The pro and cons of Roger Waters in the '80s

Published Oct. 6, 2014

One of the amusing internet stories last week was Roger Waters tiring of all the questions directed towards him about the new Pink Floyd album and going to Facebook and his website to declare, "Stop asking! I've left Pink Floyd 29 years ago." To appease Roger, let's remember some on his non-Pink Floyd material with 5:01 AM (The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking).

The story goes that in the late '70s, Waters had two concept albums written and wanted Pink Floyd to record one and the leftover concept would be done as a solo project. One concept was about a guy in a mid-life crisis and the other was about something called The Wall. In 1980, Pink Floyd's The Wall was a smash hit on both turntables and the midnight movie circuits, generating the No. 1 smash Another Brick in the Wall.

In 1984, Waters delivered The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking about a man's foggy dream from 4:30 a.m. to 5:11 a.m. in which all of the songs has the time in the title. The song 5:01 AM is the dream about the married man's fantasy of picking up a female hitchhiker and debating whether to remain faithful to his family. The video includes a recreation of the controversial album cover art of a bare bottomed blonde hitchhiker that was covered up by a black box in many sales areas. The woman on the album cover is British Page 3 model and adult film star Linzi Drew, who you might comically remember as part of the naughty "See You Next Wednesday" clip in John Landis' An American Werewolf in London.

The unusual song features Eric Clapton on guitar and reached No. 110 on the singles chart. The video mimics some of the lyrics that talk about golf courses, Dick Tracey, Yoko Ono and the movie Shane. Waters still is involved in music, but gets most of his attention these days for his rants and political stances.