Transcribed from VHS by Zombiezee
This item was interspersed with Pink Floyd videos, history and info, so I have inserted only the appropriate David Gilmour dialogue as it appeared on the VHS tape.
DG I’d seen Syd during that year in 1967, um…particularly during the making of SEE EMILY PLAY. I went along to that recording session and the change was sort of devastating in Syd – he was a different person to the one that I’d known really well. It was kind of tragic.
DG We knew it was going to do better than anything that we’d previously done. It was obvious, particularly when we saw it all put together at the end with the cover, and the whole thing. We knew that it was gonna do a lot better than anything previously, but I for one didn’t quite foresee the quantum leap that was made in popularity.
DG It was a very difficult period. You’ve sort of achieved all your childhood’s rock and roll dreams, and when you’ve reached that sort of pinnacle of DARK SIDE OF THE MOON, you have to really ask yourself what you’re still in it for. Um, it was a tough time, but I think in the end I came to the conclusion that I was in it for the music more than for anything else. Um, a conclusion which I haven’t really changed.
WISH YOU WERE HERE
DG I like the balance of music to words on WISH YOU WERE HERE and I think we took a step back towards MEDDLE, if you like, and had a better balance of music to lyrics, and I think it’s…better – for me, better balanced than DARK SIDE OF THE MOON.
Roger Waters’ departure from Pink Floyd
DG In that separation we really lost something and we gained something. You always have some regrets about losing a talented person, don’t you?
DG Well we were trying to find new things, new sounds, new ways of doing things. The actual music itself, I mean if you annotate the music, or looked at it, it wasn’t terribly experimental, but the sounds that we put onto it I suppose you could call experimental. Um, we still are looking forward to finding new ways of doing things.
DG Roger wrote most of the lyrics way back then, I mean from DARK SIDE OF THE MOON onwards Roger wrote all of them. Previously there were occasional bits by other people, but none of us ever felt that confident about lyric writing, and um…Roger expressed a desire that he should do it all, so we acquiesced.
WISH YOU WERE HERE
DG I remember bitching on myself at the time, after DARK SIDE OF THE MOON, about how I thought that musically some of the vehicles within it are a little weak. It seems like a daft thing to say about an album that’s done that well really. But, I still think that the balance, moving back towards sort of more instrumental passages and some of those spacier things was a good thing to do. I really like it a lot.
DG Well I really like it. It was sort of, I think, slightly influenced by the punk era, if you like – the Pink Floyd punk album. It was certainly a bit more aggressive than some of the other ones we’d previously done, and as you say, two of the pieces on it were pieces that we’d been working with when we started the WISH YOU WERE HERE album, and had left to one side until later. But it’s a good album for me – I like it a lot.
DG It’s Roger’s concept entirely – I wasn’t involved in the concept at all. I was very much involved in turning the concept into a great album as a producer, music writer on 3 tracks and overall help in production and arrangement. We definitely thought it was a very commercial proposition. We wanted to sell lots of records and lots and lots of stuff was done as we progressed through it to make it more commercial, more acceptable, if you like – which is just another way of saying making it turn us on more, for me personally. But it did in its initial stages, in its initial demo form.
ANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL
DG It was originally one verse – that theme’s taken up 3 times, I think, on the record, that basic theme for that track. And this was just a one verse thing to get you from this place to this place. I myself and Roger sang on it – it was fine, sounded good – and then we had the idea of putting kids on it. And when we got the tape back, because we had to say that we were in Los Angeles for the album – we sent the tape off with a list of instructions of what to do and how to do it to our engineer at Britannia Row in London. And when we got the tape back and listened to it with our voices up it was really good. When we took our voices out and it was just the kids on their own it sounded absolutely brilliant, so we mixed it twice – once with my own voice and then once with the kids’ voices, and then edited the two together. And it started sounding like it had definitely hit single sort of material.