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Most of this blog is related in some way to the music, books and films produced by Gonzo Multimedia, but the editor has a grasshopper mind and so also writes about all sorts of cultural issues which interest him, and which he hopes will interest you as well.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Chris Squire: A Wondrous Journey



It was a troubling announcement that caught the music world by surprise in May of this year: Chris Squire of Yes had been diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia and would be forced to take a leave of absence from the band’s busy touring schedule. “This will be the first time since the band formed in 1968 that Yes will perform live without me,” said Squire, who co-founded the group and was the only member to appear on every one of Yes’ 30-plus studio and live albums. After a temporary replacement had been chosen, the band’s website asked fans to send Chris good wishes for a speedy recovery as he underwent treatment. Yes devotees were rattled but hopeful; surely he would recover and get back to business. But just two months later, Chris Squire was dead. It seemed impossible—the ever-present progressive pioneer that had grounded, glued together, and guided Yes for nearly half a century was gone.

A musician of incalculable talent, Squire was a game-changer for bass players around the globe. With a signature sound and a brilliant sense of syncopation and counterpoint, the big man nicknamed “Fish” was the cornerstone of Yes’ sonic appeal and a fearless force in its live-show spectacle. Armed with his Rickenbacker bass, Chris earned membership in that small, elite club of bassists who molded originality, technique, and imagination into a playing style that had not existed before. He cited Paul McCartney, Jack Bruce, and Bill Wyman as influences, but it was the Who’s John Entwistle that lit Squire up the most. He emulated Entwistle’s trebly roundwound sound, filtering it through his own intuition and the keen ear for classical harmony he had developed as a young choir singer. With an aggressive pick attack and machine-like precision, Squire’s bass playing quickly became one of the most dominant and recognizable sounds in rock in the early 1970s. Along with his enormously talented bandmates, including singer Jon Anderson, guitarist Steve Howe, keyboardist Rick Wakeman, and drummers Bill Bruford and Alan White, Yes racked up an incredible seven consecutive gold or platinum albums in its first ten years, a mind-blowing feat that powered the band forward for decades.


CURRENTLY AVAILABLE AT GONZO:

Union (Standard DVD)
DVD - £7.99

Union
DVD - £10.99

Union (2CD)
2CD - £7.99

Rock Of The 70's
DVD - £10.99

The Lost Broadcasts
DVD - £7.99

Rock of the 70s
DVD - £7.99

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