THE WALL: Did David Gilmour dislike “The Wall” album by Pink Floyd because it had too many lyrics from Roger Waters and not enough from him?

MDM writes:

Gilmour spoke about The Wall in an interview. He stated that he really liked entire album, except for the “Vera Lynn stuff.” I assume he was referring to all the theatrical songs, including Nobody Home, Vera, Bring the Boys Back Home, etc.

As for Waters writing all the lyrics and most of the music, I would presume that by 1979, Gilmour was already used to that. It is not as if Gilmour was writing a bunch of songs that were being rejected. Gilmour wasn’t writing much at all for Pink Floyd since 1972. But he was sure great at taking Waters’ songs and making them sound good.


MB writes:

I have been pondering this question for a while, not entirely sure how to answer it.

If you look at Pink Floyd as a single entity that ran for 1965 to 2015-ish, then the question becomes impossible to answer, as that 50 years saw some very distinct phases of development.

Pink Floyd, as it "existed" since the new Millennium, is purely a David Gilmour sound and style. In "The Wall" and "The Final Cut" it was purely a Roger Waters sound and style (with Gilmour getting maybe a half dozen writing credits between both albums).

In the 1965 to 1967 Pink Floyd, the answer is "neither" because it was a 95% Syd Barrett project. The rest of the band MAYBE contributed 5%.

From 1968 to 1970, the answer is also "neither" because all four band members (with Gilmour replacing the now-absent Barrett) were all trying different things with limited success. The results were things like "Umma Gumma" and "Atom Heart Mother". Some really interesting sonic experimentation, but little else.

1971 to 1973 is probably the one period where I would say "both" as Waters' and Gilmour's distinct sounds and contributions can be heard on "Meddle", "Obscured by Clouds" and "Dark Side of the Moon". It's also interesting to note that in this period, Rick Wright's distinct sound and contribution was also noticeable.

Post-Dark Side, Gilmour, Wright, and Mason had lost a lot of their motivation. They now had a hit record - so what was there left to do? Waters was their driving force in this period and he took over more and more each album on. So from "Wish You Were Here" to "Animals" you hear less Gilmour/Wright and more Waters. By the time "The Wall" was released, it was clear that in terms of sound and style, Waters was the absolute leader. The Final Cut was a Waters solo album in everything but name.

When Waters left in 1985, Gilmour took over and re-formed the band under his sound and style. And for the next 30 years, Pink Floyd was a Gilmour vehicle. It should be noted, however, that the band was really lacking Waters' driving force. In that 30 year period, they released a total of three albums ("Momentary Lapse of Reason", "the Division Bell", and "Endless River") and one could argue that the third of those albums was just stuff they didn't use on "Division Bell" that they polished up and released in memory of the late-Rick Wright.

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