Fat Old Sun
|"Fat Old Sun"|
|Song by Pink Floyd from the album Atom Heart Mother|
|Released||2 October 1970 (UK)
10 October 1970 (US)
|Recorded||August 1970 at Abbey Road Studios, London|
|Genre||Psychedelic folk, psychedelic rock|
|Producer||Pink Floyd, Norman Smith (executive producer)|
|Atom Heart Mother track listing|
"Fat Old Sun" is a Pink Floyd song written and sung by David Gilmour. It appears on their 1970 album Atom Heart Mother, and was performed live in a greatly expanded form (often exceeding fourteen minutes), both before and after the album was released (10 October). Live performances of this song date back to 16 July 1970.
"Fat Old Sun" was performed live by Pink Floyd from 1970–71. On stage, the song was transformed from a folk ballad into an extended rock jam, leading off from the blues rock solo after the last refrain. Extended jams would usually follow, including free-form drumming, organ solos and revised chord progressions based on the "Sing to me" vocal line.
More recently, it was adopted by David Gilmour and performed acoustically in the 2001/02 David Gilmour in Concert shows, minus the electric guitar solo. When the Floyd's manager, Steve O'Rourke, died in 2003, Gilmour, Richard Wright, and Nick Mason played "Fat Old Sun" and "The Great Gig in the Sky" at O'Rourke's funeral. Early during the tour in support of Gilmour's On an Island album in 2006, the song returned to the set list. This incarnation was composed of the lyrics followed by the concert's backing singers repeating the "sing to me" chorus, then a bluesy version of the guitar solo closer to the length of the album version (the 2006 incarnation clocked in at around seven minutes). A performance from the Royal Albert Hall is featured on Gilmour's DVD, Remember That Night. It is also featured on Gilmour's live album Live in Gdańsk.
This song was one of several to be considered for the band's "best of" album, Echoes: The Best of Pink Floyd (2001), as remarked by James Guthrie, the producer of Echoes. Gilmour himself confirmed this story on Johnnie Walker's Radio 2 drivetime show in 2002 that he had made a case for this song to be included, but was out-voted and the album Atom Heart Mother goes unrepresented on that album. "Fat Old Sun" is perhaps best described as a pastoral, a hymn of praise to the countryside (as several early Pink Floyd songs were, such as "Grantchester Meadows" from Ummagumma and "Green Is the Colour" from More). The bell sounds heard at the beginning and the end of the song were later used again in "High Hopes" from their album The Division Bell.
- David Gilmour – lead vocals, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, pedal steel guitar, fretless bass, drums, percussion
- Richard Wright – Farfisa organ, Hammond organ
- Strong, Martin C. (2004). The Great Rock Discography (7th ed.). Edinburgh: Canongate Books. p. 1177. ISBN 1-84195-551-5.
- Mabbett, Andy (1995). The Complete Guide to the Music of Pink Floyd. London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-7119-4301-X.
- Manning, Toby (2006). "Which One's Pink?". The Rough Guide to Pink Floyd (1st ed.). London: Rough Guides. p. 147. ISBN 1-84353-575-0.
- Guthrie, James. "James Guthrie: Audio: Building A Compilation Album". Pink Floyd. Archived from the original on 2 June 2010. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
- Gilmour, David (September 27, 2002). Interview with David Gilmour. Interview with Johnnie Walker. BBC Radio 2. Retrieved June 19, 2013.
- Manning, Toby (2006). "The Albums". The Rough Guide to Pink Floyd (1st ed.). London: Rough Guides. p. 162. ISBN 1-84353-575-0.
- Schaffner, Nicholas (2005). "The Amazing Pudding". Saucerful of Secrets: The Pink Floyd Odyssey (New ed.). London: Helter Skelter. p. 162. ISBN 1-905139-09-8.
- Fitch, Vernon. The Pink Floyd Encyclopedia (3rd edition), 2005. Collector's Guide Publishing, Inc. p. 101. ISBN 1-894959-24-8.