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Pink Floyd


Pink Floyd

Capitol Records


1965 in Cambridge, England

Original Name(s):

Megadeaths, Sigma 6, Screaming Abdabs, Abdabs, Architectural Abdabs, Tea Set, The Pink Floyd Sound

Origin Of the Name:

Combination of the names of American blues musicians Pink Anderson and Floyd Council

Influenced By:

Jimi Hendrix, Amm (improvisational jazz group), Can (German experimental rock group), Byrds, Grateful Dead, Arthur Lee (Love)

Influence On:

David Bowie, Genesis, The Nazz, Queen, Phish, Radiohead, Smashing Pumpkins, Yes

Original Members:

Syd Barrett - guitar, vocals
Roger Waters - bass, guitar, vocals
Bob Klose, guitar
Rick Wright - keyboards, wind instruments
Nick Mason - drums

Other Members:

David Gilmour - guitar, vocals

Current Members:

David Gilmour, Nick Mason, Rick Wright

First Album:

The Piper At the Gates of Dawn (1967)

Most Recent Album:

The Division Bell (1994)

Significant Facts:

  • More than 200-million albums sold since 1967
  • Four Grammy nominations in the '70s, '80s, and '90s
  • Helped define the Progressive Rock genre
  • One of the first bands to use pyrotechnics, video, and light shows in their stage acts
  • Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996

Pink Floyd Career History:

The band that eventually became known as Pink Floyd started by performing covers of American R&B songs. When Syd Barrett joined the group in 1965 he began writing most of the band's songs, and moved the group into the burgeoning psychedelic rock movement. Surreal lyrics and experimental electronic effects established the band as the British epicenter of psych rock.

After two albums, Barrett self-destructed due to mental instability aggravated by drug use. He was replaced by David Gilmour in 1968. The band continued to expreriment, increasingly incorporating classical and jazz influences into their music.

Their innovative musical styles and flashy stage production in live performances established them as a commercially successful band with a unique sound, at the forefront of the rock opera genre with heir 1979 epic The Wall.

Pink Floyd Today:

Between the mid-70s and mid-80s Roger Waters increasingly asserted control over the band's sound and overall direction. In 1985, Waters left to pursue a solo career, and declared that Pink Floyd was done. A subsequent court battle proved otherwise, as David Gilmour retained the right to use the band's name and much of its catalog.

Pink Floyd's last studio album was 1994's The Division Bell. In July 2005, the group, Waters included, performed at the London Live 8 concert.

Both Waters and Gilmour have continued to pursue solo careers, occasionally joined by Nick Mason or Rick Wright or both to perform music from the band's glory days. All indications are that another reunion that includes both Waters and Gilmour is, at best, highly unlikely, especially in light of Wright's death in September 2008.

Essential Pink Floyd CD:

Wish You Were Here
It is significant because it is so indicative of the group's intensely complicated musical compositions and elaborate studio production. The album was a tribute to founding member Syd Barrett. It was the first Pink Floyd album to reach the #1 position on both the US and UK album charts.

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