Tuesday, September 17, 2013

DETROIT GUITAR TECH RUSSELL (SKIP) GILDERSLEEVE PASSED AWAY


Being onstage was Skip Gildersleeve's job...he traveled all over the world in various musical capacities with some really major rock groups.  Recently he was Bob Seger's guitar tech on his last tour. Skip worked with Rush, Kid Rock, Stray Cats, Brian Setzer, Steely Dan, and many other bands too numerous to list here.



I first met Skip online when I began working with Dennis Thompson in 2008.  Skip asked for my mailing address and began sending me Detroit Rock care packages...Videos and Dvds and Cd's too. My favorite gifts from Skip was the BBC Motor City's Burning DVD and a documentary on CKLW the Big 8 Radio.


Skip was definitely happiest just off the radar... I really wanted to record some of his stories but he really didn't want the publicity...perhaps the bands might think ill of him if he told things out of school ya know?



Skip sent me some pretty cool stuff over the past 4 years but he really out did himself when he took pictures at a Kid Rock shoot in Trenton and sent them to me...I was ok to use the story and photos but no mention of Skip....I never told anyone until now.

Skip called me from the Rush concert where the stage was blown away.. I think it was Chicago or close by. He managed to send me photos for that story too.  It was really incredible to hear that storm over the phone! Here all this chaos is going on and he thinks to call ME...mind blowing...


Many of our mutual friends are still reeling from the news that Skip passed away.  Legendary Sound Man Nite Bob, one of Skip's great friends announced on his Facebook page that our friend had died. My friend rock photographer/blogger Heather Harris alerted me after she saw Bob's post.


Not much is known at this time. We will update this story as soon as we can get the funeral arrangements are posted.


Skip traveld on tons of these buses.... The great news is Skip lived his life doing exactly what he loved. Makes it a bit easier to say so long to him. He always had some cool gig coming up. Everyone whose live's he touched...loved him...he defined Detroit Rock, and to me such generosity of spirit.... :*(  I loved you Skip...K


He was so damn funny....watch this...



Our thoughts and prayers are with Skip's family and friends in this sad time....

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

RIP "Skip" thanks for you great surprises in the mail and via the net.

Phill English

Anonymous said...

Still in shock. Skip was a great person, an awesome father, and father figure. He will be missed but never forgotten. Blessed to have known him.

Goran said...

Rest in peace my friend..

Michaela Nastasia said...

I got to know Skip during the Hold You Fire and Presto RUSH tours. Such a sweet sweet man. We stayed in touch for quite a while. He would send me gifts from the road on cassette! I have missed him and I am so sorry to hear of his passing.

Anonymous said...

I found out earlier today that my mom’s cousin who was the equipment manager for Steely Dan and longtime stage manager for Rush unexpectedly passed away yesterday. Even though I’ve only had the opportunity to meet him a few times, he was seriously the coolest and nicest guy ever. I just wish that I would’ve taken him up on his offer of visiting him in NYC a few years back, that way I maybe could’ve gotten to know him better.

RIP cousin Skip.

Anonymous said...

WE ALL LOVED YOU VERY MUCH SKIP. THE FRIENDS OF BILL W AND FAMILY MEMBERS LIKE ME WILL MISS U THE MOST. U LED BY EXAMPLE AND I AM BLESSED TO HAVE SHARED SOME OF YOUR LIFE.

Anonymous said...

Here is my Skip story. I was a cop in Hamilton in the 80's and Rush was opening the "Presto" tour there. I snuck into Copps Coliseum during rehearsals with my Show of Hands Album hoping to get it signed by the band. Skip saw me wandering around and took it upon himself and went out of his way to get the album signed even though he didn't know me from Adam,I didn't know him, but thanked him and asked his name he replied Skip. I never forgot him some 20 years later, and I display that album proudly still. Skip small things do sometimes mean a lot! RIP! Your kindness was appreciated!

Kim Retrokimmer said...

Skip was all about the fans...he knew he had a special job and shared his access as generously as possible...he was excited about music everyday of his life and I am certain he is tweaking Jimi's guitars now....xK

Glenn K said...

I love you forever Skip... I will miss your laugh, your love, your passion for EVERYTHING... I will always think of you at new food experiences... Rest In Peace... Till we meet again my friend, my brother, my comrade...

Dave Fletcher said...

I met Skip prior to going out with Rush on the Signals Tour in 82 & 83 working for National Sound. Skip was my mentor on the tour as he and I worked most closely together as my duties with the sound company placed me beside him on the stage for 210 shows. Skip always had a kind word for anyone no matter the situation. My best memory of the tour was getting up on Neal's drums and playing a Kansas City Blues number with him and Jack Secret. It was the pinacle of my life and times back then.

I will miss you very much skip, and one day, when I join you up there, you better be ready to Jam again!

Julie Atkinson-Fountain said...

Rest in peace Reverend Skip. Thank you for the impromptu recording session at your home in 2002. I cherish our composition of Forever Young. I hold dear to my heart Big Jake, the Crestwood 12-string you sold to me in 1971 for $75. Gone to soon my friend

Shaun Murphy said...

Skip was one of the best around.....we'll miss him terribly. He was there for everyone. Whatever you needed, you could alway count on him to get it done, or steer you to the right person. His strange and wonderful sense of humor alway kept us guessing, and I hope he has a chance to use it 'up there'.......for such a good soul, there is no doubt where he'll land!!! RIP my friend......

Steven Benson said...


This was during his Minneapolis visit on the Seger Tour this past Spring, he got to meet my Bulldog pal, Briggs. We will miss you Skip.

Share Retrokimmer


LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...