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Apples and Oranges (song)
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Apples and Oranges Song

"Apples and Oranges"
Single by Pink Floyd
"Paint Box"
Released18 November 1967
Format7-inch single
Recorded26 and 27 October 1967
GenrePsychedelic pop[1]
LabelColumbia (EMI)
Syd Barrett
Norman Smith
Pink Floyd singles chronology
"Apples and Oranges"
"It Would Be So Nice"
An Introduction to Syd Barrett track listing
18 tracks
  1. "Arnold Layne"
  2. "See Emily Play"
  3. "Apples and Oranges"
  4. "Matilda Mother"
  5. "Chapter 24"
  6. "Bike"
  7. "Terrapin"
  8. "Love You"
  9. "Dark Globe"
  10. "Here I Go"
  11. "Octopus"
  12. "She Took a Long Cool Look"
  13. "If It's In You"
  14. "Baby Lemonade"
  15. "Dominoes"
  16. "Gigolo Aunt"
  17. "Effervescing Elephant"
  18. "Bob Dylan Blues"

"Apples and Oranges" is the third United Kingdom single by Pink Floyd, the final one written by Syd Barrett,[2][3] and released in 1967. The B-side was "Paint Box" written by Richard Wright. The song is about a girl whom the narrator meets at the supermarket. It is one of only a handful of songs by Pink Floyd which deals directly with love.

The song was recorded shortly before the band's US tour, on 26 and 27 October.[4]

TV performances

Pink Floyd, along with Barrett, mimed the song on their first US televised performances on The Pat Boone Show and American Bandstand. Barrett kept his lips closed during the first performance but mimed competently on the latter show, of which footage survives.[5] After Barrett was replaced by David Gilmour, the band recorded a promotional film in Belgium in a fruit market with Roger Waters lip synching, as Barrett had left the band by this point.


This was the group's first single that failed to break into the UK charts,[6] and their US label Tower Records issued a US-only single instead: "Flaming" b/w "The Gnome" (Tower 378). Waters blamed the single's sales performance on Norman Smith: "'Apples and Oranges' was destroyed by the production. It's a fucking good song".[6][7] When the single failed to reach the charts, Barrett's reply was that he "couldn't care less."[6][8]

Further release

Both sides of the single were mixed in stereo, but the single was issued in mono, which was very muddy and probably contributed to its lack of success. The stereo mix of "Paint Box" first appeared on the Relics compilation (1971), and both tracks appeared in stereo on the Masters of Rock compilation (1974). The other four early UK singles were issued in mono originally. "Arnold Layne", "See Emily Play", "It Would Be So Nice", and "Point Me at the Sky" only exist in mono or false stereo, while "Julia Dream" was remixed for stereo at a later time, for inclusion on Relics. Mono and stereo mixes of "Apples and Oranges" and the mono mix of "Paint Box" are included in the 40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition release of The Piper at the Gates of Dawn.[9]


"It's a happy song, and it's got a touch of Christmas. It's about a girl who I saw just walking round town, in Richmond." -- Syd Barrett[10]

NME hailed it as "the most psychedelic single the Pink Floyd have come up with", however, it was "pretty hard to get a hold of".[6]



  1. ^ "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn (3-CD Deluxe Edition)".
  2. ^ Strong, Martin C. (2004). The Great Rock Discography (7th ed.). Edinburgh: Canongate Books. p. 1177. ISBN 1-84195-551-5.
  3. ^ Mabbett, Andy (1995). The Complete Guide to the Music of Pink Floyd. London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-7119-4301-X.
  4. ^ Chapman, Rob (2010). Syd Barrett: A Very Irregular Head (Paperback ed.). London: Faber. p. 189. ISBN 978-0-571-23855-2.
  5. ^ Chapman, Rob (2010). Syd Barrett: A Very Irregular Head (1st ed.). London: Faber and Faber. p. 199. ISBN 978-0-571-23854-5.
  6. ^ a b c d Manning, Toby (2006). The Rough Guide to Pink Floyd (1st ed.). London: Rough Guides. p. 43. ISBN 1-84353-575-0.
  7. ^ Schaffner, Nicholas (2005). Saucerful of Secrets: The Pink Floyd Odyssey (New ed.). London: Helter Skelter. p. 98. ISBN 1-905139-09-8.
  8. ^ Palacios, Julian (2010). Syd Barrett & Pink Floyd: Dark Globe (Rev. ed.). London: Plexus. p. 308. ISBN 0859654311.
  9. ^ Pink Floyd official website Archived 18 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine, UK.
  10. ^ MacDonald, Bruno. Pink Floyd: Through the Eyes of the Band, Its Fans, Friends, and Foes. p. 188.

External links

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