Gibb is a familiar figure at Rode Hall’s Just So and played Bollington Festival this year. In a previous guise he was a finalist of the BBC Radio Two young folk awards in 2011. In 2013 he featured alongside musical collaborator Elly Lucas in an advertising campaign for Gola trainers. Success must have seemed close.
He now makes music for children (of all ages). His website claims he was “frustrated at the lack of high quality music available for families” — a fair point, but we suspect he found it hard to progress his career, despite the Radio Two nomination. His voice is ideal for children’s songs but perhaps not so convincing singing about burly sailors drowning at sea or commenting on politics.
He’s written one stone-cold classic, Teddy at the Disco, which is only a Pixar film about dancing teddies away from being his pension plan. That’s on 2017’s Climb That Tree, which also includes fan favourites My Teacher’s A Wolf, Strong Man and Jelly on a Plate.
This new one sees his songwriting develop further as he draws from a range of musical influences, blending folk, jazz, reggae and rock and roll; we can’t say whether it’s to expose kids to a variety of music or to make himself happy.
Topics include worms (Wiggly Woo), bats (The Thing About Bats) and — mostly — being a child, with songs like It Was The Middle Of The Night, Please Leave The Light On and Riding On The Top Deck Of A Bus. Gibb is very good at telling stories in the way that children can understand, which is why most kids love him, and he can write a catchy tune.
If you’ve got kids and want music for the car that won’t drive you insane, this is it. It’s £10 at davidgibb.com, or £20 with a pack that includes a t-shirt, stickers, badges and a postcard. You can book him (£300) for your school.
If you really must, buy from here: