Syd Barrett tee
Syd Barrett, has one of music's most notorious cult followings. Syd co-founded Pink Floyd in the early 60's before coming up with the final band name the Pink Floyd in '65 which he named after 2 blues albums he had in his record collection at the time, Pink Anderson and Floyd Council. Barrett was their original front man and primary songwriter, becoming known for his whimsical style of psychedelia,
Syd like most of Floyd grew up in and around Cambridge with family working for the University. Floyd's experimental approach to music set them apart from the pack. Syd is known for his English-accented singing, and stream-of-consciousness writing style. As a guitarist, he was influential for his free-form playing and for employing effects such as dissonance, distortion, echo and feedback. Syd was also an artist and painted throughout the rest of his life after leaving Floyd.
Shine On You Crazy Diamond was being being recorded at Abbey Road, seven years after Syd left the band. The day when they were recording the song, Syd wandered into the studio and sat and listened. He sat in the recording studio some reported 20 minutes, others said 2 hours before Roger Waters recognized Syd. He had shaved all his hair including his eyebrows and was unrecognizable. It stunned and shocked the band and they reportedly cried after realizing that their former bandmate was completely lost from his former self. Syd left without saying goodbye and never realized that he was the inspiration behind the song they were recording that day which ended up being one of their most popular songs ever recorded.
Syd's breakdown is almost too sad to think about if it weren't so mystifying. Syd left the band in '68 and had a brief solo career but mostly lived a reclusive life. The theories are many surrounding his overuse of LSD. Syd's mental breakdown haunted the band and inspired them throughout their creative career.