Pink Floyd Could Have Rapped in the '80s

Producer Bob Ezrin wanted the band to embrace hip-hop.

Ultimate Guitar

Prog rock luminaries Pink Floyd are known for their creation of elaborate concept albums. However, if producer Bob Ezrin had his way, the band might have switched luscious soundscapes for processed beats during their late 1980s comeback. While working on the band's first post Roger Waters album, "A Momentary Lapse Of Reason", Ezrin had suggested that the band introduce some rap elements into their music, as Spinner reports:

"I became fascinated with it in the Afrika Bambaataa days... I'm an early adopter. I actually brought some in when we were doing 'A Momentary Lapse Of Reason'. I brought some in to David Gilmour's thing going, 'Boy, I think this stuff with a rock beat would be awesome.'"

Gilmour, however, was not so keen:

"He said, 'Oh my God, that would be terrible,'" Ezrin recalls with a laugh. "He couldn't believe it. He hated the idea."

While Ezrin is best known for his work in classic rock, the producer notes that he was an early champion of rap music:

"First of all it's not really a secret, it's not what I'm noted for... I'm an old white guy. I'm not noted for that stuff, but then a lot of old white guys have been involved in urban music and been very important to it in that. Jimmy Iovine [Interscope, Beats by Dre co-founder] is an old white guy too, but without him the modern rap business would be entirely different."

54 comments sorted by best / new / date

    And, they probably would have been great at it, because they're Pink Floyd
    I'm pretty sure if they puked and farted in the same room it would still be a better outcome than most of the overproduced shit that comes out these days
    I wonder where the world would be today, in both prog and rap
    My name is D. Gilmour, you ready for more Pink Floyd, yea you toy'd with my emotion Now there will be commotion.... Rat-at-tat-tat take a baseball bat slam across the face , spray some mace ughh ughh....take it away Rog Wat !
    I honestly wish they did do this. Just because I am so curious as to what it would sound like.
    I live down the road from Nick Mason. Just gonna throw that out there.
    Thats awesome! Must be great knowing that there is someone you can talk to just about any time.
    Pretty much if we see a ferrari driving through town it's like "oh hey it's Nick again"
    Agent 00Awesome
    It wouldn't be THAT bad if it sounded like the fast part in Not Now John. But still, good call on not listening to the producer Gilmour.
    I have heard rap in 4/4, 5/4 and 5/8, but never in 3/4. I swear it does not exist.
    Aesop Rock, P.O.S, Eminem, El-P, Freeway, Immortal Technique, etc. 3/4 is common in more rapid fire deliveries.
    It does but it's hard to find. RZA has done some hip hop songs in 3/4 in his solo records and Aesop Rock has done some 3/4. You've gotta look at indie hip hop artists. It's just like rock... most of the more interesting and innovative stuff is underground, not on the charts.
    at least two songs of eminem on recovery in 3/4.
    Way Cool JR.
    Afrika Bambaataa was a great band and started a whole new style/revolution of music, as did Pink Floyd. Would they mix well together? I think not.
    The Floyd's final album was The Wall. Final Cut was a Waters solo album, Momentary Lapse was a Gilmour solo album, and Division Bell was a Pulse album. I'm not saying they were good or they were bad. They just weren't Floyd.
    B-but 95% of The Wall was written by Waters. It almost counts as a solo album too.
    Gilmour wrote the music to Comfortably Numb and Run Like Hell, 2 major hits on the album. He had them as demos for a solo album pre-wall recording session.
    So glad they did NOT do this!!! It seems like one had to had to rap and rap rhythms to get their music anywhere for a while. Glad to see that such a fad has faded.
    Every album needs to get defended just for the sake of one fan's butthurtedness, but if Momentary Lapse or Division Bell were anything more than decent-at-best albums, there'd be a reason to put them on before Meddle, A Saucerful of Secrets or Animals. Those albums are the sonic equivalent of Valium, and not in a good way.
    Those are great albums. Not as good as Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, or The Wall, but Echoes by itself is, and Animals comes darn close. Corporal Clegg is goofy, admitted, but the rest of the songs on that album are classic, haunting, beautiful, even the title track with all it's oddness. For the sake of my butthurtedness
    Meddle has some real stinkers on it, but it Echoes and Fearless more than make up for it. I don't get the hate for Animals. Pigs is one of my favorite Floyd tunes to chill to, and Dogs is still a good track.
    I'm sorry, but Meddle and Saucer are some of their best work. Have a listen to Let There Be More Light, absolutely fantastic...
    I think you're all misinterpreting what the OP was saying. If I got it right, he meant those albums are all better than MLOR and DB (which I don't necessarily agree with).
    as if momentary lapse isn't already enough of an embarrassment to the floyd catalog...
    Kain Highwind
    Momentary Lapse of Reason is already bad and dated enough Chances are it would've been rap that hasn't aged well
    Bob Ezrin also produced a bunch of Alice Cooper albums, wonder if he suggested rapping to Vince?