“The Wall” is a rock-n-roll opera presented as a double album by Pink Floyd and it is celebrating its 36th anniversary this month. Released on November 30, 1979 by Columbia Records, it was subsequently performed live, with elaborate theatrical effects. It was also made into a film in 1982. Band members include: Nick Mason, David Gilmour, Roger Waters, and Richard Wright.
Similar to their previous albums, “The Wall” is a concept album dealing with the theme of personal isolation. The concept was inspired by the band's 1977 tour promoting their previous album “Animals”, where Roger Waters' frustration with the audience reached a point where he spat in the face of a fan who was attempting to climb on stage at the Olympic Stadium in July, 1977. Waters would come to regret this, and had lamented that such a wall exists. “The Wall” featured a notably harsher and more theatrical sound than their previous releases.
The rock opera centers on the character, Pink, who is largely based on Waters and his personal life. Pink struggles in life from an early age, having lost his father in World War II ("Another Brick in the Wall (Part 1)"), been abused by teachers ("The Happiest Days of Our Lives"), smothered by an overprotective mother ("Mother"), and deserted by his wife later on ("Don't Leave Me Now") — all of which factored into Pink's isolation from society ("Comfortably Numb"), figuratively referred to as "The Wall".
“The Wall” has sold over 30 million copies worldwide and is the world's best-selling double album of all time. Immensely successful upon release, “The Wall” quickly jumped to #1 on the Billboard 200 in the U.S. in its fourth week. It has achieved 23 times platinum and is Pink Floyd's second best-selling album in the U.S. after “The Dark Side of the Moon.” “Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)" became the band's best-selling single in the U.S. and their only song to hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. “The Wall” was also included in the book “1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.”
“The Wall” is one of my top 10 favorite albums of all time and Pink Floyd is one of my top 5 favorite bands. My husband and I saw them in Rupp Arena during their 1987 tour. The large inflatable pig that also hung above arenas whenever they played, actually was floating inside Rupp. It was very cool!!!