Remember when you were young
You shone like the sun
Shine on you crazy diamond
Now there's a look in your eyes
Like black holes in the sky
Shine on you crazy diamond
You were caught on the cross fire of childhood and stardom,
Blown on the steel breeze
Come on you target for faraway laughter,
Come on you stranger, you legend, you martyr, and shine

You reached for the secret too soon
You cried for the moon
Shine on you crazy diamond
Threatened by shadows at night
And exposed in the light
Shine on you crazy diamond
Well you wore out your welcome with random precision,
Rode on the steel breeze
Come on you raver, you seer of visions,
Come on you painter, you piper, you prisoner, and shine!


Lyrics submitted by Demau Senae


Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts I - V) song meanings
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171 Comments

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  • +5
    General CommentDon't try to find out a metaphore in every line or word of the lyrics.
    this song is dedicated to syd barrett. this was said by the group members in more than one interview. somebody like to say (and perhaps is ture) that barret came in the studios during the recording of this song.
    two months ago i've seen a concert of Waters: while the band played this song, behind them the megascreen over the stage was showing pictures of barrett and the first pink floyd.
    i've interpreted this as a sort of celebration of the utter genius (in this i agree with FelixCloud) and the days gone by... it's true that Water had to kick him out of the band, but in my point of view "kick out" is a bit negative.

    One think as a not-english-speaker i'd like to know: how do explain the title? i mean: is it imperative, conjunctive or what? "you" and "crazy diamond" are both subjects or objects or what?
    thanx to whom answer. bye
    killingFlooron August 23, 2002   Link
  • +5
    General CommentTo Killingfloor:

    Imagine a comma (,) in the title, like this, "Shine On, You Crazy Diamond." You'll see that the You Crazy Diamond is one construction, the subject of the phrase, as in: "You (Crazy Diamond) Shine On," Or "(You Crazy Diamond) Shine On." Consider the title a command sentence, where the "you" is implied.

    "You Crazy Diamond" is a similar construction grammatically to "We Three Kings" or "We the People" or "Bob the Builder". These are all one "subject" or noun-phrase.

    Hoping this helps,
    vozzy
    Vozzyon September 24, 2002   Link
  • +4
    General CommentI am also of the view that this song is about their band member Syd Berrett who left Pink Floyd very early. They are missing him and wanted to say that he (Syd) considered himself as successful very soon and left. But now he is wasting his life , destroying himself... he was a shining like a start but now he is in gloom....
    ishtiaqahmedzon June 05, 2010   Link
  • +4
    General CommentIt is a biographical song about Roger *Syd* Barrett, written love, respect and honesty.
    thecrossboneon June 19, 2012   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI totally agree with Floydian. I grew up with Pink Floyd, and I have yet to tire of their music. This is an awesome song and everone should have to listen to it at least once. It's got something for every one. You can listen to country or metal and still like this song. Well.....I dunno bout country, but every thing else you could.
    thatsreallymessedupon March 10, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General Comment"Shine on You Crazy Diamond", the title is a acronym for Syd Barrett, Shine You Diamond. S-Y-D. The whole album is a tribute to him.
    wm010403on May 10, 2003   Link
  • +3
    General CommentSYD!! SHINE WHEREVER U ARE!
    trichohmon November 21, 2009   Link
  • +3
    General Commentas lots of people said, this song is written for Syd Barrett. I know a lot about Syd, this is my interpretation:
    Remember when you were young - Waters, Gilmour and Syd were close childhood friends
    you shone like the sun - Syd was a very bright and smart child
    Now there's a look in your eyes, like black holes in the sky - he turned into a psycho because of drug abuse
    You reached for the secret too soon - Barrett started doing drugs at quite a young age
    you cried for the moon - i got insane (crying for the moon like a wolf)
    Threatened by shadows at night - he also had signs of schitzophrenia, which was well fed by all of the drugs
    and exposed in the light - everyone saw him being high all the time
    come on you painter - i used to go to an artist collage because he was a well painter
    you piper - there was a Pink Floyd's album called "the piper at the gates of dawn" while syd was still in the band
    You prisoner - poor Barrett was a slave to his drug habbit.
    jGustainison April 17, 2012   Link
  • +3
    My InterpretationAuthor may have thought it was about Syd, but it's about ego dissolution.

    In youth we chase approval, then fear the laughter of others rather than delight in it (we learn shame and guilt).

    "You reached for the secret too soon, you cried for the moon."

    Let maya unravel at its own pace, don't rush it or you'll get paranoid and fearful. Ego is dissolved by the light. If you get too precise, carried by

    Blown on the steel breeze.
    becomes
    Rode on the steel breeze.

    We're blown and tossed by life when we try to explain precisely, be clever, or avoid madness, or try to see and interpret visions, express yourself, put your self in prison of conditional love, approval, satisfaction, or peace

    ego exposed by the light, when we let ego die, we shine.
    machineboron January 11, 2013   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI always thought Piper could also be a reference to "Piper at the Gates of dawn."
    Snocore04on April 26, 2002   Link

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