Nick Mason wasn’t so sure about Pink Floyd: ‘Plan B for when the music failed’

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Most committed fans have likely heard that the core group which eventually became Pink Floyd met at an architecture school in London in 1963. Fewer might know that Nick Mason began with a confirmed exit plan.

In fact, Pink Floyd’s drummer didn’t just wonder what might come next, should their fledgling musical enterprise fail. He laid out a specific path.

“The three of us met when we were training to become architects,” Mason tells RTL2. “I actually arranged with my year master that I could go back after a year, if the music sort of came to an end. So, I had no long-term plan [for Pink Floyd]; I had a Plan B for when the music failed!”

Mason, Richard Wright and Roger Waters initially formed a series of largely forgotten pre-Pink Floyd bands, beginning with Sigma 6. Syd Barrett joined in 1965, followed by David Gilmour in late 1967. By 1968, Barrett had departed, and Pink Floyd’s best-known lineup was set. Waters lasted until 1983’s The Final Cut, and Pink Floyd ultimately continued with the trio of Gilmour, Mason and Wright through to the sessions that formed 2014’s The Endless River.

Needless to say, Mason didn’t return to London Polytechnic, something he never saw coming. “I certainly had no concept,” the Pink Floyd stalwart now admits, “that I would be sitting here 40 years later talking about what we’ve done.”

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