Roger Keith “Syd” Barrett (6 January 1946 – 7 July 2006): Founding member of Pink Floyd, and all round “crazy…

Roger Keith “Syd” Barrett (6 January 1946 – 7 July 2006): Founding member of Pink Floyd, and all round “crazy diamond” died on this day after a self-imposed exile in his Cambridge home for more than 30 years. Syd only recorded four singles with Pink Floyd, the band’s debut album (Piper at the Gates of Dawn) and contributed to A Saucerful of Secrets.

Octopus is his solo single, recorded in 1969.

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69 Responses to Roger Keith “Syd” Barrett (6 January 1946 – 7 July 2006): Founding member of Pink Floyd, and all round “crazy…

  1. Rajini Rao says:

    That’s too bad, Clinton Hammond ! Did you like Octopus? It has that quintessential magical sound of the sixties.

  2. Rajini Rao says:

    Hey, Feisal Kamil ! Got back late last night..getting caught up with G+. Photos coming soon 🙂 How have you been?

  3. Rajini Rao says:

    Clinton Hammond , have you heard of the Johns Hopkins study on psychedelic drugs? For example, “psilocybin, the drug in “magic mushrooms,” helps many people become more open, creative, and curious after they take a single high dose, a new study shows…Specifically, the study found that psilocybin affects a dimension of personality called openness.  Openness relates to the ability to see and appreciate beauty, to imagine, to be aware of our own and other people’s feelings, and to be curious and creative.” Personally, I would not be so quick or conventional in dismissing any form of creativity.

  4. Rajini Rao says:

    Get well soon, Feisal Kamil and rest up! My talk was received well 🙂

  5. Chris Roop says:

    So nice to see that someone remembers that Pink Floyd created music before Dark Side of the Moon

  6. Rajini Rao says:

    I’m a good lurker some days, Feisal Kamil , when I feel too delicate to engage 🙂

  7. Clinton Hammond, I couldn’t help but say.. what about:

    The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane –ok wait..I’m gonna stop here, because this list goes on and on.. but surely there must be some music that you like that was influenced by psychedelic drugs in some way, right?

  8. Rajini Rao says:

    Thank you, Matt Kevins . The list would be extremely long, I agree! I was trying to engage Clinton Hammond in a discussion while fully accepting that music can be an extremely personal taste (i.e., his YMMV comment). Summarily dismissing psychedelic drugs or mentally disturbed artists (whether in  music, art or anything else) is much too simplistic.

  9. A friend with whom I’ve lost touch had given this to me in a tape in the 80s. I hadn’t listened to it since but as soon as I played the video I realised that this tune was in the back of my mind all this time. Really, something else. Many thanks!

  10. Kawthar A says:

    Great song! welcome back! 😀 Rajini Rao 

  11. Rajini Rao says:

    So much of G+ goodness to catch up with, Kawthar AL ABDALLA ! 🙂

  12. Kawthar A says:

    LOL! Take your time! same here! 🙂 Rajini Rao 

  13. The Madcap laughs no more. Thanks Rajini.

  14. Chad Haney says:

    Chris Roop join the club. I’m not a big fan of PF post Waters break but I listen to some of it. I have a lot of PF on vinyl before Dark Side of the Moon. Great share Rajini Rao welcome home. Feisal Kamil hope you feel better in the morning.

  15. Chris Roop says:

    It has amused me since the release of Dark Side that an album which is a not too kind commentary on the crass commercialism of the music industry became such a commercial success. PF was a cult band prior to that.

  16. Shine on, Mr. Barrett.

  17. Adam Black says:

    I accept on from die hard pink floyd friends that’s nearly everything good the band produced was sourced from the LSDed mind of Syd…

    But really I just don’t hear it. FlOYD LOVER, Syd Skeptic here.

  18. Chris Roop says:

    Not at all Adam Black. Syd was talented, creative and unfortunately afflicted. He exiled himself because of his affliction and it was not from the use of LSD. His friends who remained with the band honored his talent and were saddened by his affliction which prevented him from participating in the band with them. Wish You Were Here, Shine On You Crazy Diamond and several others were homages to him and the bands way of saying ‘we miss you”.

  19. Rajini Rao says:

    I hear echoes of Interstellar Overdrive in later PF productions. I think Syd was a genius who burned out too early, sadly for us.

  20. Jim Carver says:

    I always loved the band. Went and saw them in 1978 at the Tarrant County Convention Center. I’ll never forget this one girl in the back seat going, “Don’t take the Central Expressway you fool!”. I got us there on time anyway, much to her chagrin.

    Never did know much about their early days though. I went to a Pink Floyd film festival one time and I did get to hear the early material.

    Some of you may remember David Gilmour’s (sp?) solo album and that was really good too.

  21. julie woods says:

    Sad.  Never much of a Pink Floyd fan….just sad.

  22. Jim Carver says:

    Thought about it and it was actually 1977. Had a brand new 1977 Monte Carlo that I bought in ’76. You could still hear “Those Were the Days” by Mary Hopkins on the radio. 🙂

  23. Jean Liss says:

    live at pompeii…  I saw it at the movie theater in Cambridge…  ahh the good old days…

  24. Rajini Rao says:

    Thanks for the link, Jean Liss . The lyrics to Echoes are poetry to me. I cannot imagine growing up without PF.

    Overhead the albatross hangs motionless upon the air

    And deep beneath the rolling waves in labyrinths of coral caves

    The echo of a distant tide

    Comes willowing across the sand

    And everything is green and submarine

    And no one showed us to the land

    And no one knows the where’s or why’s

    But something stirs and something tries

    And starts to climb towards the light

    Strangers passing in the street

    By chance two separate glances meet

    And I am you and what I see is me

    And do I take you by the hand

    And lead you through the land

    And help me understand the best I can

    And no one calls us to move on

    And no one forces down our eyes

    And no one speaks

    And no one tries

    And no one flies around the sun

    Cloudless every day you fall

    Upon my waking eyes

    Inviting and inciting me to rise

    And through the window in the wall

    Comes streaming in on sunlight wings

    A million bright ambassadors of morning

    And no one sings me lullabies

    And no one makes me close my eyes

    So I tore the windows wide

    And call to you across the sky.

  25. Loved Pink Floyd!  And welcome back!  Thanks for the link to your presentation…I will read it!

  26. Rajini Rao says:

    Hi Cheryl Ann MacDonald, Psy’D. , that was not my work in the Hopkins link but that of some colleagues. It is considered a landmark for the scientific rigor and is unusual in being accompanied by commentaries from the Director of National Inst. for Drug Abuse and several other prominent psychiatrists and neuroscientists.

  27. Oh thanks Rajini Rao I will save for a later read. This topic has been studied for years…studies even back what during the 60’s even! Maybe we can make some headway for treatment!

    :)) great share. I just looked at the names. (I worked with Ezra Griffiths at Yale New Haven hosp in the late 70’s along with Herb Kleber. (They were both there at that time)

  28. Rajini Rao says:

    Cheryl Ann MacDonald, Psy’D. , the journal editor has this concluding sentence which I thought was interesting: It is time for psychopharmacologists to open their minds

    and their laboratories to the full domain of human drug

    experience. We would do well to be wary of our own

    preconceptions and prejudgments, and to be prepared to

    consider the entire scope of human experience and behavior

    as legitimate targets for systematic and ethical scientific


  29. Well, I agree with the editor! Hold on I am going to read now!

  30. “It will open the way to study the neural mechanisms responsible for these drugaltered states of consciousness.” Studying these drugs I think needs to be de-regulated …and it could be the key to many new treatments, not just addictions. Am I on track here??

  31. Rajini Rao says:

    I agree, it’s “the dose that makes the poison” for most drugs. In the case of psychoactive drugs, there is a lot of good mixed in with the bad. For example:

  32. I wonder if we are making any headway with getting this approval! Here is a link to the man that wrote the study Griffiths (we worked closely together) I am surprised he is still there. I did not know Kleber very well.

  33. A study was just forming about Ketamine in the 1980’s, this one is from your link & this is where we all worked. Looks like the debate rages on…  “A Study by the Connecticut Mental Health Center found that 70% of their test group, none of whom had any luck with traditional depression treatments, responded positively to Ketamine treatment. Even more interesting was the fact that the drug was able to repair neuron connections in the brain that had previously been damaged by chronic stress.” These drugs seem to be much less harmful than the ones we are now using (Zyprexia, etc)

  34. Rajini Rao says:

     I had not heard about ketamine, thanks for the info.

    This topic is too politicized, unfortunately, Cheryl Ann MacDonald, Psy’D. . Although well out of my field, my general understanding is that medical use of marijuana can help cancer patients not only in pain management but also to increase appetite and shrink tumors. But the stigma attached to it seems too great for politicians to stomach.

  35. Agree….totally. Marijuana really needs to be opened up for more scientific studies (pain, anxiety, depression) along with all of these “illegal drugs”. Herb Kleber was quite an activist back then (Griffiths a senior resident). How can politicians say there is no medical benefit …when they are not allowed to be studied!!  Bye the way …what is your expertise? 

  36. Jean Liss says:

    ” 7 Illegal Drugs That Are Surprisingly Good Medicine”  I was looking at some of these and seeing that they actually treat the conditions they were initial intended to treat…  

    But if LSD helps reduce depression and helps with alcoholism, perhaps folk in in-treatment programs could benefit…  the controls could be set up for a full study.

    I’ve know a few migraine sufferers who developed a dependence on pain meds so if psyclobin helps it seems a whole lot safer than treating the symptoms (or getting botox to the brain).  The folk I know who are chronic sufferers would try ANYTHING to get rid of the pain.

  37. Rajini Rao says:

    I study ions (Calcium, sodium, potassium and protons) they move across membranes in cells via ion channels and pumps, and their role in disease..more recently autism, but everything from breast cancer to hypertension. We tend to work on new human genes that have not been studied before.

  38. Oh, interesting! Hopefully we are making progress!

  39. Rajini Rao says:

    Good morning Feisal Kamil , we are staying on topic! Syd Barrett was well known for his abuse of psychedelic drugs. He may have had other psychiatric troubles as well.

  40. Well Pink Floyd is interesting too there Feisal Kamil!  The topic relates “Just another brick in the wall”  🙂

  41. What are your thoughts on this one Feisal Kamil 

  42. Jean Liss says:

    I remember riding my bike by the hospital Syd was a resident in back when I lived in Cambridge.

    Rajini Rao have you ever looked at regeneration of nerve cells (collagen tubes seeded with stem cells)  If I remember correctly they used the nerve that allows a rat to tap its foot and I think they were able to get 1 cm of growth.  But I always wondered about the transition from stem to fully functioning nerve cells.

  43. Jim Carver says:

    I doubt that Syd Barrett’s problems stemmed from drugs. Usually that realm is relegated to the use of prescription drugs over some period.

    Sounds to me like he had a bad case of paranoia and Agoraphobia, not to be confused with Agriphobia, which is the fear of farms, but he may have had that as well. I think you get that from chemical imbalances in your body, not from some recreational drugs usually.

    Of course if he had a predisposition, some of the things he did might have sent him over the edge. Personally, I doubt it. 

  44. The problem is the Researchers and Scientists cannot get their hands on these drugs easily at all. LSD & Ketamine were not regulated back in the day. If I remember correctly LSD did have some problems with triggering psychosis (which was chronic for some….but then the regulations happened and studies stopped)

  45. Jim Carver says:

    Cheryl Ann MacDonald, Psy’D. Right, the studies were inconclusive. Some people appeared to be helped by lysergic acid and it seems in other cases it was just the opposite. That just shows how little we know about the chemistry of the brain.

  46. The drugs were banned by the FDA as being “illegal and serving no medical purpose” Feisal Kamil. I am not sure if there were any other reasons….but all studies just stopped because of this one. I don’t think big Pharm was around then so I am assuming it was just a prohibition type action.

  47. Rajini Rao says:

    The sixties scared our politicians into banning all sorts of drugs. True, some of them are habit forming (like nicotine and alcohol) and many can be taken at lethal doses. There seems to be a gut reaction to lumping them all as evil. The governor of New Jersey just (proudly) vetoed a bill decriminalizing medical marijuana.

  48. Yep Rajini Rao and so did my childhood, very conservative state of Connecticut! So these marijuana studies will be now allowed back in at Yale! Yippee 🙂

  49. Rajini Rao says:

    Cheryl Ann MacDonald, Psy’D. : You are from CT?! I lived in New Haven for 5 years.

  50. Jim Carver says:

    You may remember there was one study that linked LSD to chromosomal damage, I think that was later debunked, but the stigma remained. I think the actual notion of people going on a trip and not having to leave the farm just freaked those politicians out and they had some news reports to back them up. As far as I know, nobody ever died from taking LSD unless they lost it and jumped out of a window.

  51. Rajini Rao says:

    In New Jersey, yes, Feisal Kamil .

  52. Yes Rajini Rao I grew up in Milford, CT. Worked at Yale in the mid 70’s to mid 80’s. New Haven was really a rough place black then. Residency in New Haven or work?

  53. Rajini Rao says:

    Postdoctoral work in the Human Genetics department at Yale School of Med. from ’88-’93, Cheryl Ann MacDonald, Psy’D. . I was in Stirling Hall on Cedar St. and my daughter was born in Yale-New Haven hospital around the corner.  🙂

  54. Jim Carver I just saw your comment. Yes…but the research just stopped and they could have found out more about the brain! And who to give these drugs to…I think they thought it was something genetic that caused the chronic psychosis (but this is only from memory)

  55. Jean Liss says:

    As far as I know, marijuana is federally illegal but some states have allowed medicinal uses and the growing of a certain number of plants for personal medical consumption.  This is done with a nod from the feds that they will not enforce their laws.  CNBC had a few shows on the business in the past few years.

  56. :)) Rajini Rao we were there at the same time. Although I was working at YPI then (Yale Psychiatric Unit)  I also spent a year working on MU10 Yale Hospital (a neuropsych unit). The lady in charge was Mary Swigar, MD (maybe you know her)  I have been to Sterling Hall many times —-ever see the ghosts?  🙂

  57. Jim Carver says:

    Jean Liss That’s true. I have a friend in Colorado that has a license to grow pot. It’s not sanctioned by the Feds. But they won’t step on the toes of Colorado non-enforcement either. It’s a pretty weird deal. 

  58.  Still illegal by the Feds everywhere Feisal Kamil we are just talking about it not being a criminal offense.

  59. Rajini Rao says:

    Jean Liss , we plan to use iPSC’s soon ..they are a type of stem cell..for our studies. Currently, we just get neurons and glial cells from mouse brain. Regeneration of spinal cord in injuries is something feasible, I believe. I know the doctor who was making real progress with the actor Christopher Reeve, until he (Reeve) died prematurely of other complications from his paralysis. Cheryl Ann MacDonald, Psy’D. , how cool is that! I don’t know people in psychiatry, although I did know neurologists and neurosurgeons. As for Stirling Hall, I was too busy looking up at the stars in the entrance dome 🙂 Did you see the ghosts?

  60. No, no ghosts did I see Rajini Rao! This is an old Yale school rumor and there are now tours! (I am going on one my next trip back)  There are underground tunnels throughout the entire complex. (I have walked a few …..taking patients from one building to the next, as a young nurse :))

  61. Jean Liss says:

    I always wondered if creating the nerve like conditions (sorry I don’t have the correct terminology) allows the stem cells to develop into the desired type of cells.  If I remember correctly it was dependent on the matrix material in the tube and the contact points on the openings of the tube (not any “special” sauce added to mix).  

    Wouldn’t it be cool if you could have a biodegradable tube filled with the patient’s own stem cells and collagen matrix.  Perhaps even giving the tube some form of stimulation to assist the transformation process.  Think of the injuries that could be helped.  Eventually this could be expanded to spinal cord injuries by trying to train the connections/regrowth of the new nerve cells etc…  

    I really hope to see this in my lifetime…

  62. Jim Carver says:

    “In the United States, the rise of overdose deaths is increasingly from “legal” pharmaceuticals — showing that the need to change how we regulate and control dangerous drugs is an urgent matter for us too.

    What most Americans don’t realize is that drug laws are now changing around the world — step by step and country by country. And a new report concludes that decriminalization of drug possession has not led to increase in drug use.”

    From the link you provided Rajini Rao . It seems that the new Mexican President has a great stake in this. Seeing all the bloodshed in his country, which has also spilled over into the US.

  63. Jim Carver says:

    Might happen quicker than you think Feisal Kamil when the Republicans realize it doesn’t make dollars and sense. Ole Queen Nancy is almost dead at 92.

  64. thx for posting, wonderful;)

  65. Thanks for this G+ musical break with Syd.

  66. Rajini Rao says:

    You’re welcome, Jean-Marc Luna . Always good to meet another fan 🙂

  67. Chad Haney says:

    Decided to post some Floyd. Thanks for the reminder.

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