This lunchtime, the 2015 Borris House Festival of Writing and Ideas was host to a very special session. The three-day event, which takes place in June, is held in Co. Carlow, Ireland. Those in attendance today were able to enjoy 'Louder Than Words', a discussion between David Gilmour, Polly Samson, and a festival host, about the pair's songwriting partnership.
Brain Damage's Irish correspondent, Martin Kilbride, was on hand to share the event with us all, and his report below reveals some of the topics under discussions, and also brings the news of not just the title of the new album (well, at the moment, anyway) being revealed, but also some of the songs from the album were given their public airings. So, over to Martin, who also shares these exclusive pictures from today's event.
Both David and Polly were very open with their questions and answers and shared quite a bit on the writing process of On an Island and Division Bell. It was, after all, a 'Festival of Writings' so the topic was just that, despite everybody's wish to go off on other tangents.
Polly went on to tell us how she finds it excruciatingly difficult to
tease lyrics from David, likening it to getting a child to do his homework. But she was more than proud to write for David and for Pink Floyd.
When questions from the floor came up, she was asked was there any past Floyd song she would have liked to write lyrics for; she tongue in cheek said "Yes - I would have written 'we DO need education, and it should be free'!!" Polly said she didn't want initially to have a credit on The Division Bell and David said that she really should, that she would regret it in later years. She now says he was right, and would be furious now if she had no credit on it.
Very amusingly, David told us of waiting at train stations in France, and the SNCF service would announce train arrivals every so often. But before each announcement, there would be a 4 or 5 note 'jingle', which he said he really liked, and was sure there would be a song in it. So he would stand on the platform, iPhone held high, waiting for the jingle. Once it was 'in the can', he brought it home and it became a 'riff' for 'Just Do It' (that title may not be correct) which he then treated us to a minute or two of. It's a really, really upbeat, up-tempo guitar riffy tune, reminiscent of The Nile Song.
Polly told us the theme of the album, if there was one, is 'Carpe Diem', seize every moment, look to the future, 'Just Do It' and don't be afraid or hold back.
On being asked of his lyric writing, David answered "It's not something I'm comfortable with. I would love to find that key which opens the door to writing". On being pressed for a title for the new album, he eventually relented, saying "It's called 'Rattle That Lock'", funny, or coincidental, I thought, how he had just said he was searching for that key.
An audience member asked was 'A Pocketful of Stones' perchance written about or for Syd which Polly answered "No - it's actually about David. Ha - I got him to sing a song about himself!"
A few more things worth adding from the event: it was really nice to hear Polly say how that 'synergy' between David and Rick was gone, never to be replicated.
Polly also mentioned (but didn't go into detail) of recent troubles with Charlie - respectfully the audience didn't press on this.
On recording sessions of the new album, David joyfully recollected how Jools Holland was playing a jazz part on a particular song, but due to the lyrical content he often got lost playing while trying to keep up with the story of the narrative...
Polly also added how Phil Manzanera was, as well as a member of Roxy Music, also a dear friend (something we knew, but was nice to hear it being said) and was someone who was a joy to also work with.
The bells on the intro to High Hopes were very definitely Cambridge bells, and the words (according to Polly) were very much about David standing on the Cam banks, deciding to leave.
On a sombre ( but not unexpected) note, David added "despite having nothing but (well almost nothing!) but fond memories of Rogers working relationship, I'm sorry to dash anybody's hopes of a Pink Floyd reunion - it ain't gonna happen!"
Following the chat, David and Polly agreed to a signing outside, where you can see a picture here of Martin (far right) sat with his friend Conor (far left), with David and Polly in the middle.