Hawkwind Founder and Guitarist Dave Brock Turns 80 Today

HAWKWIND, at Rockfield Studios - L-R: Tim Blake, Harvey Bainbridge, Dave Brock, Simon King and Huw Lloyd-Langton
HAWKWIND at Rockfield Studios (l-r): Tim Blake, Harvey Bainbridge, Dave Brock, Simon King, and Huw Lloyd-Langton (Image credit: Fin Costello/Redferns)

Happy 80th birthday to guitarist Dave Brock – the Godfather of Space Rock!

Having founded the genre's quintessential band in 1969, he is the only Hawkwind member to have remained on board during its wild ride over the decades and remains firmly in the Captain's seat to this day.

Emerging from the melting pot of London's psychedelic music scene at the tail-end of the '60s, Hawkwind took a trip on the dark side and rapidly evolved with a distinctly heavier, yet equally spaced-out sound. Mangling electronic oscillators with grinding electric guitar hooks and hard-rocking rhythms the band became a hit on the UK's underground gig circuit, adored by those on the fringes of popular music.

Like a British equivalent of Grateful Dead, Hawkwind are revered by the cult following that continues to pack out venues across their homeland. As one of the country’s most beloved bands they remain a benchmark of authentic British psychedelia (not to mention the soundtrack to many a misspent youth!)

Hawkins 'Somnia' album cover artwork

(Image credit: Cherry Red Records)

Hawkwind’s new album – Somnia – is due out on September 10 and is available here (opens in new tab).

Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as GuitaristTotal Guitar, Guitar World (opens in new tab)Guitar Player (opens in new tab) and MusicRadar (opens in new tab) in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.