The Great Gig In The Sky

Richard Wright, co-founder and keyboardist for Pink Floyd, died today following a brief battle with cancer.  One of Wright’s most well-known contributions to the band’s music was “The Great Gig In The Sky” from Dark Side of the Moon.

“The Great Gig In The Sky” is (at least on the Pulse double-live CD) a nearly six minute instrumental.  Near the beginning a man’s voice is recorded saying, “And I am not frightened of dying.  Anytime will do, I don’t mind.  Why should I be afraid of dying?  I see no reason for it.  We’ve got to go sometime.”

And so it is.

Just the night before last I was listening to Pulse (Disc 2 contains a complete live performance of Dark Side of the Moon) in the car on my way to pick up our oldest daughter at work.  On our way home “The Great Gig” came on.  Like I said to her, I have never heard another piece that expressed so much feeling without using any words at all.  Listening to it again tonight I am reminded of the incredible economy Pink Floyd used in its music, and here, in one of Richard Wright’s own compositions his influence in creating that sound is clear.

What a gift.  Thanks for sharing it with us, Rick.  Be at peace.

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