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Rick being fired - How did this happen?
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Evander Offline
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Rick was fired during the Wall rehearsals and hired on with a salary during the tour but how did this come about. Was Roger the only one with a problem with Rick or was it the rest of the band?
01-08-2007 08:37 PM
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mikinik Offline
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It was Roger who fired Rick....

I think the historical outcome of Pink Floyd speakes for itself on this one.

Richard Wright is a full member of the band Pink Floyd....where he always should have been.

As I understand it, the only reason why he wasn't a full member during AMLoR was because of reasons surrounding the legal case between David/Nick with Roger that had yet to be cleared up and finished. This is why he was not "officially' a legal member during this time. Once all that was sorted out Rick was back. And I was one of those fans who finally saw a wrong....made Wright. (bad pun there...sorry)

Bob

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01-08-2007 10:38 PM
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IbanezIsTheColour Offline
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Post: #3
 
I think there was also something about Rick being on vacation, and Roger wanted him to come back and work, but Rick didn't want to.

RIP Syd Barrett - 1/6/46 - 7/7/06
RIP Rick Wright - 7/28/43 - 9/15/08

"Well, I could be wrong, but I believe, uh, Diversity is an old old wooden ship used during the Civil War Era." -The Legendary Ron Burgundy
01-09-2007 03:15 PM
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monkey.choker Offline
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Post: #4
 
mikinik Wrote:And I was one of those fans who finally saw a wrong....made Wright. (bad pun there...sorry)
That's awful! :Oo:




Edited By monkey.choker on 1168520165
01-11-2007 04:55 AM
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mabewa Offline
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Post: #5
 
It's a pretty complicated story, and there's more than one version of it. Technically, Rick wasn't fired--more like forced out of the band. They were in debt, and Roger threatened to withhold the tapes for The Wall if Rick didn't leave. One major factor was that the record company had offered them a good financial deal if they finished the album ahead of schedule, but this meant that Rick had to forfeit his planned summer vacation in order to finish his keyboard parts early. Rick refused to go along with this. His relationship with Roger had deteriorated before then, but it seems that Roger really turned against him permanently at that point, and insisted that Rick leave the band.

Most everybody involved agrees that Rick was having trouble and that he was being difficult to work with. However, everyone involved except for Roger also agrees that Rick's being forced to leave was a big mistake--he had contributed enormously to the band's sound on all albums up to and including Animals, and without him, the band was really missing something.

Anyway, in my opinion, if PF was still PF after Rick left, then it pretty much opened the door for PF the existence of a 3-man Floyd minus one major contributing member. Of course, the next version of Floyd was indeed a 3-man Floyd minus one major contributing member... but it was Roger missing instead of Rick.
01-12-2007 08:44 AM
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Evander Offline
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mabewa Wrote:It's a pretty complicated story, and there's more than one version of it. Technically, Rick wasn't fired--more like forced out of the band. They were in debt, and Roger threatened to withhold the tapes for The Wall if Rick didn't leave. One major factor was that the record company had offered them a good financial deal if they finished the album ahead of schedule, but this meant that Rick had to forfeit his planned summer vacation in order to finish his keyboard parts early. Rick refused to go along with this. His relationship with Roger had deteriorated before then, but it seems that Roger really turned against him permanently at that point, and insisted that Rick leave the band.

Most everybody involved agrees that Rick was having trouble and that he was being difficult to work with. However, everyone involved except for Roger also agrees that Rick's being forced to leave was a big mistake--he had contributed enormously to the band's sound on all albums up to and including Animals, and without him, the band was really missing something.

Anyway, in my opinion, if PF was still PF after Rick left, then it pretty much opened the door for PF the existence of a 3-man Floyd minus one major contributing member. Of course, the next version of Floyd was indeed a 3-man Floyd minus one major contributing member... but it was Roger missing instead of Rick.
Thanks man that really answered my question. :)
01-13-2007 06:28 AM
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mabewa Offline
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You're welcome. But, as I said, the story is a lot more complicated than that, and there are different versions of it, depending on who you're talking to (or even when you're talking to them).

First, in response to your question of whether it was just Roger who had a problem with Rick, or whether it was the whole band: my best take on that question is that the whole band was having problems getting along, but everyone agrees that Rick was not being easy to work with. On the other hand, according to all of the band members and co-producers except for Roger, it was only Roger who actually wanted Rick out of the band. Roger says that David and Nick wanted Rick out of the band, too, but everyone else involved has denied this rather strongly. David has gone on record saying that he told Roger that he felt that none of the 4 members of Floyd had the right to dismiss any of the others.

As for why Roger wanted Rick out of the band, one of the most commonly cited reasons for Rick being hounded out of the band is that "he wasn't contributing anything." Animals was the first album he hadn't had any songwriting credits, and he didn't have any songwriting credits on The Wall, either.

I've never bought this story at all though--it just doesn't make sense. I've never heard of someone being kicked out of a band for not contributing to the songwriting. Nick Mason hadn't had any songwriting credits for longer than Rick--since DSotM--and he wasn't kicked out of the band. There are a lot of indications that Dave and Roger were having conflicts during the recording of The Wall and TFC because Dave wanted to contribute more to the songwriting--seems odd that Roger and Dave would have had conflicts because Dave wanted to contribute, but Roger and Rick had conflicts because Rick couldn't or wouldn't contribute. Seems contradictory, no?

To be fair, Roger has denied that he had conflicts with Dave over Dave's desire to write more material--he says that Dave and Rick simply had nothing to contribute, though this account is at odds with that of the rest of the band and producer Bob Ezrin. Roger has also said that the rest of the band was "lazy," and that he felt he was doing all of the work. Fair enough, but since songwriting credits are enormously profitable, Roger stood to make far more money off The Wall than the rest of the band, so it wasn't like he wasn't going to be handsomely rewarded for his work. (Gilmour and Ezrin, by the way, also claim that there are parts they wrote on The Wall that they weren't credited for--for example, Gilmour has often said in interviews that Ezrin wrote the classical guitar piece in "Is There Anybody Out There"; if so, he certainly should have received co-writing credit)

Anyway, another reason that Roger has cited was that Rick's playing wasn't up to par. Now, Rick was having problems at the time (it seems that he was doing cocaine, for example, although it doesn't seem that he was ever any kind of raging addict, especially compared to many other successful rock musicians). But, I also find it very doubtful that he was suddenly unable to effectively play keyboards. Personally, I think that Animals contained some of his best playing ever, and the playing that he does do on The Wall (for example, the synth solo in Run Like Hell) is also very effective, so really doesn't seem likely that he had lost his instrumental ability. Bob Ezrin has stated that Roger simply wasn't satisfied with anything Rick was playing--sounds to me more like one of those issues where a personal dispute ends up influencing one's attitude towards other issues. By the way, here's co-producer/engineer James Gutherie on this issue: "Rick did some great playing on that album, whether or not people remember it - some fantastic Hammond parts."

Another issue: the band was using Ezrin and James Gutherie as co-producers with Waters and Gilmour. Originally, Rick had wanted to participate in the production as well, but most of the participants agree that Rick wasn't really doing anything--mostly just showing up in the studio and occasionally voicing his dislike of certain parts. Anyway, Rick ended up being told that he was not participating in the production of the album. This indicates some of the difficulties that the band has had with him, but, again, it doesn't really seem like something a band member would be dismissed for--you'd think that being denied the profitable co-producer position would have been punishment enough. The issue I mentioned above about Rick being unwilling to change his vacation in order to do the keyboard parts early is another example of this kind of thing: the result was simply that a lot of the keys were played by other people, and you'd think that would have been punishment enough without having to get rid of him. It wasn't like the other 3 members, with the possible exception of Nick Mason, were being easy to work with either. All in all, none of these reasons above really add up to me as being a convincing story as to why Rick had to be forced out.

This is my personal best guess: Rick wasn't forced out because he wasn't contributing, but the fact that he wasn't contributing made it possible to force him out, and the fact that he and Roger weren't getting along made it desirable in Roger's eyes to get rid of him. In contrast, Dave wasn't forced out because he was still playing a major role in the band (The Wall would have been a very different record without him), and Nick wasn't fired because he was Roger's best friend in the band. Rick had neither of these advantages. It does seem that Roger and Rick did not have a good personal relationship, and it also seems clear that, around the time of The Wall, Roger was really taking control of the band, and did not want anybody resisting his leadership. It was not just Rick that he was having problems with (around that time, Roger referred to the rest of the band "the muffins"), but it seems that Rick was the one he had the biggest problem with. I suspect that he was outraged by Rick's refusal to change the recording schedule to get an extra bonus, and decided to use his huge leverage as the main author of the album-in-progress to get rid of Rick.

I have huge respect for Roger as an individual and as an artist, but there are a lot of indications that he was on some kind of a power trip during the last few years of his tenure with PF, and I think that that his insisting that Rick leave the band is evidence of this. I've tried to see his side of the story, but in this particular case, I personally believe he was making a very shortsighted decision. I also think that Roger didn't see a future in PF, and felt that by taking complete artistic control of the band and then breaking it up, he would be able to embark on a solo career that would be seen as a continuation of Pink Floyd. If PF was to stay together, Rick's loss would have been enormous, considering his past contributions and influence on their sound, but if they were to soon break up, his loss wouldn't have mattered as much.

As it turned out, PF would make only one more album with Waters at the helm, and it was virtually a solo record. It would have been interesting to hear what TFC would have sounded like with Rick Wright on keys, but judging from the very minimal contributions by Gilmour and Mason on that album, Wright probably wouldn't have contributed much to it either.




Edited By mabewa on 1168833798
01-14-2007 07:58 PM
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whong Offline
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Wow...that's a hell of a post, mabewa....very well thought out and presented. I'd say you've nailed it!
01-15-2007 02:26 AM
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Evander Offline
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Dang that is a lot of information. Thanks mabewa that clears up a lot.
01-15-2007 06:08 AM
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mabewa Offline
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Post: #10
 
Thanks guys. Safe to say, it was a pretty complex situation, and there is more than one side to the story!
01-16-2007 05:27 PM
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