Roger Waters and Nick Mason reunite to launch The Pink Floyd Exhibition
Roger Waters and Nick Mason reunited in London on Thursday (16.02.17) to launch 'The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains' - which they needed to do now as they "might not be around much longer".
The two music legends came together to announce the look back at the psychedelic band's incredible career to mark the 50th anniversary of the group's first album 'The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn' and their debut single 'Arnold Layne'.
As well as wanting to celebrate the 'Comfortably Numb' rockers' special birthday, Mason, 73, admitted it was important for them to curate the historic artefacts now because none of the surviving members - which also includes 70-year-old guitarist David Gilmour - are getting any younger.
Speaking at a Q&A held at The May Fair Hotel, attended by BANG Showbiz, the drummer said: "Well, I think there's a couple of reasons: one is celebrating 50 years, and two is that we're of an age where we might not be around much longer."
Long-time Pink Floyd collaborator Aubrey 'Po' Powell was integral in getting the exhibition off the ground and of the band member it is Mason who had the most artefacts, props and recordings stored.
Pink Floyd are famed for their elaborate and pioneering stage shows and Mason readily admits there are not many original stage props left because it's hard to find space for a "70ft teacher", like the one used for 'The Wall Tour'.
He shared: "Yes I am the archivist - this is my show! What I did do several years ago was try and do some kind of archive. Mainly geared around the videos and photographs, apart from that I'd never let much. I'd kept old paper work and paper things but I didn't keep many old instruments and certainly one of the things when we first started talking about this. When we first started talking about this I'd been to the David Bowie exhibition which was fantastic and I didn't think we could do it because I was thinking in terms of costumes and we didn't have many costumes. There is a garage with hundreds of drum kits but they're not going in the exhibition, it was a case of putting the word out. David has got a lot of musical instruments, we kept a few props but the problem is where do you put a 70ft teacher? We're a bit short of space so there's plenty of things we don't have, things like pigs and so on we have built a few over the years so we can usually find a pig."
Among the items on display in the 350 separate exhibits is concept art from the planning stages of the band's tours, paintings by original lead singer Syd Barrett, guitars, album art and clothes worn by the band at all stages of their musical journey.
They are also unique pieces of rock 'n' roll memorabilia such as a letter from the helicopter pilot hired to chase the giant inflatable pig, suspended above Battersea Power Station for the cover of 1977 album 'Animals' after it broke free and floated off towards Kent and the actual corporal punishment cane that was used on Waters when he was at school in Cambridge, a formative experience that inspired songs on 'The Wall'.
And bassist-and-vocalist Waters can't wait to tour the exhibition himself and get a good look at that cane and the punishment log book which was kept at his school.
He said: "I've been involved in it almost not at all other than sourcing things for it. Aubrey Powell has been organising everything as far as I can tell, I live in the States now. I met with him this morning and was running through some stuff and I have to say I'm looking forward to going, there's a lot of good stuff. I particularly want to see the cane from school."
Visitors to the attraction will be welcomed inside through a Bedford van which the first line-up - comprised of Waters, Mason and the late Barrett and keyboard player Rick Wright - used to tour the UK in the mid-60s.
The exhibition is to open at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London on May 13 and it will run until October 1, 2017.
Tickets for 'The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains' can purchased now.