Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason: U2 'devalued music' with free Songs of Innocence giveaway

The drummer said he hoped Pink Floyd will be rewarded by fans for releasing their new album in the 'old fashioned way'

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The Independent Culture

Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason has criticised U2 for “devaluing” music after giving away their album Songs of Innocence for free on iTunes.

Mason said U2’s decision to release their album for free “does devalue things”, adding that music being given away for free “has been the big story of the 21st century”.

“Music has been horribly devalued by giving away. It’s funny they didn’t sense some of that. It’s been the big story of the 21st century, music being de-valued”, he told RollingStone.

The drummer is the latest musician to criticise U2’s decision.

Rapper Tyler The Creator likened waking up to Songs of Innocence on his iPhone to “waking up with Herpes”, while Sharon Osbourne told the band: “You give your mediocre music away because no one wants to buy it”.


More recently, Iggy Pop criticised the band’s free album ploy, describing the process of buying an album from an artist as “kind of an anointing”.

But Mason did admit that Pink Floyd’s forthcoming album The Endless River may be “aided, very slightly, by Bono and Co”.

“They did it the wrong way around and I’m fond of saying that what we did is a very old fashioned musical concept,” he said.

“We’re hoping people might actually buy this record. [U2’s release] was so unexpected, I thought, and interesting that people took such umbrage at being given something.”

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