Syd Barrett Was A Whistle Blower, Derek Shulman Explains

In a recent appearance on Classic Album Review, Derek Shulman shared how they felt disappointed when Syd Barrett blew the whistle on them during their early days.

Recalling the creative process behind ‘We Are the Moles,’ the musician said:

“He [his brother-in-law] said, ‘I’ll get you three hours in the studio for EMI just to write a song if you think is cool.’ So we wrote ‘We Are the Moles,’ and he had his marketing ideas. I think we wrote the song in about five minutes, and it was just me and my brothers. It was just me, Ray, and Phil.”

He then reflected on how Barrett changed the course of events, explaining:

“The buzz was really happening. However, we didn’t know at that point in the studio atmosphere that Syd Barrett and Pink Floyd were recording as well. When the buzz started to happen, people were saying, ‘Wow, the Beatles. It’s a Beatles song. They want to call themselves The Moles. we’ve got to buy this.’ Syd Barrett did a big interview, saying, ‘No, it’s not. It’s not the Beatles. It’s the sh*tty band, Simon Dupree.’ So he blew the whistle on us.”

Shulman added, expressing the impact of Syd’s words on them:

“So yes, he was the whistleblower, which we were disappointed at because we could have started Gentle Giant a couple of years before. That was our intro to getting putting new music out there to get to have an audience; a different kind of audience if you like.”

Although Barrett unmasked them then, Derek went on to make music with his brothers, along with the addition of other members, under the name Gentle Giant. The band’s journey ended in 1980 after eleven albums, and Shulman worked as a record executive in the following years.

You can watch the full interview below.