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Produced by Preston Frazier, David Gordon, Bill Govier and Wayne Hall.
This week Mark and Kevin listen to a bootleg on YouTube of the first concert in the Solo Albums Tour. Mark also gets to ‘geek out’ about audio formats for listening to Yes music and there are clips from Mitch Lefon’s recent interview with Alan White to enjoy. We also enjoy two written reviews of ARW concerts from Joseph Cottrell and Steven English.
- Does the concert feel like a Yes show?
- Which of the solo tracks are played?
- Do they all work equally well?
Listen to the episode then let us know what you think!
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Preston Frazier | David Gordon | Bill Govier | Wayne Hall
Joseph Cottrell | Jeffrey Crecelius | Michael O’Connor | Paul Tomei | Julio Scissors
Paul Wilson | Jamie McQuinn | Miguel Falcão | Ken Fuller | David Pannell | Brian Sullivan | Joost Doesburg | Jeremy North | Tim Stannard
Many thanks to Mitch Lafon for the use of his Alan White clips – One On One With Mitch Lafon 276 Featuring Alan White
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Show notes and links
This week’s Solo Album Tour bootleg:
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13 replies on “A Bootleg From The Solo Albums Tour – 256 – Yes Music Podcast”
Kevin, Mark – Great show again, as usual – SO MUCH stuff to talk about. . . I hope you realize that, the more the show grows and covers ever more topics, the more time you’ll also have to waste reading my ever-expanding comments. . . my apologies, but it’s simply too much fun geeking out on this stuff!
So – bootlegs. I’ve owned one or two; there’s probably a cassette (more on those later!) of a pretty good Genesis bootleg from the late seventies somewhere in my basement. Rush included a couple of sound board live tracks on one of their numerous concert DVDs (I think it may have been the “Time Machine” tour); I thought they sounded really good.
I have to confess: I haven’t actually listened to the main subject of this week’s podcast, so I can’t really comment on the selection or performances. It was interesting to hear that barely one week into the tour they had already dropped almost all the Steve Howe solo stuff; by the time I saw them on August 1st (yeah, Mark – 1976 – my first Yes concert; makes me a Grumpy Old Man as well!) the set list had been reduced to:
I’ve Seen All Good People
The Gates of Delirium
Long Distance Runaround
Patrick Moraz Keyboard Solo
On Wings Of Gold (apparently a Steve Howe solo piece I saw
performed live but still have never heard of before!)
Jon Anderson Harp Solo
Heart of the Sunrise
(2nd encore after the house lights went up and at least half the audience crowded the stage and just kept on “standing ovationing” for at least ten minutes until the band came back out and played)
I’m Down, by The Beatles! (and thanks to “setlist.fm” for the memories!)
It’s the same song selection as the August 17th show you recommended, Mark, in a slightly different order. I did listen to that one. The version of Long Distance Runaround is eery and weird and kind of spooky… which is probably the best lead-in to a Patrick Moraz keyboard solo as can be. That solo has a whole lot of bits of this and that from “i”. Jon’s harp solo owes more than a little to “Dance of Ranyart” from Olias. Interesting to note that (also according to “setlist.fm”) they played three consecutive nights in Detroit! Does that even happen any more? The performance of “Ritual” from the August 17 show is also the same recording that Chris used for “Yesshows,” which leads me to wonder if that sound board recording is the “master tape” for that track?
Oh, vinyl! Somewhat sorry you had to go, but I really don’t miss you all that much… to begin with, you just took up so much space! Even the best vinyl still eventually becomes dusty and scratchy, and then there’s the issue of actual physical friction between the needle and the grooves and eventually you have to get a new copy… sorry, vinyl, I may be an old fart but digital is the way to go.
8-track tapes… I actually had a console stereo for a while with an 8-track player in it. My first job was working in the souvenir store at Hoover Dam and the sound system (such as it was) consisted of an 8-track deck and a couple of crappy speakers. My life-long friend Steve (who inadvertently introduced me to Yes) and I – when the boss wasn’t there – played a lot of music THEN that you can actually hear NOW in Walmart. Lots of Black Sabbath and KISS but we also had “Tales” and “Relayer.” Think about it: can you imagine Relayer on 8-track? “Gates” took up all of the first two quarters and part of the third – yes, it faded out and faded back in TWICE at purely random areas dictated by the length of the tape. Then “Sound Chaser” started and faded out right at the insane Patrick Moraz keyboard solo… which then faded back in and “To Be Over” was the only song you could listen to uninterrupted. If memory serves, TFTO may well have been “Volume One” and “Volume Two.”
Cassette tape – easily one of the most versatile and convenient forms of music storage ever invented! Today’s “playlist” is yesterday’s “mix tape,” after all. I’m kind of a total nut for mix tapes (Kevin – you know all about what I’m talking about; Mark, hopefully you will, too!) As far as commercial product goes, I had – at least – TFTO, 9012Live and Tormato, and probably Relayer. The Tormato cassette release (release) was interesting in that, in order to have the two sides of the tape be as equal in length as possible, side one ended with “On The Silent Wings of Freedom” and side two, along with the album, concluded with “Release, Release.” Which was rather weird.
And then CDs came along, and I have owned so frickin’ many versions of every Yes album since then!
Until about four years ago, when I took down all my CD and DVD storage, got rid of all the plastic jewel cases, tossed out all the booklets, ripped my entire CD collection into iTunes (as uncompressed aiff files), stored all the discs in a couple of flip-folders (large ones) and went pure digital. I still buy certain releases on CD or DVD or Bluray – the last few by Dream Theater, some Rush special editions, all of the Steven Wilson Yes remixes, of course – but mostly I buy stuff from the iTunes store. The technology is so refined now that it all generally sounds pretty good, plus, I can stream my playlists from my iMac to my home theater audio system, and even to the speakers on my back yard patio.
You didn’t mention SACD in your discussion of formats, although I don’t personally own any and I have no idea whether or not there’s any Yes material available there.
Well, I guess I’ve reached the end for this week (audible sigh from both Kevin and Mark).
Your hint of “something different” for next week was interesting to say the least! Thanks for all that, Gents!
Great to hear from you again.
Thank you for sharing your concert memories it was great to read…and your ARW review was well done.
As for the SACD mention…sometimes in the flow of a conversation things get missed unfortunately. ..but there are a few SACD’s available as far as Yes is concerned. If you recall for the Olias episode I mention having a SACD version of the album…I think Kevin even posted pics..also if memory serves me correctly. ..there is a SACD version of Going for the One and Close to the Edge. Again in the Olias episode I mention the website where you can find them and order them…that is if they aren’t sold out..remember they do limited runs of the albums.
Talk again soon!
Mark Anthony K
My first Yes concert was near the end of that tour. While I was thrilled with the increased Yes music content, that included Ritual, I do remember being disappointed when I learned that there would be little to no Solo Albums content. It would have been amazing to hear Hold Out Your Hand live.
Good to hear from you. It must have been fantastic seeing Yes during this period. ..in fact it’s one of my favorite era’s. ..I feel Patrick was a great fit for the band. And while I agree it must have been disappointing not hearing some of the solo material. ..I’d personally much rather hear them do Ritual or Heart of the Sunrise or even Gates! Some of the good quality bootlegs from this tour show them playing those songs incredibly well.
Thanks again for your comments and support.
Mark Anthony K
I think Patrick did a completely credible job on “Heart of the Sunrise” on that Detroit show. After so many years (decades) of there being nothing but “Relayer” to document his presence in the band, it’s simply marvelous to have all this content available on YouTube and elsewhere.
The ARW show review was a perfect expression of my impressions that I had neither the skill nor time to put into words after the concert a couple of weeks ago in Chicago. Along the vein of what a Yes concert feels like, I noted the usual quiet interlude piece for ARW is provided by Rick and Jon (The Meeting) while Yes uses Steve and this last tour JonD and a bit of Billy (Leaves of Green) for this moment. Of course, the range of Steve Howe is incomparable among guitarists; like Wakeman’s keyboard range. Lou Molino is great, but his style is too intrusive for some of the old Yes pieces for my ears. I hope both both groups keep going and thrive. Glad to see ARW tweet this is not the battle of the bands!
The YMP show is great and growing. I am having trouble keeping up! A good problem indeed. Thanks to the two super fans.
I agree…the submitted ARW concert reviews this week were very well done and descriptive. It makes me all the more annoyed that they still haven’t announced any Canadian shows as I would love to see the show first hand!
Well at least Kevin will get to see them.
Thank you for the kind words regarding the show. I agree the show is growing nicely and we (Kevin and myself) will continue putting our best efforts and ideas forward for you..the listeners. I hope you continue to enjoy it.
Mark Anthony K
Jeffrey – Thanks for your kind words – for myself and Steven English. I’m just a grumpy old truck driver, but I’ve been a Yes (etc.) fan for more than four decades now and it’s just great to have a similarly-minded group of… well, friends, I guess, to geek out about this stuff with. Nice to know others agree with me about “what is Yes, and what may not exactly be Yes.”
…and I meant to point out that: A lot of Yes music, especially Bruford-era pieces, require a more delicate touch and a bit more finesse in the percussion department. Lou Molino is great at what he does, but what he does is “ARW,” and not q u i t e really Yes.
Funny you mention that show that was my very first Yes concert and again what a show it was!
this show would be burned into my memory forever!
Even to this day I can remember that show as well as them taking a few tracks for Yesshows.
The Gates of Delirium
Ritual (Nous Sommes du Soleil)
Not to mention Sound Chaser was just amazing that was the loudest Yes song I ever heard ever in all the time and shows to this day still makes my ear ring to hear it today…lol
Great show as always gentle man…
Good to hear from you my friend!
I must say again how jealous I am of people who were able to see these shows in person with their own eyes and ears. The memories you describe must be better then any bootleg recording available. ..that is gift of live music.
Thanks for the kind words regarding the show as well. Looking forward to next week.
Mark Anthony K
Indeed this episode was exactly as you described on Fb. A real bumper!
I have to admit that until recently I was unaware of the solos tour. All I conclude is that they never toured the solo material in the UK. I went to the Relayer tour then the next was GFTO. At the time though a lot of the prog bands stopped touring the traditional city venues such as Newcastle’s City Hall and went only to London. (By the way I’d love to hear more from your listener now in the USA who’s first gig was the Tales tour at said City Hall. That was the very same gig my school pal was at, he who lent me his LPs, my introduction to Yes)
On to the formats. The reason why analogue LPs are still the best when played on good equipment is that the sound is seamless. Digital is sampled at minute fractions of a second then stitched together thus forming a sort of sound wave much as digital photography is pixelated. CDs sampling rate is 44.1 KHz which can affect the harmonics of the recorded sound. The higher the sampling rate the better but it is never a pure waveform. Obviously the ear/brain can compensate for that but generally the LP sound is warmer and less analytical. Psychoacoustics is a science on its own. As has been said the modulation of the stylus limits the amount of music which can be produced per side of LP.
Eight Track was an endless loop of tape. The track width on the tape was very narrow hence limiting the bandwidth of sound. Cassette was similar in that with a narrow tape with two tracks per side i.e. four tracks on the tape the amount of sound was seriously restricted compared to LPs. Reel to Reel was a lot better in that the tape was twice as wide for most machines with only two tracks taking up the tape therefore lots more bandwidth. Also the tape went a lot faster hence further removing the restriction on sound quality. Wow and flutter were distortions to the speed both long and short respectively. Record turntables sometimes suffered from the wow but not flutter. Also with tape the noise floor was a lot higher, expressed as hiss. Dolby NR was a compression system which helped to reduce that, along with Chrome and Metal oxides which were less noisy.
CD sounded great superficially but the problem was the mastering which didn’t at first take into account the different technology. Hence the often brittle cold sound.
Obviously the later SACD and BluRay have offered massive bandwidth but the problem is that usually the playback machines have output stages which are not optimised for audiophiles. Relying on cheap op amps as opposed to discrete components to produce lovely analogue sound.
Here endeth the lesson.
I attended the June 13, 1976 show at RFK stadium in Washington D.C. This was my second Yes show and my second time hearing The Gates of Delirium and Sound Chaser live, a big bonus for me as Relayer is my number 1 Yes album. At that time, I had no way of knowing that they had even played the solo material earlier in the tour, and therefore did not miss it at all. As this was over 40 years ago, All I can really remember is that it was worth the 3 hour car ride to the venue as I was living on the Maryland eastern shore that summer. Thanks for the link to the Roanoke show; I had never heard the live solo material before, and although I enjoyed it, I can certainly understand why it was slowly removed from the set list, especially as they abbreviated set because of the addition of Ace, Peter Frampton, and Gary Wright to the bill along with the Pousette-Dart Band.