Italy: Rome

Circo Massimo, or Circus Maximus, is the location for this weekend’s concerts. Will you be there?

In the centre of the city situated between the Aventine and Palatine Hills, two of the Seven Hills on which ancient Rome was built (and ideal spots for watching an open-air concert if you don’t have a ticket, I’d have thought), the Circus Maximus was primarily used for chariot racing and is immortalised in the classic film Ben-Hur. The last chariot race is recorded as having taken place here in AD 550.

Once the ancient city of Rome’s biggest stadium with capacity for about a quarter of its population, with expansion it remained the Roman Empire’s largest; in its heyday measuring some 620 metres long.

At the height of the Roman Empire’s power, constructed out of marble and stone, this is how Circo Massimo is believed to have looked with tiered seating running the entire length of its oval circuit.

Archaeologists continue to discover Roman artefacts here, so please treat this UNESCO World Heritage Site with the gentle respect somewhere of such historical and cultural significance deserves. Although numerous concerts – including Live8 Rome, in 2005 – and mass gatherings to celebrate recent sporting triumphs have been held here, the site now functions largely as a public park and is more used to welcoming joggers and dog-walkers. Another special site where rattling of locks should be done with great care, then.

Wishing everybody fortunate enough to be in attendance a wonderful couple of nights in Rome. Enjoy.

Author: FEd

Features Editor of David Gilmour's official blog, The Blog ('Features' previously being its rather naff title), affectionately - or lazily - shortened to 'FEd'.

37 thoughts on “Italy: Rome”

  1. Welcome in Italy David and all of you bandmates and associates. Have a great time, all of you.

    For everyone in Italy who’s involved in audio production, would you please say hello to the best team you’ve ever seen. Pleasure for ears. From Phil Taylor to the last one who rings the stage they’re the best deal in the world.

    Hi all. Enjoy.

    Ciao FEd. Have a cool weekend and…what…Wales? Can we expect a nice final as I’m hoping?

    Bye!

  2. Just to remind for today’s and tomorrow’s meetup:

    Let’s meet in front of “Max Roma Caffè” (Viale Aventino, 20) at about 19:00, so we have almost one hour to talk and have a drink together (hope that we can find a tablee where to sit too), and then we can go into the venue, which is just steps away.

    This is me, I’ll have the same green trousers and this T-shirt. Anyone who needs my phone can ask FEd for my mail and we’ll arrange, so if when you’re there you can’t see me or can’t find the place you can call me.

    I remind you that you can find all the information about the public transportations, the closed roads, the entrances and so on here, also in English.

    1. Have a great night. It’s a bit late to be swapping details now, for tonight, though…

      1. As David doesn’t have a concert on Wednesday night…does Fed get some time off to watch the semi-final??

        1. Hey, even if David had a concert on Wednesday night, I’d get time off to watch the semi-final. 😛

          1. I was mightily relieved the Wales game didn’t clash with the Pompeii gig…due to be flying back on Sunday evening though… #planningfail

          2. If you need to go AWOL for a few hours or days…(!) I’m sure we can find a deputy FEd amongst us…

  3. this tour will be remembered of his career, places are sublimely selected, david is at the top of his art, his musicians are excellent, but I regret the absence of jon carin. why is it not more about the tour, thankfully it remains guy pratt and steve!!

  4. Hope everyone has a great time for the Rome shows!

    And remember – parking fees for chariots are discounted if you bring your own food and water for the horses. Ciao!!

  5. Beautiful words for our Maestro David from Gino Castaldo in “La Repubblica”:

    “Il suo modo di suonare la chitarra è una lezione magistrale di stile, un prodigio di narrazione costruito da un suono accurato e da una meticolosa ricerca di essenzialità nella scelta delle note.”

    “His way of playing guitar is a magisterial lesson of style, a narrative prodigy, built on the most accurate sound, and a meticulous research of essentiality in picking the notes.”

  6. Hi there, no, it is something different. do you know if a DVD is being filmed anywhere?

    cheers
    neil

  7. Panem et circenses – David really gives his fans a lot of panem these days and as an extra he plays these beautiful ancient roman theaters. Is David personally interested in the ancient Roman culture, FEd?

  8. Thank you for that link Fed, what an amazing construction.

    It amazes me how clever, sophisticated, and civilised people were thousands of years ago, in the BC period as well. We still don’t fully know how some buildings were built for example without the kind of technology we have today. I know someone who is a civil engineer and he raves and marvels at things like roman aquaducts. Quite some feat, there were some very clever people back then and these constructions were built to last !

    All that said. . . how could they have been so uncivilised as to make people fight to the death as gladiators or throw people to lions ? All in the name of entertainment ! That’s entertainment ????

    They obviously didn’t have anyone clever enough to invent guitars. 😀

    Fed !!!!!! I’m so pleased for Wales!!!!!!!

    ash

  9. Hi,

    I’m going too. Last time in Rome with Rick and it was really wonderful.

    In Repubblica my friend Gino Castaldo was great about David.

    Tonight I’m going to mix ’70 ’80 ’90 and our days with pure sound. This is a part of happiness in my life.

    Tomorrow I’ll tell you.

    With love
    Diana

  10. Just arrived at home.

    First of all I want to thank Stefan and Rob for their company yesterday before the concert. See you in Pompeii, guys!

    Second thing: I don’t know if today someone was waiting for me at the place of the meet-up because I lost time in the traffic jam and arrived there 20 minutes later. I’m very sorry for that, if someone was waiting for me I’ll offer him (or her) a beer at the next concert.

    Talking about the concerts: two beautiful shows, and the choice of maintaining Fat Old Sun instead of Dancing Right In Front of Me is the right decision. David played and sang even better today rather than yesterday. For me was the first time listening to One of These Days live and it was incredible, can’t wait to hear it in Pompeii…

    See you there on Friday!

    1. I’m so glad that you enjoyed it, Andrea (and thank you for tweeting a photo of you all enjoying a drink together before the show – loved that).

      1. What a top bunch a guys they were FEd. Super concert in an idyllic setting on a balmy evening.

        See you guys again in Pompeii in a few days.

  11. Hello,

    A long exciting night is starting. Circus Maximus is in red light for The Sun fall.

    Waiting for magic night and magic band.

    Love
    diana

  12. Hello all!

    Thank you for the lovely moments before the show, Andrea and Rob!

    Of course Rob deserves my special thanks, as without him we wouldn’t have been able to witness the concert from inside the venue. 🙂

    We attended the first Roman show and it was unbelievable – far better than the Florence one I was lucky to be a part of last year. The new team seems to be on the right track. Although there were minor issues (both technical and of execution), everything was at an unbelievably high level. I could rant about the show for a good long while, but only one thing really matters: It was an intense display of technique and feeling and I consider myself extremely lucky to have been able to witness it.

    One thing needs a mention, though: I know Italian people are huge soccer fans, but the way everybody was disconnected from the concert, watching the match on smartphones and tablets…it was a real shame.

    I was hoping for OOTD – hopefully, it will be on the setlist for Pompeii… which brings me to the next topic: see you all there on Friday!

    1. 34oC on Friday Stefan !!! Get the Gelati in ! See you there mid afternoon in the queue at the ticket office.

  13. Hi, only gripe I have on the UK leg is: why only London? Best part of 500 mile round trip.

  14. Same with DVD – would have thought there would be one, be silly not to document such a great show.

    I guess it’s difficult to pick where, isn’t it?

    Cheers
    Neil

    1. We would probably would like to have a series of DVD and/or BD, wouldn’t we? One for everything city? I’m sure the post processing costs would be horrendous, given David Gilmour’s standards, but I’d buy a subscription in advance…

  15. Mi inchino dinnanzi al talento di David Gilmor e della sua band. Avevo trovato alcuni frammenti del suo concerto a Roma al Circo Massimo. Incantata dalla felicita’ avevo postato nella mia pagina facebook lo straordinario frammento live. Ora purtroppo è stato tolto da youtoube. Con molto dispiacere chiedo ai manager se mai fosse possibile riavere alcuni minuti del concerto.

    Ringrazio infinitamente. Con stima. Petra Scharbach.

    1. How can you ask back to David’s manager what it was deleted from YouTube? I think it’s more than 10 years they all fight bootlegging and it’s probably David’s view, so we should respect it.

      Ciao.

      Come si puó chiedere al management di riavere ció che é stato cancellato da YouTube? Credo siano 10 anni che combattono questo genere di cose.

      Probabilmente é anche la visione di David stesso, per cui dovremmo rispettarla.

      Ciao
      Emilio

  16. Hello,

    a delicious night yesterday, really!!

    Just in my opinion, I didn’t like a lot the first singing voice in Us and Them …I miss Rick.

    Very good, Guy Pratt …his sound and bass in Money are just better than Roger’s was.

    Now Pompei: I’ll be there ….I was 15yo in “those days” but love and passion grew with me.

    Thank you Mr Gilmour!!!! God bless you.

  17. Hi all,

    I flew with my mother from Jordan to watch David on 2nd and so we’re spending a week and watching him again at Pompeii on 7th… this was a dream come true and it is magical to send David playing, no words to describe my feeling and sensation, I never had the chance to see him before.

    I find it out of everyone’s territory to talk so loudly in the concert and don’t really understand why film it instead of watching it?! Yet even more judgements on comparing this band vs the other or Guy’s bass skills vs Roger’s?!!!

    Just enjoy the moment of seeing David’s perfection!

    Next: Pompeii July 7th!

  18. Managed to catch some footage of the Rome shows and the band were sounding fantastic.

    I wish I could take in a concert in a beautiful city like Rome and it still pains me I wasn’t able to make Pompeii.

    Hope everyone attending has a great time. Really enjoying this tour.

  19. A couple of days after and I thought I write some thoughts.

    First, the good bits. The sound was awesome. When we were queueing to get in (another story!) we heard the soundcheck. On one song, DG sounded a bit rough so I was concerned but I needn’t have been. I think I can safely say the sound was the best I’ve heard in almost 40 years of gigging, Absolutely awesome. Crystal clear, plenty loud enough and the bass in Sorrow was actually painful in the chest. All instruments and all vocals clear as a bell. Well done. I guess the open air and very few buildings around meant little echo or reverb but nonetheless, brilliant job guys.

    Now the not so good bits. The layout of the floor was very different to gigs in the UK. There was a lot of space between rows and a walkway every 10 rows which meant my row 13 tickets were about twice as far back as, say, Wembley Arena. Not a problem in itself, but meant there was a lot of scope for people wandering around and going up front to take pictures which the stewards were pitifully poor at dealing with.

    Having said that, this selfish attitude and poor stewarding ironically lead to one of the most spine chilling experiences I’ve ever had a at a concert. When RLH started, there was a free for all as people crashed the floor area from way back to fill the aisles and stand on chairs. After a few ‘tuts’ I thought ‘if you can’t beat ’em’ and stood on my chair too. The crowd for that song and the encore were simply amazing (think YYZ from Rush in Rio). DG took a long time to leave the stage.

    But one final moan. If you think spending the whole night watching the concert through you portable device is a cool idea, I’ve got news for you, It ain’t. The guy next to me filmed several songs on his phone with the flash on. I tried to point out is was distracting and was actually no use but he wouldn’t have it. And a guy two rows ahead filmed the encore on an iPad pro. 15″ (or whatever) above his head for 10 minutes, FFS!

    Can I leave with plea. If you’re going to Pompeii, please just take some time to look around. Appreciate the stunning and unique environment, the historical significance of DG back at Pompeii after 45 years and leave your phones in your pocket. We’ve spent €345 for these tickets and I’d like to watch the band not your phone. Please. Just this once.

  20. Ho all people,

    I was in Pompei July the 7th….nice atmosphere, totally different 45 years ago, but no sign of nostalgia for me : I love DG music as a God of The Guitar and Pink Floyd REAL GENIUS. So, thank you for all.

    Just a problem: please David, stop with The Great Gig in The Sky.

    Not the right keyboard and piano sound, not the right voices, not the right “solo” , not the right TOTAL global sound …. Sorry MR Gilmour, you miss The Gentleman, The Wall of The Sound, The Wizard of The PF brand sound, you miss a lot Rick Wright and The Heaven was shame about this track.

    So thank you for all Mr Di Stanislao and Mr Pratt, please get back Mr Jon Carin.

    I hope the best for you
    Diana

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