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updated May 2013  


 

 

Pink Floyd .

  Knebworth Park.July 5, 1975.

 


© Gerald Harbour

 

    Setlist

  • Raving And Drooling
  • You've Got To Be Crazy
  • Shine On You Crazy Diamond 1-5
  • Have A Cigar- ( with Roy Harper on vocals)
  • Shine On You Crazy Diamond 6-9
  • Speak To Me
  • Breathe
  • On The Run
  • Time
  • The Great Gig In The Sky
  • Money
  • Us And Them
  • Any Colour You Like
  • Brain Damage
  • Eclipse
  • Encore :
  • Echoes
    Audience tape : 180 minutes.

    With the success of Dark Side Of The Moon , The Floyd had become a big international act and with that came all the trappings of success. Massive PA's , playing to big stadium crowds and inevitably , a tightening up of the act and a lack of experimentation on-stage, at least compared to the early days. This was the final gig of the Wish You Were Here tour  and the band had been augmented by two female singers for the entire trip.

  This show had some major technical problems , the road crew were tired after the US tour and had a very short time to set up a complex open air PA system .

  Additionally,  being the Floyd, there had to be SOME sort of stage effect and they had arranged to come on stage as a number of Spitfires flew overhead, but the delays with setting up the PA stuffed up the synchronization and the band came on AFTER the flyby and as a consequence they were understandably pouting just a little.

  The entire set was plagued by technical problems and during Raving and Drooling one of the PA stacks actually cut out ! - a major tragedy to have happen at such a prestigious gig. The fault was fixed but the power frequency was then incorrect, which in turn put Wright's organ out of tune , forcing him to use another keyboard, which naturally changed the tone of his offerings . As this was right at the start of the set, it affected the sound throughout the rest of the concert.

Pink Floyd At Knebworth 1975

photo courtesy Repfoto © to see more click on the link

Altogether, one can imagine the annoyance that the normally fastidious Floyd felt over this series of mistakes and to make matters worse the Rock Press gave them a mauling over their showing . However, most of the people who I know who attended were not disappointed , it certainly did not put them off the band . One bad technical gig every now and again happens to everyone , it really has to be put down to experience.

Chris Charlesworth wrote

On to the Pink Floyd, who, after all, seemed to be in charge of the day’s events, providing the stage and PA and whose contract also stipulated the presence of a back-stage bar, a facility that promoter Fred Bannister would otherwise have eschewed.

    There was a long delay before the Floyd arrived while the mechanics of their production were mobilised the giant circular screen, the lofty lighting towers, the three articulated trucks that carried their sound system and finally the brace of Spitfires that passed overhead.Their set was divided. as usual, into two halves, the first offering the newer, unrecorded material that one assumes will form the basis of their next album. and the second devoted to "Dark Side of the Moon" in its entirety, followed, again as usual, by “Echoes” as an encore. In short, the first part was poor- "Dark Side" hit occasional highs and "Echoes" was pretty superb. Tuning problems hampered the early songs and Roger Waters hit many a bum note in his vocals as the group laboured along with what appeared to be little enthusiasm for the event.

Pink Floyd At Knebworth 1975

photo courtesy Repfoto © to see more click on the link

 

   With the darkness falling, they appeared to gain new life and "Crazy Diamond" the last of the three early songs, picked up as their lighting columns bathed the band in a sea of colours. At last it seemed as if an event would happen. A model plane on a wire heralded the onset of "Dark Side" which picked up as it went along, a majestic piece of music that the group must be over familiar with by now. Nevertheless, "Any Colour You Like" developed into a tremendous jam, Dave Gilmour especially shining on his Stratocaster, trading lines with Waters and Wright that moved through a spectrum of ideas not contained on the record.

    The closing two songs, unfortunately, suffered again through Waters’ vocals and it limped, rather than romped, to it’s usually stunning climax.
"Echoes" as stated, ended the day and predictably this was played flawlessly.


Peter Revell was a vital crew member who got told off by MC John Peel.

Just thought I would let you know that I was the guy that John Peel told to "get off the tower" at Knebworth 1975.
The problem that he made, I have never lived down, especially as I was ALSO the airplane operator and
pyrotechnics guy working for the band......shame he never checked his facts out.......


Chris Atkins remembers
The Floyd's performance was a day of first and lasts. First performance in the UK of the new arrangement of Shine On, in two parts bridged by Have a Cigar (Roy Harper vocals). Last perfomances of Raving and Drooling, Gotta Be Crazy, DSOTM (with the Waters lineup) and Echoes (again the last with Waters). Plus of course the Spitfires (one or two? Two, I think!) that flew over the site between DJ Pete Drummond's introduction and the start of Raving and Drooling. I seem to remember a silver Flying Fortress in the distance to the left of the stage area at one point. It's only a guess but I have wondered if the Spitfires were brought in from a local local air display, of which the Fortess was a part, on the same day as the festival.
I should say that no one else I have spoken to remembers the Fortress, so that may be my memory at fault!



This article on the PA set up gives a better idea of what actually happened backstage .

 

     Mick Kluczynski's foreign duties at the time included clearance of quipment into a country, arranging trucks, and organising load-ins. At the end of a tour, after the band and crew returned home,he stayed to supervise the trucking of all the equipment and then do the bookwork. With Knebworth so close, it was decided that Robbie Williams and Graeme Fleming would prepare for Knebworth in Kluczynski's absence during the early part of the week.     Kluczynski recalls: "The gear arrived back in the UK on the Wednesday, and it got to Knebworth on the Friday morning ready for rigging. We had ordered some JBL long-throw horns, the old seven-foot-long fibreglass festival horns, but didn't get delivery of them until the Friday night. So literally on Saturday morning, Robbie and I were building them into the rig. We had the Floyd set up totally independent of the support bands [which included Captain Beefheart and Linda Lewis], which was the normal approach for us, although we would normally run the show for them. However, because the Floyd crew had been on tour, we ended up engineering just our own section of the show, and I brought in Trevor Jordan, Bryan Grant, and Perry Cooney (ex-IES) to look after front of house for the support bands and do the changeovers on stage, so Robbie was fresh for the Floyd."

Seth Goldman had been mixing the monitors for the band on their American dates but, as Taylor recalls, the decision was made that it was not financially viable to finance his return trip purely for the Knebworth show. "I think Nick Mason was the one who said, 'We're not paying for him to fly back for just this gig, we'll get someone else.' And we ended up using a Scottish guy from IES called Arnie Toshner. I had only been around for about a year, and I remember thinking how strange it was that a band this big would quibble about such an expense!"

   While the first half of the Knebworth set was dedicated to the forthcoming album material, complete with specially commissioned Gerald Scarfe animation projections, the second set was Floyd's last ever complete live re-creation of "The Dark Side Of The Moon" to feature Roger Waters, and was followed by "Echoes" and a dazzling fireworks display. Backed yet again by sax player Dick Parry, vocalists Venetta Fields and Carlena Williams, and special guest Roy Harper, who delivered his "Have A Cigar" vocal, Floyd's performance was little short of perfect. Or at least that's how it seemed to most of the fans. Behind the scenes, however, the crew were suffering a technical nightmare.

   For previous outdoor festivals, Floyd had used the Mole Richardson generator trucks that were common in the film industry, but Knebworth was the first instance where the band's crew had to book generators themselves. "None of the other acts prior to Floyd used keyboards, so voltage fluctuation didn't bother them," says Kluczynski. "But the generators that had been booked weren't stabilised, and to silence them, they were situated off stage with straw bales all around them. When the Floyd went on, the keyboards were all out of tune and sounded terrible, and then the straw caught fire! If we'd have known of the hazards, we probably would have run the keyboards from batteries, and it would have been just as effective. So Knebworth was Robbie's baptism of fire as a production manager, but you learn!"

Knebworth crew list,

    Recently , a decent quality audience tape has come into circulation , this gives us a good idea of what the show sounded like from the audience and altogether it shows a gig that although it has its ups and downs (, some parts are out of tune -and the use of the Farfisa instead of the Hammond changes the overall sound of the band ) , is certainly worth having , if only for the fact that it was the last time Dark Side of the Moon and Echoes were played with Roger Waters . Also it is worth remembering that the next time the Floyd played the complete Dark Side of the Moon suite was another 19 years later - a long wait between drinks !


 

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The performances from Knebworth 75 that are known to exist on tape .Pages contain recording details , photos and links .

As far as we know none of the other acts were recorded . But here are the details of their performances , plus a photo of Linda on-stage provided by Henry Cobbold.



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Knebworth Concerts 1974-86

 

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