The legendary Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason often praises the albums the band released before the most successful ones. In an interview with GQ Magazine back in 2015 he revealed that his favorite Floyd song is from the album A Saucerful of Secrets (1968) and explained why.
Nick Mason reveals his favorite Pink Floyd song of all time:
“I usually cite ‘Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun’ as my favourite Pink Floyd song – it’s fun to play, and has interesting dynamics. I know exactly where it came from in terms of the drum part, which was Chico Hamilton playing in a film called Jazz On A Summer’s Day.”
“He does a drum solo played with mallets. It’s beautiful, and so different to any other drum solo. I’m all in favour of technique, and would encourage any young drummer to practice and learn the basics. But so much of rock drumming is about what not to play. It’s about the space in between.”
Are you saying Pink Floyd were all secret jazzers at heart?
“No, we weren’t. Rick was, and I went through a period of being interested in jazz. But then I realised you need to have far too much technique, so I moved on… When I watch very technical drummers, I still find myself thinking, ‘I wish I could do that’.”
“And I probably could if I put my mind to it, and stopped messing around with cars.”
Nick Mason was born in Birmingham, January 27, 1944 and was the only member who has not left Pink Floyd since the band was formed in 1965. Despite writing few songs for Pink Floyd, he contributes some of the band’s most famous songs, such as “Interstellar Overdrive”, “A Saucerful Of Secrets” and “Echoes”. He also competes in auto events, such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans and was the only member of Pink Floyd to participate in the recording of all the albums.
The son of documentary filmmaker Bill Mason, he studied at Frensham Heights School, near Farnham. He subsequently studied at the University of Westminster, where he joined Roger Waters, Bob Klose and Richard Wright in 1964 to form the background to Pink Floyd, Sigma 6.
In a recent interview with The Telegraph, Nick Mason talked about the band’s creativity, saying:
“I still don’t quite understand how we got to that point of such free experimentation. We thought of ourselves as an R’n’B band, playing hits. It was just a bit of fun. We were floundering around. And we wanted to be a pop group.”
“We wanted to meet girls and have a wild time and be famous. I think we jumped on the bandwagon. All of those A&R guys at record companies were searching for the next big thing, and it looked like it was a toss-up between psychedelic music and reggae. And you should hear us play reggae. So, so bad.”
“The interesting thing is how unpopular we were with our funny old psychedelic music. We used to go up north and the crowds would boo. They hated us. I can’t understand why we didn’t just fold it there and then.”