The Pink Floyd & Syd Barrett Story is a documentary by John Edgington that explores the tumultuous story of Syd Barrett and Pink Floyd. It is about the tragedy that befell Barrett, and the everlasting effect it had on the band, its members, and its music.
Roger Keith 'Syd' Barrett was a founding member of the psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd. Barrett came up with the name "The Pink Floyd Sound" in 1965, later shortening it to the version we know. They began, like many bands of the time, doing cover songs of American R&B music, but soon created their own style of rock and roll, drawing from improvised jazz sounds.
By 1967 they had a contract with EMI and produced two singles: "Arnold Layne," which hit number 20 on the British charts, and "See Emily Play," which hit number 6. From there they recorded their first album, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, in which Barrett had a part in writing ten of the eleven songs (eight of which he wrote alone).
While not a big hit in the States, it was a huge hit in Great Britain. Then Barrett's behavior became increasingly unpredictable. Some of this was attributed to his experimentation with LSD and other mind-altering drugs, but now it appears that an existing mental illness, exacerbated by drug use, may have been largely responsible.
After an aborted U.S. tour that found Barrett going downhill fast, David Gilmour was brought in as second guitarist to cover for Barrett's bizarre behavior. Barrett did not contribute any new material to the band after A Saucerful of Secrets was released in 1968. In March of that year, it was officially announced that he was no longer a member of Pink Floyd.
Barrett did have a brief solo career in which he released two albums, The Madcap Laughs and Barrett. Most of the material was from 1966 and 1967. In 1972, Barrett formed a band called Stars, but it was disastrous and short-lived.
Barrett made only one other appearance, in 1975, at a recording session for Wish You Were Here. Pink Floyd was recording "Shine on You Crazy Diamond," a song about Barrett. He had a shaved head and was overweight, and none of the band members recognized him. In The Pink Floyd & Syd Barrett Story, that whole ordeal is explained, including how utterly weird it made everyone there feel. (The scene was also referenced in the Pink Floyd movie, The Wall, when Pink shaves off his body hair.)