Well known Keighley musician Ges dies at 66

Gerald ‘Ges’ Smith who has died

Gerald ‘Ges’ Smith who has died

First published in Keighley

A musician with one of Keighley’s best known bands, Dawnwatcher, has died at the age of 66.

Gerald “Ges” Smith’s time with psychedelic rock band Dawnwatcher in the 1970s was the culmination of several years playing with a number of local bands.

He was a member of bands like The Ratfinks, Carnal Horus, Kaboss, Abyss and Intrepid Birdman.

Ges, born in 1947, spent the first 30 years of his life at Riddlesden View in Thwaites, Parkwood Primary School, then Keighley Technical School.

He later lived at Hermit Hole on Halifax Road, Keighley, and worked in engineering, finishing his working life as a warehouse man.

Ges’s widow, Linda, said her husband had a lifelong love of music and started playing in local bands as early as 1964, mostly on keyboards and also bass guitar.

She said: “Even when he no longer played in bands he played his keyboards or guitars and set himself up in a music room to play.

“In recent years there was a renewed interest in Dawnwatcher and several new fans contacted Ges.”

The couple, who married in 1981, raised two children, Jane and Andrew, and have two grandchildren, Joshua and Jenny.

Ges died at Manorlands on January 8.

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