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Benjy says...

Dear ROA listeners,

Thanks for the calls and for sharing your memories of hearing Atomic Rooster for the first time. In my opinion their "Death walks behind you" album deserves to be in any Top 100 Classic Rock Albums of all time - it certainly is on mine. As I am going away for a short break next week, Thursdays's show (13th) is pre-recorded and the special will be "Welcome to the machine - Pink Floyd Part 2". This coincides with our "Pulse" dvd/cd competition which can be entered by going to the Rock of Ages website at The special will focus on the more obscure album tracks that haven't featured on the show in the past but are nonetheless pure Floyd ... hope you enjoy the show!

Speaking of which here is a lengthy but interesting history of the band, courtesy of Wikipedia (

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd evolved from an earlier band, formed in 1964, which was at various times called Sigma 6, The Meggadeaths, The Screaming Abdabs and The Abdabs. When this band split up, some members — guitarists Bob Klose and Roger Waters, drummer Nick Mason, and wind instrument player Rick Wright — formed a new band called Tea Set, and were joined shortly thereafter by guitarist Syd Barrett, who became the band's primary vocalist as well. When Tea Set found themselves on the same bill as another band with the same name, Barrett came up with an alternative name on the spur of the moment, choosing The Pink Floyd Sound (after two blues musicians, Pink Anderson and Floyd Council). For a time after this they oscillated between 'Tea Set' and 'The Pink Floyd Sound', with the latter name eventually winning out, the word Sound was dropped fairly quickly. In the early days, the band covered rhythm and blues staples such as "Louie, Louie", but gained notoriety for psychedelic interpretations, with extended improvised sections and 'spaced out' solos. The heavily jazz-oriented Klose left the band to become a photographer shortly before Pink Floyd started recording, leaving an otherwise stable lineup with Barrett on lead guitar, Waters on bass guitar, Mason on drums and Wright switching to keyboards. Barrett started writing his own songs, influenced by American and British psychedelic rock with his own brand of whimsical humour. Pink Floyd became a favourite in the underground movement, playing at such prominent venues as the UFO club, the Marquee Club and the Roundhouse. As their popularity increased, the band members formed Blackhill Enterprises in October 1966, a six-way business partnership with their managers, Peter Jenner and Andrew King, issuing the singles "Arnold Layne" in March 1967 and "See Emily Play" in June 1967. "Arnold Layne" reached number 20 in the UK Singles Chart, and "See Emily Play" reached number 6,granting the band its first TV appearance on Top of the Pops in July 1967.

Pink Floyd

Released in August 1967, the band's debut album, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, is today considered to be a prime example of British psychedelic music, and was generally well-received by critics at the time. The album's tracks, predominantly written by Barrett, showcase poetic lyrics and an eclectic mixture of music, from the avant-garde free-form piece "Interstellar Overdrive" to whimsical songs such as "The Scarecrow", inspired by the Fenlands, a rural region north of Cambridge (Barrett, Gilmour and Waters's home town). Lyrics were entirely surreal and often referred to folklore, such as "The Gnome". The music reflected newer technologies in electronics through its prominent use of stereo panning and electric keyboards. The album was a hit in the UK where it peaked at #6, but did not get much attention in North America, reaching #131 in the U.S. During this period, the band toured with Jimi Hendrix, which helped to increase its popularity. As the band became more and more popular, the stresses of life on the road and a significant intake of psychedelic drugs took their toll on Barrett, whose mental health had been deteriorating for several months. While Barrett's behaviour has often been attributed to his drug use, there are many who think that a pre-existing condition, possibly schizophrenia, was equally to blame, and that the drug use simply aggravated the problem. In January 1968, guitarist David Gilmour joined the band to carry out Syd's playing and singing duties. With Barrett's behaviour becoming less and less predictable, and his almost constant use of LSD, he became very unstable, often staring into space while the rest of the band performed. During some performances, he would simply strum one chord for the duration of a concert, or simply begin detuning his guitar. The band's live shows became increasingly ramshackle until, eventually, the other band members simply stopped taking him to the concerts. It was originally hoped that Syd would write for the band with Gilmour performing live, but Barrett's increasingly difficult compositions, such as "Have You Got It Yet?", which changed melodies and chord progression with every take, eventually made the rest of the band give up on this arrangement. Once Barrett's departure was formalised in April 1968, producers Jenner and King decided to remain with him, and the six-way Blackhill partnership was dissolved. The band adopted Steve O'Rourke as manager, and he remained with Pink Floyd until his death in 2003.

Whilst Barrett had written the bulk of the first album, only one Barrett composition, the Piper outtake "Jugband Blues", appeared on the second Floyd album. A Saucerful of Secrets was released in June 1968, reaching #9 in the UK and becoming the only Pink Floyd album not to chart in the U.S. Somewhat uneven due to Barrett's departure, the album still contained much of his psychedelic sound combined with the more experimental music that would be fully showcased on Ummagumma. Hints of the epic, lengthy songs to come are in its centrepiece, the 12-minute title track , but the album was poorly received by critics at the time, although critics today tend to be kinder to the album in the context of their body of work. Pink Floyd were then recruited by director Barbet Schroeder to produce a soundtrack for his film, More, which premiered in May 1969. The music was released as a Floyd album in its own right, Music From the Film More, in July 1969; the album achieved another #9 finish in the UK, and peaked at #153 in the U.S. Many of the tracks on More (as fans usually call it) were acoustic folk songs, two of these songs, "Green Is the Colour" and "Cymbaline", became fixtures in the band's live sets for a time.

The next record, the double album Ummagumma, was a mix of live recordings and unchecked studio experimentation by the band members, with each member recording half a side of a vinyl record as a solo project (Mason's first wife makes an uncredited contribution as a flautist). Though the album was realised as solo outings and a live set, it was originally intended as a purely avant-garde mixture of sounds from "found" instruments. The subsequent difficulties in recording and lack of group organization led to the shelving of the project. The title is Cambridge slang for sexual intercourse, and reflects the attitude of the band at the time, as frustrations in the studio followed them throughout these sessions. With fans, the album was Pink Floyd's most popular release yet, hitting UK #5 and making the U.S. charts at #74.1970's Atom Heart Mother, the band's first recording with an orchestra, was a collaboration with avant-garde composer Ron Geesin. One side of the album consisted of the title piece, a 23-minute long rock-orchestral suite. The second side featured one song from each of the band's then-current vocalists (Roger Waters's folk-rock "If", David Gilmour's bluesy "Fat Old Sun" and Rick Wright's psychedelic "Summer '68"). Another lengthy piece, "Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast", was a sound collage of a man cooking and eating breakfast and his thoughts on the matter, linked with instrumentals, it had the best chart performance for the band so far, reaching #1 in the UK and #55 in the U.S. Before releasing its next original album, the band released a compilation album, Relics, which contained several early singles and B-sides, along with one original song (Waters's jazzy "Biding My Time").

This is the period in which Pink Floyd shed their association with the "psychedelic" scene (and its association with Barrett) and became a distinctive band that are difficult to classify. The divergent styles of Gilmour, Waters and Wright (Mason's writing contributions to the group were minimal) were merged into a unique sound. This era contains what many consider to be two of the band's masterpiece albums, The Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here. The sound became polished and collaborative, with the philosophic lyrics and distinctive bass lines of Waters combining with the unique blues guitar style of Gilmour and Wright's light keyboard melodies. Gilmour was the dominant vocalist throughout this period, and female choirs and Dick Parry's saxophone contributions became a notable part of the band's style. The sometimes atonal and harsh sound exhibited in the band's earlier years gave way to a very smooth, mellow and soothing sound, and the band's epic, lengthy compositions reached their zenith with "Echoes" from Meddle (although "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" exceeded it in total length, it was split in two pieces as the opening and closing of Wish You Were Here). This period was not only the beginning but the end of the truly collaborative era of the band; after 1975 Waters's influence became more dominant musically as well as lyrically. Wright's last credited composition and last lead vocal on a studio album until 1994's The Division Bell were in this period, and Gilmour's writing credits sharply declined in frequency until Waters left the band in 1985. The last ties with Barrett were severed in musical, as well as literal, fashion with Wish You Were Here, whose epic track "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" was written both as a tribute and elegy to their friend.

The band's sound was considerably more focused on Meddle (1971), with the 23-minute epic "Echoes" taking up the second side of the LP. "Echoes" is a smooth progressive rock song with extended guitar and keyboard solos and a long segue in the middle consisting largely of synthesised whalesong produced on guitar, along with samples of seagull cries, described by Waters as a "sonic poem". Meddle was considered by Nick Mason to be "the first real Pink Floyd album. It introduced the idea of a theme that can be returned to." The album had the sound and style of the succeeding breakthrough-era Pink Floyd albums but stripped away the orchestra that was prominent in Atom Heart Mother.Meddle also included the atmospheric "One of These Days" , a concert favourite featuring Nick Mason's menacing one-line vocal ("One of these days, I'm going to cut you into little pieces"), distorted and bluesy slide guitar, and a melody that at one point segues into a throbbing synthetic pulse quoting the theme tune of the cult classic science fiction television show Doctor Who. The mellow feeling of the next three albums is very present on "Fearless", and this track displays a country influence, as does the prominent pedal steel guitar on "A Pillow of Winds". The latter track is one of the Floyd's very few acoustic love songs. Waters's role as lead songwriter began to take form, with his jazzy "San Tropez" brought to the band practically completed. Meddle was greeted both by critics and fans enthusiastically, and Pink Floyd were rewarded with a #3 album chart peak in the UK; it only reached #70 in U.S. charts, however, partly because Capitol Records had not provided it with enough publicity support. Today, Meddle remains one of their most well-regarded efforts.

Pink Floyd

Obscured by Clouds was released in 1972 as the soundtrack to the film La Vallee, another art house film by Barbet Schroeder. This was the band's first U.S. Top 50 album (where it hit #46), hitting at #6 in the UK. The album was, to an extent, stylistically different from the preceding Meddle, with the songs generally being shorter, often taking a somewhat pastoral approach compared to the atmospheric use of sound effects and keyboard on sections of Meddle, and sometimes even running into folk-rock, blues-rock and piano-driven soft rock ("Burning Bridges", "The Gold It's in the..." and "Stay" being the best examples for each).

Pink Floyd

The release of Pink Floyd's massively successful 1973 album, The Dark Side of the Moon, was a watershed moment in the band's popularity. Pink Floyd had stopped issuing singles after 1968's "Point Me At The Sky" and was never a hit-single-driven group, but The Dark Side of the Moon featured a U.S. Top 20 single ("Money"). The album became the band's first #1 on U.S. charts, a huge improvement over its previous recordings. The critically-acclaimed album stayed on the Billboard Top 200 for an unprecedented 741 weeks (including 591 consecutive weeks from 1976 to 1988), establishing a world record and making it one of the top-selling albums of all time. It also remained 301 weeks on UK charts, despite never rising higher than #2 there, and is highly praised by critics. Saxophone forms an important part of the album's sound, exposing the band's jazz influences, and female backing vocals play a key role in helping to diversify the album's texture. For example, straight rock songs such as "Money" and "Time" are placed on either side of mellow pedal steel guitar sounds (reminiscent of Meddle) in "Breathe (Reprise)" and female vocal-laden song "The Great Gig in the Sky" (with Clare Torry on lead vocal), while minimalist instrumental "On the Run" is performed almost entirely on a single synthesiser. Incidental sound effects and snippets of interviews feature alongside the music, many of them taped in the studio. The album's lyrics and sound attempt to describe the different pressures that everyday life places upon human beings. This concept (conceived by Waters in a band meeting around Mason's kitchen table) proved a powerful catalyst for the band and together they drew up a list of themes, several of which would be revisited by Waters on later albums, such as "Us and Them"'s musings on violence and the futility of war, and the themes of insanity and neurosis discussed in "Brain Damage". The album's complicated and precise sound engineering by Alan Parsons set new standards for sound fidelity; this trait became a recognizable aspect of the band's sound and played a part in the lasting chart success of the album, as audiophiles constantly replaced their worn-out copies.

Seeking to capitalise on its newfound fame, the band also released a compilation album, A Nice Pair, which was a gatefold repackaging of The Piper at the Gates of Dawn and A Saucerful of Secrets. It was also during this period that director Adrian Maben released the first Pink Floyd concert film, Live at Pompeii.The original theatrical cut featured footage of the band performing in 1971 at an amphitheater in Pompeii with no audience present (only the film crew and stage staff). Fortuitously, Maben also happened to capture some interviews and behind-the-scenes glimpses of the band during recording sessions for The Dark Side of the Moon at Abbey Road Studios, some of which were incorporated alongside other new footage between songs in later versions of Live at Pompeii.

Pink Floyd

Wish You Were Here, released in 1975, carries an abstract theme of absence: absence of any humanity within the music industry and, most poignantly, the absence of Syd Barrett. Well-known for its popular title track, the album includes the largely instrumental, nine-part song suite "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" , a tribute to Barrett in which the lyrics deal explicitly with the aftermath of his breakdown. Many of the musical influences in the band's past were brought together — atmospheric keyboards, blues guitar pieces, extended saxophone solos (by Dick Parry) jazz fusion workouts and aggressive slide guitar — in the suite's different linked parts, culminating in a funeral dirge played with synthesised horn. The remaining tracks on the album, "Welcome to the Machine" and "Have a Cigar" , harshly criticise the music industry; the latter is sung by British folk singer Roy Harper. It was the first Pink Floyd album to reach #1 on both the UK and the U.S. charts, and critics praise it just as enthusiastically as The Dark Side of the Moon. In a famous anecdote, a heavyset man with a completely shaved head and eyebrows wandered into the studio while the band was recording "Shine On You Crazy Diamond". The band could not recognise him for some time, when suddenly one of them realised it was Syd Barrett. He was greeted enthusiastically by the band but subsequently slipped away during the impromptu party for David Gilmour's wedding (which was, coincidentally, also on that day). It was the last time any of the other band members saw him. Gilmour recently confirmed this story, although he could not recall which song they were working on when Syd showed up. Barrett's eyebrow-shaving tendencies would later be revisited in the movie Pink Floyd: The Wall.

By January 1977, and the release of Animals (UK #2, U.S. #3), the band's music came under increasing criticism from some quarters in the new punk rock sphere as being too flabby and pretentious, having lost its way from the simplicity of early rock and roll.Animals was, however, considerably more basic-sounding than the previous albums, due to either the influence of the burgeoning punk-rock movement or the fact that the album was recorded at Pink Floyd's new (and somewhat incomplete) Britannia Row Studios. The album was also the first to not have a single songwriting credit for Rick Wright. Animals again contained lengthy songs tied to a theme, this time taken in part from George Orwell's Animal Farm, which used "Pigs", "Dogs" and "Sheep" as metaphors for members of contemporary society. Despite the prominence of guitar, keyboards and synthesisers still play an important role on Animals, but the saxophone and female vocal work that defined much of the previous two albums' sound is absent. The result is a more hard-rock effort overall, bookended by two parts of a quiet acoustic piece. Many critics did not respond well to the album, finding it "tedious" and "bleak", although some celebrated it for almost those very reasons. For the cover artwork, a giant inflatable pig was commissioned to float between the chimney towers of London's Battersea Power Station. However, the wind made the pig balloon difficult to control, and in the end it was necessary to matte a photo of the pig balloon onto the album cover. The pig nevertheless became one of the enduring symbols of Pink Floyd, and inflatable pigs were a staple of the band's live shows from then on.

1979's epic rock opera The Wall, conceived by Waters, dealt with the themes of loneliness and failed communication, which were expressed by the metaphor of a wall built between a rock artist and his audience. This album gave Pink Floyd renewed acclaim and another chart-topping single with "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)". The Wall also included the future concert staples "Comfortably Numb" and "Run Like Hell", with the former in particular becoming a cornerstone of album-oriented rock and classic-rock radio playlists as well as one of the group's best-known songs. The album was co-produced by Bob Ezrin, a friend of Waters who shared songwriting credits on "The Trial" and from whom the band later temporarily distanced themselves after quarrelling with him over several contentious issues. Even more than during the Animals sessions, Waters was asserting his artistic influence and leadership over the band, which prompted increased conflicts with the other members. The music had become distinctly more hard-rock, although the large orchestrations on some tracks recalled an earlier period, and there are a few quieter songs interspersed throughout (such as "Goodbye Blue Sky" and "Nobody Home"). Wright's influence was completely minimalised, and he was fired from the band during recording, only returning on a fixed wage for the live shows in support of the album. Ironically, Wright was the only member of Pink Floyd to make any money from the Wall concerts, the rest covering the extensive cost overruns of their most spectacular concerts yet.

Despite never hitting #1 in the UK (it reached #3), The Wall spent 15 weeks atop the U.S. charts during 1980. Critics praised it, and it has sold over 30 million copies worldwide. It is the third-best selling album of all time in the U.S and the best selling album by a single artist to be released during the 1970s. It has been certified 23x platinum by the RIAA, for sales of 11.5 million copies in U.S. alone. The huge commercial success of The Wall made Pink Floyd the only artists since the Beatles to have the best selling albums of two years (1973 and 1980) in less than a decade.album. The film, written by Waters and directed by Alan Parker, starred Boomtown Rats founder Bob Geldof and featured striking animation by noted British artist and cartoonist Gerald Scarfe. It grossed over US$ 14 million at the North American box office. A song which first appeared in the movie, "When the Tigers Broke Free", was released as a single on a limited basis. This song was finally made widely available on the compilation album Echoes: The Best of Pink Floyd and the re-release of The Final Cut. Also in the film is the song "What Shall We Do Now?", which was cut out of the original album due to the time constraints of vinyl records. The only songs from the album not used were "Hey You" and "The Show Must Go On".

1983 saw the release of The Final Cut, dedicated to Roger Waters's father, Eric Fletcher Waters. Even darker in tone than The Wall, this album re-examined many previous themes, while also addressing then-current events, including Waters's anger at Britain's participation in the Falklands War, the blame for which he laid squarely at the feet of political leaders ("The Fletcher Memorial Home" . It concludes with a cynical and frightening glimpse at the possibility of nuclear war ("Two Suns in the Sunset"). Michael Kamen and Andy Bown contributed keyboard work in lieu of Richard Wright's departure, which had not been formally announced before the album's release. Though technically a Pink Floyd album, the LP's front cover displayed no words, only the back cover reading: "The Final Cut - A requiem for the post war dream by Roger Waters, performed by Pink Floyd: Roger Waters, David Gilmour, Nick Mason". Roger Waters received the sole songwriting credit for the entire record, which became a prototype in sound and form for later Waters solo projects. Waters has since said that he offered to release the record as a solo album, but the rest of the band rejected this idea. However, in his book 'Inside Out', drummer Nick Mason says that no such discussions ever took place. Gilmour reportedly asked Waters to hold back the release of the album so that he could write enough material to contribute, but this request was refused. The music's tone is largely similar to The Wall's but somewhat quieter and softer, resembling songs like "Nobody Home" more than "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)". It is also more repetitive, with certain leitmotifs cropping up continually. Only moderately successful with fans by Floyd's standards (UK #1, U.S. #6), but reasonably well-received by critics, the album yielded one minor radio hit, "Not Now John", the only hard-rock song on the album (and the only one partially sung by Gilmour). The arguments between Waters and Gilmour at this stage are rumoured to be so bad that they were supposedly never seen in the recording studio simultaneously, and Gilmour's co-producer credit was dropped from the album sleeve (though he received attendant royalties). There was no tour for the album, although parts of it have since been performed live by Waters on his subsequent solo tours.

After The Final Cut was released, the band members went their separate ways and spent time working on individual projects. Gilmour was the first to complete his solo album, releasing About Face in March 1984. Wright joined forces with Dave Harris of Fashion to form Zee, which released the experimental album Identity a month after Gilmour's project. In May 1984, Waters released The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking, a concept album once proposed as a Pink Floyd project. A year after his bandmates' projects, Mason released the album Profiles, a collaboration with Rick Fenn of 10cc which featured guest appearances by Gilmour and UFO keyboardist Danny Peyronel.

Waters announced in December of 1985 that he was departing Pink Floyd, describing the band as "a spent force creatively", but in 1986 Gilmour and Mason began recording a new Pink Floyd album. At the same time, Roger Waters was working on his second solo album, entitled Radio K.A.O.S.. A bitter legal dispute ensued with Waters claiming that the name "Pink Floyd" should have been put to rest, but Gilmour and Mason upheld their conviction that they had the legal right to continue as "Pink Floyd." The suit was eventually settled out of court.

Pink Floyd

After considering and rejecting many other titles, the new album was released as A Momentary Lapse of Reason (UK #3, U.S. #3),. Without Waters, who had been the band's dominant songwriter for over a decade and a half, the band sought the help of outside writers. As Pink Floyd had never done this before (except for the orchestral contributions of Geesin and Ezrin), this move received much criticism. Ezrin, who had by now renewed his friendship with Gilmour, served as co-producer as well as being one of these writers. Richard Wright also returned, at first as a salaried employee during the final recording sessions, and then officially rejoining the band after the subsequent tour.Gilmour later admitted that Mason had hardly played on the album. Because of Mason and Wright's limited contributions, some critics say that A Momentary Lapse of Reason should really be regarded as a Gilmour solo effort, in much the same way that The Final Cut might be regarded as a Waters album.

A year later, the band released a double live album and a concert video taken from its 1988 Long Island shows, entitled Delicate Sound of Thunder .1992 saw the box set release of Shine On. The 9 disc set included re-releases of the studio albums A Saucerful of Secrets, Meddle, The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, Animals, The Wall, and A Momentary Lapse of Reason. A bonus disc entitled The Pink Floyd Early Singles was also included. The set's packaging featured a case allowing the albums to stand vertically together, with the side-by-side spines displaying an image of the Dark Side of the Moon cover. The circular text of each CD includes the almost illegible words "The Big Bong Theory".The band's next recording was the 1994 release The Division Bell, which was much more of a group effort than Momentary Lapse had been, with Wright now reinstated as a full and contributing band member and figuring prominently in the writing credits. The album was received more favourably by critics and fans alike than Lapse had been, but was still heavily criticised as tired and formulaic. It was the second Pink Floyd album to reach #1 on both the UK and U.S. charts. The Division Bell was another concept album, in some ways representing Gilmour's take on the same themes Waters had tackled with The Wall. The title was suggested to Gilmour by his friend Douglas Adams. Many of the lyrics were co-written by Polly Samson, Gilmour's girlfriend at the time, whom he married shortly after the album's release. Besides Samson, the album featured most of the musicians who had joined the A Momentary Lapse of Reason tour, as well as saxophonist Dick Parry, a contributor to the mid-70s Floyd albums. Anthony Moore, who had co-written the lyrics for several songs on the previous album, penned the lyrics for a tune by Wright, "Wearing the Inside Out" , Wright's first lead vocal on a Pink Floyd record since Dark Side of The Moon. Wright and Moore's writing collaboration continued on nearly every song on Wright's subsequent solo album, Broken China.

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd have not released any new studio material or toured since 1994's The Division Bell. The band released a live album entitled P*U*L*S*E in 1995. P*U*L*S*E hit #1 in U.S. and featured songs recorded in London, Rome, Hanover and Modena on The Division Bell tour in 1994. VHS and Laserdisc versions of the concert at Earl's Court in London 20 October 1994 were also released, and a DVD edition will be released on 10 July 2006.A live recording of The Wall was released in 2000, compiled from the 1980–1981 London concerts, entitled Is There Anybody Out There? The Wall Live 1980–81. It hit #1 on Billboard Internet Album Sales chart, and hit #19 on U.S. charts. A newly-remastered two-disc set of the Floyd's best-known tracks entitled Echoes was released in 2001. Gilmour, Mason, Waters and Wright all collaborated on the editing, sequencing, and song selection of the included tracks. Minor controversy was caused due to the songs segueing into one another non-chronologically, presenting the material out of the context of the original albums. Some of the tracks, such as "Echoes", "Shine On You Crazy Diamond", "Marooned", and "High Hopes" have had substantial sections removed from them. The album reached #2 on U.S. charts. In 2003, a 30th-Anniversary SACD reissue of Dark Side of the Moon, featuring high resolution surround sound, was released with new artwork on the front cover. In 2004 a remastered re-release of The Final Cut was released with the single "When the Tigers Broke Free" added. The 30th-Anniversary SACD reissue of Wish You Were Here is due later in 2006.

Floyd since then

Pink Floyd

Waters and Wright are reported to be working on solo albums; David Gilmour released his first solo record since 1984's About Face, called On an Island, on 6 March 2006, and began a tour of small concert venues in Europe, Canada and the U.S. in support of the album a few days later, with Richard Wright as part of the band. Nick Mason's book, Inside Out: A Personal History of Pink Floyd was published in 2004. Roger Waters in the meantime composed and released a fully fledged opera. The band reformed for a once off appearance at 2005's Live 8 concert and although there have been constant rumours of a tour this is unlikely in the light of recent statements by David Gilmour. In 2006 Waters hit the road again performing the entire Dark Side of the Moon album in concert, Nick Mason joined for several dates but both Gilmour and Wright are conspicuously absent.

Rock of Ages turns 2!!!!

We are celebrating our 2nd birthday throughout June and July with tons of competition prizes courtesy of the following wonderful people and labels: Nigel King and Cerys Grant @ SonyBMG; Josi Kruger @ Universal; Charise Matthews @ Gallo Music; Adrian Skirriw @ ASP Records; Rob Cowling @ Sheer Music; Gillian Ezra @ EMI Records.

Rock on until we meet again ...


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- where the obsessed unite.

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Studio phone: 089-1102003

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News from the
World of Rock
Barney Back On National Radio
Radio 2000 has announced that alternative/SA Music guru Barney Simon has joined the station and as from Tuesday 11th July he will be hosting a weekly 4 hour show every Tuesday. Barney will be featuring South African music in all it's hues and sounds plus gig guides, legal stuff, gear reviews, interviews, classifieds demos and much more. Rock of Ages is absolutely thrilled that Barney has become part of the 2000 team, not only is he a fountain of knowledge of all things alternative and a committed rock lover but he is also one of the nicest people in the music business (p.s. don't tell him I said so!)

After more than 30 years, the legendary New York club is to close down on September 30. This is because owner Hilly Cristal has failed to reach an agreement with the building's landlords over the rent. CBGB's was responsible to showcasing hordes of new bands in the early 70's that went on to become punk & new wave stars including The Ramones, Talking Heads, Blondie and Television.

Live Gigs
Jack Hammer
12th July Volksbald Fees / OFM Downstage
21st July Die Blou Hond, Linden
28th July Steak & Ale, Centurion
29th July Pierneef Theatre
4/5th August Oppikoppi
25th August Café Barcelona, Pretoria

Jim Neversink Tour
27 July - Steak And Ale - Pretoria (with Josie Field)
28 July - EVOL - Cape Town
3 August - Upper Level - Stellenbosch (with Diesel Whores)
4 August - Mercury Live in CT (with Diesel Whores)
5 August - Radium Beer Hall (Norwood/Orange Grove)
6 August - Oppikoppi (Northam)
11 August - Back 2 Basix (with Josie Field) (Westdene)
12 August - The Bohemian (Richmond)
19 August - Bourbon Street - Potchefstroom

Julian Laxton Band “Legends in Rock”
18/19 August Welkom Civic Centre (tickets@Computicket)
Saluting Legends like Clapton, Hendrix, Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Status Quo, Bad Company, Santana, Rolling Stones, Freedoms Children, Hawk, Julian Laxton, etc

London Calling (Fairview, Joburg)
14th July PUNK NIGHT with Touched By Nausea, Solitary Confinement, HastenThe Storm, Japan & I

Rock Evolutions - V & A Waterfront's Theatre @ The Pavilion 21st July to 27th August (Thurs, Fri & Sat evenings only)
(Show chronicles the development of rock music in all shapes and forms… starting with the 50s' pioneering days of blues and 12-bar rock 'n roll and concluding with the current heavily-amplified nu-metal rock. There are visits along the way to the British Invasion & Psychedelic Rock of the 60s, the theatrical Stadium rock of the 70s, the glam and hard rock of the 80s and the 90s grunge & alternative revolution).

Back on Track
Every Saturday @ Cheetah's, Brackenfell CT from 5.30pm-play 60's/70's blues and rock
You say it's your birthday...
July 2
Pete Briquette - Boomtown Rats - 1954
Johnny Colla - Huey Lewis & The News - 1952

July 4
Ralph Johnson - Earth, Wind & Fire - 1951

July 5
Robbie Robertson - The Band - 1943
Huey Lewis - Huey Lewis & the News - 1950

July 6
Rik Elswit - Dr. Hook - 1945
Bill Haley - 1925

July 7
Ringo Starr- 1940

July 9
Bon Scott -AC/DC - 1946

July 11
Richie Sambora - Bon Jovi - 1959

July 12
Christine McVie - Fleetwood Mac- 1943
Eric Carr - KISS - 1950
Phil Kramer - Iron Butterfly - 1952

July 13
Roger McGuinn - Byrds - 1942
Stephen Bladd - J. Geils Band - 1942

July 15
Marky Ramone - Ramones - 1956
Linda Ronstadt - 1946
Jeff Carlisli - .38 Special - 1952
Joe Satriani - 1956

July 16
Stewart Copeland - Police - 1952

July 17
Geezer Butler - Black Sabbath - 1949
Chet McCracKen - Doobie Brothers - 1952
Mick Tucker - Sweet - 1947
Spencer Davis - Spencer Davis Group - 1939

July 18
Cesar Zuiderwijk - Golden Earring - 1950

July 19
Brian May - Queen - 1947
Bernie Leadon - Eagles - 1947

July 20
John Lodge - Moody Blues- 1943
Carlos Santana- 1947

July 21
Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam) - 1947

July 22
Don Henley - Eagles - 1947
Rick Davies - Supertramp - 1944

July 23
Blair Thornton - BTO - 1950
Dino Danelli - Rascals - 1944
Slash - Guns 'N Roses - 1965
Andy Mackay - Roxy Music - 1946

July 25
Jim McCarty - Yardbirds, Renaissance - 1940

July 26
Roger Taylor - Queen - 1949
Gary Cherone - Van Halen - 1960
Mick Jagger - Rolling Stones- 1943

July 28
Rick Wright -Pink Floyd - 1945
Steve Morse - Deep Purple - 1948
Simon Kirke - Bad Company - 1949

July 29
John Sykes - Whitesnake - 1959
Patty Scialfa - E Street Band - 1953
Neal Doughty - REO Speedwagon -1946
Geddy Lee - Rush - 1953

July 31
Bob Welch -Fleetwood Mac - 1946
Bill Berry - R.E.M. - 1959
Hugh McDowell - Electric Light Orchestra - 1953

Courtesy of About ClassicRock

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Benjy Mudie
Benjy Mudie with Void in the late 70's Benjy Mudie 2004
Then Now

Of Scottish origin, Benjy Mudie started out in the music industry working in record shops. He later became the A&R man for WEA records, signing such luminaries as Lesley Rae Dowling, Baxtop and Falling Mirror. He has ventured briefly into the realms of songwriting, getting co-writing credit for Little Sister's song 'You Got My Heart', but it is mainly for his running of record labels, notably Tusk and more recently Fresh and Retro Fresh that he is honoured. With these labels he has tirelessly dedicated himself to putting South African music out there, showing an unshaking belief in the quality of SA music.


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