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Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast

Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast

Have you ever heard "Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast" by Pink Floyd? It is mostly instrumental but you can hear in the background the mumblings or Alan, a roadie who was working with the band, back in the 1970's.

I like the way Alan talks to himself. He repeats over and over again that he likes marmalade... and I doubt he was actually preparing all the food he was talking about, but I am almost sure he had coffee, bacon, eggs and some kind of cereal (some say it's rice puffs), and of course, toasts with marmalade.

Some argue that this song is nothing but a psychedelic novelty, a song made for its time, and some people even dare say that Atom Heart Mother is not a great album. I beg to differ. Let's just take a look at this song in particular: Pink Floyd was so masterful that they turned the most mundane of life events into a 13-minute song that is musically full of poetry. 

The song has three acts and since the three of them were full of inspiring material let's have a look at them individually:

Rise and Shine

This part is entirely instrumental, you can hear pianos, organs and guitars. It gives us an introduction to Alan's day, that I like to imagine as a sunny day in the countryside.

Alan mentioned several times that he likes marmalade.

Alan mentioned several times that he likes marmalade.

Sunny Side Up

The second part, "Sunny Side Up" is when Alan starts talking to himself. You can hear the everyday sounds that Alan makes while preparing his breakfast. It was performed in its entirety by David Gilmour, what a virtuous musician!

Even though this section of the song is called "Sunny Side Up", and one might think that what Alan is preparing are sunny side up eggs, the lyrics tell the opposite: Alan is having scrambled eggs.

Later on, Alan mentions "breakfast in Los Angeles... macrobiotic stuff". This was interesting to me, and it had me looking the Internet for more information about "macrobiotic stuff". This is a word I haven't heard in a very long time. I remember back in the '90's there was a surge of macrobiotic shops, but as we see thanks to this song, it's been around for a long time.

Breakfast in Los Angeles... macrobiotic stuff...

Breakfast in Los Angeles... macrobiotic stuff...

So to my understanding, "macrobiotic stuff" are healthy foods. A macrobiotic diet includes a lot of whole grains, beans, vegetables in season, and according to one source, fruit, as long as they are not tropical. So I thought overnight oats with chia pudding and nectarines would be good enough. I'm still conflicted with the idea of nectarines being tropical or not. Someone on Instagram told me that they also grow in cold climates, so they would qualify as macrobiotic... what do you think?

PS: I'll publish the recipe for this chia pudding/overnight oats on Friday!

Morning Glory

The third part, "Morning Glory" was played by the whole band, except Roger Waters, but it's beautiful. It's uplifting in a very sad way, like most of Pink Floyd's work. It's a song about being happy and grateful for your struggle, and it's really proof that beauty is everywhere.  You can hear Alan in the background getting "ready for the gig" and more breakfast sounds.

There is another song by Pink Floyd to which I want to dedicate its own photo shoot, "Candy and a Currant Bun". It's from the time Syd Barret was in the band, my favourite time, by the way!



A breakfast inspired by Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast by Pink Floyd.

A breakfast inspired by Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast by Pink Floyd.

As always, thank you so much for reading! Remember you can follow me on InstagramTwitter and Facebook and if you feel like it you can subscribe to my newsletter, I send it every Friday!

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