Pink Floyd reunion unlikely as Waters still fumes:
- Pink Floyd, which has not performed together since 1994, remains on hiatus while its members pursue various projects. Gilmour is preparing to release a concert video in November, and hopes to record a solo album next year.
“Pink Floyd, to be honest, is the furthest thing from my mind at the moment,” he told Reuters in a telephone interview.
“I know that other people have a different view and it has some sort of intrinsic importance, but right at the moment I’m just not thinking about Pink Floyd. I’m just concentrating on what I’m doing in a totally selfish way, and enjoying myself.”
Now 56, Gilmour said he prefers a simpler life making more spontaneous music, whereas a Pink Floyd album and tour would require “an awful lot of time and effort.”
Famed for elaborate concerts that boasted flying pigs and laser shows, Pink Floyd grossed $104 million from its 1994 trek across North America. The stadium tour, which was seen by more than three million people, ranks third on the all-time earners list behind the Rolling Stones and U2. Since then ticket prices have soared, and industry observers say a new Pink Floyd tour could smash records.
But Gilmour, a father of eight who is reportedly worth more than $100 million, seems to be more interested in giving away his money. He last year donated proceeds of 3.6 million pounds (now $5.7 million) from the sale of a house to a charity and has set up a foundation to disburse more funds.
Stones take note: 56, rich as hell, big family, own musical interests. But then again, a rolling stone gathers no cash when it isn’t rolling.
- His upcoming DVD and VHS release “David Gilmour in Concert,” is a largely acoustic affair built around a concert at London’s Royal Festival Hall in June 2001.
Gilmour revisits old Pink Floyd nuggets like “Shine On You Crazy Diamond,” “Comfortably Numb” and “Wish You Were Here,” as well as a few rarities written by Syd Barrett, the group’s first leader. Barrett, a drugs casualty, left Pink Floyd in 1969 and lives in seclusion in Cambridge, England.
Gilmour said he has not seen him since 1975, when an unrecognizable Barrett casually dropped into the London studio as the band was recording “Wish You Were Here.” Gilmour is in occasional touch with Barrett’s sister, and often thinks of driving up to Barrett’s place for a cup of tea and a chat.
“There was a time when his family seemed to think that that sort of thing wouldn’t be a very good idea, but maybe that time has passed. I might get round to it one of these days.”
Gilmour joined Pink Floyd in 1968 three years after it was formed, and has led the band since its bitter 1980s split from musical mastermind Roger Waters, who went to court in an unsuccessful bid to prevent his former colleagues from touring under the Pink Floyd name.
Gilmour said he was fascinated to learn that drummer Nick Mason has recently become friendly again with Waters. Claiming an inability to hold a grudge, Gilmour said he would be happy to make up with Waters but the feeling is not reciprocated.
“Being enemies over something as trivial as who does what within a pop group is pretty childish stuff, isn’t it?”
Life is too short, Roger; but then again, I prefer Pink Floyd when Waters isn’t running the group: The Wall is probably my least favorite of their classic-period albums – too much whining and not enough tunes.
Check out my interview with Wall producer Bob Ezrin for some background on the recording and the personalities involved:
“Initially the album was to be written by Roger alone, but there were holes. I insisted that we go through Dave’s repertoire. At that point, there was tension between them, and I had to be the glue,” Ezrin says.
“Dave played a bunch of demos, and after one – I don’t even remember what the lyric was – I said, ‘This must go on the album.’ Roger resisted, but demurred, wrote the lyrics, and that song became ‘Comfortably Numb.'”
The contoversy surrounding the song continued. Waters and Ezrin felt that the orchestra was integral to the song and Gilmour did not. They fought about it until the last three days of mixing. Imagine “Numb” without the orchestra and you will know how good Ezrin’s ears are, as well as his powers of diplomacy.
“Numb” wasn’t the only bone of contention. There was also a fight over “Another Brick in the Wall,” which Ezrin says was originally “one verse, one chorus and out.
“I said ‘this is a hit.’ They said ‘we don’t do hits.’ I said ‘yes you do’ and so forth. ‘This is going to be a single.’ They said ‘fuck you’ and wouldn’t play it. So [the song on the album] is the same track twice with a drum fill that I found and edited between the two of them.
“We got the [singing] kids from the London Arts High School: 20 tracks of kids, ten different performances of the second verse and edited it all together. When I played it for Roger, he about flipped he loved it so much.”