composer / musician / producer / co-founder of IONA

Film Biography

Perhaps best known for his work with the pioneering UK based Celtic folk/rock/ambient band IONA, which he co-founded in 1989 with David Fitzgerald, Dave's multi-faceted career as a musician, composer, arranger, improviser, producer and engineer has led him into many musical genres and work with numerous artists including; Troy Donockley, Jack Bruce, Buddy Guy, Gloria Gaynor, Mae McKenna, Moya Brennan, 'Snake' Davis, Paul Jones, Pete Brown, Phil Keaggy, Bryn Haworth, Graham Kendrick, Fenton Robinson, Lurrie Bell, Louisiana Red, The All Soul's Orchestra, The Emperor String Quartet, The St Edmundsbury Boys Choir, Sheila Walsh, Adrian Snell, Emiko Shiratori, Robert Fripp, Nick Beggs (Kajagoogoo / Steve Hackett Band), Martin Smith & Stuart Garrard (of Delirious) and many others.

Dave's deep interest in writing music for film has led to numerous commissions to write for short films and many commercial projects. Dave's approach to composition is very visual, cinematic and evocative and it is perhaps his sensitivity to evoke mood and atmosphere, often with adventurous use of harmony and textures that film makers and producers have picked up on. IONA's music is used regularly by TV and Film producers as an evocative backdrop on their productions.

Cinema Shorts:

'Wilfred' (narration by Derek Jacobi), 'The Lost Princess', 'Bittersweet', 'Cinema', 'Going Up', 'The Man from the Moon', 'Remember to Smile', 'Petrified', 'Amazing Grace', Nestle's UK iMax Theatre's 3 year video juke box project (17 films - all composed, recorded and mixed by Dave in 5.1 surround), 'Futureworld' (environmental video installation)


'Boy and The Dinosaur' (1461 productions - going into production in 2014), Snowdonia - Realm of the Ravens', 'Timewatch' (Battle of the River Plate & Hadrian's Wall), 'Heart of the Matter', 'Heart and Soul', 'Songs of Praise', 'Routes & Rhythms', 'First Light', 'Titchmarsh's Travels', Summerscapes', This is the Day', 'World War 2 - Behind Closed Doors', 'The Lost World of El Dorado', 'Northern Lights', 'Summer Sunday' series (all BBC TV), 'Island Soldiers', 'World in Action', 'ABC of the Celtic Saints (all ITV), 'Ann Geddes - Photographer', 'The Lindisfarne Gospels', 'God in the House', 'Why we care about Bosnia', 'MTV Sports', 'Signal Exchanges', 'The Alpha Zone', 'Channel 7 Sports', 'Working for Wool', 'Discovering the Tyne Valley' (various channels) and others.

Miscellaneous Video Credits:

'Tom Finney', 'Sammy Steele and the Lost Bicycle', 'Osprey in Flight', 'Anti-Nuclear Dumping' plus about 70 other short films / music for various product launches / trades shows / museums etc.

Album Releases:

The Eye of the Eagle (Bainbridge & Fitzgerald) 1998, Veil of Gossamer 2004 (Bainbridge solo), From Silence (Bainbridge & Donockley) 2004, When Worlds Collide (Bainbridge & Donockley) 2005, Life Journey (Bainbridge & Fitzgerald) 2009, 12 album releases with IONA (1990 to present), new Dave solo album 'Celestial Fire' currently in production and due for release in early 2014.

Other Compositions:

'Iberian Fantasy' for Guitar and Orchestra written with classical guitarist Nick Fletcher & released on Nick's album 'Cathedral of Dreams' (2009), 'In the Wake of Colmcille' - solo guitar piece commissioned for Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine's cover cd (1998), St Paul's Cathedral (London) Annual Retreat - composer / musician in residence (2007/2008/2009)

Experience As Musician, Producer, & Engineer:

As a musician Dave has toured the world with IONA and many other artists and played on numerous recordings. With 27 years experience as an innovative record producer, Dave has produced all 12 of IONA's albums as well as his own solo albums 'Veil of Gossamer' and 'Celestial Fire', several collaborative projects with David Fitzgerald and Troy Donockley, 'Celtic Hymns - Looking into Light' by IONA vocalist Joanne Hogg, 'Cathedral of Dreams' by classical guitarist Nick Fletcher, albums and / or tracks by Adrian Snell, Joe King, RSVP (France), Emiko Shiratori (Japan), Barry & Batya Segal (Israel), Godfrey Birtill and others.

Since 2004, Dave has had his own, purpose built project studio (Open Sky Studio), where he records and/or mixes many of the projects he is involved with, including his new solo album 'Celestial Fire' and other recent cd releases 'Day 7' (Barry and Batya Segal), 'Two Thousand Years Ago We Bled Into One' (Godfrey Birtill), 'Breaking of the Dawn' (Fletcher & Bainbridge), 'Visions & Vistas' (Pete James Trio), 'The Passion Suite' (Kairos Ensemble), 'Life Journey' (Bainbridge & Fitzgerald), 'Cathedral of Dreams' (Nick Fletcher), 'Songs for Luca 2' (Various Artists), 'Another Realm' (Iona), tracks for BBC TV's 'Songs of Praise' programme and numerous short film projects and keyboard and guitar sessions for various albums.

Education & Awards:

Leeds College of Music 1977-80, Diploma in Jazz and Light Music, First Class Pass (including Distinction in Arranging), Sam Hood Rosebowl for Outstanding Performance (1980), BBC Radio 2 Best Jazz Soloist Award (Piano) (1980). Wavendon All Music Course (1982) - intensive jazz studies with Michael Garrick.


Able to write in a number of different genres, whilst retaining his own distinctive voice. Able to write & orchestrate for small ensembles right up to full orchestra. Dave is a gifted player and improviser on a number of instruments, including, piano, keyboards, guitars and bouzouki. Dave has a great ear for detail and is able to bring a 3 dimensional quality to his recordings and mixes. Has an in depth knowledge of Digital Performer, the recording / sequencing software of choice for many top Hollywood composers.



Track Samples:



The Lost Princess: (NB film starts about 2 minutes in after another film)

Contact Dave