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Pink Floyd: Had a ‘Pete Best’ Too?

Pink Floyd
(Photo by Keystone Features/Getty Images)

The lineup they’ll best be remembered for featured Roger Waters, Nick Mason, the late Rick Wright and David Gilmour. And of course there was Syd Barrett, but he was gone before the band hit it big on the international stage. But the very early edition of Floyd included singer and guitarist Chris Dennis, who says, “I missed out on super stardom with Pink Floyd, but I’ve no regrets.”

Now 74, Dennis was part of the band when they did their first show as Pink Floyd, but left shortly thereafter to join the Royal Air Force after deciding they weren’t “going anywhere… I helped start the biggest rock band in the world, and it enabled me to hang out with the likes of Jimi Hendrix — that’s enough for me… When I first picked up Floyd’s first record in a store, I felt nothing but proud of them. I was so pleased and happy that they had made it. To be honest, I didn’t even like the sort of music they were playing at the time — so they probably wouldn’t have had the success they’ve had if I had continued to play in the band… But the stuff they do now is just wonderful.”

After leaving the military in 1973, Dennis set up a recording studio in Cambridge, England, and he is still in touch with his former bandmates. He speaks to Nick “two or three times a year and maybe Roger once a year — but I have to say they do move in different circles to me now.”

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