Yes in the US 2020 PLUS Dave Watkinson’s news! 416

This week, I’m away for work so it’s been impossible to create a full episode. However, there are two important Yes updated we need to cover so I attempted to connect with Mark from my hotel room – which worked, a bit…

So what we have is a very short episode covering the announcement of the US Tour dates for 2020 and the press release from Dave Watkinson which I’ve copied below:

EP cover


The Book, Vinyl EP Record and Accrington Display

March – April – May 2020

28 – March – Paperback Book release

30 – March – Jon & The Warriors Vinyl Demos EP Record release

27 – April – Accrington Library Display Opening Day and Signing

30 – May – Accrington Library Display – Warriors member – Signing 


Jon Anderson and The Warriors – the road to Yes

A meticulously researched book about Jon Anderson and his early band The Warriors (who also featured future King Crimson drummer Ian Wallace).

Published by Sonicbond Publishing in the UK it has 208 pages. It features 175 black and white photos and 44 in colour, most not seen for more than 50 years.

Jon Anderson is the enigmatic lead singer and founding member of Yes. He is also a composer, artist, writer, dreamer, lyricist, poet and musician, with a career spanning more than fifty years. Many books have been written about the band Yes, but until now none have covered Jon’s early years in his first band, The Warriors, in any detail. This group played a key role in developing Jon’s Anderson’s vocal range, work ethic and determination to succeed, as well as giving him valuable experience in the music business, which was of invaluable help as his career blossomed.

David Watkinson takes us on a journey from the Lancashire beat music scene in the early 1960s to the vibrancy of London later in the decade. In the short time The Warriors existed – from 1963 to 1967 – they released a single, appeared on TV and in a movie, and spent a year following in the Beatles footsteps as a working group in Germany.

As well as providing a complete history of The Warriors, this book also follows Jon’s subsequent career in London, his appearances with Gun and his brief solo career as Hans Christian. He finally met Chris Squire and found a home in Mabel Greer’s Toyshop, as that group gradually morphed into Yes during the summer of 1968. The book includes new interviews with Jon and many members of The Warriors, through its various line-up changes, most for the very first time. It also features a newly researched family tree, long forgotten photographs, of both the Warriors and the first line up of Yes, many items of memorabilia and an exclusive look into the band’s diaries. It closes with a comprehensive discography and a collectables section.

This unique and meticulously researched book will delight both Yes and Jon Anderson fans as well as students of the 1960s music scene. It is essential reading for all lovers of the world’s greatest progressive rock band, and fans of the genre’s finest vocalist – Jon Anderson.

The Paperback edition signed by the author is exclusively available through…

Price: £20, 234 x 156 mm (Royale), ISBN: 9781789520354

The book is also available to pre order from all bookshops and online stores.



In these early recordings by Jon we don’t get the lyrics, wordplay, mysticism or complex sounds and meanings which later became his signature. What we have here is a young man enjoying himself as a band member, trying to make a few pounds, travel and to emulate the Beatles a little. In these basic beginnings neither Jon Anderson or Ian Wallace shine much, but what we do get are little signs and glimpses of their potential.   

Jon Anderson would go on to be the legendary singer in Yes. A writer, musician, frontman, leader and the all-round voice of prog rock music. On the earlier tracks Jon was most definitely in his backing singer role, you get to hear that voice cutting through. The last track being a total joy and a rocking surprise with Jon giving it his all. King Crimson fans will hear just how tight Ian Wallace’s playing was before hitting the big time too. All the band members shine, which can be heard on the instrumental track, Rodney and Dave are solid and it is easy to see why they brought in Brian Chatton on keyboards, his work being similar to his personality, bright, lively and rocking. Jon Anderson can be heard growing as a singer, musician and frontman for the band over the three years difference in the recordings. From a backing singer with his brother Tony to an out-of-sight, soul groover and mover. All seemingly a long way from the music of Yes and Close to The Edge or Olias of Sunhillow, but it was all influencing Jon, who was listening, learning and performing. This was Jon in his apprenticeship years, preparing himself for the lifelong career that was to follow.    

This rare and exciting material came from various lofts and trunks around the world. Hidden away for more than fifty years, the condition of some of the material was very poor – having jumps, scratches, muffled and even stopping completely. In my attempt to bring these recording to life again, I made the decision on a few tracks not to over-produce them, leaving in the crackles and blemishes. With others however I was surprised at how well and clear they came out. The band sounds very accomplished; you can hear just how well practised they were. The Warriors were among the best beat group acts at the time.  

Featuring seven demo tracks from the band at different times in their career, from Lancashire at the rise of their local stardom, to the ending months in Germany in 1967. Six of the tracks are with the full band, Jon Anderson backing and as a lead singer with just one track as an instrumental.    

This limited – edition (500) picture sleeved, vinyl EP 7” record, is released on Plane Groovy Records in a coloured vinyl, a 1960s vibrant orange plus in standard black vinyl format. Played at 33RPM, this record tips it’s hat to the days in the 1970’s when Yes would produce such an EP. 

This long-lost material gives the Jon Anderson and Yes fans a new insight into these beat music years.


Side A

1) ‘Too Much’ (2.21)

2) ‘Can’t Live It Down’ (2.44)

3) ‘Summer Girl’ (1.54)

Side AA

1) ‘The Doll House Is Empty’ (1.59)

2) ‘Run to Me’ (2.21)

3) ‘She’s Gone’ (2.08) Instrumental

4) ‘She’s Gone’ (2.02) with vocals

Researched, mastering, co-ordinated, images and production by David Watkinson 

Chris Topham – Plane Groovy Records.

Cat No: OLIAS90127

Barcode: 7426822210602

Pre orders 30 January, available through   

Released 30 March 2020

Prices: Limited Orange Vinyl £9.99, Black Vinyl £7.99, Test Pressing (10 only) £20.00

Free download available of the tracks with each purchase



Accrington, the hometown of Jon Anderson, will hold a small display in the town’s library from 27 April – 30 May 2020 in celebration of the new book and vinyl record published on his early years in the 1960s. The display takes the form of a cabinet of memorabilia, with one area focusing on The Warriors and the other Jon as a solo artist and a member of Yes through the years.

David Watkinson, the curator of the display and author of the newly published book, Jon Anderson and The Warriors – the road to Yes, will be on hand to sign copies of the paperback book (Sonicbond) for sale on the 27 April and on the 30 May, the latter date being the final day where it is hoped a member of the famous local 60s group The Warriors will attend too.

Books and copies of the limited – edition vinyl EP will be available to purchase from David who is happy to discuss both releases and the display.

Accrington Library, St James’ Street, Accrington, Lancashire, BB5 1NQ. Opening times: Mon/Tues/ 9-5/Wednesday 9-7/Thurs 9-5/Friday 9-5/Saturday 9-5/Sunday Closed

Tel: 0300 123 6703 Email:

The Author – Producer – Curator

David Watkinson was born in Bolton, Lancashire. He has a background in antique furniture, sales and the automotive world. He is currently working within the field of historic furniture restoration in London and his interests include the arts, music, classic cars, antiques and being creative. The author of the best-selling history of the band Yes: Perpetual Change (Plexus, 2001), he has been a passionate admirer, collector and historian of the band Yes for over 40 years. He lives in West Sussex, England.

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