Several news organizations are reporting that Pink Floyd co-founder Syd Barrett has died.
Barrett was the band’s leader and creative force during its early years before he eventually left the band and was replaced by David Gilmour, and Pink Floyd went on to become one of the best selling and most influential bands of all time. More info on Pink Floyd here and Syd Barrett here.
He was also a central theme of the band’s 1975 album Wish You Were Here (hence the title of this entry and the use of the album cover). “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” is about him, and during Pink Floyd’s performance at Live 8 last summer, Roger Waters told the audience,”It’s quite emotional standing up here with these guys… We’re doing this for everyone who’s not here. And particularly, of course, for Syd,” before performing “Wish You Were Here.”
Rolling Stone has reached into its archives and dug up this 1971 interview with Syd Barrett which you should read. According to the MTV News writeup, he hasn’t given an interview since 1971, so this could be the one.
Finally, this bit of information coming in from the Department of Bad Karma: Rolling Stone is reporting that although Barrett died on July 7, it was not announced until today (July 11). Today is also the day that the DVD version of Pink Floyd’s 1995 live album Pulse is released.