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Pink Floyd | Comfortably Numb

Song Lyrics – Comfortably Numb – Pink Floyd

Hello,
Is there anybody in there?
Just nod if you can hear me
Is there anyone home?

Come on
Now
I hear you’re feeling down
I can ease your pain
Get you on your feet again

Relax
I’ll need some information first
Just the basic facts
Can you show me where it hurts?

There is no pain you are receding
A distant ship’s smoke on the horizon
You are only coming through in waves
Your lips move
But I can’t hear what you’re saying

When I was a child I had a fever
My hands felt just like
Two balloons
Now I’ve got that feeling once again
I can’t explain
You would not understand
This is not how I am

I… Have become comfortably numb

O.K.
Just a little pin prick
There’ll be no more aaaaaaaah!
But you may feel a little sick

Can you stand up?
I do believe it’s working
Good
That’ll keep you going through the show
Come on
It’s time to go

There is no pain you are receding
A distant ship’s smoke on the horizon
You are only coming through in waves
Your lips move
But I can’t hear what you’re saying

When I was a child
I caught a fleeting glimpse
Out of the corner of my eye

I turned to look but it was gone
I cannot put my finger on it now
The child is grown
The dream is gone
I… Have become comfortably numb

Enjoy This Video of “Comfortably Numb” by Pink Floyd

 Some Facts About “Comfortably Numb” by Pink Floyd

Comfortably Numb” is a song by the English rock band Pink Floyd, which first appears on the 1979 double album, The Wall. It was also released as a single in the same year with “Hey You” as the B-side. It is one of only three songs on the album for which writing credits are shared between Roger Waters and David Gilmour. The melody and most of the music was written by Gilmour while Waters contributed the lyrics and some additional notes.

The song is one of Pink Floyd’s most famous, and is renowned especially for its guitar solos. In 2004, the song was ranked number 314 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. In 2005, it was the last song ever to be performed by Waters, Gilmour, Wright, and Mason together. In 2011, the song was ranked 5th in the BBC Radio 4’s listeners’ Desert Island Discs choices.

While most songs on The Wall album were written by Waters alone, most of the music for “Comfortably Numb” was written by David Gilmour, who originally recorded the instrumental demo during the latter stages of recording his first solo album, hoping to find some later use for it. Gilmour later brought his demo of it to The Wall sessions. In Gilmour’s original demo, though there were no lyrics, he sang a melody not unlike the final version of the chorus. The verses, however, were in the key of E minor (a progression of E minor, D major, C major, A minor, and back to E minor again), rather than B minor, as in the final version. Also, the chord sequence for the final chorus line “I have become comfortably numb” did not exist in Gilmour’s demo. So, while the music is widely considered to be Gilmour’s work, it’s entirely possible that Roger Waters composed the chords for that line, as well as making the decision to change the verses from E minor to B minor.

As with the other songs on The Wall, “Comfortably Numb” tells a segment of the story about Pink, the album’s protagonist. This song has to do with Pink’s battle to handle the world. The lyrics feature interplay between a doctor treating Pink (verses, sung by Waters) and Pink’s thoughts (chorus, sung by Gilmour).

Film adaptation of Comfortably Numb

A large group consisting of Pink’s manager (Bob Hoskins), the hotel manager (Michael Ensign), paramedics, and roadies burst into Pink’s hotel room to find an unconscious Pink sitting in a chair. As the paramedics try to revive Pink, his manager berates him, complaining about how he never liked him. The hotel manager does not take kindly to Pink’s untidiness, but Pink’s manager insists that “he’s an artist”. After injecting a drug into Pink’s arm, the paramedics drag Pink out of the hotel and to his limousine.

He is then transported to a concert where he was scheduled to play. Flashbacks of Pink’s childhood are inter-cut into the scene. In the flashback, a young Pink finds a wild rat and shows it to his overprotective mother. Her negative reaction towards the rodent causes Pink to hide the rat in a nearby shed. Pink later catches a fever that keeps him bed-ridden for some time. After he recovers, Pink returns to the shed only to find that the rat has died in his absence. Pink dumps its lifeless body in a nearby river.

As he is dragged through the halls of the hotel towards a waiting limousine, the drug causes Pink to hallucinate that his body is developing into a hideous, bulbous pink shell. He dreams of injured (or perhaps dead) soldiers attempting to give him back his deceased rat. Upon being pushed into the limousine, Pink tears off his diseased shell to reveal himself in Nazi-like military attire, and now appears very clean, alert, and in control of his surroundings.

The film version of “Comfortably Numb” is very much the same as the album version, except that Richard Wright’s organ before David Gilmour’s final solo has been removed, and Pink’s screams (as performed by Roger Waters) have been mixed in, as he claws his way out of his shell.

Live performances

The song has become an established favourite, and an essential part of any live set by Pink Floyd, and also by Waters and Gilmour during their respective solo careers.

Pink Floyd

During the 1980/81 The Wall tour, where a giant wall was constructed across the stage during the performance, the song was performed with Roger Waters dressed as a doctor at the bottom of the wall, and David Gilmour singing and playing guitar from the top of the wall on a raised platform with spotlights shining from behind him. According to David Gilmour, the final solo was one of the few opportunities during those concerts that he was free to improvise completely.

‘It was a fantastic moment, I can tell, to be standing up on there, and Roger’s just finished singing his thing, and I’m standing there, waiting. I’m in pitch darkness and no one knows I’m there yet. And Roger’s down and he finishes his line, I start mine and the big back spots and everything go on and the audience, they’re all looking straight ahead and down, and suddenly there’s all this light up there and they all sort of–their heads all lift up and there’s this thing up there and the sound’s coming out and everything. Every night there’s this sort of “[gasp!]” from about 15,000 people. And that’s quite something, let me tell you.’
— David Gilmour

After Waters had left the band, Gilmour also revised the verses to his preferred grungier approach during live performances. The verse vocals were arranged for three-part harmonies, rather than attempting to imitate Waters’ voice. In both 1987–88 and 1994, the lyrics were sung by Richard Wright, Guy Pratt and Jon Carin.

In December 1988, a video of the live performance from Delicate Sound of Thunder reached number 11 on MTV’s Top 20 Video Countdown. The video was two minutes shorter than the album version and the video clip had different camera angles from the home video version.

A 10-minute version of “Comfortably Numb” was performed at Earls Court, London on 20 October 1994, as part of the The Division Bell tour. The Pulse video release edited out approximately 1:14 minutes of the ending solo, whereas the original pay-per-view video showed the unedited version.

Pink Floyd, complete with Waters, reunited briefly to perform at the Live 8 concert in Hyde Park, London in July 2005. The set consisted of four songs, of which “Comfortably Numb” was the last.

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