“..It was all Murray Sim’s fault.
He lived near me on the outskirts of Edinburgh and when I was about 13 he told me he had bought an amazing LP.
It was called The Piper at the Gates of Dawn by some people with a really weird name … Pink Floyd.
One day after school he played it for me.
My music tastes at the time were fairly wide (they still are) – everything from the Incredible String Band, Bert Jansch and Bob Dylan to Tamla Motown, John Mayall, Howlin’ Wolf, Cream and the Rolling Stones.
But this Pink Floyd thing was … different.
I wasn’t very enthusiastic at first.
“That’s because you are not really listening to it,” Murray said.
After a couple of plays and a more mugs of his execrable instant coffee, I was hooked.
It was my entry into the world of King Crimson, Jethro Tull, Jon Hiseman’s Colosseum, and many others.
It was years before this was called prog rock.
I just loved the music; fresh, challenging, inventive.
If we have to put music into baskets, then the progressive rock bands I fell in love with as a teenager made sounds that shaded into jazz, folk, metal -
- and in the case of the wonderful (and sadly missed) Jon Lord, modern classical music.
For me, prog rock has always been essentially British.
It combines all our great and eccentric genius…”
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