Remember when you were young,
You shone like the sun.
Shine on you crazy diamond.
From the album Wish You Were Here
Pink Floyd, 1975
It seems, lately, that every time we think about Russell or write another piece for this blog, the subject comes back to music; probably because music was such a large part of his life, but reminders of Russell seem to pop up in the strangest places.
Just this week, Ben posted a video of Pearl Jam singing Society, remembering how much Russell liked this band. We still have a Pearl Jam poster up in his room (next to Oasis), and even though we should redecorate, that poster will stay.
I was listening to Pink Floyd in the car on the way to work one day last week. This song is one I first heard 40 years ago, at a one-day festival at Knebworth House.
The album was just about to be released and Pink Floyd performed every song, a very memorable day. I rushed out to buy the album as soon as it was released (and still have it). It had a very iconic cover and came with some free postcards (sadly now missing, otherwise I would leave them in memory of Russell).
So, this song was playing on my i-pod and on this occasion I really listened to the lyrics. So much of that song reminded me of Russell, not least because it was one he loved as well. He could be really, really crazy, as many of you will remember, but he would also do anything for anyone – a real diamond.
Come on you target for faraway laughter
Come on you stranger,
Little did we know that 10 years after we first heard these words, we would have a son who could have been the subject of that song. We are still laughing at his jokes and his antics even though he is now so far away. He is a stranger to so many people who have found a postcard or read this blog, but they all say what a great person he must have been; how much they would have liked to have known him. Legend is a word that so many of you use to describe him; and yes his memory is still shining, and hopefully will do so for many years to come.
And we’ll bask in the shadow of yesterday’s triumph
And sail on the steel breeze.
Come on you boy child,
You winner and loser,
Come on you miner for truth and delusion,