Albums like Fragile, Close to the Edge Tales from Topographic Oceans and 90125 and singles such as “Roundabout,” “Owner of a Lonely Heart” and “I’ve Seen All Good People” are just some of the enduring classics that have made YES one of the most influential and groundbreaking groups in rock & roll. Now, the classic YES line-up of guitarist Steve Howe, bassist Chris Squire and drummer Alan White will launch the "In The Present" tour starting November 4th in Hamilton, Ontario, marking yet another chapter in the art-rockers’ amazing, 40-year career of legendary live performances. The three will be joined by keyboardist Oliver Wakeman, the son of YES’ Rick Wakeman, and vocalist Benoit David, a Montreal, Quebec, native and vocalist in several YES tribute groups, who was discovered by the band on the Internet.
With a remarkable 40-year career that has time and again redefined the boundaries of rock, YES was formed in 1968 by Chris Squire and Jon Anderson, who shared a mutual interest in vocal harmonies and classical music. With drummer Bill Bruford, guitarist Peter Banks and keyboardist Tony Kaye, they became YES, earning a residency at the famed London venue The Marquee Club, where they played with the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Pink Floyd, releasing their self-titled debut album in July 1969.
Guitarist Steve Howe, who went on to play in the popular prog-rock groups Asia and GTR and continues releasing acclaimed solo albums and touring, brought an experimental cutting edge to YES for their 1970’s The Yes Album, their first number one album in the UK. Drummer Alan White, who had been hand-picked to play on John Lennon’s Imagine and George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass, came aboard in 1972. YES then went on to conquer America and played at some of the largest paid attendance concerts of all time including JFK Stadium in Philadelphia in 1976 to a crowd of over 130,000 people.
YES postponed plans for a 40th anniversary Close to the Edge and Back tour in June, when vocalist Jon Anderson suffered a severe asthma attack and was diagnosed with acute respiratory failure. Commented Squire: "This isn't an attempt to replace Jon Anderson, because as we all know, that would be impossible. With Benoit, we are bringing in a talented singer so that we can go out and honor the music of YES for the fans who have waited for the past four years to see us perform."
A dominant force in rock music for more than four decades, YES has created some of rock’s most enduring and compelling hits, selling more than 30 million albums worldwide. The group has defined music history with their dynamic instrumental contrasts and abstract lyrics. Their symphonic use of sound and innovative musical styles continues to make them the most successful progressive rock band in history and their amazing career continues to defy many of their rock counterparts.