Michael Giles

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Michael Giles
Birth nameMichael Rex Giles
Born (1942-03-01) 1 March 1942 (age 80)
Waterlooville, Hampshire, England
GenresJazz fusion, progressive rock
Instrument(s)Drums, percussion, vocals
Years active1960–2011

Michael Rex Giles (born 1 March 1942) is an English drummer, percussionist, and vocalist, best known as one of the co-founders of King Crimson in 1969. Prior to the formation of King Crimson, he was part of the eccentric pop trio Giles, Giles and Fripp along with his brother, bassist Peter, and guitarist Robert Fripp. They were active between 1967-1968.

Life and career[edit]

Giles was born in Waterlooville, Hampshire, England.

His drumming technique is complex and polyrhythmic, based primarily on the jazz tradition, but also on the then developing progressive rock tradition. His playing dictated much of the compositional structure of the first King Crimson album, In the Court of the Crimson King.[1] Giles's compositional ear is evidenced by his ability to weave seamless tempo changes and subtle melodic deviations into his drumming throughout the album.

Giles and Ian McDonald both left King Crimson in December 1969, though Giles played on the band's second album, In the Wake of Poseidon as a session musician. He and McDonald recorded an album called McDonald and Giles, which was lighter in style than King Crimson, but still technically demanding. Giles then worked as a session player for the duration of the 1970s, appearing on albums by Anthony Phillips, Leo Sayer, and Kevin Ayers. He also played on McDonald's 1999 solo album Driver's Eyes.

Giles only solo album, Progress, was recorded at his home studio in 1978, but not released until 2003.

In 2002, he co-founded the 21st Century Schizoid Band, a group composed of former King Crimson musicians, with the exception of his son-in-law, guitarist and vocalist Jakko Jakszyk, who later joined King Crimson. After one studio session and a single tour, Giles passed the drum stool to another former King Crimson drummer, Ian Wallace.

In late 2008, an experimental group focused on improvisation was announced, Michael Giles' MAD Band, with Adrian Chivers and Dan Pennie.[2]

He was often cited by Rush drummer Neil Peart as an influence.[3]

Selected discography[edit]

Giles, Giles and Fripp[edit]

King Crimson[edit]

McDonald & Giles[edit]

Luther Grosvenor[edit]

  • 1971 Under open skies

Murray Head[edit]

  • 1972 Nigel Lived

Jackson Heights[edit]

  • 1972 The Fifth Avenue Bus
  • 1972 Ragamuffins Fool
  • 1973 Bump n' Grind

Leo Sayer[edit]

Kevin Ayers[edit]

Roger Glover & Guests[edit]

John G. Perry[edit]

  • 1976 Sunset Wading
  • 1995 Seabird

Anthony Phillips[edit]

Ian McDonald[edit]

21st Century Schizoid Band[edit]


Movie score[edit]


  1. ^ "Interview with Michael Giles by Aymeric Leroy". Elephant-talk.com. 7 February 2000. Retrieved 15 October 2011.
  2. ^ http://www.madband.co.uk
  3. ^ Peart, Neil (January 2003). "Neil Peart Speaks With Zildjian..." Zildjian (Interview). Archived from the original on 6 December 2003.