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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond 1993 Press Release

Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond
Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond
Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond press releases. Check out these EMI Records press release sheets for Crazy Diamond - The Complete Syd Barrett. The first is dated April 14 1993 and is for the release of the 3CD Box Set. The second is dated April 19 1994 and is for the release of the 3 CDs with bonus tracks, which were originally only available with the 3CD Box Set released the year. Both sheets are in very good to excellent condition. 
Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond

This is a 1993 release and out of print in the U.S., and is the Syd's 1993 box set on EMI. Features both of his 1970 solo albums, 'Barrett' & 'The Madcap Laughs', plus the 1989 rarities compilation 'Opel' with 6 additional tracks added to it; 58 tracks total. Came in a 6' x 12' long-box that also contained a 24 page booklet.

Disc: 1
  1. Terrapin
  2. No Good Trying
  3. Love You
  4. No Man's Land
  5. Dark Globe
  6. Here I Go
  7. Octopus
  8. Golden Hair
  9. Long Gone
  10. She Took A Long Cold Look
  11. Feel
  12. If It's In You
  13. Late Night
  14. Octopus (Takes 1 & 2)
  15. It's No Good Trying (Take 5)
  16. Love You (Take 1)
  17. Love You (Take 3)
  18. She Took A Long Cold Look At Me (Take 4)
  19. Golden Hair (Take 5)

Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond
Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond
Disc: 2
  1. Baby Lemonade
  2. Love Song
  3. Dominoes
  4. It Is Obvious
  5. Rats
  6. Maisie
  7. Gigolo Aunt
  8. Waving My Arms In The Air
  9. I Never Lied To You
  10. Wined And Dined
  11. Wolfpack
  12. Effervescing Elephant
  13. Baby Lemonade (Take 1)
  14. Waving My Arms In The Air (Take 1)
  15. I Never Lied To You (Take 1)
  16. Love Song (Take 1)
  17. Dominoes (Take 1)
  18. Dominoes (Take 2)
  19. It's Obvious (Take 2)
Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond
Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond

Disc: 3
  1. Opel
  2. Clowns & Jugglers
  3. Rats
  4. Golden Hair
  5. Dolly Rocker
  6. Word Song
  7. Wined And Dined
  8. Swan Lee (Silas Lang)
  9. Birdie Hop
  10. Let's Split
  11. Lanky (Part 1)
  12. Wouldn't You Miss Me (Dark Globe)
  13. Milky Way
  14. Golden Hair
  15. Gigolo Aunt (Take 9)
  16. It Is Obvious (Take 3)
  17. It Is Obvious (Take 5)
  18. Clowns & Jugglers (Take 1)
  19. Late Night (Take 2)
  20. Effervescing Elephant (Take 2)

Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond
Syd Barrett Crazy Diamond

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Monday, July 17, 2017

Syd Barrett Poster Offer - Mishka Westell

The Laughing Madcaps Group is cooperating with famed Poster Artist - Mishka Westell to offer her amazing Syd Barrett poster! There are four versions available: 1) Cream, 2) Silver Foil, 3) Gold Foil, 4) Holographic Foil.

These are 18 x 24″ prints and officially endorsed by the Syd Barrett estate and the Laughing Madcaps group. If you use the following code with your order Miska will be sure to sign your poster:

This is an AMAZING image of our Syd and these posters are in EXTREMELY, EXTREMELY LIMITED QUANTITIES. See the link here:

BTW, Miska lives in Austin, Texas and is Roky Erickson's Poster Artist. She is famous for that alone.

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Sunday, July 16, 2017

Pink Floyd The Scene Club, NYC, 1968

Pink Floyd The Scene
Pink Floyd The Scene
In the Swinging Sixties the hottest club to see a concert at was Steve Paul's, The Scene, Club in the basement of 301 West 46th Street, in NY's Theater District. The Scene had a knack for hiring rock groups right before they broke big. This list included the Doors, Jimi Hendrix, Tiny Tim, Paul Butterfield's Blues Band, the Velvet Underground  and Pink Floyd.

Pink Floyd The Scene
Pink Floyd The Scene
Steve Paul got his start as the wunderkid Publicist for the Peppermint Lounge. He opened The Scene in 1965 and it soon attracted an "A" list of attendees including Lizi Minnelli, Sammy Davis Jr., Andy Warhol, and Tennessee Williams.

Hendrix used to woodshed there playing long into the night, “At the Scene, Jimi would completely let himself go — playing all he knew and didn’t know, going beyond sharing — playing all,” David Henderson wrote in his Hendrix biography, “ ’Scuse Me While I Kiss the Sky.” “Trying to get it all out.” In fact, the infamous 'High Live and Dirty" bootleg was recorded there which featured a very drunk Jim Morrison.

Pink Floyd The Scene
Pink Floyd The Scene
The Scene was entered by going down a flight of stairs. Jim Marron (The Scene's maitre d') described the layout as follows: "It had three rooms that focused in, like, a cross on the stage, and as a subterranean basement, it had the sort of Paris-cave-disco style to it." 

See a rare video showing somebody entering The Scene here:

Pink Floyd The Scene
Pink Floyd The Scene
Pink Floyd played there for three nights in July. The dates were the 15th through the 17th. Below is the set list for one of those nights which was probably the list for all three nights:

1. Interstellar Overdrive
2. Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun
3. Astronomy Domine
4. Flaming
5. A Saucerful of Secrets
Pink Floyd The Scene
Pink Floyd The Scene
As one can see, the band was playing Syd's songs with the single addition being A Saucerful of Secrets from their (then) new album.

Unfortunately, there is not much more to be found about the Pink Floyd The Scene gig. It seems to have been lost in the mists of time except for some cool Photos.

Update, thanks to Pink Floyd Researcher - Mark Scobac both the Cashbox and Billboard reviews of Pink Floyd's Scene run have been found and are published for the first time online here:

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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Interview: Men on the Border - Live in Brighton

Live in Brighton
Recently, the Laughing Madcaps, Syd Barrett, group sat down with Goran and Phil, from Men on the Border, to ask them about their newest Syd tribute effort - Live in Brighton.

Stream the album on Spotify:

Here is the interview:

OK, who is the band and how did you manage to convince everybody to try to make a go at playing Syd Barrett music?

Goran: We are borderline men of course. Caught between the conflicts of life. The seed of an idea germinated after a visit to the Idea Gallery arts and letters exhibition in March 2011 and then a Floyd festival in July. Phil and I started recording in October. The first song we completed was Octopus, which was quite a challenge, and then we sort of entered the whole amusement park. 

Phil: Goran convinced me to give this project a shot with a couple of very rough and weird acoustic demos recorded on his iPhone which he sent me. I found Octopus intriguing with its odd non-structure and I got lots of psychedelic vibes which I found inspiring. It was a difficult song to learn to play for working out all the parts, but it was actually a very satisfying experience. We spent a few weeks working on and off with Octopus and found a pretty good way of working together – mostly based around sending suggestions back and forth. As it was just the two of us at that time and we were both travelling a lot in our day jobs that was a good way to progress. 

We loved that first attempt at an arrangement and I had no qualms about immediately starting on another song, which I think was “Feel” – 7 minutes of dreamy opus. The first half is piano and acoustic 12-string guitar-driven, then it concludes with a strummed Rickenbacker like John Lennon’s rhythm guitar on “Hey Jude” and a wailing solo on top. That song kind of clinched the deal and sparked off the idea of maybe putting together a whole album of Syd songs. Right from the start the aim was to make these songs our own and I didn’t once refer to Syd’s original recordings. Goran could play them all on guitar, but I had never heard any of them! So my starting point was only Goran’s demos.

It's exciting to see a whole new album of Syd Barrett music performed live. Is the CD out? Where can the fans buy it? Give up the information! Do you have your papers!? Let me see your papers!

Goran: We have earlier made two CD's and a total of 24 tracks. Then we wanted to release a single in July this year but decided that streaming was the way to go. Our fan base is global and CD distribution is a hassle. Besides, it seems plastic is selling less and less, so finally we decided not to waste time and money by producing a CD for the “Live in Brighton” album. CDs are now totally dead in Sweden except for the Christmas albums you can buy in supermarkets and gas stations. All the music stores have closed down, so how do you sell them?

Live in Brighton
Phil: The live album was recorded in Brighton in June this year at a great little venue called the Prince Albert. The sound guy had 24-channel recording capability on his mixing desk, but at the time we had no idea at all that everything was being recorded. Goran and I found that out 3 months later when we visited Brighton again for David Gilmour’s tour premiere and we were sent the files a few weeks later. They were very clean 48 kHz, 24 bit recordings of our 45 minutes on stage. About 9 gigabytes in total. I still don’t know the name of the sound guy, though. I’ve asked, but there’s been no panic rush to tell me. I mixed and mastered it in Cubase. 

Interestingly, the entire outside wall of one side of the Prince Albert is painted with deceased rock and pop icons like Jimi, John Lennon, Syd, Brian Jones, Phil Lynott and many more. So we took a photo and put that on the album cover. We had to move some images around in Photoshop to cover up the door and windows, but it’s still pretty striking. That evening was a Syd/early Floyd event with five or six bands playing. We agreed on a set with the organizer the week before the concert so as not to play the same songs as everybody else, but that worked fine for us. The album is fairly short, only 9 songs, but that’s the slot we got! 

I haven’t heard of any other releases from that gig, though I did hear from Stuart that Ham Legion’s superb bass player Nick was mixing songs. There could be some songs on YouTube, but I haven’t looked. 

It's cool to see that our friends at Neptune Pink Floyd were involved. Why, I remember when Keith Jordan was knee-high to a scarecrow. Tell us about how that happened. The full story!

Goran: It was all much by chance and through the wonders of web searching. We had this gig in Cambridge on June 13 and were looking for more places to play. Not quite sure how Neptune Pink Floyd was involved, but I believe they had done something similar earlier. Stuart Avis was the key person there and he seems to have a great network. 

Phil: Goran found the event on the net, and it was an incredible coincidence that there happened to be a Syd evening the day before our gig in Cambridge. So we rang the organizer Stuart at Black Bunker, sent him some links to YouTube, iTunes, Spotify etc. and a day later we were in! The only slight problem was that there was already a bunch of people booked, so it meant squeezing us in with a short set. But it was easy to do as the backline and PA was all fixed. We just needed to show up with guitars and pedals. Stuart put us on as next to last band, but we were first up for the sound-check. That was easy too, basically just to plug in and play! We got to Brighton from the Channel Tunnel just a few hours before the gig, and left for Cambridge directly after. We got there at 4 in the morning. 

The posters for the gig. Where can I score some? I want!

live in brighton
Goran: Yeah! We missed picking one up. Stuart Avis of Black Bunker Studios is your man. 

Phil: We also have digital copies which could be printed. I think. 

Tell us about the gig. How many people showed up. What was the sound system like. What did you use to record the gig and whose idea was it. You know, EVERYTHING!!!

Goran: Maybe a hundred people. But the right kind, you know! Really avid fans and great in music knowledge. The other bands were very good and fun to see. It was pretty varied too. Some did Syd stuff and others did Floyd. And who is in the audience, but Monty Oxymoron from The Damned. He really loves his Syd Barrett and gave us some compliments on our version of Scream Thy Last Scream. Although my singing is honestly not in good form. I had a cold. Probably from that damned tour bus and a strange gig and late night in Copenhagen two nights earlier. 

Phil: The audience wasn’t huge, but was enthusiastic. They were there were for what we were going to do, so we were able to relax and just enjoy playing. Goran’s voice was in fact pretty shot, but that gave the whole performance some bite and it shows how far we’ve come as a live band since recording the songs. I’ve played with David Parkin, the bass-player, since the late 80s and we’ve made four albums together as a duo in the last 20 years. It’s a similar thing with Bjorn Hammarberg, the drummer. We’ve played together in various constellations since 1980. The line-up for the album is completed by Lasse Forsberg on rhythm guitar. He was front man for one of bands I’ve played with for the last 12 years.

The PA system at the Prince Albert looked ancient but sounded great and the engineer had what looked like a new digital mixing desk, which he put to good use. So the sound was very good and we know that from watching the other bands. Onstage the bass sounded a bit like a horse farting but in front of the PA it was massive. So kudos to the engineer and I hope someone tells me his name one day.  

What are the future plans for the band? Playing the USA! Are you going to add some Nick Drake and Roky Erickson to the setlist?

Live in Brighton
Goran: USA! That would be amazing. If somebody can get us the right audiences we'd come. Next thing is actually a symphony. No kidding! Tentatively titled Dark Floyd and it is all Syd related. Nick is an old love, but we like it more edgy. Roky, yeah, but that's too much edge! 

Phil: We’ve started working with a symphony orchestra and we’re now waiting for an offer from an arranger. The concert itself will take place in October 2016, but Goran and I have been asked to put together a promotional package by mid-January 2016, for release at the beginning of February. This is serious shit! So I expect that we’ll start collaborating with the arranger in the New Year and the thought of that is mildly nerve-racking. I’ve never worked on symphonic arrangements, but I believe the arrangements on the albums will lend themselves to this form without any problems. This will be truly awesome! We have plans to take a small section of the orchestra with us for a couple of major gigs in August next year. That idea has so far also been bought by the orchestra. 

We'd love to play in the States, but how the hell do you do that without someone to organise it and pay for it. Our pockets are not that deep, but it's an interesting thought.

To book Men on the Border contact them HERE or on Facebook.

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Friday, April 3, 2015

Syd Barrett, Pink Floyd, and the Binson EchoRec.

Syd Barrett Binson EchoRec
If there is one effect that truly defined the Pink Floyd sound from the beginning, it’s the Binson Echorec. The "Binson" has a unique sound and both Syd and Rick Wright (Roger too) used it to create sounds that were quite innovative at the time. That so many have enjoyed the strange, lush atmospherics of the Echorec, if not it’s name, is thanks largely to Syd Barrett and David Gilmour. Syd Barrett used it for psychedelic echo effects on songs such as “Interstellar Overdrive”.

Syd Barrett Binson EchoRec
Barrett used the device to conjure manic sheets of sound and unrest to complement his whimsical outings live and in the studio for The Piper at the Gates of Dawn LP in 1967. In Barrett’s hands, however, the Binson’s unusual multi-head design and capacity for convoluted, syncopated, and interstellar repeats helped shape the foundations of U.K Space and Progressive Rock. When Barrett left, Gilmour took up the lead guitar role and began expanding on the sounds that made the band famous.

Syd Barrett Binson EchoRec
Syd had seen a Binson Echorec being used in May 1966, when he'd been invited to watch experimental electronic band AMM recording their debut album with Joe Boyd. AMM's guitarist was Keith Rowe, who favored an unsentimental approach to his instrument that made use of effects, treatments and the use of assorted household implements on his guitar strings making for an unusual grating sound.

Syd Barrett Binson EchoRec
Apart from Interstellar Overdrive, Syd used this trick on the middle section of Arnold Layne while the guitar was routed through the Binson. Seeing AMM liberated Syd; he began to use his guitar more as an effect generator than a mere device for playing chords and solos. The Echorec was a spectacularly sounding device as can be heard on tracks like Interstellar overdrive and Astronomy Domine, it's interesting to note that rumours had Syd Barrett placing 2 different Echorecs in 2 different Amps to have a more 360 degree sound!

Syd Barrett Binson EchoRec
Produced in Milan, Italy, the Binson had its peak in the 60’s. They were unique in their construction, utilizing a specially designed steel/alloy disc or drum, which carried a durable flat metal ‘tape’. The drum was driven by a powerful AC motor, in most cases, via a rubber jockey wheel, which kept the transport very stable. Record and playback heads were arranged around the drum periphery.

Four playback heads were mounted at different distances from the record head and these delayed the input signal at different times, up to about 350 milliseconds. You could switch between the heads to choose a delay length or combine them for additional sounds. Complex, fragile and fussy, they were capable of incredible sounds, but also a source of great frustration.

Syd Barrett Binson EchoRec
The original Echorec's tube preamp imparted a flavor to the guitar tone, even in delay bypass mode. In general, it warmed up the guitar tone and helped to drive the signal just a little. The Echorec pedal incorporates a preamp that provides a lush, open sound that doesn't get muddy in the deep delay settings. When not engaged, the true bypass pedal seems to have little noise or effect on the guitar signal. It also has a buffering effect that works well with other pedals, too. You can also select whether the repeats are cut, or continue to “trail off” as the effect is disengaged. That's a nice feature to have available. This is a pedal that opens up your playing simply by virtue of its sounds.

Syd Barrett Binson EchoRec

Armed with a Fender Esquire, a Danelectro 3021, a Binson Echorec, a Selmer Treble N’ Bass 50 head, and a Watkins Dominator (a 2x10, 17-watt combo), Barrett unleashed furious, jarring blurs of chordal shrapnel on Piper’s “Astronomy Domine,” and delivered proto-metal palm-muted chunks, and loopy, string-mashed-on-polepiece skronk for the psychedelic tour de force, Interstellar Overdrive.
Barrett worked wonders with the Binson and the wah-wah pedal, and, perhaps most impressively, turned the slide guitar (previously associated mostly with the blues) into an integral component of his space odysseys. Syd’s Piper at the Gates of Dawn was Psychedelic Pop, and everything but conventional, including it’s song titles, like Pow R. Toch H. and Take Up Thy Stethoscope and Walk. Released later than the UK on September 11, Piper was criminally butchered in the U.S. by Capitol, and released omitting the amazing tracks "Flaming," "Bike," and "Astronomy Domine. When Gilmour joined Pink Floyd in early 1968 he continued with the same setup Syd Barrett had been using for some years, – Telecaster, Selmer amps, Vox wah wah, Fuzz Face and the Binson Echorec 2. 

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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Syd Barrett 1974 Sessions (Finished)

Many people, including this blog, refer to the 1974 sessions as some exercise in futility. As someone who does multi-track recordings frequently, upon further inspection, I found them to be a solid foundation to edit together into a cohesive unit. I added a few layers of bass and drums and ended up with this amazing recording. Why we continue to get the story that these were a complete waste of time is beyond me.

direct link:

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Sunday, December 28, 2014

Meatball Fulton Syd Barrett Interview Analyzed

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
This is an analysis of the Syd Barrett Interview by Meatball Fulton from London, August, 1967. This Interview has been misclassified by many as "stoned gibberish". I think that classification is incorrect. To me, Syd sounds pretty lucid and is trying to answer Fulton's off-the-wall questions as best he can.

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
The Interview starts out with Syd talking about his art and uses painting as an example. He states that his desire to paint came out of a very genuine desire to paint within him. Then, this desire was identified and he went into Art School and he speaks about his Teachers "altering" his critical thinking about painting. This is called: Education.

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
Syd states that he painted a picture "the other day" and he could hear "quite clearly", in his internal dialog, criticisms and instructions that he could relate back to Art School. Then he speaks about his music career as possibly a "very valuable break" where he can leverage *that* experience against his painting talent and education to try and improve his painting. It's quite interesting about how he refers to his music career as a "break" from painting that he plans to resume.

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
Then Meatball Fulton asks him if he ever gets "frightened" by the observation that the world is made up of various "systems" that change the way one thinks when one learns them. This is a pretty off-the-wall fooking question! But Syd does his best to answer it.

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
Syd says that it bothers him a bit, like Meatball. But he relates back to Art School by referencing his painting again and states that it was "quite enjoyable" to assimilate *that* system of knowledge (painting technique) and that he wanted to hold onto that enjoyment while assimilating new systems (business, money, music, film, etc, etc...).

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
Then Meatball asks him: "Do you find yourself in patterns and constantly repeating the same patterns over and over?" Another off-the-fooking-wall question! Syd does what anybody would probably do when asked such a question; he goes "huh!" and says nothing more. Then Fulton asks him what he is working on at the moment that is inside himself (???!) and Syd says: "Yeah, I can't really say..."

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
Then Fulton asks him: "Do you often observe people and think that you could tell them something about themselves that they don't know?" Syd is fumbling for words because it's such an off-the-fooking-wall question. Then he says that talking is not as important as "sensing" people and much of the time that "sense" about somebody can't be adequately put into words and that's cool with him. Again, I think that this is a coherent answer to an off-the-fooking-wall question.

Syd Barrett Interview
Syd Barrett Interview
Then it gets uncomfortable when Fulton asks him "what do you 'sense' about me?" Syd sees it for what it is; a loaded question and one can tell that he doesn't want to answer. Meatball says: "Really be honest.' Syd says maybe the strangest thing is "meeting you at all" in an attempt to steer the conversation back into less confrontational grounds. But Fulton keeps at it and says that he can "edit out" anything bad and that he has all this professional etiquette and he has "done this a few times."

My take, on careful listening to this Interview, is that it is not "proof" that Syd Barrett was going mad. I really think that Syd tried to answer this guy's stupid questions as best that he could.

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