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The Dream Is Over - OCR Google

Numérisation de MOJO - The Dream Is Over.pdf trouvée dans le cache de Google. Pas terrible mais c’est un bon début pour traduire.

The endless rumours of a Pink Floyd
reunion came to an end with the
tragic death of their keyboard player
Rick Wright "I'm unlikely to start
polishing my drum sticks in the near
future," says Nick Mason, leading
MOJO's eight-page tribute to Floyd's
"quiet one". Words: Mark Blake
the final snapshot of Pink Floyd before
The Dark Side Of The Moon changed their
world forever. Away from the crumbling
amphitheatre, director Adrian Maben
tries to conduct a band interview. Busy
wolfing down beer and shellfish, Pink
Floyd arc in no mood for serious conversa-
tion. Roger Waters and David Gilmour bat
away the questions, «hile swapping banter in the pedantic style of
Peter Cook's comic creation E.L. Wist)': "Are these oysters
| French?" drones Waters. "I like to think that oysters transcend
| national barriers."
I Maben persists, until Nick Mason intervenes: "Adrian," he
£ cautions. "This attempt to elicit conversation out of the chaps is
■ doomed to failure." Only one member of Pink Flovd tries to
Ì engage with the interriewer. "I don't understand what you mean
Ï by that," s,ivs link \Yri«ht pulitck «Hon asked if the band have
! any difficult moments. "Well then, vou'refacking thick," quips
jl Waters, amid mudi gitalin:;. I..jut, Wriyht offers .1 haltfiillookto
Si the camera and stales hesitantly: "We have ureal understand inn
! and tolerance of each other. But there are a lot of things left
! unsaid. I feel. Sometimes."

September 15 explained, Richard William Wright was
"[ho quiet one" in l'ini. Hove!. Tin-Times worn further:
"Had his profile been any lower, he would have been reported
missing." Sadly, the ¡mage of the put-upon Wright from Live At
Pompeii would stick. Few interviews with him in recent years
failed to mention his fractious relationship with Waters, his forced
exit from Pink. Floyd in 1979, and his rather sad di
.Along with Nick Mason, Wright was the
Other Londoner in the Cambridge Strong-
hold that was the original Fimi!. Growing
up in the suburbs, he learned to play guitar,
piano, trumpet and trombone. In 1962, he
enrolled at Regent Street Polytechnic to
study architecture, and met Nick .Mason and
Roger Waters. Wright joined their ad hoc
musical group (known by a string of names
that included Sioroa d. Tin- AhdabsandThe
Megadeaths), which occasionally included
his future wife Juliette Gale. Tellingly, the
band's guitarist Clivo Metí all'i- recalled "the
lovely Juliette... but Rick was so increiliblv
shy that he hardly spoke."
Realising he had little interest in archi-
tecture, Wright quit the polytechnic and
signed up at London's Rovai College of Music, The move paid off
when he sold one of his songs, You're The Reason Why, to a Liver-
pudlian vocal trio, Adam, Mike & Tim, "Rick wrote a proper pop
song and sold it," says Nick Mason. "He'd written a single before
the rest of us were even properly operational,"
When Pink Floyd made their 1967 debut, The Piper At The Gales
Of Dawn, Wright's formal training proved ablessing, "I remember
Rick sorting out the harmonies and telling everyone what to sing,"
recalls Floyd co-manager Peter Jenner, "1 think everyone, including inc. iirnli-Tfsiiniiti-d Rkk. It's ilic- i ¡as-;, management thing: he
wasn't any trouble, so you tended not to notice him. You were al-
ways more aware of the ones that were high maintenance."
''Rick liked melodv, but he wasn't resistant to the others tiling
we did," adds Mason. "Listen to the start of Astronomy Domine or
] jit.rstt ll;i] '. ivrnlriw. 1 [<■ nrwr an I onv p:vi o^vt^ioii'. ;i!n»¡: ln.v,
keyboards should be used. That attitude didn't get knocked out oi
him at musk college." Experimental and structured in his playing,
Wright was an ideal collaborator for front-
man Syd Barrett, Later, Wright said he even
considered leaving the band to work with
Barrett, before witnessing the singer's rapid
decline. Wright composed See-Saw and
Remember A Dav lor Flood's second alburn,
1968'sA Saucerfu! Of Secrets. (Mason: "Wistful
songs, very much in the Barrett tradition,")
Yet See-Saw was also nicknamed 'The Most
Boring Song I've Ever Heard Bar Two' by the
band, while Wright claimed he "now cringes
at Remember A Day", Self-effacing and un-
confident, he was never destined to succeed
as Pink Floyd's frontman.
Singing guitar-prodigy David Gilmour's
arrival, coupled with the "high maintenance"
Waters' growing ambition, pushed Wright
further back. "I like to use the George Harrison example," says
Mason, "because, like George, Rick wrote, he sang, he did a lot of
things, but he did become eclipsed by everyone else." "We had to
keep going," Waters explained of his emergence as Floyd's de facto
leader. 'And nobody else seemed to want to take charge, sol did,"
Waters' natural brusqueness found an easy target in die keyboard
player. A Floyd associate recalls a 1966 holiday, where "Roger kept
purring Rick down the whole time. Using him as his punch bag."
Wright would glumly admit to a "personality clash with Roger..

ge 4
and constant niggling", dating li.uk to student days, "i don't think
Rogerconsciouslv wanted u.ilo jsi-opit- ilu'.vn." savs David Gilmour.
"But he's very alpha-male, and he's not always sensitive to how
much that can hurt other people."
"Rick could be verv droll and verv lunnv" adds Mason, "lint he
suffered from being quieter." It was ahvavs jokilv suggested that
Wright was tighter with money than his bandmates. Waters would
mischievously tell inter viewers ol Rick padlocking his food cup-
board when die two shared a house, or ota protracted dìspute over
a restaurant bill in Japan when, it transpired, Wright had failed to
pa\ lor his bandmates'extra portion ol prawns.
"We never pvw up. we just grew older." admit-. Mason. "Having
given Rick this character, we then kept it up. And were quite happy
to work on the same joke lor Ill-odd years. It never gets boring,
especially when the person in question finds ii irritating."
After Rick's death, Gilmour described the pair's working rela-
tionship as "telepathic". Ik hoes, the piece that occupied the second
half of 1971 's Meddle was a high watermark for both; Gilmour and
Wright's voices co m piemen lin g each other as they shared lead vocals
on the opening verses. While experimenting in Abliev Road, Wright
devised the distinctive eerie sound (the now famous ping) that was
the start ol Echoes. "There is this Image, il von like, o! Rick sat
working something out on the keyboards while a war went on
around him between the rest of us," says Mason.. l/c<i./fc's engineer
John Leckie agreed: "Rii k would-it ai the back and not say anything
for days, but his playing w.n the highlight ■ >l any session."
Wright's involvement with The Diirk Side Of The Moon com-
pounded his musical strengths. In 1973, the era of keyboard wiz-
ards Keith Emerson and Rick Wakeman. Wright preferred a subtler
approach. It was all about texture and sound. "I don't want to be
the fastest pianist on the planet," he said. "I'd like to be like Miles
Davis, who can play one note a bar." Aptly, then, Wright borrowed
a sequence from Davis's Kind Of Blue for the Flovd's Breathe. His
playing was similarly measured on The Great Gig In The Sky, a piece
for piano and female voice. Though, in 1990, to his bandmates'
chagrin, Wright licensed the song tor use in a 'IX ,\i\ lor painkillers.
Working on the track Us And Them at Abbey Road, Rick chose
to play the song's ¡.«//-influenced elioni progression on a grand piano
instead of die Hammond he had used earlier Engineer Alan Parsons
taped him, while Wright plavcd along to what he thought was the
rest of the band in the next studio but was in facta recording made
earlier. What started as a prank at his expense became, as Parsons
explains, "one ot the liest things Rick ever did".
A Waters/Wright composition, the bassist named Us And Them
as one of his favourite Pink Floyd songs and, even at the height of
their disagreements, ahvavs praised Wright's contribution.
a five-acre country pile. The Old Rectory, in the village of
Therfield, Cambridgeshire. Rick's parties were, recalled
one visitor, "the stufi of legend". Guests remembered "racing
around on miniature Bugatlisand bikes... and drag queens getting
pushed into die swimming pool."
On tour in 1974, Flovd relused to give interviews, but a Melody
Makerjournalist bought his own ticket toan Edinburgh Usher Hall
gig, and secured an interview with Wright. When the rest of the
group complained, Rick said that he'd "felt sorry for the chap". His
portrayal suggested a man inside a bubble: "I don't listen to the radio,
I don't watch Top Of The Pops, I don't watch the Old Grey Whistle
Test. I don't even know how the rock business is going."
Il Rick was, asa flovd roadie remembers, " a lovelv chap, but a bit
away with the Essies", his work on 197S's Wsh You Were Here was
very grounded. The album still plays like a Rick Wright showcase,
with the space-age sound of the VCS 5 synthesbser splashed across
Welcome To The .Machine and Shine On You Cra/v Diamond.
Wright's playing on 1977's/lfiinia/s was also impeccable, but his
songw riling had stalled: '1 was not lunctioning well and not coming
up with anv ideas." l97fi'ssol<i I l'Hit /"V,v»u ■.« ting between dreamv
paeans to the island of Rhodes, where Wright had a second >-
Page 5
on the phone to
■*< home, and the parlous state of his
relationship with wife Juliette. The al-
bum failed to sell, proving Floyd's cul-
tivated anonvmitv had a downside.
The ongoing friction between
Wright and Waters became critical
during the making of their next al-
bum, The Wall. When it «-as discov-
ered that the group's financial advisers
had made some unwise investments with tneir money, Floyd became
tax exiles. The Wall sessions began in France, with producer Bob
Ezrin. Wright contributed little, and spoke later of "feeling frozen,
unable to pia)'". The more Waters pushed, the worse Wright be-
came. "Rick is not a guy who performs well under pressure," ex-
plains Ezrin. "He's an intuitive player, Roger was very unforgiving,
and every time he saw someone giving what he thought was less, he
was very vocal about it, and sometimes quite cutting." Even Gilmour
was forced to admit: "Rick just sat there and it was driving us mad."
Under Waters' pressure, Wright quit the band, but agreed to
play the Wall shows as a salaried session. "I utterly failed to stick up
for Rick and instead I aligned mvsclfwith the forces of safety," said
Mason. "1 think it's a shame and I did feel guilty." Recalling the
shows, Wright admitted, "I fooled mvself into thinking that mavbe,
if I play as well as I can, Roger will admit that he was wrong." Waters
didn't, but, as a hired hand, Wright made money from the tour
while his estranged kindniati-s covered the
the '60s, but by the end of the next decade he and Gil-
mour owned villas in Lindos. Summer holidays found
the party expanding beyond spouses to include a coterie of friends
and hangers-on. There was a lot of temptation for a monicd rock
star: drink, drugs, full-moon parties, sometimes too much fun.
"There was an awful lot of cocaine around," one observer recalls,
"And that didn't help." Out of Pink Floyd, his marriage on the skids,
Wright just seemed to retreat. "He just stopped communicating,"
said one associate. "It was like he got gazumped by the others."
It would be a couple ofye;.rs betöre Wright returned to making
music, distracted by Lindos, liis yacht and new girlfriend Franks, a
Greek fashion model-tur ned-designer. While Waters and Gilmour,
would make their next solo albums with help from Eric Clapton and
g Pete Townshend respectively, Wright teamed up with Dave 'Dee'
ä Harris, several years his junior, the cx-vocalist with electro-pop
§ band Fashion. They began working at Wright's home studio in
| Cambridgeshire. A Floyd fan, Harris was desperate for Wright to
? play the Hammond "but getting him to do it was a nightmare". Rick
wanted an electronic sound; something that reflected
his love of Talking Heads, Peter Gabriel and Eno.
"We had a Fairlight, the toy of the moment," laughs
Harris. "But everything we did sounded like a robot,"
Wright was in mid divorce, and the sessions were
beset by "psychological ups and downs". Harris was
often left alone in the studio, fussed over bv "a won-
derful guy called Pink, who looked after Rick's house.
He was this fantastic Canadian queen who was forever
the wives of the other band members,
ones and think, Christ, it's exactly like
ni-pro band, but with millionaires — the
wives calling each odier this and that."
Harris and Wright released the album, Identity,
under the band name Zee in 1984, but it Stifled, and
Harris bailed out tor a production job. "Mv career
was in a very different place to Rick's. It's
a shame, as I loved him dearly."
With Waters now out of Pink Floyd,
Gilmour and Mason wanted to keep the
band name. In the ensuing legal tussle,
h.-ivìii« Wrig!« kick in the fold made sense.
Gilmour recalled Wright's new wife, Fran-
ka, approaching him on Rick's behalf and
asking whether there was a vacancy. Wright
had a lunch meeting with Gilmour and the
Floyd's manager Steve O'Rourke, in which
he was vetted before being allowed back in
("They wanted to see if I wasOK"). 1987's
A Momentary ¿ope 0/ Reason had Wright's
name listed anion« its other session musi-
Icians. But on tour, like -Mason, who was
■VOW accompanied by a second percussion-
ist, Wright was supported bv additional kevbu.inl pi aver, Jon Garin.
Gilmour defended the use of extra manpower, while insisting both
Mason and Wright were "back up to scratch" a few dates into the
lour. By ! 994's The Division Bell, Wright had been fully reinstated. His
second marriage hadfloundered. but he had a new girlfriend, Ameri-
can model Millie Hobbs, Fans and critics who asked "What happened
to Rick Wright?" listened closely to The Divisions Bell's Wearing The
Inside Out. The lyrics conveyed tin thoughts of a man bruised by life,
hut finally re-connecting with the world around him.
Frustrated b\ the sii.iil's-p.ice at which Pink Floyd worked. Wright
followed the Division Bell tour with a hau med-sounding solo al h urn,
Broken China, in 1996. Its central theme concerned the stages of de-
pression experienced by a close friend, which Wright later revealed
was actually his new wife, Millie. The album's buried treasure was its
closing track, Breakthrough, beautifully sung by Sinéad O'Connor.
Broken China came and went, but however keen Wright may have
been to get back to making Pink Floyd albums, it was not to be.
Floyd's reunion with Roger Waters for Live 8 in 2005 failed to lead
to any longer-term collaboration. Wright was a natural choice to
play on David Gilmour's next solo album, 2006's On An Island, even
if, as the guitarist recalls, "it was a struggle, to get him to come down
the studio and actually play". On the subsequent tour, Wright came
back into his own, revisiting Echoes, Time, even The Great Gig In
The Sky. On almost ever v date, lie received a standing ovation, and
grew ever more confident as the tour wore on. Wright described it
"the happiest tour I have ever been on".
"During the '70s and early '80s, it was easy to forget Rick's abili-
ties, because he forgot them," said Gilmour. "He went through a dif-
ficult time but came out of it. He came right back, out of his shell."
Wright had been diagnosed with cancer at the end of 2007, but
his death came as shock to all around him. Nick Mason, the band
member who always seemed the most optimistic for a Pink Floyd
reunion, now drolly concedes: "I'm unlikely to start polishing my
drum sticks any time in the near future." David Gilmour, who played
tribute to Wright after his death with a TV' performance of Remem-
ber A Day, honoured Floyd's sdf-effadïi«kevboard player with a few
carefully chosen words: "No one can replace Richard Wright."
Page 6
So said Rick Wright. Conducting his final interview with MOJO, he
also reflected on Floyd's early days, the band's inner tension and
his own role in their enduring legend... Words: Mark Paytress
seedfloyd/test/the-dream-is-over.txt · Dernière modification : 27/06/2011 à 12:38 de

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