Wednesday, Jun. 03, 2009

Syd Barrett

Syd Barrett was dissatisfied with music. A founding member of Pink Floyd, he left the group after two albums but found little more contentment in his two solo efforts. He tried forming another group, Stars, but quit after three performances. Barrett tried returning to the studio but struggled through just three days of recording before selling his solo rights to his record label and moving into a London hotel. When the money ran out, in 1978, he walked nearly 50 miles to his mother's house in Cambridge, leaving public life behind. Syd began to use his birth name of Roger and passed the time by painting, gardening and reportedly writing an unpublished book on art history. He made no more public appearances, and died in 2006. Accounts suggest that Barrett disliked being reminded of his musical past and kept no contact with other Pink Floyd members. His sister offered one of the better explanations for Barrett's aversion to public scrutiny: "He found his own mind so absorbing that he didn't want to be distracted."