This is really some good stuff as this article was printed about a month before Pink Floyd released their debut album on August 4th, 1967. Really early days for the band but we can see the direction they were heading in, and later became hugely famous for, in this article.
Nothing nasty behind our light and colour effects
Says Pink Floyd`s Roger Waters to Norrie Drummond
“WE are simply a pop group. But because we use light and colour in our act, a lot of people seem to imagine that we are trying to put across some message with nasty, evil undertones.” So said Roger Waters, bass guitarist with the Pink Floyd back in the NME Chart this week with “See Emily Play.”
The Pink Floyd as most people now know were one of the first groups to start the pop “son et lumiere” cult. By using equipment which threw liquid abstract shapes on to a stage backdrop the Pink Floyd built up large followings in London’s freak-out parlours like the Round House and the UFO club.
But the group themselves have always remained rather remote, mystical creatures simply because few people could see them properly.
It sometimes makes it very difficult for us to establish any association with the audience,” said Roger. “Apart from the few at the front no one can really identify us.”
The Pink Floyd — Rick Wright, Nick Mason, Syd Barrett and Roger — turned professional less than four months ago and already they have had two medium hits.
“We’re not rushing into anything. At the moment we want to build slowly and I think we’re doing not too badly. The important thing is that we’re doing what we want to do.
“We record the numbers we want and fortunately they seem to be the ones that people want. No one interferes with us when we’re in the studio. They just leave us, more or less, alone to get on with what we want.”
The Pink Floyd, unlike most groups, pay very little attention to what goes on in the charts.
“We listen to Radio London and the other stations,” said Roger. “But we don’t really concern ourselves with what other groups are doing. The Chart puzzles me because I just can’t imagine the type of person who would buy Engelbert Humperdinck’s record and the Cream’s. That is if there is such a type.”
What type of audience then did the Pink Floyd attract?
“We recently played a concert at the Queen Elizabeth Hall,” said Roger, “and that’s usually where string quartets play. The people who came to see us there were a very mixed lot.
“Some really way-out people with bare feet and a few old women who always go to the Queen Elizabeth Hall no matter what’s on. But mostly they were average men and women between 17 and 25 mixed with a few teeny-boppers.”
The Pink Floyd want to play a string of these concerts in the autumn, “We’d like to play the major centres like Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow doing our own two-hour show.”
The group thinks that it would be a successful venture. “You see,” said Roger, “contrary to what some people think it’s not just the Southern audiences that we appeal to. In fact the further North we go, the better the reception.
“We played in Belfast recently and the reception there was great. The same thing happened when we played in Abergavenny. We had screamers and everything. It really astonished us.”
As I was leaving Roger he suddenly turned to his manager Andrew King. “I’ve just remembered a great idea I had last night.
“I was driving down the M.1 and the wing mirror on a lorry in front was vibrating finely. It was reflecting all the other lights on the road, winking indicators, stop lights and so on. Now, supposing we were to. . . .”
That, I suppose, is how a “Happening” begins.