||1994||Mustard Gas and Roses|
|Jakko Jakszyk||1996||Are My Ears on Wrong?|
|Jakko Jakszyk||1997||Road to Ballina|
|Jakszyk Fripp Collins||2011||A Scarcity of Miracles|
|Kevin Ayers||1992||Still Life with Guitar|
|King Crimson||2008||Park West, Chicago, Illinois – 7 August 2008|
|Lewis Taylor||2000||Lewis II|
|Lewis Taylor||2005||In Session|
|Lisa Stansfield||1997||Never, Never Gonna Give You Up Live|
|Lisa Stansfield||2001||831 – Change|
|Manfred Mann's Earth Band||1996||Soft Vengeance|
|Manolo García||2002||Nunca el Tiempo es Perdido|
|Mick Karn||1995||The Tooth Mother|
|Mieko Shimizu||1990||A Road of Shells|
|OSI||2012||Fire Make Thunder|
|Paolo Gianolio||2009||Pane e Nuvole|
|Paolo Gianolio||2012||Tribu' di Note|
|Patty Pravo||2002||Radio Station|
|Paul Young||1995||Grazing in the Grass Live|
|Peter Cox||2001||Flame Still Burns|
|Porcupine Tree||2002||In Absentia|
|Porcupine Tree||2004||The Sky Moves Sideways reissue|
|Porcupine Tree||2005||Up the Downstair reissue|
|Porcupine Tree||2006||Arriving Somewhere...|
|Porcupine Tree||2007||Fear of a Blank Planet|
|Porcupine Tree||2007||Nil Recurring|
|Porcupine Tree||2009||The Incident|
|Progetto Cavani||1993||Alza la Testa|
|Richard Barbieri/Tim Bowness||1994||Flame|
|Richard Barbieri||2008||Stranger Inside|
|Rob Cowen/Beverley Craven||2004||Lady Advertiser|
|Sarah Jane Morris||1988||Can't Get to Sleep|
|Saro Cosentino||1997||Ones & Zeros|
|Sharon Rose||1994||Never Be The Same|
|Shooter||1999||..And Your Point?|
|Shooter||1999||Life's a Bitch|
|Steve Thorne||2007||Part Two: Emotional Creatures|
|Steve Thorne||2009||Into the Ether|
|Storm Corrosion||2012||Storm Corrosion|
|The Kings of Oblivion||1987||Big Fish Popcorn|
|Three Blind Mice||2007||Good Grief|
|Tom Robinson & Jakko Jakszyk||1988||We've Never Had It So Good|
|Zerra One||1986||The Domino Effect|
- "Gavin Harrison". Discogs. Retrieved 24 November 2019.
- "Gavin Harrison | Biography". Allmusic.com. Retrieved 22 July 2015.
- "Interview: Gavin Harrison (solo & 05Ric, Porcupine Tree, King Crimson)". Hit-channel.com. Retrieved 4 August 2020.
- Slater, Sam (June 2010). "Interview with Chris Pennie - Coheed and Cambria". www.mikedolbear.co.uk. Leicestershire, England. Archived from the original on 25 November 2010. Retrieved 8 July 2017.
[...] Gavin Harrison is a great player and his books have been a great source of inspiration to me. [...]
- "Interview: Ryan Van Poederooyen of DTP". damnationmagazine.com. 3 October 2014. Archived from the original on 1 April 2016. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
[...] I’d have to say my biggest inspiration on the drums at the moment is Gavin Harrison from Porcupine Tree. The guy is absolutely amazing on the drums. Great feel, great chops, amazing groove and he always plays unique beats and fills that really stand out to me. [...]
- "A Toontrack Interview with Soilwork Drummer Dirk Verbeuren". geargods.net. 3 December 2013. Archived from the original on 30 May 2015. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
- Marc, Travis (2010). "Andrew Spence Interview". ukdrummer.com (published 20 November 2014). Archived from the original on 12 February 2017. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
[...] So lately drummers who are really have a serious effect on my drumming are Gavin Harrison [...] I would just love to have a brain transplant with that guy. Anything he does is just mind boggling. What I love most about him is he’s not so flashy, just very down to earth and passionate about his drumming. Everything is well thought out and out together and he makes the impossible seem possible.
- Kearns, Kevin; Haid, Mike (14 October 2014). "The Essence of Progressive Drumming". Modern Drummer. Archived from the original on 14 February 2017. Retrieved 13 February 2017.
- "John Merryman". sickdrummermagazine.com. 9 September 2007. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
- "Entrevista exclusiva: Ulcerate". www.zannmusic.com.ar. 25 November 2009. Archived from the original on 14 April 2016. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
- Cece, Dan (29 February 2016). "INTERVIEW: Aaron Stechauner From Rings of Saturn". itdjents.com. Archived from the original on 26 April 2016. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
- "Baard Kolstad's official Facebook". 28 February 2012. Archived from the original on 2 September 2017. Retrieved 2 September 2017.
- "SDM Cover Feature | Francesco Paoli". Sick Drummer Magazine. Brockport, New York. 18 March 2014. p. 56. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
- Lazinica, Gordan (2 November 2014). "Šta muzičari slušaju: Matija Dagović (Consecration)". balkanrock.com (in Bosnian). Archived from the original on 2 November 2014. Retrieved 13 March 2017.
[...] Gavin Harrison je verovatno najkompletniji i najkompleksniji muzičar među bubnjarima današnjice. Prava je poslastica slušati i gledati ga u bilo kojoj muzičkoj situaciji. ([...] Gavin Harrison is probably the most complete and complex musician among drummers of today. Is a real delight to listen to and watch him in any musical situation.)
- Muralidhar, Vilasini (8 September 2011). "Vishnu Reddy (September 2011)". headbangers.in. Archived from the original on 12 February 2017. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
- "Exclusive Interview with Neil Peart". mikedolbear.co.uk (published 9 November 2006). January 2006. Archived from the original on 11 May 2006. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
Along with all the drummers I have always enjoyed, and still listen to and appreciate (many mentioned in the DVD and related material), I like what Gavin Harrison is doing with Porcupine Tree, and on his instructional DVDs. His playing and his thinking are interesting, musical, and inspiring.
- Bruford, Bill. "FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS". BillBruford.com. Archived from the original on 20 July 2010. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
Fellow countryman Gavin is leading the field in improvising with meters. He has managed to distil the essence of, and codify the laws of what I think is generally considered to be the next big step in drumming, namely the ability to move at will through several parallel meters, whose relationship to the basic pulse can then be said to be ‘displaced’ or ‘modulated’. He has the cleanest and tidiest execution of any drummer I’ve ever heard. Try his group ‘Porcupine Tree’, or some of his excellent instructional books and DVDs.
- Schetter, Michael (6 July 2012). "MIKE PORTNOY: The Two Most Creatively Fulfilling Years". www.prog-sphere.com. Munich, Germany (published 19 September 2012). Archived from the original on 23 February 2014. Retrieved 4 April 2017.
- Holmes, Nicholas (23 October 2012). "Devin Townsend Interview". www.metalgigs.co.uk. London. Archived from the original on 27 October 2012. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
- Ottavioli, Xavier (November–December 2011). "Interview with Steve Smith for BATTERIE magazine (France)" (PDF). Batterie. No. 84. Archived (PDF) from the original on 12 July 2017. Retrieved 12 July 2017 – via vitalinformation.com.
- López, Martín (26 November 2014). "Soen drummer Martin Lopez's top 10 drum heroes". Music Radar. Archived from the original on 2 December 2014. Retrieved 13 February 2017.
- Micallef, Ken (April 2017). "On The Cover – Matt Garstka". Modern Drummer. Archived from the original on 19 March 2017. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
- Strik, Henri (January 2015). "Interview Dave Bainbridge: "With this album I was aiming to recapture some of the emotions that first motivated me to devote my life to music"". www.backgroundmagazine.nl. Archived from the original on 14 February 2017. Retrieved 13 February 2017.
- "Hannes Grossmann". sickdrummermagazine.com. 29 July 2007. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
- Richardson, Blake (1 April 2011). "By Request: IAMA drummer for a touring progressive metal band. I am Blake Richardson". IAMA. Reddit. Archived from the original on 29 August 2017. Retrieved 30 August 2017.
Love Porcupine Tree. I was jamming the Incident the other day. That record has really grown on me. Gavin Harrison is the man. Dude has some of the most tasteful fills ever.
- "Nightwish Fanpage - INTERVIEW WITH KAI HAHTO 2015 !!! :)". Facebook. 2 November 2015. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
- Iraheta, Alfredo (29 October 2016). "Exclusive Interview with Marillion's Ian Mosley – Part 2". World Prog-Nation. Retrieved 19 May 2019.
- "Dan Presland". sickdrummermagazine.com. 16 June 2009. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
- "Evan Sammons". sickdrummermagazine.com. 9 November 2010. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
- "Bodo Stricker". sickdrummermagazine.com. 16 October 2008. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
- Batmaz, Murat (22 July 2007). "Abigail's Ghost Talk About Their Hot Debut Selling Insincerity". www.seaoftranquility.org. Archived from the original on 10 January 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
They're a great band. Gavin Harrison is probably my favorite drummer ever. [...] Perhaps that's why In Absentia worked for me --it was a compromise between the old Porcupine Tree sound and having Gavin Harrison in the mix.
- "Blake Anderson". sickdrummermagazine.com. 9 October 2013. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 9 July 2017.