Lyrics

Money get away
Get a good job with good pay and you’re ok

Money, it’s a gas
Grab that cash with both hands and make a stash
New car, caviar, four star daydream
Think i’ll buy me a football team

Money get back
i’m all right Jack keep your hands off my stack

Money, it’s a hit
don’t give me that do goody good bullshit
I’m in the high-fidelity first class traveling set
and i think i need a Lear jet

Money, it’s a crime
share it fairly, but don’t take a slice of my pie
money,so they say
is the root of all evil today
but if you ask for a rise,  it’s no a surprise that they’re giving none away

Writer/s: WATERS, ROGER/GILMOUR, DAVID JON
Publisher: Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., IMAGEM U.S. LLC

Money – Pink Floyd – Meaning

 Money get away 

Money, as it is so frequently posited, is “evil” and full of temptation, which opens the doors to a whole different world of lust greed etc. Often times, earning an obscene amount of money comes with a heftier pricetag than first imagined. Often times, earning an obscene amount of money comes with a heftier pricetag than first imagined.

Roger Waters put together the cash register tape loop that plays throughout the song. It also contains the sounds of tearing paper and bags of coins being thrown into an industrial food-mixing bowl. The intro was recorded by capturing the sounds of an old cash register on tape, and meticulously splicing and cutting the tape in a rhythmic pattern to make the “cash register loop” effect.

Bands like The Beatles had used tape loops, but never like this. The tape loop used on this was about 20 feet long, and if you’ve ever seen a reel-to-reel tape machine, you can imagine how hard it was to keep it playing. In order to get the right tension and continuously feed the machine, they set up the loop in a big circle using microphone stands to hold it up. It was fed through the tape machine and played throughout the song.

 Get a good job with good pay and you’re ok 

In this world, in order to be “okay” (i.e. be comfortable, fed, sheltered, out of debt), the only thing that matters is that you have a well-paying job. We teach kids in school to start worrying about what job they will get when they leave and there’s societal pressure to go to college to make sure you can get a good one.

 Money, it’s a gas. Grab that cash with both hands and make a stash 

Whether you like it or not, humans run on money. If you don’t have money, then you wouldn’t have food, shelter, or heat for the most part. Money is a near-necessity, so when you find a lot of it, you better grab it while you can. There are multiple meanings here: “It’s a gas,” is a way of saying that something is funny or a lot of fun, but there’s also a metaphor here, in saying that money is a fuel.

 New car, caviar, four star daydream. Think i’ll buy me a football team 

These things are typical symbols of wealth. Most people only get to buy a new car every 5-10 years but for rich rockstars (and today, rappers) they can get a new car as often as they get dinner. Caviar, a type of rare fish eggs, is one of the most expensive meals you can buy.

Guitar World asked Gilmour if he was purposely trying to get away from just playing a 12 bar blues on guitar. He replied: “No, I just wanted to make a dramatic effect with the three solos. The first solo is ADT’d – Artificially Double Tracked. I think I did the first two solos on a Fender Stratocaster, but the last one was done on a different guitar – a Lewis, which was made by some guy in Vancouver. It had a whole two octaves on the neck, which meant I could get up to notes that I couldn’t play on a Stratocaster.”

 Money get back. I’m all right Jack keep your hands off my stack 

Again repeating the message of the first line of the previous verse. Gilmour is telling the person he’s talking to that he’s fine as he is as long as nobody tries to get any of his money.

“Alright Jack” is also a slang term in the UK which refers to selfish people who refuse to help others.

This, along with the following lines, is meant to mock how many wealthy people lobby for lower taxes and reduced government spending, so that they can maintain their wealth at the expense of the less fortunate.

 Money, it’s a hit. Don’t give me that do goody good bullshit 

The song satires the attitudes of the wealthy by having Gilmour voice their line of thinking. Once you’ve got the money, you don’t want to hear clichéd things like “money can’t buy happiness” and “sharing is caring”. You just want more and you want to keep it all to yourself. It is likely that the band wrote this after feeling this way themselves (much like how they wrote The Wall after Waters was feeling like he had built his own wall).

The song begins in an unusual 7/8 time signature, then during the guitar solo the song changes to 4/4, then returns to 7/8 and ends in 4/4 again. When Guitar World February 1993 asked Dave Gilmour where the famous time signature for “Money” came from, the Pink Floyd guitarist replied: “It’s Roger’s riff. Roger came in with the verses and lyrics for ‘Money’ more or less completed. And we just made up middle sections, guitar solos and all that stuff. We also invented some new riffs – we created a 4/4 progression for the guitar solo and made the poor saxophone player play in 7/4. It was my idea to break down and become dry and empty for the second chorus of the solo.”

 I’m in the high-fidelity first class traveling set, and i think i need a Lear jet 

Gilmour put in his fair share of work, so he feels entitled to the money he earned. Rather than giving it away to people who didn’t earn it, he’d rather blow it on frivolous expenditures. He’s so rich that even first class isn’t good enough for him any more. Notice that he says he “needs” a Learjet. He doesn’t just want one because it would be cool to have, he’s become so elitist that he feels like he simply can’t cope with anything less.

Many studio effects were used on this song. They were using a new 16-track recorder, which allowed them to layer sounds much easier, but complex studio techniques like this still took a long time to do in 1973, as there weren’t digital recorders and samplers available like we have today. If you wanted to copy and paste something, you had to do it the hard way – with a razor blade and splicing tape.

 Money, it’s a crime. Share it fairly, but don’t take a slice of my pie 

Many people like to think that giving money to the poor is a good idea and everyone should do it but not many people want it to be their own money. Similar to how many people are in favour of more government spending in things like health and education but almost nobody thinks their own taxes should be increased.

Also before this verse even starts, one of the best guitar solos and THE GREATEST saxophone solo ever, are heard.

Roger Waters is the only songwriter credited on this, but the lead vocal is by David Gilmour. Waters provided the basic music and lyrics, while the whole band created the instrumental jam of the song. Gilmour was the one overseeing time change and responsible the acclaimed guitar solo. Rick Wright and Nick Mason.

 money,so they say, is the root of all evil today. But if you ask for a rise,  it’s no a surprise that they’re giving none away 

Money is like heroin, you know that it is bad for you, but you would never want to give it up. People try to act high-and-mighty by saying that money is “the root of all evil” and no one should value material wealth, but those same people would never be willing to give that root away themselves. Those people are hypocrites.

The Bible, in 1 Timothy 6:10, says “For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

 

Conclusion

This song is about the bad things money can bring. Ironically, it made Pink Floyd lots of cash, as the album sold over 34 million copies.

Leave a comment or a different vision of the meaning of this song if you want.

 

 

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