Do you really
know Pink Floyd??
Formed in the mid- 60’s. Their music
tinkered with new technological advances in sound effects and electronic chit chat. Derived out of a Blues prospect, many
of their songs had far-out lyrical standards and new concepts which were new to the modern singer. The music has said to have
echoed a more classical or even operatic quality in the lyrics and the sound.
They began as a “Psychedelic band”
of the 60’s, the time of the “Hippie Music” and peace rallies. They first fell under the leadership of lead
guitarist Syd Barrett. He sang and wrote 99% of their early material. Barrett shared the stage with bassist Roger Waters,
keyboardist Rick Wright, and drummer boy Nick Mason.
Why Pink Floyd? As I mentioned before,
the music was originally based from a Blue’s perspective. The first name of two ancient blues men were taken to create
the name “Pink Floyd.” They were of course Pink Anderson and Floyd Council. Most British rock bands concentrated
on the R&B/Rock values of the 60’s.
The Early Years-
Floyd began to experiment fast. They mixed
instruments with instruments and blended sounds to make “freaky” passages through lyrics and eerie sounds which
were created by amplification and taking use of slide just about any type of whammy bars up and down their guitar strings.
Syd Barrett put his composing to work with odd lyrics of a poetic sense and haunting organ noises and guitar rips. Pink Floyd
landed their first recording contract with EMI in 1967 and made the Top 20 list with a debut single “Arnold Layne.”
Their first album, “The Piper at the Gates of Dawn” also was released the same year.
The “Piper at the Gates of Dawn”
album was somewhat sacred because it was the only album like that that Floyd would produce. The band decided to get rid of
the leader, Barrett, because he was “to hard to work with and understand, live or in the studio.” The boys got
a new guitarist in 1968. His name was Dave Gilmour, a friend of the band for a long time. Barrett was instead kept to write
lyrics and contribute to the records. But, a few months later, Sid Barrett was out of the group because 5 were just too many
members. Pink Floyd then did the unthinkable. They cut away from the group and managed Barrett as a solo artist.
Amazingly, Floyd regrouped, maintained
their popularity and became better. The band had made in on the charts in across the pond, but was still unknown in the U.S.
Gilmour, the excellent guitarist of the group, soon became the dominant dictating composer. “A Saucerful of Secrets,”
the follow-up to the “Piper” album, came out in 1968 and made the British Top Ten. The album was a blueprint of
Barrett. Floyd continued to add eerie sounds of organs, guitars, keyboards and voices to interest their fan’s minds.
Syd Barrett is now a fading memory for
the fan’s of Floyd. Released in 1971, “Meddle” focused on the early songs of Floyd. “Echoes,”
“One of These Days,” and “Fearless” are some of their better known hits from the album. Nothing could
prepare Pink Floyd for their unknowingly instant success on their 1973 album “Dark Side of The Moon,” which made
theme known to the world. The album allowed them to be superstars in the United States. The album reached number
one on the US charts and stayed on the
Billboard chart for 741 weeks. “Dark Side of The Moon” is still known as one of the best and most popular albums
worldwide. After the amazing success of the “Dark Side of The Moon” album, “Wish You Were Here” debuted
in 1975 with such hits as Shine on You Crazy Diamond, Have A Cigar and of course Wish You Were Here. Shine On You Crazy Diamond was a Barrett song and reached number one with the rest of the album. “Animals,”
released in 1977, included classics such as Pigs and Sheep. The band was just getting started.
By this time, Roger Waters began to emerge
as the firm hand over Pink Floyd’s success and lyrical vision. The rather over ambitious double concept album, named
“The Wall,” concerned itself over emotional and modern walls as well as the songs. “The Wall,” was
the huge success that Pink Floyd had been looking for and needed. The songs were of a favorable nature and of heavy-duty electronic
textures with a bit of pop elements. Another Brick In The Wall (Mainly Part 1)
was considered to be their biggest hit ever. The touring of The Wall featured construction of an actual wall during the band’s
The Inevitable Fall of Pink Floyd
As with many bands, the fun must come to
an end. The 1980’s was the difficult year. Roger Waters, bassist, was asserting total control of the band. A sort of
dictatorship had overwhelmed the rest of the band. “The Final Cut,” an album released in 1983, was the most unimpressive
album to date. It had little electronic value and the lyrics were nothing like the band had written before. The album meant
failure. The band split up for a while after the album was released. Waters eventually sued Wright and Mason. Roger lost the
battle, which meant they’d have to get a Top Five album with their hit “Momentary Lapse of Reason” in ’87.
The irony of losing one leader 20 years ago came back into play when they lost Waters. Waters went on to a solo album and
managed on moderate sales and little attention. Pink Floyd still stuck together- that is Mason, Wright, and Gilmour. The band
still had a big fan base, but an unimpressive post-Waters life. Released in 1991, “The Division Bell” was the
band’s last studio album and their first studio album in seven years. The album topped the charts in 1994, but it didn’t
make a big impact on current music. Same went for the “Pulse” album, a staged released album, in 1994. Water’s
went on with a solo career with a recreation of “The Wall” set at the site of the former Berlin Wall in 1990.
He released it as the “The Wall: Live in Berlin”
album. Syd Barrett, the lost Pink Floyd member, was removed from the public eye and forgotten. Even though, he’ll be
remembered as the fallen genius and founder of one of the greatest bands in British/American history. Ever? Pink Floyd was
his creation- thank you Syd.
DE JA VU
No one could have expected what could happen
on July 2, 2005. The world fight against poverty in Africa concert LIVE 8, was held in 10
cities across the world. London was host to one of those concerts.
In mid-June, Pink Floyd announced that they might get back together for the concert. They made the dream come true. All the
Floyd guys, (Gilmour, Waters, Mason, and Wright) except Barrett, were on the stage and rocking hard. They performed four of
their best hits which included Money, Breathe,
Comfortably Numb, and Wish You Were Here.
The crowd literally went wild when they took the stage. No other than Roger Waters gave a slight smile to the world and to
his band when it was all over.