probably the most neglected pink floyd guy besides nick mason (the drummer who doesn't write many songs on the albums i have).
syd helped start pink floyd. he was a brilliant guitarist and was very experimental about many things - playing techniques, lighting, effect pedals, and, unfortunately, drugs.
syd had a mental disability (schizophrenia?) and acid only made things worse. by the time he was released from the band, he was not able to interact with the group anymore. for example, he wouldn't sing the same words or play the same riff more than once.
syd was gradually replaced by david gilmour (around the 1968 album "ummagumma"). he has been recently diagnosed as diabetic, but otherwise he is doing fine, having a bonfire now and then in the garden, and painting from time to time.
shine on you crazy diamond is a 9-part song dedicated to the rock legacy of syd barrett
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