Many consider it Pink Floyd's masterpiece and one of rock music's most influential albums, but 1973's The Dark Side of the Moon is legendary for more than musical reasons. It has a rumored connection to The Wizard of Oz and features the groundbreaking use of segues comprising audio recordings.
There's much to Dark Side unknown to the majority of listeners, but the surprising facts add intrigue to the beloved album.
A Bootleg Leaked A Year Early
Pink Floyd began playing Dark Side of the Moon songs in concert around 1972, a year before the album's official release. To the band's horror, someone publicly released a bootleg recording of the entire album sequence from a London show and sold it in record stores.
Though the band feared the bootleg would hurt album sales, it didn't - Dark Side has sold more than 15 million copies in the US, becoming one of the most successful albums of all time and holding the record for the most weeks spent on the Billboard 200 chart.1,392193Is this fascinating?
Naomi Watts's Father Has A Cameo
Actress Naomi Watts has a connection to the band and their groundbreaking album, thanks to her late father, Peter Watts, formerly Pink Floyd's tour manager. Peter's laughter appears on two songs: "Brain Damage" and "Speak to Me."
Peter died of a drug overdose when his daughter was 8 years old. He was also on the album art for Pink Floyd's Ummagumma.1,467211Is this fascinating?
The Band Helped Make Monty Python's 'Holy Grail' With Money From Album SalesPhoto: EMI Films
As die-hard Monty Python fans, the band assisted the legendary British comedy troupe with raising capital for their film Monty Python and the Holy Grail using some of the money from sales of Dark Side.
Director Terry Gilliam explained why artists like Floyd, Led Zeppelin, and Elton John all chipped in to make the now-classic film come to life.
Gilliam told The Guardian:
There was no studio interference because there was no studio; none of them would give us any money. This was at the time [British] income tax was running as high as 90%, so we turned to rock stars for finance. Elton John, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin - they all had money, they knew our work, and we seemed a good tax write-off. Except, of course, we weren't. It was like The Producers.2,183364Is this fascinating?
The Band Played 'Money' In 7/4 Time
Songs played in a 7/4 time signature don't often gain notoriety - except for Pink Floyd's "Money." According to Waters, David Gilmour became frustrated over the song's time signature during recording:
I would do things, and Dave would say, "No, that's wrong. There should be another beat. That's only seven."
I'd say, "Well, that's how it is." A number of my songs have bars of odd length.1,432216Is this fascinating?