Saturday, December 08, 2007

Saturday Rock Show

I suppose I am getting the easy stuff out of the way.

Last night at work, I was talking music with a co-worker. We started talking about Yes, Asia, Steve Howe, Rick Wakeman, etc., and the following song got stuck in my head. At least, the opening interplay between the guitar and keyboards, especially the Moog counter-melody.

Without a doubt, I have spent more of my adult life listening, analyzing, sifting, music from Yes than from any other group. There was a period, roughly 1989 through 1994 or so, when I listened to little else. My wife and I went to see Yes on their Talk tour at the Virginia State Fairgrounds in Richmond in the summer of 1994. She often says that I taught her to love Jon Anderson and Rick Wakeman. They are easy to mock now - the capes, the sometimes pompous, sometimes self-consciously overly complex melody/harmony lines. Yet, through it all, I think they were no less honest about what they were doing than the Rolling Stones or the Beatles. The only difference was they had different influences - jazz, English folk music, English church music, classical, and country (Bill Bruford says the rhythm that opens this song is a rip-off of the Bonanza TV theme; they used the strings from Death Valley Days for the cover of Richie Havens song, "No Opportunity Necessary, No Experience Required"), rather than the R&B and blues that influenced the previously named bands.

Some people thought that was bad. Me? I think it still rocks. From Yessongs, this is "Yours Is No Disgrace":

Virtual Tin Cup

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