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Peter Brian Gabriel was born in Woking on the 13th February 1950, and was the founder of the pop rock group Genesis.

In September 1963, aged 13, he went to Charterhouse School. Gabriel along with fellow pupil at Charterhouse, Tony Banks, used to go the 'The Record Corner', in Pound Lane, Godalming and listened to soul records such as Otis Redding and James Brown.

In the winter of 1965 The Garden Wall was formed with Peter Gabriel (vocals), Tony Banks (piano) and Chris Stewart (drums). A fledgling rock band The Anon, was formed with Anthony Phillips (guitar), Rivers Job (bass), Rob Tyrell (drums), Richard Mcphail (vocals), and later was joined by Mike Rutherford (rhythm guitar). They performed their first gig at Charterhouse in December 1965. The two bands teamed up to perform the end of term concert in July 1966. Anon played their last gig in December with Phillips (guitar and vocals), Mike Rutherford (bass), and Tyrell (drums).

In December 1966 the first recorded demo tapes were made with Gabriel, Banks, Phillips and Rutherford, and Genesis was formed in January 1967. Jonathan King, who was also a Carthusian, heard their music and after the second demo tape the band signed a contract with King’s Jonjo Music. They signed for Decca in 1968 with help from their producer Jonathan King. They recorded their first two singles and an album From Genesis to Revelations in March 1969. In 1971 they went on tour with Phil Collins who was now in the band replacing Phillips. Foxtrot was a success and Selling England by the Pound in 1973 was to give the band a reputation in America with their first UK hit-single. The double album The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway was to be the last made by the original Genesis line-up.

In May 1975 Gabriel left Genesis, and recorded his first solo album Peter Gabriel in 1977. He was voted best British Male Artist in 1987 and won the best video award with Sledgehammer in the British Phonographic Industry Awards. In 1988 he opened his own Real world studios near Bath, and composed the soundtrack for The Temptation of Christ. In 1992 he released the album Us.

In 2005 Peter Gabriel was named as the musical director the soccer World Cup in Germany in 2006, overseeing the tournament’s Berlin opening ceremony on the 7th June. A two-hour extravaganza was staged two days before the competition’s first match. In 2010 he released Scratch My Back, an album of orchestral cover versions of songs by various artists. In 2011 he released the album New Blood and a DVD of the New Blood concert at the HMV Apollo.

Godalming Museum © 2011