Happy 60th Birthday Syd Barrett!

Happy 60th Birthday Syd Barrett!

Thursday, 07 January 2016



Syd Barrett (6 January 1946 – 7 July 2006) was an English musician, composer, singer, songwriter, and painter. Best known as a founding member of the band Pink Floyd, Barrett was the lead singer, guitarist and principal songwriter in its early years and is credited with naming the band. Barrett was excluded from Pink Floyd in April 1968 after David Gilmour took over as their new front-man, and was briefly hospitalized amid speculation of mental illness.

These days, everyone knows who Syd Barrett (Roger Keith Barrett) was. Without Syd there would have been no Pink Floyd. Syd Barrett lead the band during their beginning years, writing most of their music and lyrics, playing lead guitar and singing lead vocals. In March of 1967 Syd’s association with the Pink Floyd band that he created ended.

Syd went on to record two solo albums, ‘The Madcap Laughs’ and ‘Barrett’.  Syd later performed with the group Stars, a band located in the Cambridge, England area, but left them after 3 gigs, hence essentially vanishing from the public till his death July 7, 2006.

Some of Syd’s music has a whimsical childlike feel, almost stories, then it hits you, the play with words, various meanings to a line, mysteryous lyrics spiraling thru your mind whilst his guitar sings surreal notes, using very unique special effects.  The outcome, trance like riffs would quickly errupt into intense, slightly off kilter strumming, obscure chanting vocals, tense verses with explosive choruses.  Syd is thought to be a musical virtuoso. Syd’s style was described by critics in several ways, ‘clumsy and anarchic’, ‘adventurous and distinctive’, ‘idiosyncratic’, ‘revolutionary’, also ‘brilliant’ and ‘painful’ but do not be fooled by some of the negativity. Syd uses every concievable style of guitar mastering one can imagine. Quite frankly he knew his instrument intimately and pushed it to its limits.

Syd is considered the originator of psychedelic music in the 60’s.  His obvious influence on Pink Floyd can still be heard long after he left the group. Continuing without Syd was difficult, since the public as well as the music industry thought Syd was the band.

Syd Barrett did not get a fair share of the recognition that should be bestowed upon him, for without Syd Barrett’s influence and genius, Pink Floyd would not exist today.  (source – contributed by Silks @ discogs.com)

Please join in the conversation of celebrating and remembering Syd in our comments section below. Tell us about how he has influenced you in your lives.

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