You are here

Famous Musicians on Formentera

The idyllic island of Formentera, just 30 minutes from Ibiza, has attracted a wide range of people across the decades - including famous musicians across time.

Houses iced in whitewash guard a pale shore-line
Cornered by the cactus and the pine
Here I wander where sweet sage and strange herbs grow
Down a sun-baked crumpled stony road.


These opening lyrics to the 1969 song "Formentera Lady" by prog rockers, King Crimson perhaps goes some way towards explaining why many musicians have found inspiration on the tiny island of Formentera over the years, most notably in the sixties and seventies.

Legend has it that Bob Dylan lived on the island in a 200-year-old windmill for some months, however this remains one of the great "myths" with reports and opinions varying as to its validity. There are certainly no photographs to back up the claim, but interestingly, a picture of the very same windmill Bob Dylan allegedly lived in appears on the cover of Pink Floyd's 1969 album "Soundtrack from the Film More".

Pink Floyd's connection with Formentera began in 1967 when band members, Roger Walters and Syd Barrett visited the island to stay with Dr Samuel Hutt, aka Hank Wangford, an English country and western songwriter who was renowned as London's long-haired rock-and-roll doctor in the sixties due to his work with drug addiction which, of course, brought him into contact with many rockers.

As well as the band, one of Pink Floyd's most famous roadies, Aubrey "Po" Powell, was equally as enamoured with Formentera, arriving in 1968 and staying for four months "living like a hippie". Powell went on to become a member of Hipgnosis, a London-based art design group who specialised in creating cover art for rock albums.

More recently, in 1986, the video to Chris Rea's "On the Beach" was filmed in Formentera, and twenty years later, Pink Floyd's guitarist David Gilmour, re-visited his passion for the island in his third solo album, "On an Island" to mark his 60th birthday.

Formentera Guitars

An additional gem for all musicians past and present visiting Formentera is the world-renowned guitar and bass workshop, Formentera Guitars, located in the town of Sant Ferran De Ses Roques. Handcrafting bespoke instruments for decades, Formentera Guitars remains one of the most prestigious guitar-building schools in Europe.

It is still possible to visit the workshop and for music-lovers, Formentera Guitars offers the ultimate in original holidays...a three week guitar or bass-making course, in which you can craft your own instrument by hand out of top quality woods, such as mahogany, maple, alder or ash, with ebony being used for the frets.

Small as it may be, it is clear to see that Formentera has always been a nub of creative energy and inspiration.

The question remains...what musical or artistic talents may this island bring forth in years to come?

To check out accommodation on the glorious island of Formentera, please see Ibiza Spotlight Formentera Accommodation.

To read more about Formentera, please see our Formentera Guide

Related content