Grantchester Meadows (7:27)

Cover of Ummagumma (disc 2: Studio Album)

From Ummagumma (disc 2: Studio Album) and 14 other releases

“Grantchester Meadows” is a song from the second half of the experimental Pink Floyd album Ummagumma. It was written and performed entirely by Roger Waters. The song features Waters’ lyrics accompanied by an acoustic guitar, while a tape loop of a skylark chirps in the background throughout the entire song. At approximately 4:13, the sound of a honking goose is temporarily introduced, followed by the sound of it taking off.

The lyrics describe a pastoral and dream-like scene at the Grantchester meadows in Cambridgeshire, England. This is where fellow band member David Gilmour grew up and former member Syd Barrett lived. This type of Pastoral Ballad was typical of Roger Waters’ compositional approach in the late sixties and early seventies. It was a style that he was to continue on his first solo album - Music from “The Body” and “If” from Atom Heart Mother.

Interestingly, considering the song’s idyllic setting, a fly can be heard buzzing close to the listener at the end of the song, followed by someone (presumably Waters) walking down a flight of stairs and across a room to swat and kill the fly (an ending that segues into the following song, “Several Species…”).

“Grantchester Meadows” was incorporated into Pink Floyd’s The Man and the Journey concert suite as “Daybreak.” It was performed live during the American 1970 tour, often opening the show.
This song was one of several to be considered for the band’s “best of” album, Echoes: The Best of Pink Floyd, and would have been the only song from Ummagumma to be included on the compilation.

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