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Pink Floyd — Wish You Were Here
Album: Wish You Were Here
Avg rating:
9.2

Your rating:
Total ratings: 5853









Released: 1975
Length: 5:07
Plays (last 30 days): 1
So, so you think you can tell
Heaven from Hell, blue skies from pain
Can you tell a green field from a cold steel rail?
A smile from a veil? Do you think you can tell?
Did they get you to trade, your heroes for ghosts?
Hot ashes for trees? Hot air for a cool breeze?
Cold comfort for change? Did you exchange
A walk-on part in the war for a lead role in a cage?

How I wish, how I wish you were here
We're just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl year after year
Running over the same old ground, what have we found?
The same old fears, wish you were here
Comments (902)add comment
I do not go throwing my 10's around. 10/10 means perfect, has no rival, is second to none; few songs can boast that quality. THIS IS A 10! Pure perfection.

In the tradition of Spinal Tap, I say we turn it up to 11.
Always great to hear this and most other DGs tracks played on RP - the guitars DG played on this and many of his other classic tracks will never be heard live again - I'm pleased I saw PF 3 or 4 times over the years!!
J'aime imaginer, quand cette chanson passe, les centaines d'auditeurs de RP qui arrêtent ce qu'ils font, font une délicieuse pause, en pensant à toutes ces années où ils ont été accompagnés par ce chef d'oeuvre.

I like to imagine, when this song plays, the hundreds of RP listeners who stop what they are doing, make a delicious break, thinking of all those years accompanied by this masterpiece.
Not always a huge Pink Floyd fan - OO! controversial - but, this never fails to make me stop and listen.
Morning Mood by Edvard Grieg followed up with this to start my day.....time to go hit the donate now button.  Thank you!
Wow. They just don't write lyrics like this anymore.  
Long Live                                                                                                                                      Radio Paradise
My rating is                                                                                                                          9 -OUTSTANDING
 CeluiquiCherche wrote:

Je vous écris une longue lettre parce que je n'ai pas le temps d'en écrire une courte.
Blaise Pascal (1656)
 
Thanks for the source of the quote!  ….maybe Abe wasn't as honest as we all thought!  
I'll echo the sentiment from a comment on the previous song. The segue from Edvard Grieg to Pink Floyd is perfect. Subtle. Sublime.
 lizardking wrote:

I'm pretty sure all of us 10-raters of this excellent song know all the words.  It's not the quantity of words, more the quality.  
It reminds me of the Abraham Lincoln anecdote, whereby he P.S.'d a letter he'd written with the apology "sorry for the long letter. I did not have enough time to write a shorter one."  

Long Live RP!!
 
Je vous écris une longue lettre parce que je n'ai pas le temps d'en écrire une courte.
Blaise Pascal (1656)
Wonderful tribute to Roger/Syd Barrett.

If the lyrics confuse then pay closer attention to all the songs syd wrote and whats between the lines.
Big clues are also found in the documentaries about Syd.
 gmsingh123 wrote:
9.2?  Really?  Has anyone listened to the actual words?  Two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl in one verse  and running over the same old ground in the next.  And then you have to wonder why the singer is wishing the other person was there when they're busy swimming in a fish bowl together and then growing legs and running over the same old ground.  Somehow it's not nearly as painful when I look at Dylan's or Cohen's or Neil Young's or Paul Simon's lyrics.  The music is quite good, of course.
 
Newsflash; Not all lyrics are intended to be taken literally. You thought Roger and David were talking about actually turning into fish and swimming around in an actual fishbowl? . . . Yikes.
 gmsingh123 wrote:
9.2?  Really?  Has anyone listened to the actual words?  Two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl in one verse  and running over the same old ground in the next.  And then you have to wonder why the singer is wishing the other person was there when they're busy swimming in a fish bowl together and then growing legs and running over the same old ground.  Somehow it's not nearly as painful when I look at Dylan's or Cohen's or Neil Young's or Paul Simon's lyrics.  The music is quite good, of course.
 
I'm pretty sure all of us 10-raters of this excellent song know all the words.  It's not the quantity of words, more the quality.  
It reminds me of the Abraham Lincoln anecdote, whereby he P.S.'d a letter he'd written with the apology "sorry for the long letter. I did not have enough time to write a shorter one."  

Long Live RP!!

I could have also said something along the lines of:  yeah, I know, a 9.2 average rating IS A BIT low....
9.2?  Really?  Has anyone listened to the actual words?  Two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl in one verse  and running over the same old ground in the next.  And then you have to wonder why the singer is wishing the other person was there when they're busy swimming in a fish bowl together and then growing legs and running over the same old ground.  Somehow it's not nearly as painful when I look at Dylan's or Cohen's or Neil Young's or Paul Simon's lyrics.  The music is quite good, of course.
 Steely_D wrote:
I always wonder if a band, while recording a legendary album, recognizes what they're doing. Did they feel this, and not feel it when they did Division Bell? What did they feel? Why didn't they stop, rethink it, and try again? (This isn't about the presence of Waters, but the idea that a band might recognize that the planets had aligned for this moment, allowing them to make great art. You could ask the same question of Peter Gabriel making So and then making Scratch my Back.)

 
I could make the same argument comparing Katy Lied to Two Against Nature but it would be as unfair to The Dan as this comparison is to Floyd (and Gabriel).  I guarantee that both bands enjoyed writing and producing those later efforts and look as fondly upon them as the work from earlier in their career.   Bands evolve.  As does their sound.  Sometimes the fans just can't get over the nostalgia or the ageism to see the later work for what it is: a part of the continuum of a great band that is still working hard and creating.
 lizardking wrote:
This has got to be one of the best songs of all time...and FOR SURE is the best song EVER that begins with the guitarist coughing up a phlegm ball.  10→11!! 
 
HAHA! Nice catch!
This has got to be one of the best songs of all time...and FOR SURE is the best song EVER that begins with the guitarist coughing up a phlegm ball.  10→11!! 
I like Pink Floyd trivia.

Did you know this song was somewhat written about former bandmate Syd Barrett?

Did you know he sort of just showed up while they were working on the album after having not seen anyone in the band for quite some time? https://ultimateclassicrock.com/syd-barrett-wish-you-were-here-sessions/

A bizarre story.



71 “1” votes...

incredible

10 x10 for me 
Ahhhh....I'm lying on the floor and letting Pink Floyd sweep all over me. 
but then it's also a cautionary tale kinda like death of a salesman, no?

and sparklehorse.  
 hypotenuse wrote:
So love this album.  Fitting tribute to my cousin.  Played as we walked into his funeral.  So many singing it, with tears in their eyes.

 
I lost my cousin (and best friend) to suicide in 1985.  This song still reminds me of him, and I still get tears in my eyes every time it comes on.  Wish you were here, Chris.
It really doesn't get any better than this. 
 lizardking wrote:
Where's the REPEAT button at?
 
I hear you, brother. 
Where's the REPEAT button at?
What a song! Pink Floyd at their best! {#Guitarist}
I was in a band in high-school and we covered this song. We thought we did a pretty good... turns out someone had been recording it and we played it at probably 1.5x speed... opps.
 DanielHLloyd wrote:
One of the greatest songs. Ever. Period. The end. Also a very underrated album. If you own Dark Side and The Wall and think you have all the best Floyd albums you do not. You must complete the Trifecta with WYWH. {#Notworthy}

 
{#Notworthy}{#Notworthy}{#Notworthy}

{#Meditate}

{#Good-vibes}
One of the greatest songs. Ever. Period. The end. Also a very underrated album. If you own Dark Side and The Wall and think you have all the best Floyd albums you do not. You must complete the Trifecta with WYWH. {#Notworthy}
{#Music}
So love this album.  Fitting tribute to my cousin.  Played as we walked into his funeral.  So many singing it, with tears in their eyes.
13
Maybe I accidently hit the PSD button and stepped into this "I wish I could rate it an 11" track just now, and I am NOT complaining.  In fact, I logged on specifically to shout out to BillG and THANK YOU for offering a LOSSLESS format on the Android App....and how fitting that one of the first songs I hear with the new setting is one of my 11 11-rated songs.  SUPER AWESOME, and LONG LIVE RP!!
not just for this song, but for all your great songs you play. grate work!!!! I love it
Fantastic group and fantastic songs 
I always wonder if a band, while recording a legendary album, recognizes what they're doing. Did they feel this, and not feel it when they did Division Bell? What did they feel? Why didn't they stop, rethink it, and try again? (This isn't about the presence of Waters, but the idea that a band might recognize that the planets had aligned for this moment, allowing them to make great art. You could ask the same question of Peter Gabriel making So and then making Scratch my Back.)
Just saw Waters Us & Them show last week - AMAZING - highly recommended.
Yes, I still wish you were here.
This. Entire. Album.{#Notworthy}
And did you exchange
A walk on part in the war
For a lead role in a cage?
12
 {#Clap}gedhickman wrote:
11

 


{#Cheers}
Awesomeness 
They are few and far between................IMHO.....this is 11....
11
{#Sunny}
 Bert7 wrote:
Classic...

 
Thats true! Always a 10 from Germany!
Classic...
There is actually the slightest little smidgin of life in this one. Damn, there is actually even the slightest little teensy weensy bit of human emotion as well. A rare thing from The Void. They musta woke up and realize they missed the guy.
pink floyd the division bell would be good
When you first learn the guitar, and someone teaches you the opening stanza, you feel on top of the world. Easy to play, and oh so cool. Good one RP.
 musicforme wrote:
Wish you were playing Danny Gatton, please give PF a rest and thank you for the PSD button.

 
You have your PDS button and we enjoying Pink Floyd! Isn't nice, there is something for every one. 

Love this! {#Clap}{#Meditate}{#Notworthy} 
Wish you were playing Danny Gatton, please give PF a rest and thank you for the PSD button.
well said skooba
That vote histogram says it all.
Hi Bill how about playing Bettye Lavette's version from The British Rock Songbook.It's brilliant.
Wish rating scale went to 11.
Seriously, this hasn't been played since Jan 11th? Great to hear it now :)
not only perfect song, but sadly perfect timing...

we all wish you were here, Mr Bowie


Perfect 11
I wish Robert S. McNamara was still here.  His perspective is missed.  
 sirtezza wrote:
Far too much Pink Floyd here. Tired dull old shit that is SO ANNOYINGLY OVERRATED !!
So much great music out there, so little time.
 
I agree.  There is so much great music out there.  This just happens to be better than 99.99% of it.  Happy Holidays, and may you have a healthy and prosperous New Year!    {#Cheers}
 sirtezza wrote:
Far too much Pink Floyd here. Tired dull old shit that is SO ANNOYINGLY OVERRATED !!
So much great music out there, so little time.
 
..no... 
 I use my one 11 for this.  {#Music}

ckcotton wrote:

I need this ALL THE TIME!

One of the best songs ever written 

 


You gotta love hearing the fingers scratching on the guitar strings on the first eight bars.

Damn the sound mixing board....pure, unadulterated RnR straight ahead, captain! 
 For the sake of saving the lost Citizen Kane, I rather find this pretty surprising and aftermath long-lasting.
Claudia ich liebe dich
 coloradojohn wrote:
Reminds me of my 3 months in the Amiata region of Tuscany. As I hiked and biked the local hills, this song was in my head, and really stayed there. I sang it to myself. Then one night at a local gathering at a wine bar, a band started to play it; they didn't know the words, spotted me, saw a spark in my eye, and next thing I knew, they asked me to sing. I was taken aback, but, wow, what synchronicity The Universe exhibits sometimes! After all, I was prepared — I'd been rehearsing it all along. Apparently, I nailed it. I felt as if it was not me singing it; the voice of The Music took over; it felt like when making pottery in Ishikawa, or climbing a mountain, or dancing in a frenzy...

 
Wow, what a nice moment for you. Thank you to share:-).
 coloradojohn wrote:
Reminds me of my 3 months in the Amiata region of Tuscany. As I hiked and biked the local hills, this song was in my head, and really stayed there. I sang it to myself. Then one night at a local gathering at a wine bar, a band started to play it; they didn't know the words, spotted me, saw a spark in my eye, and next thing I knew, they asked me to sing. I was taken aback, but, wow, what synchronicity The Universe exhibits sometimes! After all, I was prepared — I'd been rehearsing it all along. Apparently, I nailed it. I felt as if it was not me singing it; the voice of The Music took over; it felt like when making pottery in Ishikawa, or climbing a mountain, or dancing in a frenzy...

 
Nice...living well man!
 rharvey658 wrote:

I believe this is sound effects to create the illusion that Gilmour is listening to himself on a bad radio (maybe AM), and then starts to play along (when the guitar sounds clearer). You can hear him clear his throat right before he starts to play.  Just my guess.

 
I read somewhere that David revealed that he had recorded the AM radio tuning and interfearence noises in his Ford Cortina.

I would love to know what Derick had thought of this "star nonsence".
Bill, 

I notice you've been playing a lot of Pink Floyd lately.  Whatever you did to tweak your playlist algorithm, well done, man.   
need to play the parts 6 - 9 now, PF should never be in bite sized pieces, they said that themselves.
Syd died 9 years ago TODAY!
 coloradojohn wrote:
Reminds me of my 3 months in the Amiata region of Tuscany. As I hiked and biked the local hills, this song was in my head, and really stayed there. I sang it to myself. Then one night at a local gathering at a wine bar, a band started to play it; they didn't know the words, spotted me, saw a spark in my eye, and next thing I knew, they asked me to sing. I was taken aback, but, wow, what synchronicity The Universe exhibits sometimes! After all, I was prepared — I'd been rehearsing it all along. Apparently, I nailed it. I felt as if it was not me singing it; the voice of The Music took over; it felt like when making pottery in Ishikawa, or climbing a mountain, or dancing in a frenzy...

 
I love coloradojohn's trips back to beautiful experiences, thank you for posting them Dude! big smiles each time, now that's COOL : )
 Will62 wrote:

Sorry Lazarus - the "it's" is a contraction, not a possessive. So the apostrophe stays. And that is the last point of Sweet Virginia's (apostrophe denoting possession) post with which I agree. The term "All Time Classic" gets bandied about a little easily but not in this case

 

Nope... it is a possessive its which means it should not have its apostrophe and it should be its... the apostrophe is only for a contraction of it is to it's... hope life is grand for you right this minute, Will62...

miss you, Buster... wish you were here, brother...


Reminds me of my 3 months in the Amiata region of Tuscany. As I hiked and biked the local hills, this song was in my head, and really stayed there. I sang it to myself. Then one night at a local gathering at a wine bar, a band started to play it; they didn't know the words, spotted me, saw a spark in my eye, and next thing I knew, they asked me to sing. I was taken aback, but, wow, what synchronicity The Universe exhibits sometimes! After all, I was prepared — I'd been rehearsing it all along. Apparently, I nailed it. I felt as if it was not me singing it; the voice of The Music took over; it felt like when making pottery in Ishikawa, or climbing a mountain, or dancing in a frenzy...
From my programming days....

How I wish, how I wish i had a beer
We're just two programmers coding in a cubicle, line after line,
Running over the same old code.
What have we found?
The same old bugs.
Wish i had a beer.
There's nothin like hearing fingers scratching the strings...no over production, no filtering, etc.

This is real music...you can tell a smile from a veil. 
Now this is more like it!!
 gfp wrote:
I can't bear to hear songs from this album individually, taken out of context, sandwiched like a some delicacy between two slices of white bread or, at best, whole multi-grain.

 
I was thinking the exact same thing.  No offense Bill, but I absolutely must leave now and pull up Shine on You Crazy Diamond (Parts VI-IX).
What can I say about such a perfect PF song? I think the lyrics say it all. This song also happens to be from my favorite PF album, "Wish You Were Here," which the real Floyd played in its entirety at the Oakland Coliseum (indoors) and which was cited as one of their best shows in the US (guest appearance by Snowy White). 1977-- you had to be there & be really high! 
Song was so great I got hypnotized...You know Syd walked in the studio during this song, written for him. Pretty amazing...back to dinner...you guys Rock!
I can't bear to hear songs from this album individually, taken out of context, sandwiched like a some delicacy between two slices of white bread or, at best, whole multi-grain.
{#Sunny}
 Will62 wrote:

Sorry Laz - the "it's" is a contraction, not a possessive. So the apostrophe stays. And that is the last point of Sweet Virginia's (apostrophe denoting possession) post with which I agree. The term "All Time Classic" gets bandied about a little easily but not in this case

 
mmm sorry Will62, but Laz is correct. Ponder this sentence and you will discover your error.  "It's losing its impact." 

In any case, this is a great song and any time I hear it, is a good time. cheers 
 Lazarus wrote:

I agree that this is a truly great song, but I disagree that it's overplayed and losing its impact...  and let me point out that the possessive its has no apostrophe...

hope life is grand for you these days, Sweet_Virginia...

 
Sorry Lazarus - the "it's" is a contraction, not a possessive. So the apostrophe stays. And that is the last point of Sweet Virginia's (apostrophe denoting possession) post with which I agree. The term "All Time Classic" gets bandied about a little easily but not in this case

rharvey658 wrote:

Bad humor at its best! (?)

  
{#Lol}

 
head shot of pop star Pink with snarling grimaceHead shot of Floyd from "Mayberry RFD"

Floyd is screaming in terror. Wow, American culture has changed a lot over time. 
One of my favorite songs!
thanks for making it so easy PF ...  to give you a 10. 
 
 Webfoot wrote:
I needed this right now.

 
I need this ALL THE TIME!

One of the best songs ever written 
 Webfoot wrote:
I needed this right now.

 
Me to:-/
 Webfoot wrote:
I needed this right now.

 
 
And me, today.
 
Missing a family wedding back east today and it hurts my heart.
I needed this right now.
 korbamite wrote:
The first few guitar notes always conjures a smile:)


 
netskink wrote:
Wish you were here. Indeed!
 


 
For me it's the squeak of the chair even before the first plucks of the guitar.
Wish I was there...
More of a Rick Wright album than you would expect.
Pick him out of the mix and be amazed. (Easiest in a 5.1 remix)
 Sweet_Virginia wrote:
truly great song, but overplayed and losing it's impact. 
 
I agree that this is a truly great song, but I disagree that it's overplayed and losing its impact...  and let me point out that the possessive its has no apostrophe...

hope life is grand for you these days, Sweet_Virginia...

The first few guitar notes always conjures a smile:)


 
netskink wrote:
Wish you were here. Indeed!
 

Wish you were here. Indeed!
     {#Daisy}{#Daisy}{#Daisy}
Where's the 11?

Frickin timeless!
 Sweet_Virginia wrote:
truly great song, but overplayed and losing it's impact.
 
With most overplayed "classic rock" songs I would agree with you.
This is one of the very few that seem impervious to "overplayed syndrome".
Still gets me every time.
the best  "Wish You Were Here"  song {#Notworthy}

{#Daisy}
Nothing less than a 10
nice nice nice:-)
 {#Lol}

zepher wrote:


 


One of the few songs I can play on the guitar and sing at the same time. Maybe because of its simplicity, it is GOLDLIKE!!
 {#Notworthy}   ....... must be Godlike

Would LOVE to hear the "Immersion box" live version on RP sometime.  Can anyone help Bill out with that? Or has it been played and I missed it?
 johnjconn wrote:


Pink Floyd

 
Bad humor at its best! (?)
 (Banned) wrote:
Does anyone else notice a high frequency tone running through the beginning of this song?  I always thought it was a bad ground on my Buick, but 30 years later I notice its still there.

 
I believe this is sound effects to create the illusion that Gilmour is listening to himself on a bad radio (maybe AM), and then starts to play along (when the guitar sounds clearer). You can hear him clear his throat right before he starts to play.  Just my guess.
{#Notworthy}  awe-inspiring song
Does anyone else notice a high frequency tone running through the beginning of this song?  I always thought it was a bad ground on my Buick, but 30 years later I notice its still there.
{#Bananajam}...... when only G O D L I K E is acceptable 
And it fits perfectly in this rainy night in Georgia as well!

 
Well if this isn't godlike, I just don't know what is. 
Fits perfectly in this sunny day!!! Thank you, Bill:-)