A Saucerful of Secrets

A Saucerful of Secrets

Overview
A Saucerful of Secrets is the second studio album
Studio album
A studio album is an album made up of tracks recorded in the controlled environment of a recording studio. A studio album contains newly written and recorded or previously unreleased or remixed material, distinguishing itself from a compilation or reissue album of previously recorded material, or...

 by the English rock group Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd were an English rock band that achieved worldwide success with their progressive and psychedelic rock music. Their work is marked by the use of philosophical lyrics, sonic experimentation, innovative album art, and elaborate live shows. Pink Floyd are one of the most commercially...

. It was recorded at EMI
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

's Abbey Road Studios
Abbey Road Studios
Abbey Road Studios is a recording studio located at 3 Abbey Road, St John's Wood, City of Westminster, London, England. It was established in November 1931 by the Gramophone Company, a predecessor of British music company EMI, its present owner...

 on various dates from August 1967 to April 1968. It is both the last Pink Floyd album on which Syd Barrett
Syd Barrett
Syd Barrett , born Roger Keith Barrett, was an English singer-songwriter, guitarist, and painter, best remembered as a founding member of the band Pink Floyd. He was the lead vocalist, guitarist and primary songwriter during the band's psychedelic years, providing major musical and stylistic...

 would appear and the only studio album in which all five band members contributed.

During A Saucerful of Secretss difficult recording sessions, Barrett became increasingly unstable, and in January 1968, David Gilmour
David Gilmour
David Jon Gilmour, CBE, D.M. is an English rock musician and multi-instrumentalist who is best known as the guitarist, one of the lead singers and main songwriters in the progressive rock band Pink Floyd. In addition to his work with Pink Floyd, Gilmour has worked as a producer for a variety of...

 was brought in.
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Encyclopedia
A Saucerful of Secrets is the second studio album
Studio album
A studio album is an album made up of tracks recorded in the controlled environment of a recording studio. A studio album contains newly written and recorded or previously unreleased or remixed material, distinguishing itself from a compilation or reissue album of previously recorded material, or...

 by the English rock group Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd were an English rock band that achieved worldwide success with their progressive and psychedelic rock music. Their work is marked by the use of philosophical lyrics, sonic experimentation, innovative album art, and elaborate live shows. Pink Floyd are one of the most commercially...

. It was recorded at EMI
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

's Abbey Road Studios
Abbey Road Studios
Abbey Road Studios is a recording studio located at 3 Abbey Road, St John's Wood, City of Westminster, London, England. It was established in November 1931 by the Gramophone Company, a predecessor of British music company EMI, its present owner...

 on various dates from August 1967 to April 1968. It is both the last Pink Floyd album on which Syd Barrett
Syd Barrett
Syd Barrett , born Roger Keith Barrett, was an English singer-songwriter, guitarist, and painter, best remembered as a founding member of the band Pink Floyd. He was the lead vocalist, guitarist and primary songwriter during the band's psychedelic years, providing major musical and stylistic...

 would appear and the only studio album in which all five band members contributed.

Recording and structure


During A Saucerful of Secretss difficult recording sessions, Barrett became increasingly unstable, and in January 1968, David Gilmour
David Gilmour
David Jon Gilmour, CBE, D.M. is an English rock musician and multi-instrumentalist who is best known as the guitarist, one of the lead singers and main songwriters in the progressive rock band Pink Floyd. In addition to his work with Pink Floyd, Gilmour has worked as a producer for a variety of...

 was brought in. As a result, A Saucerful of Secrets became the only non-compilation Pink Floyd album on which all five band members appeared, with Gilmour appearing on five songs ("Let There Be More Light
Let There Be More Light
"Let There Be More Light" is the opening track on Pink Floyd's second album A Saucerful of Secrets. It was also released in edited form as the fourth US single by the group. A rare US-only single release contains edited mono versions of this song and "Remember a Day". The single did not chart...

", "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun
Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun
"Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun" is a song by British rock band Pink Floyd and is featured on their second album A Saucerful of Secrets . It was written by Roger Waters and features a drum part by Nick Mason played with timpani mallets...

", "Corporal Clegg
Corporal Clegg
"Corporal Clegg" is a song by British psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd, and is featured on their second album, A Saucerful of Secrets . It was written by Roger Waters and features David Gilmour, Nick Mason, and Richard Wright on vocals. The song also features a kazoo.-Lyrics:The song is about a...

", "A Saucerful of Secrets
A Saucerful of Secrets (song)
"A Saucerful of Secrets" is a multi-part instrumental composition by the rock band Pink Floyd from the album A Saucerful of Secrets, released in 1968. The track lasts 11:52 and was composed by band members Roger Waters, Richard Wright, Nick Mason, and David Gilmour...

", and "See-Saw
See-Saw (song)
"See-Saw" is a song from Pink Floyd's 1968 album A Saucerful of Secrets. It is the third Pink Floyd song written solely by Richard Wright, and the second on the album as such, and features Wright on vocals...

"), and Barrett on three ("Remember a Day
Remember a Day
"Remember a Day" is a song by British psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd, and is featured on their second album, A Saucerful of Secrets . The song, written and sung by Richard Wright, was recorded in October 1967 at De Lane Lea Studios in London, England...

", "Jugband Blues
Jugband Blues
"Jugband Blues" is a song by British psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd, and is featured on their second album, A Saucerful of Secrets...

" and "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun"). Barrett was finally ousted from the band in early March, leaving the new incarnation of Pink Floyd to finish the album. "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun" is the only song on which all five band members appeared.

As well as "Jugband Blues", the album was to include "Vegetable Man
Vegetable Man
"Vegetable Man" is an unreleased song by the English psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd. The song was recorded from October 9–12, 1967, and was an attempt to record a follow-up single to "See Emily Play", as well as the beginning of sessions for the album which would eventually become A Saucerful of...

", another Syd Barrett song. The song was to appear on a single as the B-side to another unreleased track, "Scream Thy Last Scream". Two additional Syd Barrett songs, "In the Beechwoods" and "No Title" (frequently referred to on bootlegs as "Sunshine"), were also recorded early in the sessions for the album. At least one other song, "John Latham", was recorded during these sessions, and remains unreleased.

Keyboardist Richard Wright
Richard Wright (musician)
Richard William Wright was an English pianist, keyboardist and songwriter, best known for his career with Pink Floyd. Wright's richly textured keyboard layers were a vital ingredient and a distinctive characteristic of Pink Floyd's sound...

 sings lead vocals on four of the album's seven songs, and backing vocals on the eleven-and-a-half-minute instrumental opus "A Saucerful of Secrets", making this the only Pink Floyd album where Wright's vocal contributions outnumber those of the rest of the band. This is also the only album to contain lead vocals by all five Pink Floyd members (Mason sings lead parts on "Corporal Clegg"), though it is not the only album where the other four have singing credits. On the album Meddle
Meddle
Meddle is the sixth studio album by English progressive rock group Pink Floyd. It was released in October 1971.The album was recorded at a series of locations around London, including Abbey Road Studios...

, all four remaining members contributed their voices again, with Mason delivering a single spoken line in "One of These Days".

Track listing


Album cover


This is the first of several Pink Floyd album covers designed by Hipgnosis
Hipgnosis
Hipgnosis was a British art design group that specialized in creating cover art for the albums of rock musicians and bands, most notably Pink Floyd, T.Rex, The Pretty Things, UFO, 10cc, Bad Company, Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Scorpions, Yes, The Alan Parsons Project, Genesis, Peter Gabriel, ELO and XTC...

, and was only the second time that an EMI group (The Beatles
The Beatles
The Beatles were an English rock band, active throughout the 1960s and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Formed in Liverpool, by 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr...

 were the first) was permitted to hire outside designers for an album jacket. Certain elements of the collage are taken from page 25 of Marvel Comics
Marvel Comics
Marvel Worldwide, Inc., commonly referred to as Marvel Comics and formerly Marvel Publishing, Inc. and Marvel Comics Group, is an American company that publishes comic books and related media...

' Strange Tales
Strange Tales
Strange Tales is the name of several comic book anthology series published by Marvel Comics. It introduced the features "Doctor Strange" and "Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.", and was a showcase for the science fiction/suspense stories of artists Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, and for the...

 #158 (1967), including the face of the Living Tribunal
Living Tribunal
The Living Tribunal is a fictional character that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character first appeared in Strange Tales #157 June 1967 and was created by Stan Lee, Marie Severin and Herb Trimpe.-Publication history:The Living Tribunal debuted in a storyline called "The...

 in the upper left, Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange
Doctor Stephen Strange is a fictional character that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was co-created by writer-editor Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko, and first appeared in Strange Tales #110 ....

 along the right edge and the image of a string of planets entering a whirlpool that runs through the center of the design.

The title track was David Gilmour's first professional songwriting credit. His name is incorrectly spelled "Gilmore", an error that would persist on all pressings until finally being corrected with the 1994 remastered version.

Songs from the album


Like The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is the debut album by the English rock group Pink Floyd, and the only one made under founding member Syd Barrett's leadership. The album contains whimsical lyrics about space, scarecrows, gnomes, bicycles and fairy tales, along with psychedelic instrumental songs...

 before it, the album contains space rock and psychedelic rock songs. But unlike Piper, which was dominated by Syd Barrett's compositions, A Saucerful of Secrets contains only one original Barrett song, "Jugband Blues".

With Barrett seemingly detached from proceedings, it came down to Roger Waters
Roger Waters
George Roger Waters is an English musician, singer-songwriter and composer. He was a founding member of the progressive rock band Pink Floyd, serving as bassist and co-lead vocalist. Following the departure of bandmate Syd Barrett in 1968, Waters became the band's lyricist, principal songwriter...

 and Richard Wright to provide adequate material. The opening "Let There Be More Light
Let There Be More Light
"Let There Be More Light" is the opening track on Pink Floyd's second album A Saucerful of Secrets. It was also released in edited form as the fourth US single by the group. A rare US-only single release contains edited mono versions of this song and "Remember a Day". The single did not chart...

" penned by Waters, continues the space rock approach established by Barrett. Both "Remember a Day
Remember a Day
"Remember a Day" is a song by British psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd, and is featured on their second album, A Saucerful of Secrets . The song, written and sung by Richard Wright, was recorded in October 1967 at De Lane Lea Studios in London, England...

" and "See-Saw
See-Saw (song)
"See-Saw" is a song from Pink Floyd's 1968 album A Saucerful of Secrets. It is the third Pink Floyd song written solely by Richard Wright, and the second on the album as such, and features Wright on vocals...

" use the child-like approach that was established on their debut. Wright remained critical of his early contributions to the band.

"Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun
Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun
"Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun" is a song by British rock band Pink Floyd and is featured on their second album A Saucerful of Secrets . It was written by Roger Waters and features a drum part by Nick Mason played with timpani mallets...

" (another Waters' composition) is a space rock number which was first performed with Barrett in 1967. The success of the track was such that it remained in their live set-list until 1973 where it appeared in a greatly extended form. Waters later performed the track during solo concerts from 1984 and later. Waters borrowed the lyrics from a book of Chinese poetry
Chinese poetry
Chinese poetry is poetry written, spoken, or chanted in the Chinese language, which includes various versions of Chinese language, including Classical Chinese, Standard Chinese, Mandarin Chinese, Cantonese, Yue Chinese, as well as many other historical and vernacular varieties of the Chinese language...

 from the Tang Dynasty
Tang Dynasty
The Tang Dynasty was an imperial dynasty of China preceded by the Sui Dynasty and followed by the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period. It was founded by the Li family, who seized power during the decline and collapse of the Sui Empire...

, like Barrett had used in "Chapter 24
Chapter 24
"Chapter 24" is the title of a song from Pink Floyd's 1967 LP The Piper at the Gates of Dawn. It was written by Syd Barrett and its lyrics are inspired by text from chapter 24 of the ancient Chinese tome I Ching ....

".

"Corporal Clegg
Corporal Clegg
"Corporal Clegg" is a song by British psychedelic rock band Pink Floyd, and is featured on their second album, A Saucerful of Secrets . It was written by Roger Waters and features David Gilmour, Nick Mason, and Richard Wright on vocals. The song also features a kazoo.-Lyrics:The song is about a...

", written by Roger Waters, is the first Pink Floyd song to address issues of war, a theme which would endure throughout the career of Waters as a songwriter for the band, culminating on the 1983 album The Final Cut
The Final Cut (album)
The Final Cut is the twelfth studio album by English progressive rock group Pink Floyd. It was released in March 1983 by Harvest Records in the United Kingdom, and several weeks later by Columbia Records in the United States. A concept album, The Final Cut is the last of the band's releases to...

. This song also features the first official release with vocals by Nick Mason, who sings lead.

Release history


In the United Kingdom the album was released on 29 June 1968 on EMI's Columbia
Columbia Graphophone Company
The Columbia Graphophone Company was one of the earliest gramophone companies in the United Kingdom. Under EMI, as Columbia Records, it became a very successful label in the 1950s and 1960s...

 label as both mono
Monaural
Monaural or monophonic sound reproduction is single-channel. Typically there is only one microphone, one loudspeaker, or channels are fed from a common signal path...

 (SX 6258) and stereo
STEREO
STEREO is a solar observation mission. Two nearly identical spacecraft were launched into orbits that cause them to respectively pull farther ahead of and fall gradually behind the Earth...

 (SCX 6258) LPs
Gramophone record
A gramophone record, commonly known as a phonograph record , vinyl record , or colloquially, a record, is an analog sound storage medium consisting of a flat disc with an inscribed, modulated spiral groove...

. It reached number nine in the charts. In the United States it was released by the Tower Records
Tower Records (record label)
Tower Records was a record label from 1964 to 1970. A subsidiary of Capitol Records, Tower often released music by artists who were relatively low profile in comparison to those released on the parent label, including a number of artists—such as The Standells and The Chocolate Watch Band—later...

 division of Capitol
Capitol Records
Capitol Records is a major United States based record label, formerly located in Los Angeles, but operating in New York City as part of Capitol Music Group. Its former headquarters building, the Capitol Tower, is a major landmark near the corner of Hollywood and Vine...

, where it remains the only Pink Floyd album to not chart. However, when reissued as A Nice Pair
A Nice Pair
A Nice Pair is a compilation album by Pink Floyd, re-issuing their first two albums—The Piper at the Gates of Dawn and A Saucerful of Secrets—in a new gatefold sleeve. The album was released in December 1973 by Harvest and Capitol in the United States and the following month in the United Kingdom...

, with the original version of The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is the debut album by the English rock group Pink Floyd, and the only one made under founding member Syd Barrett's leadership. The album contains whimsical lyrics about space, scarecrows, gnomes, bicycles and fairy tales, along with psychedelic instrumental songs...

 after the success of The Dark Side of the Moon
The Dark Side of the Moon
The Dark Side of the Moon is the eighth studio album by English progressive rock band Pink Floyd, released in March 1973. It built on ideas explored in the band's earlier recordings and live shows, but lacks the extended instrumental excursions that characterised their work following the departure...

, the album did chart at number 36 on the Billboard 200
Billboard 200
The Billboard 200 is a ranking of the 200 highest-selling music albums and EPs in the United States, published weekly by Billboard magazine. It is frequently used to convey the popularity of an artist or groups of artists...

.

The CD
Compact Disc
The Compact Disc is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was originally developed to store and playback sound recordings exclusively, but later expanded to encompass data storage , write-once audio and data storage , rewritable media , Video Compact Discs , Super Video Compact Discs ,...

 stereo mix of the album was first released in 1987, and in 1992 was digitally remastered and reissued as part of the Shine On
Shine On (Pink Floyd)
Shine On is a 1992 nine-CD box set by Pink Floyd which was released through EMI Records in the United Kingdom and Columbia Records in the United States to coincide with Pink Floyd's 25th anniversary as a recording and touring band...

 box set. The remastered stereo CD was released on its own in 1994 in the UK, and then in April 1995 in the US. The mono mix version of the album has never been officially released on CD.

Singles

  • "Remember a Day" (edit) / "Let There Be More Light" (edit) (19 August 1968, US release only)

Non-album singles

  • "It Would Be So Nice
    It Would Be So Nice
    "It Would Be So Nice" is a 1968 song by the rock band, Pink Floyd, written by Richard Wright. It was released as the fourth single by the group. The song was left out of the 1971 collection Relics and prior to the release of The Early Singles in 1992 with the box set Shine On it was only available...

    " / "Julia Dream
    Julia Dream
    "Julia Dream" is the B-side of the Pink Floyd single "It Would Be So Nice". It was later issued on several compilation albums: The Best of the Pink Floyd, Relics, and The Early Singles disc included in the Shine On box set...

    " (19 April 1968, 7" UK release)
  • "See Emily Play
    See Emily Play
    "See Emily Play" was the second single recorded by the English psychedelic rock group Pink Floyd. It was written by original frontman Syd Barrett and recorded on 23 May 1967. The single featured "Scarecrow" as its B-side...

    " / "The Scarecrow
    The Scarecrow (Pink Floyd song)
    "The Scarecrow" is a song on Pink Floyd's debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn , though it first appeared as the B-side of their second single "See Emily Play" two months before...

    " (22 July 1968, US re-release 7")
  • "Point Me at the Sky
    Point Me at the Sky
    "Point Me at the Sky" is the fifth United Kingdom single by the British band Pink Floyd, released on 17 December 1968. The song was an early collaboration by bassist Roger Waters and guitarist David Gilmour. The single was not released in the United States However, it was released by Capitol...

    " / "Careful with That Axe, Eugene
    Careful with That Axe, Eugene
    "Careful with That Axe, Eugene" is an instrumental song by the British band Pink Floyd. The studio recording was originally released as the B-side of their single "Point Me at the Sky" and is also featured on the Relics compilation album; live versions can also be found on Ummagumma and in the film...

    " (6 December 1968, 7" UK release)

Personnel


Pink Floyd
  • Roger Waters
    Roger Waters
    George Roger Waters is an English musician, singer-songwriter and composer. He was a founding member of the progressive rock band Pink Floyd, serving as bassist and co-lead vocalist. Following the departure of bandmate Syd Barrett in 1968, Waters became the band's lyricist, principal songwriter...

     – bass guitar
    Bass guitar
    The bass guitar is a stringed instrument played primarily with the fingers or thumb , or by using a pick....

    , percussion, vocals
  • Richard Wright
    Richard Wright (musician)
    Richard William Wright was an English pianist, keyboardist and songwriter, best known for his career with Pink Floyd. Wright's richly textured keyboard layers were a vital ingredient and a distinctive characteristic of Pink Floyd's sound...

     – piano
    Piano
    The piano is a musical instrument played by means of a keyboard. It is one of the most popular instruments in the world. Widely used in classical and jazz music for solo performances, ensemble use, chamber music and accompaniment, the piano is also very popular as an aid to composing and rehearsal...

    , organ
    Organ (music)
    The organ , is a keyboard instrument of one or more divisions, each played with its own keyboard operated either with the hands or with the feet. The organ is a relatively old musical instrument in the Western musical tradition, dating from the time of Ctesibius of Alexandria who is credited with...

    , mellotron
    Mellotron
    The Mellotron is an electro-mechanical, polyphonic tape replay keyboard originally developed and built in Birmingham, England in the early 1960s. It superseded the Chamberlin Music Master, which was the world's first sample-playback keyboard intended for music...

    , vibraphone
    Vibraphone
    The vibraphone, sometimes called the vibraharp or simply the vibes, is a musical instrument in the struck idiophone subfamily of the percussion family....

    , vocals
  • David Gilmour
    David Gilmour
    David Jon Gilmour, CBE, D.M. is an English rock musician and multi-instrumentalist who is best known as the guitarist, one of the lead singers and main songwriters in the progressive rock band Pink Floyd. In addition to his work with Pink Floyd, Gilmour has worked as a producer for a variety of...

     – guitar
    Guitar
    The guitar is a plucked string instrument, usually played with fingers or a pick. The guitar consists of a body with a rigid neck to which the strings, generally six in number, are attached. Guitars are traditionally constructed of various woods and strung with animal gut or, more recently, with...

    , vocals, kazoo
    Kazoo
    The kazoo is a wind instrument which adds a "buzzing" timbral quality to a player's voice when the player vocalizes into it. The kazoo is a type of mirliton, which is a membranophone, a device which modifies the sound of a person's voice by way of a vibrating membrane."Kazoo" was the name given by...

  • Nick Mason
    Nick Mason
    Nicholas Berkeley "Nick" Mason is an English drummer and songwriter, best known for his work with Pink Floyd. He was the only constant member of the band since its formation in 1965...

     – drums
    Drum kit
    A drum kit is a collection of drums, cymbals and often other percussion instruments, such as cowbells, wood blocks, triangles, chimes, or tambourines, arranged for convenient playing by a single person ....

    , percussion, vocals
  • Syd Barrett
    Syd Barrett
    Syd Barrett , born Roger Keith Barrett, was an English singer-songwriter, guitarist, and painter, best remembered as a founding member of the band Pink Floyd. He was the lead vocalist, guitarist and primary songwriter during the band's psychedelic years, providing major musical and stylistic...

     – guitar, acoustic guitar
    Acoustic guitar
    An acoustic guitar is a guitar that uses only an acoustic sound board. The air in this cavity resonates with the vibrational modes of the string and at low frequencies, which depend on the size of the box, the chamber acts like a Helmholtz resonator, increasing or decreasing the volume of the sound...

    , slide guitar
    Slide guitar
    Slide guitar or bottleneck guitar is a particular method or technique for playing the guitar. The term slide refers to the motion of the slide against the strings, while bottleneck refers to the original material of choice for such slides: the necks of glass bottles...

    , vocals


Additional personnel
  • Norman Smith – drums and backing vocals
    Backing vocalist
    A backing vocalist or backing singer is a singer who provides vocal harmony with the lead vocalist or other backing vocalists...

     on "Remember a Day"
  • The Salvation Army (The International Staff Band) on "Jugband Blues":
    • Ray Bowes (cornet
      Cornet
      The cornet is a brass instrument very similar to the trumpet, distinguished by its conical bore, compact shape, and mellower tone quality. The most common cornet is a transposing instrument in B. It is not related to the renaissance and early baroque cornett or cornetto.-History:The cornet was...

      )
    • Terry Camsey (cornet)
    • Mac Carter (trombone
      Trombone
      The trombone is a musical instrument in the brass family. Like all brass instruments, sound is produced when the player’s vibrating lips cause the air column inside the instrument to vibrate...

      )
    • Les Condon (E bass)
    • Maurice Cooper (euphonium
      Euphonium
      The euphonium is a conical-bore, tenor-voiced brass instrument. It derives its name from the Greek word euphonos, meaning "well-sounding" or "sweet-voiced"...

      )
    • Ian Hankey (trombone)
    • George Whittingham (B bass)
    • One other uncredited musician

Sales chart performance

Year Chart Position
1968 UK Albums Chart
UK Albums Chart
The UK Albums Chart is a list of albums ranked by physical and digital sales in the United Kingdom. It is compiled every week by The Official Charts Company and broadcast on a Sunday on BBC Radio 1 , and published in Music Week magazine and on the OCC website .To qualify for the UK albums chart...

9