Wish You Were Here is the ninth studio album by English progressive rock group Pink Floyd, released in September 1975.
The album explores themes of absence, the music business, and former band-mate Syd Barrett’s mental decline.
It was inspired by material the band composed while performing across Europe, and recorded over numerous sessions at London’s Abbey Road Studios.
Early sessions were a difficult and arduous process but it was Roger Waters’ idea to split the centrepiece track ˝Shine On You Crazy Diamond˝ in two, and join each half with three new compositions.
˝Shine On˝ was a tribute to Barrett, who, coincidentally, made an impromptu visit to the studio while it was being recorded.
The band failed initially to recognise Barrett, who had gained weight and changed in appearance.
As with their previous work, The Dark Side of the Moon, the band made use of studio effects and synthesisers.
Roy Harper was a guest vocalist on ˝Have a Cigar˝.
The album’s packaging, again designed by Storm Thorgerson, featured an opaque black sleeve inside which was hidden the album artwork.
Wish You Were Here was released in September 1975 to instant success; record company EMI was unable to print enough copies to satisfy demand.
Although it initially received mixed reviews, the album has since been acclaimed by critics, and appears in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of ˝The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time˝.
Band members Richard Wright and David Gilmour have each declared Wish You Were Here their favourite Pink Floyd album.