Jon Anderson Talks Yes

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photo credit: William Philbin

photo credit: William Philbin

To most music fans, Jon Anderson‘s voice is synonomous with the music of Yes (even though he’s quit the band twice, and 1980’s Drama was recorded with a different singer). So it was a surprise when Yes announced that they were going on tour in 2008 without Anderson. Anderson had been suffering from acute respiratory failure, and was unable to tour at that point. The decision was made to hire a new singer, and they recruited Benoit David, who had fronted a Yes cover band called Close To The Edge. Last year, they released their first album with David, Fly From Here. Earlier this year, Yes relieved him of duty, replacing him with another former Yes tribute band frontman Jon Davison (from Roundabout, he was also a member of the ’90s group Sky Cries Mary).

All throughout the band’s tour, Yes leader and bass player Chris Squire has maintained that Jon Anderson has signed off on the new version(s) of the band. Anderson, in fact, just finished his latest solo acoustic tour, where he performed Yes classics alongside his solo material. We asked him how he feels about his former band touring without him.  ”They didn’t really talk to me about the idea. I said, ‘Guys, if you’re gonna do this, I’m not going to stop you, but please let the fans know who is in the band.'”

Would he ever return to the band?  Jon says “I’d never say no.”  Anderson’s latest release is an 21 minute, four movement song called “Open,” available as a digital download.


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