Five Reasons To Watch Yes

Five Reasons To Watch Yes
Robert Knight

Don't call it a comeback; Yes have been touring for years (41 to be exact), albeit with a rotating cast of personnel. The seminal '70s U.K. prog band has seen legitimate resurgences in each decade, and still puts in serious roadwork well into their fourth.

Music blogs don't give a lot of love to Yes; they're old, and lack the rock legend status of many of their contemporaries. It's a shame because, really, they're an important band. So here are five reasons why you should see Yes tomorrow night at the Greek Theatre.

Because you're an earnest music nerd. This band is too uncool even to like ironically. Hipster-types aren't going to go anywhere near Yes, Rush or anything Peter Gabriel (that's the difference between him and Phil Collins, by the way).

Because you still party. Normal music nerds grow up to be something more than music nerds. But Yes isnt something that's outgrown like, say, Blue Oyster Cult. Sure, the pony tail is gray and the pot is possessed legally (as legitimate glaucoma medication), but Close to the Edge remains your favorite soundtrack for self-exploration. C'mon, people. Its Siddhartha set to music.

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Because elitism is something to embrace. Yes is a band of prima donnas; each member is considered the best of the best on the U.K. rock scene. On their landmark record Fragile, the band insisted that half their songs be solo compositions for each member to flex nuts on. Its kind of the same approach a music blogger takes at a party when the conversation turns to music.

Because opener Peter Frampton comes alive. I guarantee that most of either you or your parents had the Frampton Comes Alive! record, so you grew up with these songs. It's a question of mathematics. If you know that UB40 didn't write "Baby, I Love Your Way," then you understand.

Because you don't mind that lead vocalist Jon Anderson isn't on tour: Yeah, this sucks. But lots of classic rock acts tour with some dude plucked from the tribute bands ranks. Hard-core prog-rock fans still can watch Steve Howe, Chris Squire and Alan White.


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