This page contains all the articles that were uploaded in April 2022, chronologically sorted, from old to new.
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Releasing it as Pink Floyd instead of David
Gilmour and friends will get the song free promotion and as such
every (online) newspaper has already brought it up, although not all
reviews are that positive. The (Daily) Telegraph, for instance,
describes it as an
overblown 1980s Eurovision entry.
Update 2022 04 10: 24 hours after its launch, the song hit the #1
position of iTunes downloads in 27 countries.
The song uses the vocals of Andriy
Khlyvnyuk, singing a 1914 Ukrainian patriotic song 'Oi
u Luzi Chervona Kalyna' (Oh, the Red Viburnum in the Meadow). The
roots of the song can be found in a traditional from 1640 as explained
in the next video from Metal Pilgrim.
It is not the first time Pink Floyd has used an outsider to sing a song, Roy
Harper and Clare
Torry come to mind, but it is a very rare occasion (not counting
those two canine vocalists: Seamus
and Mademoiselle Nobs). Pink Floyd doesn't have a tradition either of
covering songs, the only examples I can think of is Green
Onions on an early TV show and the King
Bee demo. (Gilmour and Waters have recorded/streamed a few covers
Gilmour and his merry men have the habit of turning Floyd's history into
their hands and this time it is no different. The blurb says this is the
first new original music they have recorded together as a band since
Division Bell. It makes me wonder what happened with Louder
Than Words, from The
Endless River, that ended the Floyd in a Yoko Ono kind of way. Fans
are still dissing and fighting about it.
Gilmour has taken an a capella song from a Ukrainian singer-soldier and
added some typical Floydian ingredients in the mix. On the video, we can
see he uses his 1955 Fender Esquire that is prominent on the About
Face album cover, but more than probably he changed that for a
Strat, at least for the second solo.
David's guitar play is, as always, impeccable - gold dust as one
fan describes it. To my amazement, plenty of room is given to Nick
Mason in the second part of the song. He spices it with his typical Masonic
drum fills. He still is the best drummer for the band and the only
member who has been present on every album, in every incarnation. Rick's
keyboards are missed but you could do a lot worse than with Nitin
Sawhney. (Spoiler: will he be on the solo album David Gilmour is
The song is short, three minutes and a half. Luckily Gilmour didn't fall
into the trap of adding a six minutes guitar solo on a one couplet song
like he used to do in the past.
Bandsmen by Remote Control
On the Steve
Hoffman Music Forum, the song is heavily discussed and, as usual,
opinions tend to differ, with online missile shootings between the David
and Roger camps. Pigheaded people have forgotten that Roger
Waters left the band some 37 zillion years ago.
One can’t deny that Waters’ opinion about the war is somewhat
prevaricating, one fan put it like this:
Given some of Roger's asinine comments on the subject of Russia's
invasion of Ukraine, I think it's for the best that he's not involved.
I agree with some of Waters' political opinions, but the fact that he
was a welcome guest on the one-sided propaganda channel that is RT (Russia
Today) has been bothering me. Playing the Ukrainian Nazi card is a
bit stupid after you have been welcomed by a TV station that has invited
conspiracy theorists, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and Holocaust
Waters is writhing around like a snail in a saucerful of salt,
condemning the war but trying to blame NATO and the USA. I’m old and
realistic enough to understand that international politics is a dirty
business. I agree that the ‘democratic’ Western world has played a
dubious role in the Ukrainian Orange
Revolution and its aftermath. In something resembling a mediocre Ian
Fleming story, they overplayed their cards, perhaps not realising
that Vladimir Putin is an even bigger madman than Donald Trump ever was.
Just Before Dawn
Floyd anoraks will fight over everything, even the use of the font on
the cover picture for the song. It uses a letter type that is very close
to the one we know from The
Wall. It is even closer to the lettering on the anti-war single When
The Tigers Broke Free, from 1982. We leave it in the middle if this
is a deliberate stab at Roger Waters or just a clever marketing trick.
Hey, Hey, Rise Up is a very uncommon single by the Floyd, but
these are uncommon times. Once you get used to the pompous singing you
can discover its magic or as Gilmour ironically put it: the rock god
guitar player. Bloody well done.
(Link for recalcitrant browsers: Pink Floyd - Hey
Hey Rise Up (feat. Andriy Khlyvnyuk of Boombox))
Pink Floyd 2022
Many thanks to: Metal Pilgrim, Steve Hoffmann Forum and its many
visitors. ♥ Libby ♥ Iggy ♥
Sources (other than the above mentioned links): Petridis, Alexis: ‘This
is a crazy, unjust attack’: Pink Floyd re-form to support Ukraine,
Guardian, 7 April 2022.
A Fleeting Glimpse is proud to announce the Iggy the Eskimo exhibit.
collaboration with The Holy Church of Iggy The Inuit social media page,
we have set up a brand new exhibit highlighting the cult status of Iggy
Iggy was one of Syd Barrett‘s girlfriends in 1969.
Who is most famous for being the model for the Syd Barrett album The
Madcap Laughs. It was rumoured that Iggy the Eskimo, was part Inuit.
With that statement in mind and the fact that she used to be a (former)
girlfriend of movie maker Anthony Stern, that was about all that was
In the early 1970s, she simply disappeared from
Syd’s life and the public eye without a trace, only to later reappear in
the public eye after 40 years out of the limelight.
to social media again and interacting with fans all over the world, she
firmly reacquainted herself with her cult status and continued to engage
with her following until her saddened death in 2017.
brand new exhibit, you can read the back story of who actually took the
photographs used for Syd’s Madcap Laughs album, discover more about her
relationship with Eric Clapton, and hear the story of when she thought
Syd Barrett was cheating on her, which subsequently turned out to be him
visiting David Gilmour.
We have sometimes been harsh about David
Gilmour who reconfigured the past in favour of his colleague Rick
Wright, but the friendship between Gilmour and Wright was an honest
and genuine one.
In an emotional introduction, Aubrey
Powell tells how David Gilmour was sitting at Rick’s deathbed
(2008). At a memorial party, where Roger
Waters was absent, old surviving friends from the Underground days
were present. Jon
Lord and Jeff
Beck played some songs and David and Nick, with Guy Pratt, Jon Carin
and Tim Renwick remembered Rick with Great
Gig and Wish
You Were Here.
Aubrey ‘Po’ Powell was sitting next to Storm
Thorgerson, who was in a wheelchair after a stroke, and both men
realised that they were in the autumn of their lives. Powell knew that
if he had to write some memoirs, he had to get on with it. It still took
him more than a decade but in 2022 he published Through The Prism:
Untold Rock Stories from the Hipgnosis Archive.
Through The Prism is, for once, not a coffee-table photo extravaganza,
but a 320 pages book filled with anecdotes and stories about Hipgnosis
and their many friends, who were often also their clients.
The first chapter 'Laying Ghosts to Rest' is about Cambridge and the
boy/man who started the career of Pink Floyd and indirectly Hipgnosis as
well. An autobiography is based on memories and not always on facts and
as such we forgive that Po repeats the story that Syd
Barrett was an admirer of Pink
Anderson and Floyd
Council. In a previous post on this blog, Step
It Up And Go, we have stated that there were no easily obtainable
records of these two bluesmen, certainly not in the UK. The chance that
Syd Barrett listened to one of their songs is very, very close to zero.
And, contrarious as we are, Syd didn’t contrive the term Pink Floyd
either, one of his beatnik friends did: Stephen Pyle. Syd borrowed the
line when he had to improvise a new name for his band.
Through The Prism is not a Pink Floyd biography, but a story about a man
called Po. Syd happens to be present from time to time. One day, he
takes some LSD in Storm's garden and is fascinated for hours by an
orange, a plum, and a box of matches. This event, ‘small as a molehill’,
has grown into a mountain over the years, but of course, Hipgnosis is to
blame for that. Storm turned the anecdote into a record cover (photo).
In late autumn 1969 Powell visits Syd's flat to take some publicity
shots for Madcap, the so-called yoga pictures. Aubrey writes that Storm
had taken the album cover shots a few weeks earlier. That is not wrong
if you go by Vulcan logic, but it has been established that the cover
shoot dates from April 1969. That is about 20 to 24 weeks earlier, not
'a few'. Not a word about Iggy the Eskimo, nor about the presence of
another photographer who was still their friend, but not for long: Mick
Rock (see also: Rock
The Syd chapter ends with the invention of the name Hipgnosis.
Powell testifies how they almost catch Syd red-handed, a pen in his
hand, seconds after he wrote HIP-GNOSIS on the white front door.
I always believed this was something of an urban legend, invented by
Storm and Po to give the name extra cachet, but if this testimony is
accurate it leaves no doubt that Syd was behind it.
As a young man, Aubrey Powell is more a hoodlum and a swindler than an
Jenner even has to bail him out of jail, but slowly he finds his way
as a photographer, helped by Storm. When Pink Floyd asks them for the
cover of A
Saucerful Of Secrets their career lifts off. That cover, actually a
collage of pop culture and esoteric images, is photographed in black and
white and coloured by hand afterwards (photo).
Heart Mother the Floyd want a non-psychedelic cover, so nothing like
The solution comes from conceptual artist John Blake, whose path they
will cross several times. Why not a cow? A cow it is (picture).
Equally uncharacteristic is the cover for The
Dark Side Of The Moon. Again it is Pink Floyd who want something
else, much to the annoyance of a stubborn Storm Thorgerson who tries to
push a picture of the Silver
Surfer. They find the prism concept in a popular science book and
because Storm and Po can't draw they ask George
Hardie to finish it (photo).
Dark Side is much more than a record, it is a worldwide recognisable
symbol and Powell gives some examples of how the record (and its sleeve)
have become instruments to protest against censorship and war.
Here, there and everywhere
You Were Here Hipgnosis devises some art, built around a theme of
absence and the number 4. Four like 4 members of the band, 4 elements
(earth, air, fire, water) and the 4 panels on a gatefold sleeve. Only,
the final product is packaged in a single sleeve, but one with a twist.
One day, it must have been the 5th of June 1975, an almost
unrecognisable Syd Barrett enters the office, asking where the band is.
Richard Evans, of the Hipgnosis crew, replies that they are probably at
Abbey Road. Po accompanies Syd to the street where he walks to Soho, ‘a
confused and forlorn figure’ (see also: Shady
The concept of the burning man puzzles Aubrey. How can he take a picture
of that? For Storm, the solution is simple: set him on fire. Even
better, set him on fire in America (photo).
Let’s remember folks, these are the golden days of rock. You wanna take
a pic of a pyramid. Fly to Egypt. You want to check a few lakes out. Fly
to California. All expenses paid, including the huge bill of ‘special
medicine’ to get through those lonesome nights.
Dark Side and Houses
of the Holy (Led
Zeppelin) make Hipgnosis nearly as big as the rock stars they
graphically represent (photo).
On a trip to Vegas Po stays in Frank Sinatra’s personal suite at Caesars
Palace. Escort girls and coke (not the soft-drink variety) are
included in the service, although Po claims he declines both offers.
Po loves the wide American scenery and trips to the USA are regularly
made. Hiring a plane to fly over the desert to find a great location: no
problem. Hiring a helicopter to shoot some pictures from the air: no
problem. Hiring figurants, actors, stuntmen, and props: no problem. Rock
‘n’ Roll pays well in the seventies.
Hipgnosis not only make fantastic covers, but they have some duds as
Stewart is so angry about the Time
Passages sleeve that he will never speak to Po again. Needless to
say that Hipgnosis lose a client that day (photo).
Obviously, the memoirs aren't about Pink Floyd alone. Peter
all have their entries. Po's stories about Led Zep, who have some
gangsters refurbished as bodyguards, are so unbelievable you might think
you have ended up in The Godfather. There’s some weird occult shit as
well, Jimmy Page was called the Dark Lord by the other members of the
The sleeve for Animals
is Roger Waters’ idea to begin with. Storm Thorgerson is (again) pissed
when his idea for a sleeve is downvoted and refuses to speak to Waters.
When Storm (in the book Walk Away Renée) calls the Animals sleeve a
Hipgnosis project it is up to Roger to be offended. The next Pink Floyd
albums, with Roger Waters at the helm, no longer have a Hipgnosis sleeve.
Despite the friction between Storm and Roger, Po Powell is commissioned
to supervise the shoot. He hires 8 photographers and asks Nigel Lesmoir
Gordon to coordinate some filming from a helicopter.
On the first day, Algie (the pig) refuses to soar to the skies and they
postpone the shooting for the next day. When the pig breaks free on day
two Powell suddenly realises he has forgotten to rebook the marksman to
shoot it down. It could’ve been a disaster, but luckily it isn’t.
Although unwanted, it will go down in history as the biggest rock
publicity stunt ever (photo).
The thing with Hipgnosis is that they want to realise their surreal
ideas in the real world. For a Wings Greatest
Hits album, it is Paul McCartney’s wish to have a picture of a Demétre
Chiparus statue standing in the snow on top of a mountain. Hipgnosis
flies the statue to Switzerland where it is transported by helicopter to
Glacier. The team consists of several photographers, mountain
rescuers and a pilot.
It is a great story, but frankly, the picture could have been made in
the studio with cotton balls for snow and a picture of the Matterhorn
as a backdrop (photo).
For a 10CC cover, Po wants to put a sheep on a sofa, by the sea. He
flies to Hawaii, where there is only one sheep on the entire island. He
has a sofa custom-made by a film props company (photo).
Powell shows his expense sheet for the shoot. It is £2,280 in 1980 money
or over £10,000 ($12,800/€11,800) today. The invoice to 10CC is double
No wonder Po starts behaving like the rock stars he frequents, including
a nasty habit with cocaine. Everybody who works with Storm Thorgerson
knows that he can be incredibly stubborn. With the rise of MTV, Aubrey
and Powell start a film company, but cracks are appearing in their
relationship. The amicable banter of the past is gone and Po goes his
way, becoming a successful filmmaker and creative director.
A New Machine
Years later they reconcile and when Storm realises he has not a long
time to live he suggests that Po must be the Floyd’s art director.
Powell is responsible for the successful Their
Mortal Remains exhibition and book. Internal Floyd wars make it
impossible to release a Mortal Remains compilation (not that anybody
needed an extra Pink Floyd record). We finally get the confirmation that The
Early Years box-set was going to include a miniature car but alas
the band has always been known for its greediness (my comment, not Po’s).
Through The Prism is not a detailed autobiography but a
collection of many (funny and interesting) anecdotes about Po’s
graphical output and his wacky clients. Powell stays rather vague about
his personal life and the relationship with Storm Thorgerson that was
very troubled for a couple of decades. Attentive readers though will
have the impression there is a new girlfriend or wife in every second
chapter. Rock ‘n’ Roll!
For the Pink Floyd, Led Zep, 10CC and Macca anorak there is more than
enough material to like this book, about those days when rock still was
the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
The curry inspector is no more, no more Lord Drainlid either.
RIP Mick Brown, Cambridge music archivist, painter, cartoonist,
satirist and Pink Floyd’s enemy number one, whom we all loved to hate.
There is this thing called Pink Floyd on the Interweb. It is pretty big.
So big that it has intersections between different divisions. There are
many crossroads so to speak. There is this five-lane Pink Floyd motorway
that has a Syd Barrett exit. It leads to an A-road that still is pretty
busy. If you go further down the line you have to take a B-road. I call
it the Cambridge connection. Not a lot of Pink Floyd fans will ever go
there, but those who do are in for a surprise. It takes some effort
The Cambridge beatnik scene of the late fifties and early sixties has
been extensively described in several Pink Floyd and Syd Barrett
biographies, but these mostly hover around the three Cantabrigian Floyd
members and their friends: Roger ‘Syd’ Barrett, David Gilmour and Roger
Waters. (Actually, Fred and Roger affectionately called Barrett: Sydney.)
There was a group of youngsters who wanted to find fame and fortune in
London and who stayed in the Pink Floyd slipstream once that band became
famous. David Gilmour jokingly called them The Cambridge Mafia. It is
believed the last hangers-on were surgically removed decades later by
Pink Floyd became a successful band by throwing their R&B shackles away
and diving into the swampy London Underground. But they weren’t the only
band with Cambridge roots. Enter Warren Dosanjh and Mick Brown.
Mick Brown edited, did the layout and added plenty of pictures from his
archive for this book. He was also one of the contributors to the
'young’ David Gilmour biography High Hopes, written by
Warren Dosanjh and Glenn Povey (see also: Guitar
Hero). That book describes him as follows:
Mick Brown went to the Perse preparatory and senior schools until 1963
when he was asked to leave. He attended the CCAT until 1965 and then
lived in London between 1967 and 1972. His contribution to the 1960s
counterculture was being jailed for two months in 1968 after the
anti-Vietnam War protest in Grosvenor Square.
While Brown was in London he carefully avoided the psychedelic hippie
and acid scene. Brown worked in the print industry and after his
retirement produced satirical cartoons, movie clips and posters for
local community rock and jazz groups (High Hopes, p. 120).
While Mick Brown is virtually unknown to the average Floyd fan he was
regularly consulted for his encyclopedic knowledge of Cambridge bands.
Yes, even Pink Floyd asked him for information once. He was also the man
who claimed to know who Arnold Layne was.
The real 'Arnold Layne' was John Chambers who came from Sturton Street.
He was well known around Cambridge in the early 1960s and often used to
hang about at the Mill Pond. The Arnold Layne name was simply a
typical Barrett parody of the Beatles' Penny Lane that was recorded at
the same time.
Mick Brown was a regular at Birdie
Hop where he liked to contravene uncritical Syd Barrett and Pink
Floyd fans. He relentlessly contradicted those self-proclaimed Barrett
specialists begging for the attention of the Syd anoraks. It didn’t
always make him friends, quite the contrary.
When a Syd Barrett and early Pink Floyd event was organised in Cambridge
he described it, pretty accurately, as 'a load of old toffs stuck in a
lava lamp'. He was also the one whispering in my ear that The Syd
Barrett (charity) Fund was conned by 'useless PR men and bullshitters'.
When The City Wakes festival took place they promised to publish a
Cambridge bands coffee-table book, but it never materialised. It may
have pissed him off.
Mick Brown made many movies he published on his YouTube
channel. Some are political observations, under the alter ego, Lord
Drainlid. As 'curry inspector' he documented day trips he made with his
friends to the seaside or other places.
He also documented several 'Roots of Cambridge Rock' festivals.
In one of those, there is a jam between Rado Klose and Jack Monck. That
should sound familiar to early Pink Floyd fans.
It was his opinion that a small exclusive group of former students and
public schoolboys claim to have been the sole innovators of alternative
culture in Cambridge since the early 1960s. He was not very happy with
middle-class so-called artists saying to have been Syd Barrett's best
friend. In other words: gold diggers.
To quote him:
The Mill was the place to gather at weekends. Originally the scene of
elite students' merry japes, it was taken over by Mods, Rockers and
Unfortunately, a hard drug habit spread in the city from
the 1960s onwards, helped inadvertently by a prominent GP with
university connections over-prescribing heroin and cocaine.
small elite group who claim to have originated the alternative or
counter-culture in Cambridge – and indeed London – seem not to recognise
the existence of a local community.
Apart from patronising one or
two 'clowns', they ignore the fabric of the city. Their only
contribution to life here has been to hawk their self-published works
with the help of press releases in the local papers.
Mick Brown remembered the gigs Syd Barrett had with Those Without but
was more impressed by a concert from Thelonius Monk, whom he called a
great musical genius of the 20th century. The first album he bought was
from Charlie Parker, at Millers Music Shop. He was a jazz lover for the
rest of his life, pretending that Pink Floyd never happened. But despite
his criticism, he did have a soft spot for Birdie Hop and joined their
2013 and 2015 Cambridge gatherings.
A true one-off and lovely human being. I will remember him often, and
always with a smile on my face. If ever there was a need for a national
day of mourning, this is it.
Farewell, you absolute legend. ❤ ❤ I am so privileged to have met him.
He wasn't only incredibly polite, but freaking hilarious, a class-A
joker but also disarmingly clever at times and made me proper belly
laugh on more than one occasion!
Mick Brown was a great grumpy man, whose heart was with the local bands.
Many thanks: Warren Dosanjh, Rich Hall, Peter Alex Hoffmann, Lisa
Newman, Glenn Povey, Antonio Jesús Reyes, Eleonora Siatoni, Abigail
Thorne, Lee Wood and the many, many members of Birdie Hop. ♥ Libby ♥
Sources (other than the above mentioned links): Dosanjh, Warren &
Povey, Glenn: High Hopes, David Gilmour, Mind Head Publishing,
2020, p. 120. Dosanjh, Warren: The Music Scene of 1960s Cambridge,