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Pigs (Three Different Ones)

"Pigs (Three Different Ones)"
Brazil promotional single
Promotional single by Pink Floyd from the album Animals
Published Pink Floyd Music Publishers Ltd
Released 23 January 1977 (UK)
2 February 1977 (US)
Recorded April – May 1976
Genre Progressive rock, blues rock, hard rock
Length 11:28
4:05 (promotional version)[1]
Label Harvest (UK)
Columbia/CBS (US)
Writer Roger Waters
Producer Pink Floyd
Animals track listing

"Pigs (Three Different Ones)" is a song from Pink Floyd's 1977 album Animals. In the album's three parts, "Dogs", "Pigs" and "Sheep", pigs represent the people whom Roger Waters considers to be at the top of the social ladder, the ones with wealth and power; they also manipulate the rest of society and encourage them to be viciously competitive and cutthroat, so the pigs can remain powerful. Although it was not made available for commercial purchase, promotional copies were released in Brazil, albeit in an edited form of only four minutes and five seconds in length.[1]


  • Summary 1
  • Live versions 2
  • Personnel 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


The song's three verses each presents a different "pig", the identity of whom remains a matter of speculation[nb 1] as only the third verse clearly identifies its subject as morality campaigner Mary Whitehouse, whom he describes as a "house proud town mouse" who has to "keep it all on the inside."[3]

Halfway through the song, David Gilmour uses a Heil talk box on the guitar solo to mimic the sound of pigs. This is the first use of a talk box by Pink Floyd.[4] Gilmour also plays a fretless bass guitar, with a pick, doing two short, syncopated bass solos—one before the first verse, another before the third. When the final verse ends and a guitar solo emerges, the bass line moves into a driving sixteenth note rhythm, sliding up and down the E minor scale in octaves, beneath the chords of E minor and C major seventh.[5] Roger Waters, usually the band's bassist, played a rhythm guitar track on the song instead.

In some cassette tape versions of the album, this song was divided into two parts after the first verse, fading out on side one and fading back in on side two, in order to minimise the total length of tape.

Live versions

The normal length of the song performed live was roughly 17 minutes (some would top out at 20 minutes), compared with the album length of 11 minutes and 28 seconds. Live renditions basically followed the album version with a few notable differences: an extra guitar solo was played after the second verse, the talk-box solo on guitar was substituted with a Minimoog solo and to the coda were added a quiet Hammond-led section and a crescendo reprise of the guitar solo with aggressive drumming. Waters, who sang on both the studio and live versions of Pigs (Three Different Ones), also added his signature screams throughout live performances of this song during the 1977 tour.

When played on the 1977 tour, Waters shouted a different number for each concert. This purportedly has the purpose of identifying bootleg recordings.[6]

When this song was performed in Montreal on 6 July 1977, a disruptive fan angered Waters by throwing a beer bottle onto the stage. While the band played toward the climax of the song's jam section, Waters called the fan, through the microphone, onto the stage, then spat in his face after pretending to help him up. This concert, of which bootleg recordings exist, has been cited as a catalyst for Pink Floyd's next album, The Wall.[7]

In 1987, on tour to promote his solo album Radio K.A.O.S., Waters performed a shortened version of the song, featuring only the first two verses and shorter guitar solos between them as part of an extended Pink Floyd medley.


Recording dates: April and May 1976 at the band's own Britannia Row Studios, Islington, London.[8]



  1. ^ According to one interpretation, the first verse's "pig man" refers to businessmen in general (but see "Dogs"), whereas the second verse indirectly refers to conservative politician Margaret Thatcher, leader of the opposition at that time.[2]


  1. ^ a b Pigs (Three Different Ones) (Media notes). Pink Floyd.  
  2. ^ DeGagne, Mike. Pigs (Three Different Ones) at AllMusic
  3. ^ Blake 2008, pp. 243–244
  4. ^ "Animals: Trivia and Quotes". BWP. Retrieved 27 September 2010. 
  5. ^ Guitar World, Issue #22
  6. ^ Tarquini, Stefano. "The Roger Numbers Game". Retrieved 27 September 2010. The drummer [Nick Mason], through his agent and friend, Ben Sutton, has answered me that the numbers shouted from Waters in 'Pigs' were to identify the bootlegs recordings (literally in the letter: 'The numbers in Pigs that you mentioned were ... to identify bootleg recordings!'). 
  7. ^ Ellis, Wray (13 September 2008). "Pink Floyd - Olympic Stadium, Montreal, Canada, July 6th 1977". Brain Damage. Retrieved 8 February 2013. 
  8. ^ Fitch, Vernon. The Pink Floyd Encyclopedia (3rd edition), 2005. ISBN 1-894959-24-8



External links

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