Syd Barrett’s Faerie-Tales


Syd Barrett has always been a major influence for me; a lost genius amidst the tumultuous cultural times of the late 1960s. I even managed to slip him into my novel Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun, as an oracle of wisdom to my deranged protagonist. It’s no secret that he was an enthusiastic user of LSD, but probably less well-known (apart from amongst his fan-base) that his very irregular head often interacted with the world of the faeries.

Probably the best biography of Syd is Rob Chapman’s Syd Barrett – A Very Irregular Head,sydbarrettaveryirregularheadukpublished in 2010. Chapman goes to some length in analysing Syd’s early influences, and how they translated into the first Pink Floyd album Piper at the Gates of Dawn in 1967. The very name of the album is taken from a chapter in Kenneth Graham’s Wind in the Willows, where Rat and…

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