Rogers Waters Talks The Wall with Sirius XM
Roger Waters Brings The Wall to Wrigley Field. Photo by Norman Sands.
To celebrate the revival of The Pink Floyd Channel on Sirius XM and his upcoming New York performances of The Wall Live vocalist, bassist and songwriter Roger Waters sat down with legendary radio personality Jim Ladd and a panel of fans for a town hall-style interview. The two-hour conversation was broadcast live on the new Floyd station and Deep Tracks today at noon ET, with a rebroadcast scheduled on the same pair of stations tonight (June 27) at 7 PM.
While Ladd introduced Waters and posed a few brief questions of his own, the conversation topics mainly came from the group of lucky fans who were chosen to prepare questions for the rock icon. These questions seemed to surprise both Ladd and Waters with their sophistication and depth of insight, starting with the first fan who asked Waters’ advice on finding inner peace within. The discussion subject shifted to Waters’ relationship with the late Syd Barrett when a fan asked why he became so interested in “madness” on Dark Side of the Moon, recounting the experience of seeing his bandmate “falling apart in front of your eyes” and expressing “enormous sadness about his descent into the loose gathering of symptoms that is schizophrenia.”
After taking a break to play The Wall track “In The Flesh” the conversation turned political when a panel member asked about the message of The Wall and his performances in context of the current geopolitical climate, especially the Arab Spring. This set the tone for the greater portion of the interview, with this and other political questions prompting Waters to share his views on the future of Egypt’s government, class politics, the military industrial complex and war as a means of generating profits, national security efforts, the dystopian messages of Huxley and Orwell, bank bailouts and a heated condemnation of unmanned drone bombings. Waters presented his opinions on these topics passionately and clearly, engaging the audience with the same emotion and sincerity of his songwriting. Ladd also told the audience and listeners about Roger’s practice of meeting wounded military service members backstage during the intermission of every concert.
Beyond politics, Waters also fielded questions about the processes behind The Wall Live, explaining that every morning he watches recordings of the show and changes elements to better accomplish his goals, making each of the tour’s 181 performances (and counting) slightly different from each other. Asked to name his musical influences, Waters credited The Band, an early 19th century composer and the Ancient Greek mathematician Pythagoras, who studied the scientific reasons for music’s effect on human emotion.
Waters will bring The Wall Live to stadiums across the East Coast until the tour closer in Quebec on July 21, including shows on July 5 and 6 at Yankee Stadium in New York City.