Predictably, there has been a vast amount of press coverage for Pink Floyd’s remastered edition of The Dark Side of the Moon amid all the usual celebrity hype. Wish You Were Here is now getting the same treatment.
A sharp-eared reporter who actually listened to the album has spotted an alternative version of the title track, with a haunting violin solo.
The player is none other than the jazz violinist Stéphane Grapelli, who happened to be in Abbey Road that day in May 1975. I happen to remember that he was making Strictly for the Birds with Yehudi Menuhin and must have wandered into the Pink Floyd session – as one does at Abbey Road.
Stéphane was a master of improvisation. In my history of classical recording,
I describe how he wrote some of the Birds tracks in the taxi on his way to Abbey Road, trying to get his name as author onto the album to extract an extra royalty. Late in life, he was still poor as a churchmouse.
I can’t wait to hear his Pink Floyd solo.