Roger Waters in concert
After band founder Syd Barrett suffered a mental breakdown in the late 1960s, Waters set the band's artistic direction and, along with co-writer, guitarist, and singer David Gilmour, brought Pink Floyd into the limelight, producing a series of albums that remain among the most critically acclaimed and best-selling records of all time.
Waters' relationship with Gilmour grew strained through the 1970s, however, as Waters exerted more and more creative control over the band. The last Waters-Gilmour collaboration, The Final Cut, was credited as being by Waters, with music performed by Pink Floyd. Shortly thereafter, a disagreement between Waters and Gilmour over the right to use the name "Pink Floyd" progressed into a lawsuit. Gilmour received the rights to the name "Pink Floyd" and a majority of the band's songs, though Waters did retain the rights to the album The Wall and all of its songs -- nearly all of which had been written by Waters.
Waters embarked on a solo career after Pink Floyd, producing three albums and a movie sountrack that were critically acclaimed but failed to garner impressive sales. After Amused to Death in 1992, Waters spent the remainder of the 1990s working on a musical opera entitled Ça ira. As of 2003 this production remains incomplete.
After the downfall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, Waters staged a gigantic charity concert of The Wall in Berlin on July 21, 1990 to commemorate the end of the division between East and West Germany. The concert took place on Potsdamer Platz, a location which was part of the former "no-man's land" of the Berlin Wall, and featured many guest superstars.
After a long hiatus, he started touring again in the late 1990s, performing live concerts of some of his most well-known work with Pink Floyd, alongside material from his solo career, before sizable audiences. He is also known to spend time working on a new solo album, but it is not known when it will be finished. Two possible tracks from this forthcoming album have been released on the In the Flesh Live and Flickering Flame: The Solo Years Vol. 1 respectively.
Waters' father, Eric Fletcher Waters, a soldier in the British Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment), lost his life in the World War II Anzio Campaign (which is described in Water's song When The Tigers Broke Free). This loss has been a recurring theme in much of Waters' work. Waters never met his father.