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Syd Barratt

Syd Barrett dies age 60

Pink Floyd legend passes away at home
11 July 06 - Sixties legend Syd Barrett, the former singer and lead guitarist of Pink Floyd, has died.

He passed away last Friday (7 July) at his Cambridge home from complications related to diabetes aged just 60.

His brother Alan confirmed his death, saying only: "He died peacefully at home. There will be a private family funeral in the next few days."

Barrett's former Floyd bandmates Nick Mason and Richard Wright issued this statement:

"The band are naturally very upset and sad to learn of Syd Barrett's death.

"Syd was the guiding light of the early band line-up and leaves a legacy which continues to inspire."

Barrett had a drug-induced breakdown at the height of his fame and has been a virtual recluse ever since.

"Syd was the guiding light of the early band line-up and leaves a legacy which continues to inspire."
Pink Floyd statement


Pete Jenner was Pink Floyd's original manager. He told 6 Music he was upset to learn the sad news of Barrett's death, but added he wasn't "totally surprised":

"About six months ago the rumour hit me that he was very unwell and was having trouble with his sight because of his diabetes."

He added: "Rumour has it that he [Barrett] appeared on occasions and certainly seemed to feel that they [Pink Floyd] were still his band, and it was very hard to get through to him.

"So I don't know whether he fully accepted that he had left the band or what his position was."
 
Graham Coxon is among the fellow musicians who've been lining up to pay tribute to the star.

He told 6 Music that Barrett was an enormous influence on him as a guitarist:

"He's terribly overlooked as a guitar player. He's someone I listen to regularly and I was only listening to him the other day.

Coxon added: "For me as a songwriter, he was someone who seemed to take us places that were ever so special, with a lot of humour and mischief. A treasure of this country."

Barrett was born Roger Keith Barrett in Cambridge in 1946, gaining the nickname 'Syd' at the age of 15.

He left Pink Floyd in 1968, just as the band was on the verge of gaining huge international acclaim.

The band penned Shine On You Crazy Diamond in tribute to him a few years later, appearing on their 1975 classic album Wish You Were Here. Just last summer at Live 8, the briefly reformed line-up dedicated the song to their former bandmate live on stage.

Meanwhile, the band's 1967 debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is credited as one of the best psychedelic albums of all time, taking its title from a chapter in Barrett's favourite children's book, The Wind in the Willows .

Despite having left the band by the time of the release of the second album, A Saucerful of Secrets, the following year, his influence is still felt in the shape of the track Jugband Blues, which he penned.

He was replaced by guitarist, and friend of the band, David Gilmour, who had been originally drafted in as a fifth member as Barrett's behaviour become more erratic.

However, Barrett re-emerged in 1970, releasing two solo albums, The Madcap Laughs and Barrett. Both records featured his former Floyd bandmates (David Gilmour also produced most of the sessions) as well as members of the Soft Machine.

However, these are his only solo works post-Floyd. He became a recluse once more, and was never to release any more material.

In 2004, a five-song session he recorded for John Peel's Radio 1 show in 1970 was uncovered and released.


Syd Barrett
6 January 1946 - 7 July 2006

Kellie Redmond

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Comments so far

stuart hunt chesham bucks
syd was a victim of this disease most of society is afflicted with that of a pathological obsession with celebrity and fame albeit spent in syd's case. even up to his death people would not afford him the privacy and respect he or anybody else for that deserved.

pattie gilmour, reading
i met syd in cambridge nearly four years ago....it's a memory i will keep with me forever. i adore his music, he was for me pink floyd and even though i love what they became i think without syd they lost that shine that they tried so hard to get after he left. he left a huge hole. shine on syd.

anon
good bye syd barrett

Stella > Nantes/FRANCE
I wanted to lurn guitare only to play Syd Barrett's songs. He gives me the best inspiration. I am sure you found the light.. A French fan

Akira, Tokyo
I was really sad to hear of Syd’s death. Some might say he was just a psychedelic doodler but I don’t think so. I think he tried to transcend modernism by singing about a child’s world. In modern times we are taught how to think logically and grow up to be a member of society but at the same time we lose an independent mind that every adult has in their childhood. Syd was an eternal child. That was a double- edged sword. As an artist of an independent mind he left lots of great songs that give us an idea full of suggestion to be free in modern times while as a member of society being an eternal child drew ruin on him.

Bob Kovacs Bedminster PA, USA
Roger (Syd) is now truly at piece. For all the joy and suffering he had in this life and the love people had for him I'm sure he is in Heaven with his mother welcoming him home.

pattie,Reading
goodbye syd

Adrian - Durban
All visionaries, revolutionaries, prophets, geniuses (and Scorpios/Aquarians) are mad. They see into realms we cannot even fathom.

Xenia Sin City
Wish you were here! Oh yeah by the way...which one's Pink? Rest in Peace forever!!!

psychaxe, cyberia
So now the madcap laughs at us again. May he laugh on in peace this time. Shine on you crazy diamond in the heavens!

Andrea Colorado Springs, CO, USA
Thank you Syd for forming the best group ever. Thank you for your creative genius and soul. Until we meet again in another lifetime...

Jewel& Dave..Cambridgeshire
We have been fans of Syd since the Piper at the gates of dawn came out, sadly we never got to see him play, we saw Pink Floyd at a gig in our local college in '68 but he had just left the band and been replaced by Dave Gilmour. His childlike quality came through in his songs, the words so simple but the meaning often diverse and complex, See Emily Play, Julia Dream, Paint box, Arnold Layne, all so artistically impressive as were his painting and sketches. This verse from Jugband blues always seemed like a cry for help.... It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear That I'm not here. And I never knew the moon could be so big And I never knew the moon could be so blue And I'm grateful that you threw away my old shoes And brought me here instead dressed in red And I'm wondering who could be writing this song. Here's to the brightest star in the sky.

Adam Reich Montague New Jersey USA
Syd's Time Here Will Never Be Forgotten He Was One In A Million.

Marianne/Brookfield, IL, USA
oh mna the sound he heard and made was IS grate and its too bad the news isnt clear on how he passed away

funkayfish, appleby
well it is a sad time, i wasn't expecting that syd would be the next great death in music but it happened another man into the legends of music hall of fame. good old sid, shine on you crazy diamond.

Gary - San Jose, CA, USA
Thru all the years I've listened to Pink Floyd, I'd always wondered what happened to that insane genius that gave us Pink Floyd. If it wasn't for him, we never would have experienced one of the greatest bands of all time. Who knows what he might have contributed had he not gone mad. I'll definately be mourning his passing.

Arnold Layne, Sussex.
One of the great musicians of the 60s and a father to psychedelia. Had he not fallen victim to excessive drug use, who knows how Floyd may have evolved.

Dave Welch - Wirral
You may be gone but you'll always shine on. Rest in peace Roger.

Ramon Perruolo St. Albans
Think Gilmour shouldn't takes "Arnold Layne" as encore for his presumption concerts,even worse, to sing in along D. Bowie. That's kind of ridiculous, these old green chats,singing Barrett music.

Andy311261 Enfield
I fist heard scarecrow at the age of six, never realizing that it would put me onto a lifetime love of psychedelic music, I find that when relaxing with my headphones on I shut my eyes and listen I go on a magical musical trip back or sometimes forward when I play syd’s music it sends me further than any other. Not one day in the last 15 years without listening to him The star above you is crystal blue

Bikeman, Old Orchard Beach ME, USA
A sad day for anyone who knows anything about rock history. A giant, both in personality and song-writing, always tapping some dark and untouched part of the human condition while still retaining his sense of humor. He will be missed. Bless you Syd, and all who follow after you.

george peratinos /melbourne/australia
sid what can i say;;you are the creator of the music i love so much-im sure you will create more of the same where ever you going be.thanks.

Claudio Zamorano M./Santiago, Chile
The only thing that I can say is: Syd Barrett, I won't forget you, you'll live in my mind forever... ...Remember when you were young, you shone like the sun!!!!

B N F Beith Scotland
Shine on in Heaven Syd. You were a ledgend. Loved your music. Still big Floyd and Waters fans. B n F

dolores daw, coronado, California
syd barrett was a sound heard in our home as my son Graeme was a huge fan. Graeme died in November 2005 (43) and at his memorial service all of his guitar playing friends performed and sang the Pink Floyd music for us and I am sure that my son was going along with the group. My daughter Sarah, Basel, Switzerland wrote a very moving tribute to Syd Barrett which you have on your site. May Syd and Graeme rest in peace.

Mike, Moscow/Russia
RIP Syd. Thank you for all you've done.

Marek, Prague - Czech
Dear Syd, thanks for openining a new, nice space for our minds by your music. "Alone in the clouds all blue Lying on an eiderdown. Yippee! You can't see me But I can you..."

John A, Lincolnshire
I am shocked at this tragic news, but the truth is, Syd will never truly die. He is loved by so many. Thankyou Syd, we will remember you....

"Slowride 66" Central florida U.S.A.
onto the great gig in the sky my you be less troubled there thanks !

Humberto/Monterrey Mexico
Shine on !!

David Coad. Redruth. Cornwall
Your music will be listened to forever.

Ali from Norwich
I miss Syd and I'm sorry for his family. He was a great guitarist and singer... RIP Syd.

The Gothicwizard, London UK
...Set the controls for the Heart of Heaven, Syd, in Interstellar Overdrive ... many thanks for many years of joy... rest in peace dear friend. All our Love, The Gothicwizard and Princess Ivana xxx

Juan, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Thanks for the music Syd, you were a living legend. Let me believe you havent left us, lets just say the crazy diamon is going thru the longest trip ever.

Terence, New York
RIP Syd. Sadly it will take your death for more people to truly understand the impact you had on Pink Floyd.

scott wright..... carmarthen west wales
yeah sadly missed i was in school with him we wrote a few songs together

Juanchi. Maracaibo/Venezuela
Keep shining Syd Barrett. RIP

Geoff Hicks, Chesterfield
Piper at the Gates of Dawn is one of the few albums that I can remember where I was when I first heard it. Brilliant.

Taihsi-Japan/UK
RIP & shine on SYD!!

vicky,bristol
Really sad, a hero to many.......R.I.P SYD.

Tristan, Northumberland
rain falls in grey far away... thanks Syd.

blacktocomm, finland
No!! :´( I can't help but to cry. Syd Barrett made this world a better place and his music always made me smile. Now its effect is the opposite. Rest in peace, Syd. now playing: The Madcap Laughs

Gordon, Exeter
Genius

johnboy munchen germany
a good tribute to syd he was a great artist.It is good to read that he was well respected in the music world,his songs have given me great pleasure throught these years.God bless him rest in peace Syd

Matt - Exeter
RIP Syd!!!

Joshua Papworth, Auckland, New Zealand
RIP Syd. You will be missed.

Kev Orme, Derby United Kingdom
I was born a year after Syd left Pink Floyd. My 6-year-old Daughter, Emily, is named after one of his songs. From hearing that song and other Pink Floyd in my early teens I was taken with the musical intelligence of Pink Floyd and Syd Barrett. I always found the Song “See Emily Play” his most beautiful song. On seeing how beautiful my daughter was when she was born I felt compelled to name her after a beautiful song. It helped that my wife also appreciates Pink Floyd. His influence has impressed itself on countless bands and musicians from his peers in the psychedelic scene through David Bowie and Marc Bolan in the 70’s, Blur and others in the 90’s and bands such as Placebo today. When Pink Floyd paid him tribute by saying, "You Shone Like The Sun" in Shine On You Crazy Diamond they were almost right. Syd Barrett was a supernova of talent and creativity that burned energetically, brightly and explosively for a very short time. However, like a supernova he has left beautiful nebulae of influence and musical heritage that I am sure will permeate the minds and hearts of musicians and their fans alike for many years to come. Syd is one crazy diamond that is guaranteed to shine on.

Tara - Iran
it was so very sad, i love him, his works and his figure, rest in peace ...

Dew San / Mexico City
If I mention your name turn around on a chain... in memoriam... Syd Barrett 1946-2006

john
RIP Crazy Diamond

Melv, Leeds
R.I.P Syd -- musical genious -- Shine in You crazy Diamond

Renato - Padua, Italy
You played the quicksilver in sound/ You blended a colourful impasto in the paintings/ Your dark shining globes catched the breath of the world/ wiring it to a lysergic fervour and blasting in an ever-burning heart/ You will always represent the end of the everyday banality/ Thank you Syd.

paul brown ..beddington
shine on syd,

Anotherloser / Exeter
I first bought Piper at the gates of dawn at a whim, largely down to its rather lovely reissue box. However, upon hearing it music was changed forever. Out went the Radiohead grays of my youth and in came bright Technicolor. This record made me buy my first guitar and more importantly made me want to play it like nobody else. I would say Syd will be missed, but the truth of the matter is he has been missed for many, many years

Jaimi Laing, Southampton
Rest in peace, Crazy Diamond. We'll never forget you.

Kenny, East London
RIP fella

Grizzly, Sleaford, Lincs
Very sad indeed. R.I.P Syd.

Cassim - Curitiba Brazil
Thank you Syd.

John Dawson, Luton
The true genius behind the Floyd. His legacy will live forever.

Chris,Clitheroe
Syd was a genius,may he rest in peace

Andy, Chelmsford
Very sad news. Syd leaves a legacy of some original, interesting and vital music. He was a true pioneer in terms of song structure and sound and we shouldn't forget the wicked sense of humour that laced many of his songs. May he shine on wherever he is..

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