It always goes like this:
- Syd was talented, cool, funny ect.
- Then he took acid, left Floyd and went mad/crazy.
- Then they show that photo of him being fat.
- He became a recluse.
- End of story.
This is him in the 80′s.
This is what his sister Rosemary had to say in an interview from 2009.
The common description of Syd’s life post Pink Floyd, and especially once he’d moved back to Cambridge was that of a recluse, was that a tag given to him because the media couldn’t get to him, or had his personality significantly changed?
A. There is some truth to it, certainly he was a lot less sociable after the Floyd, I don’t think we could say he was a recluse, I don’t think that’s accurate because he didn’t generally shun company. He did however become more selective, when he was younger everyone was his friend, after the Floyd I think there was lots of issues and it made him much more wary of human contact. Not everyone had good motives towards him; therefore I think he became quite suspicious of people.
There is nothing mad or crazy about that. He was obviously a sensitive perosn. He got hurt, felt betrayed and therefore didn’t trust many people.
He loved art. He painted and wrote a book about the history of art.
It’s interesting how with the term “mental health” and the various definitions, you’re essentially putting an umbrella over anyone who’s brain works in a slightly different way.
A. I think it perhaps comes down to what you can and can’t cure. With schizophrenia it can be helped or controlled with the use of drugs which benefit enormously. But with someone like Syd, and like a lot of people, their brains just work in a different way and it’s perfectly acceptable, if only we would accept people who are different from ourselves. Illness isn’t the word for it, different is the only word for it. I feel we should welcome the difference and celebrate it.