Roger Keith Barrett was an English singer, songwriter, and musician. He co-founded the rock band Pink Floyd in 1965. Barrett was ousted from the band in 1968 amid speculation of mental illness. He began a brief solo career in 1969 with the single ‘Octopus’ In 1972, Barrett left the music industry, retired from public life and strictly guarded his privacy until his death in 2006.
About Syd Barrett in brief
Roger Keith Barrett was an English singer, songwriter, and musician. He co-founded the rock band Pink Floyd in 1965. Barrett was ousted from the band in 1968 amid speculation of mental illness. He began a brief solo career in 1969 with the single ‘Octopus’ In 1972, Barrett left the music industry, retired from public life and strictly guarded his privacy until his death in 2006. He died of pancreatic cancer in 2006 at the age of 69. He was the fourth of five children. His father, Arthur Max Barrett, was a prominent pathologist. His sister Rosemary said: ‘He was never Syd at home. He would never have allowed it’ He was a Scout with the 7th Cambridge troop and went on to be a patrol leader. In late 1962 and early 1963, the Beatles made impact on him and he began to play Beatles songs. In 1963, Barrett became a Rolling Stones fan and saw them perform at a village hall in Libby Gausden, Cambridgeshire. In 1964, Barrett saw Bob Dylan perform and started writing songs; one friend recalls hearing ‘Effervescing Elephant’ at this time. Barrett had played bass and guitar with The Hollerin’ Without The Blues in mid-1963 and was inspired to write ‘The Blues Without Bob Dylan’ in 1964. He also played guitar with Bob Dylan in 1964 and ‘Without The Blues Without The blues’ in 1966. In 1967, he started playing guitar with David Gilmour and the band The Mottoes.
In 1968, he joined the Boston Crabs, and the group played at a CND benefit at Friends Meeting House on 11 March 1962. In September 1962, Barrett had taken a place at the art department of the Cambshire College of Arts and Technology, where he met DavidGilmour. In March 1963, he met the Rolling Stones and became a fan of their songs. He later played bass with them in a band called ‘The Hollerins Without the Blues’ in the summer of 1964. In November 1964, he played bass in a gig at the CND Benefit at Friends meeting House in Libnics. In May 1965, he formed the band Geoff Mott and TheMottoes, a band which Barrett formed, to perform in their front room. In October 1965, the band broke up and he joined The Boston Crabbes. In August 1966, he became a member of the band ‘The Mottos’ and played with the band until the end of the year. In April 1967, Barrett joined the group ‘The Pink Floyd’ and recorded four singles, their debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, portions of their second album A Saucerful of Secrets, and several unreleased songs. In 1988, EMI released an album of unreleased tracks and outtakes, Opel, with Barrett’s approval. He played with several members of Pink Floyd on The Madcap Laughs and Barrett, recorded with the aid of several other members.