On This Date In 1973: Pink Floyd released their eighth studio album, The Dark Side Of The Moon in the US. It remained in the US charts for 741 discontinuous weeks from 1973 to 1988, longer than any other album in history. After moving to the Billboard Top Pop Catalog Chart, the album notched up a further 759 weeks, and had reached a total of over 1,500 weeks on the combined charts by May 2006. With an estimated 45 million copies sold, it is Pink Floyd’s most commercially successful album and one of the best-selling albums worldwide. Songs on the album were heavily inspired by former Pink Floyd vocalist/ guitarist and founding member, Syd Barrett, who left the band in 1968 (to be replaced by David Gilmour) due to his declining mental state.
On This Date, January 6th, in 1975: Pink Floyd entered London’s Abbey Road Studios to begin recording its seventh studio album, Wish You Were Here. Like much of Pink Floyd’s material, the album’s two-part song “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” is a tribute to the band’s former singer and guitarist Syd Barrett, whose drug-induced breakdown had forced him to leave the band several years earlier. Syd would also have celebrated his birthday today (Born 1/6/1946), if he had not passed away in July of 2006 at the age of 60. Shine on you crazy diamond.
Wish You Were Here Cover Art
Pink Floyd (L-R) Roger Waters, Nick Mason, Syd Barrett and Rick Wright
Pink Floyd keyboard player and founding member Richard “Rick” Wright has died on September 15th, 2008 after a short struggle with cancer. He was 65. Wright was a member of Pink Floyd from their first album, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn in 1967 alongside lead guitarist Syd Barrett, Roger Waters and Nick Mason. David Gilmour joined the band at the start of 1968 while Barrett left the group shortly afterwards. Wright penned songs on classic albums including The Dark Side Of The Moon – “The Great Gig In The Sky” and “Us And Them” – and Wish You Were Here.
Original Pink Floyd Guitarist and front man, Syd Barret, has passed away on July 7th, 2006, at age 60 due to complications from diabetes. In his obituary for the NY Times rock journalist John Pareles writes that Barrett, “was also renowned both as an LSD casualty and as a symbol of how close creativity can be to madness.” Read more of that resonant obit at this link: Syd Barret Dies at 60. Shine On, You Crazy Diamond.
Ian sent me the above link to this Brazilian web zine called Whiplash. Somehow, they seem to have gotten their hands on a huge archive of photos of Rock Stars in stages from mere infancy to teenage years. Each musician or band is archived under a separate link, which actually makes it easier to find a specific person, if you happen to be looking for baby pictures of Steven Tyler. You honestly will not believe the adorable pictures of Ozzy Osbourne as a toddler posted on this site, and I think someone definitely had the opportunity to raid the baby picture archives of Marilyn Manson’s parents. There’s also some truly squeal-inducing elementary school age pictures of the late Layne Staley and Kurt Cobain that will just break your heart. On the lighter side, I found the world’s gayest picture of Slash (at about age 14) and another one of Paul Stanley that is just as gay as pink suede. Check out the picture of Green Day drummer Tre Cool (my guess: age five) and tell me he doesn’t still look exactly like that. And last but not least, where the hell did they get a picture of Syd Barrett, who looks to be about 2 or 3 in the photo. Fascinating stuff.