top of page

Pink Floyd - The Wall

In the history of the modern age, there were quite a few examples of building and tearing down walls, and we do not mean that only in the literal sense.

Today we would like to tell you about one "wall", which was established on November 30, 1979, and still stand strong, despite the internal controversies that accompanied its creation process and despite some of the criticism it has received over the years.

If you still do not understand, then Pink Floyd's masterful album "The Wall" is celebrating its birthday today and we want to tell you 42 interesting facts about it:

. On July 1978 Roger Waters offered the band two ideas for the band's next album: the concept of "The Wall" and the concept of "The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking". The band chose "The Wall". Eventually, the concept of "The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking" was used for Waters' first solo album, released in 1984.

2. Waters got the idea for "The Wall" during a performance held as part of the "In The Flesh" tour, to promote the "Animals" album. Amid the show held in Montreal in 1977, Waters spat in the face of a rioting fan. Shocked by his reaction, Waters spoke later that evening with producer Bob Ezrin about the idea of ​​isolating himself from the audience using a wall to be placed along the stage. This idea was later implemented, both as part of the concept of the album and during the performances that accompanied it, when a huge wall was built between the band and the audience.

3. The main character in the story - Pink, is based on Syd Barrett and on the story of Waters, an orphan child whose father was killed in World War II.

4. Waters wrote all the songs on the album, lyrics, and melody, except for four: "Comfortably Numb," "Run Like Hell," and "Young Lust," co-written with David Gilmour, and "The Trial", co-written with producer Bob Ezrin.

5. Although the band's albums over the years, including "The Dark Side Of The Moon" and "Wish You Were Here" were hugely successful, the only "Pink Floyd" song to reach the top of the Billboard charts was "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2".

6. During the recording of the album, keyboardist Rick Wright went through a difficult period. He went through divorce proceedings from his wife Juliette and suffered from a heavy cocaine addiction, which prevented him from concentrating on the album. This eventually led to Roger Waters firing him, even before the album was released.

7. As a result, Wright became the only member of "Pink Floyd" to receive employee status in the band. It paid off for him later on. He became the only gainer among the band members from the grandiose tour that accompanied the album, as he received a steady salary that did not depend on the losses of that ambitious tour.

8. The title of the album's opening song, "In the Flesh?", Was taken from the name of the "Animals" tour. The song goes down to the concept root of the album, which was created following the same incident in which Waters spat on a fan. Waters said he tried to write a parody of stadium-rock songs as an opening song to the album, something that would sound noisy and silly.

9. The song that plays at the opening of "In The Flesh?" Is "The Little Boy that Santa Forgot," by singer Vera Lynn. The song is about a child without a father. The song "Vera" from the album was also influenced by the same Vera Lynn and her song "We'll meet again", where the words "We'll meet again, Some Sunny Day" appear.

10. The children's choir that accompanies the song "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2", consists of 23 children aged 15-13 from a school in "Islington" in London. The school was chosen because of its proximity to the studio where the album was recorded.

11. The children's voices have undergone 12 doublings, so they will sound like they include many more children.

12. The idea for the choir was brought by Bob Ezrin. He used a similar chorus as part of the song "School's Out" which he produced for Alice Cooper.

13. Bob Ezrin is also responsible for the "disco" beat in this song. He got the idea after listening to a disco song by Nile Rodgers, known among others from the band "Chic".

14. The children's choir did not receive any payment. In 2004 the children's parents filed a lawsuit against "Pink Floyd" demanding payment of benefits, claiming that the recording was made without their knowledge, but despite this, the lawsuit yielded only small sums.

15. The nu-metal band "Korn" recorded a cover version of the three parts of the song "Another Brick in the Wall". The song was released on their "Greatest Hits Volume 1" album.

16. Another interesting cover version of the song is off the one-off supergroup "Class of '99", which included Layne Staley from "Alice in Chains", Tom Morello from "Rage Against the Machine", Stephen Perkins from "Jane's Addiction" and Martyn LeNoble from" Prono For Pyros". The song was released as part of the soundtrack to the movie "The Faculty" in 1998. This is one of the last recordings of singer Layne Staley who died in 2002.

17. The drummer in the song "Mother" is Jeff Porcaro who was a session player, known from the band "Toto". According to Waters, Nick Mason was unable to perform the drum roles in the song, because it included several rhythmic changes and an unusual time signature of 5/4, which Waters said did not fit the mind of Mason, who works a little differently.

18. The kid who says the phrase "Look mummy, there's an airplane up in the sky" in the song "Goodbye Blue Sky" is Harry, the son of Roger Waters, who was two years old at the time. Here, we were able to write a fact about this song without mentioning the legendary animator Gerald Scarfe, who is responsible for the amazing animation that accompanied, among other things, the band's performances and is also included in the film "The Wall". So if we did not write, let us at least watch his phenomenal work:

19. The song "One of My Turns" was influenced by an incident in which singer and songwriter Roy Harper vandalized his caravan at the "Knebworth Festival" in 1975. Remember, Harper is a friend of "Pink Floyd" members and the one who sang "Have A Cigar" from "Wish You Were Here".

20. The song "Hey You" was written by Waters inspired by the ending of his first marriage. The song was not included in the film because Waters thought his lyrics did not fit the chronology of the plot. The one who plays bass in this song is David Gilmour.

21. The melody of the guitar and bass after the words "Open Your heart, I'm coming home" is the same as the melody in the song" Another Brick In The Wall, Part 1 ".

22. The sound effects of seagulls that are heard during the song "Is There Anybody Out There" are the same sounds that are heard in "Echoes" from the album "Meddle".

23. Waters noted that the song "Nobody Home" was written about all sorts of people he knew.

24. The line "I've got a grand piano to prop up my mortal remains" refers to Rick Wright and his condition during the recording of the album.

25. The line "Wild, Staring Eyes" refers to Syd Barrett, of course.

26. The lyrics to the song "Comfortably Numb" were written by Waters and were inspired by a shot of pain he received from a doctor before a show that took place on June 29, 1977, in Philadelphia as part of the "In the Flesh" tour. The shot caused anesthesia in his hands and he found it difficult to concentrate on playing, just as described in the song, including the words: "That'll keep you going through the show" and "My hands felt just like two balloons".

27. Gilmour composed the song during his work on his first solo album, from 1978. Waters heard the melody and wrote the lyrics to Gilmour's melody. It was the last song that Waters and Gilmour wrote together.

28. The bass line in the song's film version is different from that of the album version.

29. This was Gilmour's favorite piece during the tour designed to promote the album. By the time the song was played the wall was already built along the stage, when at the moment of Gilmour's mighty solo, a hydraulic lever lifted Gilmour above it.

30. Waters wanted the song "The Show Must Go On" to sound like "The Beach Boys," so he enlisted Beach Boys member Bruce Johnston to perform background vocals in it. Johnston also performs background vocals on the song "Waiting for the Worms".

31. Similar to the song "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2", also in the song "Run Like Hell" Bob Ezrin persuaded the band to perform the song with a disco beat. The original version of the song is longer, but the band had to cut it short in the mix so the album will not exceed the appropriate times for a full vinyl record. The full recording still exists in the masters.

32. The chord passage of the song "The Trial" is the same as that of the song "Run Like Hell" which includes the chords Em, F, Em, C, B.

33. Roger Waters played the clarinet in the song "Outside the Wall" during the performances that accompanied the album.

34. The song "When the Tigers Broke Free", which was not included on the album, was written by Waters during the sessions for the album and tells of the death of his father Eric Fletcher Waters.

35. The title of the song during the recordings was "Anzio, 1944", the place and time Waters' father died during World War II.

36. The other three band members rejected the idea of ​​putting the song on the album, claiming it was too personal, but eventually the song found its way into the film.

37. At the same time, the song was released as a single on July 26, 1982. The cover read "Taken from the album "The Final Cut", which indicates an initial intention to include it on the album "The Final Cut". This, as is well known, was not carried out, but was corrected in the remastered version.

38. The song "What Shall We Do Now?" Written and recorded during the sessions for the album but eventually stayed out in favor of the song "Alice Cooper".

39. Lyrics of the song "What Shall We Do Now?" Appear in the album because the decision to give it up was made only in the final stages of editing.

40. Those who sang some of the songs on the tour that accompanied the album, were an alternate band, called "The Surrogate Band". The alternate band, which included guitarist Snowy White among others, played on stage, sometimes alongside members of "Pink Floyd" and sometimes alone, while wearing masks. The idea was to present Waters' opinion that the audience does not really care who is on stage as long as they "deliver the goods."

41. Beyond the fact that the album is on Rolling Stone magazine's 500 greatest albums of all time list and the "1001 albums you should hear before you die", this album also ranks third on the list of all-time best-selling albums in the United States.

42. The Israeli band "Echoes - Pink Floyd Tribute Show" performs the entire album in their performances, from beginning to end, accompanied by video art and a scenery that matches the original show.

For Listening: Spotify, Apple Music

Follow us on Facebook or Subscribe to our website

"Face/Off" - Israel's Rock Blog & Podcast


Enjoying the Blog? Subscribe to get it right to your mail!

Thank you !!

bottom of page