David Gilmour et al - Smoke On The Water interview
Written by Matt   
Monday, 09 December 2013

In 1989, following the Armenian earthquake, the biggest names in rock (including David Gilmour) united to re-record Smoke On The Water under the banner of Rock Aid Armenia. As part of the record promotion, Rock Aid Armenia and the BBC did a live broadcast to the USSR. Millions of people tuned in to hear Ian Gillan, David Gilmour and Bruce Dickinson being interviewed about their role in the Rock Aid Armenia project.

The footage of that BBC broadcast was thought to be long lost, but has recently turned up, and can be seen here:

According to the BBC, over 20 million people tuned in from the USSR. As you'll, the footage includes David explaining why he hadn't asked Ian Gillan to join Pink Floyd "we couldn't afford him", and is asked why Roger Waters left Pink Floyd...

The original 1989 Rock Aid Armenia version of Smoke on the Water was remixed in 2010 and released via iTunes and CD/DVD. The aim was to raise funds to build the music school that had not been properly rebuilt after the 1989 earthquake (it was 25 years ago this month that the quake took place).

Jon Dee, the organiser, told us this weekend that he was "glad to say that a few months ago we finally finished the fundraising and building works and opened the new music school in Gyumri in the earthquake zone - it's big enough to teach 200 kids. The new school looks great (we built it totally from scratch). And every cent that we raised went straight to the school rebuilding programme - not a cent was spent on admin.

"Ian Gillan and Tony Iommi also helped us with the fundraising - they visited the temporary school with me that we knocked down and replaced. Ian also turned up to open the school with me, the President of Armenia and Ara Tadevosyan (my charity partner in Armenia who co-organised the rebuilding with me)."

The promo video and the 2010 remix are still available on iTunes and all money raised from the downloads of this will go towards the new school to pay for instruments and any ongoing repairs. Please visit RockAidArmenia.com for much more about this worthy project, including studio outtakes and photos.