Personalities | Pink Floyd | The Waters-Led Era (1976–85) | An Overview
The period 1969–76 was highly collaborative, with all four members of Floyd making a contribution to the process of writing musical material or coaxing ideas to fruition in extended studio sessions or during live performances. Roger Waters had, though, emerged as the prime lyricist in the band and his passionate nature and strongly held convictions guided both his musical and thematic ideas.
Despite The Dark Side Of The Moon spending years in the UK and US album charts bringing Floyd huge financial rewards and packed stadia, Waters was not creatively becalmed. From Animals (1977) onwards he dominated proceedings to the extent of taking control not only of overall production duties on The Wall (1979) and The Final Cut (1983) but also using outside co-producers like Bob Ezrin as musical sounding boards instead of fellow band members. By The Final Cut a number of session musicians were being deployed to provide the instrumental textures or arrangements that his vision required.
Waters’ lyrical barbs against society, war, politics, morality and hypocrisy were countered by emotional sensitivity unlocked by the early loss of his father. The Wall, as an album, tour and film, was one of the greatest and most complete multimedia events pulled off by Floyd, even if Waters had forced Rick Wright out of the band during its long studio gestation. Ironically, when he officially decided to go solo he was confronted by Dave Gilmour and Nick Mason, steely-eyed and prepared to sail onwards as Pink Floyd – without him.
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