ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, APRIL 3, 2012
By Steve Newton
Diehard Pink Floyd fans have had a lot to be thankful for of late. Just last month the band released the “Immersion” boxed set version of The Wall just in time to psych up Floyd freaks for the big Roger Waters show at B.C. Place next month.
And today Eagle Rock Entertainment announced that it will releaseThe Story of Wish You Were Here, a Blu-ray–or, for the financially challenged, DVD–that tells all about Pink Floyd’s 1975 followup to its monumental Dark Side of the Moon album.
I remember buying my own vinyl copy when it first came out, probably for the amazing price of $3.99 at A&B Sound or something. If I recall correctly it was wrapped up in dark-blue or black plastic, and when you got that off there was one of those freaky Hipgnosis covers that weed would make you stare at for hours at a time.
The album only had four songs, one of which, “Wish You Were Here”, became the house-party sing-along of choice if anybody had a banged up acoustic and a rudimentary knowledge of chords. My fave song was “Shine on You Crazy Diamond”, which opened and closed the album, and was made up of nine different parts. I liked the parts that featured Dave Gilmour‘s soaring guitar the most.
But enough of my hazy, half-baked recollections. Here’s Eagle Rock’s sales pitch:
Wish You Were Here, released in September 1975, is cited by many fans, as well as band members Richard Wright and David Gilmour, as their favorite Pink Floyd album. On release it went straight to Number One in both the UK and the US and topped the charts in many other countries around the world.
This program tells the story of the making of this landmark release through new interviews with Roger Waters, David Gilmour and Nick Mason and archive interviews with the late Richard Wright. Also featured are sleeve designer Storm Thorgerson, guest vocalist Roy Harper, front cover “burning man” Ronnie Rondell and others involved in the creation of the album. In addition, original recording engineer Brian Humphries revisits the master tapes at Abbey Road Studios to illustrate aspects of the songs’ construction.
The band members discuss the album’s themes of absence, the greed of the music business and former band member Syd Barrett, who is famously celebrated in “Shine On You Crazy Diamond”, which both opens and closes the album. The program also covers the unexpected visit Barrett paid to Abbey Road during the recording, the difficulties of the early recording sessions and how the decision to split “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” into two sections was the catalyst for the album’s successful completion.
The DVD and Blu-ray releases contain additional bonus material not featured in the TV broadcast version, including further interviews with Roger Waters, David Gilmour and Nick Mason plus Roger Waters and David Gilmour performing excerpts from the Wish You Were Here album.