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Sound Bites - short bits and pieces of interviews -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- : Here's another excerpt. This one pertaining to Roger's leaving the : band. It is reprinted (without permission) from Rolling Stone issue : #513, dated November 19, 1987. ..."We never assumed that it was defunct," says Gilmour. "But the growing tide or rumors and Roger's vocal output combined made it almost like an avalanche. We couldn't keep issuing press statements saying, 'No, we haven't split up'. It wasn't worth the bother. Our assumption - my assumption, anyway - was that we would do another record." According to Gilmour and Mason, Waters officially announced his leaving in a letter to the Floyd's record companies, Columbia in America, EMI in the UK, in December 1985. "We had had discussions," Mason says. "We sort of knew something was up." Gilmour and Mason say that Waters thought his exit would mean the de facto end of the group. "We'd been having these meetings in which Roger said, 'I'm not working with you guys again,'"Gilmour says. "He'd say to me, 'Are you going to carry on?' And I'd say, quite honestly, 'I don't know. But when we're good and ready, I'll tell everyone what the plan is. And we'll get on with it.' I think partly his letter was to gear us up into doing something." "Because he believed very strongly that we wouldn't do it," says Mason. "Or couldn't do it," Gilmour says. "I remember meetings in which he said, 'You'll never fucking do it.' That's precisely what was said. Exactly that term." He laughs wryly. "Except slightly harder." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- : This is an exceprt from an interview with Dave. It was on the "In The : Studio" radio program where they choose an album and talk with the : people who made it. It's a bit of a joke. We started off once, and we put all the tracks down without any noise reduction on them, but using these things called keypexes (sp?) which are noise gates which would turn the tracks on when we were using them and off when we weren't using them. Just cut out the hiss between the moments, you know. And like the Dolby system, which is a general noise reduction system which is in operation all the time. And then -- this is a period of very heavy technical advancements rapidly happening. During that period of time the Dolby system became quite wide spread, and they got them in at Abbey Road, and we actually had all the tapes copied. All the master tapes were copied onto -- sixteen track non-Dolby onto sixteen track Dolby. So all the masters are second generation from the word go. It's amazing what you can do with sound. Technically speaking, every rule in the book was broken on that. And people think it's a kind of an audiorile record. Wonderfull (chuckle). And it shouldn't really be that way (interviewer laughs). -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- : Roger Waters, Musician Magazine, May 1992 Something is triggered off in each of us when we listen to certain songs, a feeling so intangible that it might only whisper, yet is recognized. Roger Waters explained how he thinks music does this: "As an audience, we look at the painting or hear the music and recognize truth of some kind that affects us deeply. It explains our universe to us in some way that is reassuring. It is that which makes me feel there may well be something to be in tune with." Roger's description of his school illustrates how the traditional educational process seems designed to squash creativeness, a theme that he later explored artistically in The Wall. "My father was killed in the war when I was three months old, and I was brought up in Cambridge, England, by my mother, who's a school teacher. She didn't encourage my creativity. She claims to be tone deaf, whatever that means, and has no interest in music and art or anything like that. She's only interested in politics. I didn't really have a happy childhood. I loathed school, particularly after I went to grammer school. Apart from games, which I loved, I loathed every single second of it. Maybe toward the end when I was a teenager, going to school was just an 'us and them' confrontation between me and a few friends who formed a rather violent and revolutionary clique. That was alright, and I enjoyed the violence of smashing up the school property. The grammer school mentality at that time had very much lagged behind the way young people's minds were working in the late '50's, and it took them a long time to catch up. In a way, grammer schools were still being run on pre-war lines, where you bloody well did as you were told and kept your mouth shut, and we weren't prepared for any of that. It erupted into a very organized clandestine property violence against the school, with bombs, though nobody ever got hurt. I remember one night about 10 of us went out, because we had decided that one guy - the man in charge of gardening - needed a lesson. He had one particular tree of Golden Delicious apples that was his pride and joy, which he would protect at all costs. We went into the orchard with stepladders and ate every single apple on the tree without removing any. So the next morning was just wonderful; we were terribly tired but filled with a real sense of achievement. "Syd Barrett [the cofounder of Pink Floyd with Roger] - who was a couple of years younger - and I became friends in Cambridge. We both had similar interests - rock 'n' roll, danger and sex and drugs, probably in that order. I had a motor bike before I left home, and we used to go on mad rides out into the country. We would have races at night, incredibly dangerous, which we survived somehow. Those days - 1959 to 1960 - were heady times. There was a lot of flirtation with Allen Ginsberg and the beat generation of the American poets. Because Cambridge was a university town, there was a very strong pseudo-intellectual but beat vibe. It was just when the depression of the postwar was beginning to wear off and we were beginning to go into some kind of economic upgrade. And just at the beginning of the '60's there was a real flirtation with prewar romanticism, which I got involved with in a way, and it was that feeling that pushed me toward being in a band. I used to go with friends on journeys around Europe and the Middle East, which in those days was a reasonably safe place. How much all that experience had to do with my eventually starting to write, I've no idea. "The encoragement to play my guitar came from a man who was head of my first year at architecture school at Regent Street Polytechnic, in London. He encouraged me to bring the guitar into the classroom. If I wanted to sit in the corner and play guitar during periods that were set aside for design work and architecture, he thought that was perfectly alright. It was my first feeling of encouragement. Earlier, I had made one or two feeble attempts to learn to play the guitar whan I was around 14 but gave up because it was to difficult. It hurt my finger, and I found it much to hard. I couldn't handle it. At the Polytechnic I got involved with people who played in bands, although I couldn't play very well. I sang a little and played the harmonica and guitar a bit. Syd and I had always vowed that when he came up to art school, which he inevitably would do being a very good painter, he and I would start a band in London. In fact, I was already in a band, so he joined that." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- : Roger showed up on MTV News At Nite yesterday, with a : interview that lasted 3-4 minutes. : This is what he said about Pink Floyd: People do what they do. I left and there's a band there still called pink Floyd. People must make of it what they will. It's not of my busiens anymore, you know. Gilmour and Mason own the name pink Floyd, that's it, finished! It's nothing to do with me. I have no control over it, I have no control over back catalogue, I have nothing to do with any of it. I'm out of it.., OK? And it happened several years ago, and I was jolly angry and gloomy about it at the time, and I'm now over it and I'm getting on with my own work. You know, let's talk about something else. [ Smiling when saying this ] -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- : There is also Waters "interview" in the latest Q magazine (November '92) : It seems it's the same that was on MTV. : Here are some nice quotes :-) "I wrote The Wall as an attack on stadium rock - and there's is Pink Floyd making money out of it by playing it in stadiums! Pathetic. They spoiled my creations." "Well, anyway, I am one of the best five writers to come out of English music since the War." "Radio One won't play my single because they know it's no good. They know it's not as good as Erasure or Janet fucking Jackson." [He also said that Lloyd Webber used music of Echoes in the beginning of Phantom Of The Opera.] "Bastard. [...] But I think that life's too long to bother with suing Andrew fucking Lloyd Webber." [Waters was asked which writers could possibly rank above him] "John Lennon. [...] Er, I can't think of anybody else [...] Freddy Mercury maybe...." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- : --- Included from Dave Gilmour interview, Q Magazine, August 1990 --- HAVE YOU COMMUNICATED IN THE LAST THREE YEARS OTHER THAN THROUGH LAWYERS? Oh yes. We've met and talked. He has now stopped coming to the meetings we have to hold - we are still in business together and we have to have board meetings to make various decisions, but now he usually sends a proxy along. The last time I spoke to him was when we signed our agreement (in 1987), which stopped all lawsuits at that time and settled the fact that we had the name in perpetuity. He got some rights and bits and pieces, particularly to do with The Wall. There were one or two areas of the agreement that weren't clear and he subsequently entered two or three lawsuits against us, which he has now dropped. -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- : Extracts from an article about The Wall in Berlin, taken from : Q Magazine, #48, September 90. : I have only typed in what Waters says, the rest is just a description : of the show and things like that. : Interviewer Phil Sutcliffe ...AND PIGS WILL FLY! "If this concert is to celebrate anything, it's that the Berlin Wall coming dow can be seen as an liberating of the human spirit," Waters tells Q during rehearsals. So it is not in any sense a "Top that!" addressed to Dave Gilmour and Nick Mason, now legally established owners of his old band's name and, hence, proprietors of an fabulously successful Pink Floyd comeback in the late '80s? "No it's not Top that! But it certainly will be most gratifying that a few more people in the world will understand that The Wall is 'my' work and always have been. There must be an element of that. Though after hearing them at Knebworth I don't think I should worry. They just haven't got the faintest idea of what any of it's about. But then they never did. Still most of the audience for this show will probably think it's Pink Floyd anyway. The attachment to the brand name is limpet-like. It's something I live with." ...The 100-piece Soviet army band took no more than a word in the ear of the right chap. Four tanks, though, were just not on. Nor, finally, were the pair of WW2 bombers buzzing the site, proposed by Waters. Even Cheshire had balked at that one. "He said, You can't do that" Waters recalls. "I said, "But that's what this is all about! Anyway, we had an argument. I think he felt bad about it because he still has things to deal with, knowing he'd been up there dropping bombs on the poor bastards." The bomber proved unobtainable anyway but for Waters, other satisfactions were readily to hand. "When I came to listen to the album again after 10 years, I thought, Christ, I hope I like it still," he says. " Then I put it on in the car and it was, This isn't half bad. I'm extremely proud of it. I'm proud of the fact that I get letters from schoolteachers who use Another Brick as the basis of class discussion. And there's a book about psychotherapy in which the author mentions The Wall and says how extraordinary it is that an Englishman should write in this way. When I read that in an academic tome about child psychology I did feel a warm thrill that somebody had taken it so seriously. I get letters about The Wall too - I'm not saying the mailbag's bursting with them - but from people it meant a lot to, helped them free their feelings. It's given comfort. So the pay-off from having expressed myself before my peers and torn down my wall, if only to limited extent, the pay-off is... good." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- When the band reached NZ on "that" world tour, Dave and Nick and Rick were interviewed briefly for television. One of the questions asked was very similar to the above, along the lines of "How do you feel about performing without Roger Waters". Dave's answer (paraphrased - this was some time ago): "Well, we're only doing three songs that he sang on and I'm singing those, and bass players are ten-a-penny really." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Stolen from the 08Jan83 Goldmine: Gilmour: "The whole side three bit with the orchestra all got shortened radically. Other songs -- `Run Like Hell,' was chopped to bits, really. Whole chunks. One was concentrating then on vinyl. It wouldn't matter so much today, but with vinyl, there was a finite limit of about 21 minutes a side. Every extra minute, you lost a db, one db of level when it's being played on the radio. Not so much here, where they compress the shit out of it, but also [the] signal-to-noise level gets worse and over 25 minutes you're beginning to suffer quite distinctly. So, our objective was to get it short enough to be able to get it onto two albums, and some things suffered for that." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Here is what roger waters said of "not now john" "john" is a british word much like "jack" or "buddy" in the states. INTERVIEWER: "not now john" is about over ambitions & drive for money and winning...blind ambitions to best the "wily japanese" and to conqueor the russian bear" ROGER:yes, but never mind the russian bear, what about the other members of the human race?...wait until they start trying to compete, and that's most of us. There are lots more of them than there are of us. There are more of the third world than there are of the old and new worlds. And as soon as they get TVs, they're going to get well up-tight. In fact, they may well say, "You've had your go, we want our go now." it's that kind of 'more.' INTERVIEWER: Would you say that the personality/persona of the singer in "not now john" has the same mentality or character as in "have a cigar?"...We're all put together as a team. ROGER: Well, yes. You've done your homework! -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Rolling Stone, July-ish 1990: RS: I understand that PolyGram Records, which is releasing a live album of the event, has put a lot of pressure on you to employ special guest stars in the show. It strikes me that 'The Wall' is less suited to a parade of guests than, say, 'Tommy'. RW: Well, I thought Tommy was reduced *dramatically* by the inclusion of Billy Idol and Patti LaBelle and Phil Collins. I find the ubiquitous nature of Phil Collins's presence in my life irritating anyway - but having said that, the kid is a child actor and he was very good, though I did feel it was kind of overkill to wear two different costumes. But Billy Idol and Patti LaBelle were an absolute nightmare. They were fucking *aweful*. But I am using as much outside help as I can get, particularly for "Bring the Boys Back Home". I want to get soldiers from opposed ideologies onstage together to create a piece of music theater, which is symbolic of what Leonard Cheshire and the Memorial Fund are trying to achieve. Which is international cooperation in the face of national disatsters. On the other members of Floyd being absent: RS: It's ironic that you're singing about cooperation and breaking down walls, and yet you're not including the people with whom you recorded "The Wall" originally. RW: Yeah. I wouldn't be able to focus on the piece, or the day, or what it was about, or its aims, or whatever, if either Dave Gilmour or Nick Mason were there. If I was to get involvied with them, it would have to be done at Big Sur and it would take six months. Having said that, I absolutely acknowledge that some of the work involved in The Wall is Dave's. But the fact that he cares as little as he does for the feelings that are in the piece, I think, makes it impossible for me to invite him to be there. You know, he has been out in stadiums playing my piece, in exact opposition to my emotions and ideas and philosophies and whatever, for his own profit. And I can't forgive him for that. [ ed note--"Big Sur" is a "new age" sort of rehabilitation/retreat center in California. Waters here is suggesting that any kind of "reunion" of Floyd would invlove lots and lots of therapy, group discussions, getting to know one another, and probably more than a small amount of tranquilizers.] -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- In an interview with Karl Dallas, in _Bricks In The Wall_, "DALLAS: The cross-cutting in the movie, with the Anzio landings, don't you think that's a little far fetched? "WATERS: Not really, no. I don't. Because there seems to me to be something ... well, it's strange, because it's not a direct parallel. Clearly, the motivation behind people jumping off DUKWs and running up beaches in Anzio is that they've been bloody well ordered to do it, you know. And they thought, and they were probably thinking, they were fighting a war that needed to be fought. "Whereas the motivation for the kind of involvement inrock shows that I'm pointing at is masochism. It's something I don't understand. I do not understand that thing of people going to rock shows and apparently the more painful it is the better they like it." Regarding the final scene: "WATERS: [...] That final image, if it's saying anything at all, it's suggesting that when we're born, we don't like Molotov cocktails, and that we learn to like them as we grow older. We learn to want to burn stuff and break things. ... [Later, after being asked if that's sentimentalizing childhood] "WATERS: [...] Children don't ... well, actually children DO like Molotov cocktails, of course, they do. They love Molotov cocktails. I don't know why I said that. It's clearly nonsense. They like guns and fireworks and bangs and ... but they don't like killing. Well, most of the children I know don't, anyway. [...] Killing is very worrying I think to children, and it's something that we get hardened to as we grow older. Some of us get more hardened to it that others." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Dave Gilmour on "Midweek" - UK Radio 4 Dave confirmed that he and Nick and Rick were currently "jamming in the studio" and "preparing [to start] the new album". He didn't mention a release date. Concerning the break-up with Roger, he defined the point of no return as during the filming of "The Wall", basically saying that Roger's ego had got too much to handle. Also, apparently, at one point (he didn't say when) he was advised by the police not to go to the studio and to stay at home because the FBI had informed them that a crazed fan was on his way over with a hand gun! -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- MTV News at Nite Nov 24, 1992 [A short bit about Pink Floyd with interviews with Gilmour and Waters.] Gilmour, about Waters leaving (paraphrased): "We lost something and we gained something.... You always have some regrets about losing a talent.., don't you?" -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- David Gilmour in the February 1993 Guitar World. WHAT ABOUT YOUR SOLO ON COMFORTABLY NUMB? DID THAT TAKE A LONG TIME TO DEVELOP? No. I just went out into the studio and banged out five or six solos. From there I just followed my usual procedure, which is to listen back to each solo and mark out bar lines, saying which bits are good. In other words, I make a chart, putting ticks and crosses on different bars as I count through: 2 ticks if its really good, 1 tick if its good and a cross if its no go. Then I just follow the chart, whipping one fader up, then another fader, jumping from phrase to phrase and trying to make a really nice solo all the way through. That's the way we did it on "Comfortably Numb". It wasn't that difficult. But sometimes you find yourself jumping from one note to another in an impossible way. Then you have to go to another place and find a transition that sounds more natural. WHEN YOU DO A COMP LIKE THAT, ARE YOU CONCERNED THAT YOU'LL WIND UP WITH A RESULT THAT'S PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE TO PLAY? Not if it sounds alright. I'm perfectly happy to puzzle the hell out of people who try to work out how its done. (important part here!) FOR LIVE SHOWS, DO YOU THEN HAVE TO GO AND LEARN TO PLAY THE SOLOS FROM THE RECORD? No. I NEVER PLAY LIVE SOLOS EXACTLY THE SAME WAY THEY APPEARED ON RECORD. I tend to start with the same thing that's on the album and take off from there. Every once and a while I'll remember a bit from the record and fall back on that. Of course, the solo in the middle of Comfortably Numb is worked-out. I always do that the same. But I never play the main solo - the jam solo at the end - exactly the same as the original. (end of interview) -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Something from TAP: QUNTROVERSY & AGGRESSION Winding through the tapes of writer Matthew Gwyther, we found quotes from Waters and Gilmour which, while too specialist for his Observer feature (see Medialog, TAP 59), will interest scandalously-inclined Floyd fans... DG on Waters: "I haven't spoken to Roger since the 23rd of December, '87, when we finalised our agreement. We made up, on a word processor, an agreement; the two of us together with one guy, from our accountants... "I have seen him since, at Paul Carrack's 40th birthday party... he turned round from the bar with two drinks in his hand and couldn't help but smile. Then he stalked off and gathered his party and left." Waters on Sorm Thorgerson: "He came and stayed with my mother and brothers and me. I'll never forget him saying, Oi, I want my cup of tea, or, I want my breakfast. My mother said, Well, go downstairs and put the kettle on, then. 'Oh, alright.' "About ten minutes later, this 11-year old came back and said, How do you put the kettle on? He'd been at (boarding school) since the age of five and didn't know how to boil a fucking kettle of water! [Which is] a fantastic indictment of that whole thing about education and children." * Fast forwarding futher, Matthew asks about Mason being Rog's best friend: "Well, so I thought... But when push came to show, when we were making The Final Cut, I asked him to stand by me, to be part of 'my gang'. "He said to me, '...I want to go on with Gilmour...'. At least he had the courage to tell me that. I went, Alright, if that is what you belive." Finally, we get to the poetry Rog's been composing. There's stuff about Grantchester Meadows, fishing in the River Cam and the obligatory dead dad bit: "We did our best / We kept his trust / Our dad would have been proud of us." You read it here first... * Thorgerson gets his revenge, in an interview with Simon Taylor, for the laters college dissertation 'The Music and Images of Pink Floyd': "There was an argument between Roger and me over the crediting of the Animals cover. Using Roger's concept, it was up to me to design the cover and organise it all. Getting the pig, photographers all in place was my work. "Therefore, I credited myself as sleeve designer. Roger was furios and after a long argument the sleeve notes were changed with him listed as designer. After that, he never bothered to call me again; which is a shame really, because we were good friends.. That is typical of Roger, a very unforgiving sort of chap. "That is why I didn't get asked to do The Wall cover. The one they used is very bleak, isn't it? But then it reflects the music on that album. On the whole, I think his covers over recent years have been awful, but that's his decision." Incidentally, can Storm explain the Delicate Sound Of Thunder cover...? "Because [it] was a live album, I wanted the cover to reflect what was so special about a Floyd gig - what made their shows unique - which I concider to be the marriage of light and sound. So you have Mr. Light in a showdown with Mr. Sound. The whole thing was shot in Spain." Lastly during his chat with Simon, Storm confirmed he had been "working on a book about Pink Floyd with Nick Mason". This was not the Shine On rubbish, so maybe we'll see something interesting published to coincide with next year's Pink shenanigans... -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Roger Waters, Musician Magazine, May 1992 Something is triggered off in each of us when we listen to certain songs, a feeling so intangible that it might only whisper, yet is recognized. Roger Waters explained how he thinks music does this: "As an audience, we look at the painting or hear the music and recognize truth of some kind that affects us deeply. It explains our universe to us in some way that is reassuring. It is that which makes me feel there may well be something to be in tune with." Roger's description of his school illustrates how the traditional educational process seems designed to squash creativeness, a theme that he later explored artistically in The Wall. "My father was killed in the war when I was three months old, and I was brought up in Cambridge, England, by my mother, who's a school teacher. She didn't encourage my creativity. She claims to be tone deaf, whatever that means, and has no interest in music and art or anything like that. She's only interested in politics. I didn't really have a happy childhood. I loathed school, particularly after I went to grammer school. Apart from games, which I loved, I loathed every single second of it. Maybe toward the end when I was a teenager, going to school was just an 'us and them' confrontation between me and a few friends who formed a rather violent and revolutionary clique. That was alright, and I enjoyed the violence of smashing up the school property. The grammer school mentality at that time had very much lagged behind the way young people's minds were working in the late '50's, and it took them a long time to catch up. In a way, grammer schools were still being run on pre-war lines, where you bloody well did as you were told and kept your mouth shut, and we weren't prepared for any of that. It erupted into a very organized clandestine property violence against the school, with bombs, though nobody ever got hurt. I remember one night about 10 of us went out, because we had decided that one guy - the man in charge of gardening - needed a lesson. He had one particular tree of Golden Delicious apples that was his pride and joy, which he would protect at all costs. We went into the orchard with stepladders and ate every single apple on the tree without removing any. So the next morning was just wonderful; we were terribly tired but filled with a real sense of achievement. "Syd Barrett [the cofounder of Pink Floyd with Roger] - who was a couple of years younger - and I became friends in Cambridge. We both had similar interests - rock 'n' roll, danger and sex and drugs, probably in that order. I had a motor bike before I left home, and we used to go on mad rides out into the country. We would have races at night, incredibly dangerous, which we survived somehow. Those days - 1959 to 1960 - were heady times. There was a lot of flirtation with Allen Ginsberg and the beat generation of the American poets. Because Cambridge was a university town, there was a very strong pseudo-intellectual but beat vibe. It was just when the depression of the postwar was beginning to wear off and we were beginning to go into some kind of economic upgrade. And just at the beginning of the '60's there was a real flirtation with prewar romanticism, which I got involved with in a way, and it was that feeling that pushed me toward being in a band. I used to go with friends on journeys around Europe and the Middle East, which in those days was a reasonably safe place. How much all that experience had to do with my eventually starting to write, I've no idea. "The encoragement to play my guitar came from a man who was head of my first year at architecture school at Regent Street Polytechnic, in London. He encouraged me to bring the guitar into the classroom. If I wanted to sit in the corner and play guitar during periods that were set aside for design work and architecture, he thought that was perfectly alright. It was my first feeling of encouragement. Earlier, I had made one or two feeble attempts to learn to play the guitar whan I was around 14 but gave up because it was to difficult. It hurt my finger, and I found it much to hard. I couldn't handle it. At the Polytechnic I got involved with people who played in bands, although I couldn't play very well. I sang a little and played the harmonica and guitar a bit. Syd and I had always vowed that when he came up to art school, which he inevitably would do being a very good painter, he and I would start a band in London. In fact, I was already in a band, so he joined that." -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

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