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Who laughs in the background of Pink Floyd’s “Brain Damage”

Pink Floyd


Who laughs in the background of Pink Floyd’s “Brain Damage”

In 1973, Pink Floyd not only changed the course of their career, but also changed music forever. With the release of “Dark Side of The Moon”, their best-selling album and one of the best-selling of all time, they caused a huge impact in the music business and inspired countless generations of musicians.


That album sold an estimated amount of more than 45 million copies worldwide and although it was meant to be listened to as one single track, there were some high points. One of them is the track “Brain Damage”, which besides incredible vocals by Roger Waters also has a creepy laugh in the background which wasn’t recorded by any of the band members.

By who is the laugh in the classic Pink Floyd song “Brain Damage”

That crazy laugh in the background of the song that talks about mental illness is from Peter Watts. He was the band’s road manager which worked with the band from 1968 until 1974. He was born in Bedford, Bedfordshire, England in 1946. Before working with the Progressive Rock band was the road manager for The Pretty Things.

It’s credited to his then girlfriend Patricia Watts (They both married later) the recording of the dialogue of “I never said I was frightened of dying”. That phrase can be heard in the start of “The Great Gig In The Sky”. At the time the album was recorded, Roger Waters walked in the studio asking different questions to who was around. Then he used some of their answers recorded in the songs.

But a curious fact involves Watts’ previous wife Myfanwy Edwards-Roberts, with whom he had two kids Ben (Born in 1967) and Naomi (Born in 1968). The boy became a photographer and Naomi, who is known as Naomi Watts became a few decades later the famous Hollywood actress. She starred in movies like “The Ring” (2002), “21 Grams” and “King Kong” (2005).

Peter already appeared before in Pink Floyd albums. He can be seen alongside the roadie Alan Styles on the rear cover of the album “Ummagumma” (1969). They are shown with the group’s equipment close to a taxiway at the London Biggin Hill Airport.

Pink Floyd supported his family after his tragic death

Peter Watts and Roger Waters

Alan Styles, Peter Watts and Roger Waters in the 70s

He tragically passed away in 1976 at the age of 30. He was found dead in a flat in Notting Hill and the cause was a heroin overdose. His daughter Naomi Watts revealed in an interview with The Guardian in 2017 that Pink Floyd supported her family after her father passed away. It was their money that helped them to move to Australia and begin a new life.

‘When he died, my dad hadn’t saved money, and I guess my mum didn’t have any. ‘So they, the band, very kindly… ‘Trust fund’ doesn’t sound right at all. I think they gave my mum a few thousand dollars to help get things underway. A lump sum, to help. It was kind that they did that,’ Naomi Watts said.

During the same conversation she revealed that she cried when an Pink Floyd fan gave her a unknown photo of her father smiling. It was the first time she had ever seen him with a smile.

“You’ve got to understand, I’ve got maybe three photos of my dad. Maybe two memories, and all of the photos of him are either out of focus or he’s a tiny speck in the background,'” Naomi Watts said.

I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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