Goodbye Blue Sky

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"Goodbye Blue Sky"
Song by Pink Floyd
from the album The Wall
Published Pink Floyd Music Publishers Ltd
Released 30 November 1979 (UK)
8 December 1979 (US)
Recorded April – November 1979
Genre Progressive rock
Length 2:45
Label Harvest (UK)
Columbia (US)
Songwriter(s) Roger Waters
Producer(s) Bob Ezrin, David Gilmour, James Guthrie, Roger Waters

"Goodbye Blue Sky" is a song by Pink Floyd.[1] It appeared on their 1979 double album, The Wall.[2]

Plot[edit]

In a brief prologue, a skylark is heard chirping. The sound of approaching bombers catches the attention of a child (voiced by a young Harry Waters), who states, "Look mummy, there's an aeroplane up in the sky".

The lyrics go on to describe the memory of the Blitz: Did you see the frightened ones? Did you hear the falling bombs? Did you ever wonder why we had to run for shelter when the promise of a brave new world unfurled beneath a clear blue sky? ... The flames are all long gone, but the pain lingers on.

Film version[edit]

In the film version, this segment is animated by Gerald Scarfe. It shows a white dove (which begins as live action) flying peacefully up only to suddenly explode gorily, torn apart by a black Nazi eagle (Reichsadler). This swoops over the countryside, then grabs at the earth with its claws, ripping up a huge section and flying off leaving a trail of blood. It glides over England and it gives birth to a monster in the wake of its shadow, which then transforms into a machine that is an undefeated warlord releasing airplanes. Next, naked, gas-masked people (the frightened ones) are seen running about on all fours and hiding from The Blitz. Finally, a Union Jack that fragments, turning into a bleeding cross, the Nazi eagle crashed and the dove flies right out of it. The blood runs into the gutter and a drain. Unlike the album, this comes in after "When the Tigers Broke Free" and before "The Happiest Days of Our Lives".

Live versions[edit]

For the 1990 large-scale concert The Wall – Live in Berlin, vocals for this song were provided by Joni Mitchell, with visuals largely reprised from the film version.

Roger Waters' 2010–13 tour The Wall Live uses the song to depict a metaphorical "cultural bombing". As bomber planes fly in from the distance, they drop not bombs, but dollar signs, euro signs, religious symbols, and corporate logos. This imagery ended up attracting controversy due to the juxtaposition of dollar signs and the Star of David, which was deemed antisemetic by the Anti-Defamation League; Waters later removed the offending iconography[3] and wrote an open letter to The Independent clarifying that the Star was meant to critique the Israeli government.[4]

Personnel[edit]

with:

Cover versions[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Fitch, Vernon. The Pink Floyd Encyclopedia (3rd edition), 2005. ISBN 1-894959-24-8

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mabbett, Andy (1995). The Complete Guide to the Music of Pink Floyd. London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-7119-4301-X. 
  2. ^ Strong, Martin C. (2004). The Great Rock Discography (7th ed.). Edinburgh: Canongate Books. p. 1177. ISBN 1-84195-551-5. 
  3. ^ Andy Greene (7 October 2010). "Roger Waters Changes Controversial ‘Wall’ Video". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 19 October 2015. 
  4. ^ Harkov, Lahav (5 October 2010). "Roger Waters: I'm not anti-Semitic, I'm anti-occupation". The Jerusalem Post. 
  5. ^ a b c d Fitch, Vernon and Mahon, Richard, Comfortably Numb — A History of The Wall 1978–1981, 2006, p.81.

External links[edit]