Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Alan White on Chris Squire, Yes’ New Tour and Cruise to the Edge: Exclusive Interview Read More: Alan White on Chris Squire, Yes' New Tour and Cruise to the Edge

Alan White’s 2015 itinerary is jam-packed. Yes are gearing up for a major tour with Toto and Cruise to the Edge, their annual floating festival, will set sail in November. But for White, the stage will feel somewhat empty from now on: Bassist Chris Squire, the other half of Yes’ dynamic rhythm section, passed away in June following a bout with leukemia.

For Yes – and the music community, in general – the impact of Squire’s death is immeasurable. But Alan White and company were adamant about carrying the band forward, recruiting former member Billy Sherwood to step into Squire’s massive boots. “Absolutely we’re moving ahead,” the drummer said last month. “I’m gonna do it for him.”

White spoke to Ultimate Classic Rock before the start of the new tour, which begins today (Aug. 7), about Yes’ resolve, their plans to honor the late Chris Squire in their upcoming sets, and – on a lighter note – the hilarious Yes-Spinal Tap connection, among other topics.

I wanted to express condolences on the passing of Chris Squire — incredibly sad news.

Absolutely. It’s a huge loss for every band member, and for me in particular, because I’ve worked with him for 43 years all the time. We never stopped working together.

The band announced an all-star tribute to Chris for the cruise, featuring Mike Portnoy. Have you figured out any kind of tribute for your own set?

We’re working on it. We’ve got five days of rehearsal before we actually hit the road, and then we’ll finalize our plans with that. On the cruise, we’ll be adding about four or five numbers to the set. We haven’t totally decided on it yet. We have to run through these songs to see what’s working. The rehearsals will tell a lot.

Read on...

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