Nick Mason details Pink Floyd and The Beatles’ first encounter in 1967

on November 14, 2014, 2:11pm

Last week, we learned that The Beatles nearly made an album with Bob Dylan and The Rolling Stones in 1969. Unfortunately, because all parties weren’t onboard with the idea, what could’ve been a historic collaboration never came to fruition. However, it turns out the Fab Four might’ve had a better chance teaming up with another legendary rock act during the late ’60s: Pink Floyd.

According to Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason, all four original members of the psych rock outfit — himself, Syd Barrett, Roger Waters, and Richard Wright — recorded music literally right next door to The Beatles at Abbey Road Studios in London. In his 2004 memoir, Inside Out: A Personal History of Pink Floyd, Mason points specifically to an instance in which Pink Floyd watched The Beatles record Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band highlight “Lovely Rita” around the same time they themselves made their debut album, 1967’s The Piper at the Gates of Dawn.

The sheer proximity of both bands’ studio sessions wasn’t just pure coincidence — it had an impact on what Pink Floyd would record. As avid Beatles/Pink Floyd fans have noted, there’s especially a handful of undeniable similarities between “Lovely Rita” and The Piper instrumental “Pow R. Toc H.”. In particular, compare the dense, intricate layering of sound, the quirky vocal stylings, and fuzzy noise effects.

While the musical overlap of both bands has always been acknowledged, it’s hard not to be amazed by such a fascinating factual tidbit. The Beatles and Pink Floyd may not have ever officially collaborated, but knowing that Sgt. Pepper and The Piper, two pieces of rock history, were conceived just mere feet from one another is almost mind-blowing enough.

Below, listen to both “Lovely Rita” and “Pow R. Toc H.”.

In related news, Pink Floyd just released their first album in 20 years, The Endless River.

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