Partial mass retain

The Gazette has an interview with Steve Howe, inasmuch as the current touring version of Yes is due in town next week (Howe, Chris Squire and Alan White, along with vocalist Benoît David, found in a Yes tribute band called Close to the Edge, and keyboardist Oliver Wakeman, whose surname may seem familiar), and I found this bit about the set list interesting:

“One of the regulars is always going to be ‘Roundabout.’ We never think the show is really ended properly until we’ve done ‘Starship Trooper’,” Howe said of the set list. “For the most part, the wealth of it comes from ‘The Yes Album, Fragile and Close to the Edge… I don’t think Yes is about ‘Owner of a Lonely Heart.’ I think Yes is about Relayer or ‘The Gates of Delirium’.”

While I am fond of “Owner of a Lonely Heart,” I can’t blame Howe for his indifference to it: he’d left the band before the 90125 sessions and had nothing to do with the recording. Still, he’s willing to play it:

“Yes is Yes. It isn’t only Yes when I was there. It isn’t only Yes when (singer) Jon (Anderson) was there.”

Which seems fair enough. I mention in passing that the Wings Over The World tour in the middle Seventies managed to find room for a couple of non-McCartney songs: Jimmy McCulloch sang his own “Medicine Jar,” and Denny Laine took the lead on “Go Now,” the early Moody Blues hit, which he’d sung way back in ’65.

Of course, what really knocks my hat into the creek was the revelation that there was actually a Yes tribute band. This is not the easiest group to emulate, if you know what I mean.


  1. Nicole »

    1 July 2010 · 8:06 pm

    I disagree. :) Yes is not Yes without Jon Anderson. :)

  2. CGHill »

    1 July 2010 · 8:17 pm

    Anderson is definitely distinctive. Although there are those who apparently can’t stand him:

    To those unfamiliar with Yes’ singer, imagine a hamster that has been dipped in helium and squeezed between the thighs of a pro wrestler.

    Close to the edge, indeed.

  3. Nicole »

    1 July 2010 · 8:57 pm

    Hah! Great quote.

  4. hatless in hattiesburg »

    1 July 2010 · 11:54 pm

    i only saw yes live twice. first was the “union” tour with all 8 “original” members, and it was impressive. their next tour was drastically poorer in quality. i doubt i’ll want to see them again…

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