Rick Wakeman (the keyboard genius from Yes) was extremely gracious to speak with Jungleroom.com this afternoon from Orlando, Florida on the very first day of the "An Evening of YES Music and More!" twenty-nine city American tour with bandmates Jon Anderson and Trevor Rabin. Not content to rest on past glory, Anderson, Rabin and Wakeman are working on new songs, which are currently being recorded. After the band's live debut in North America in October/ November they will follow with a worldwide tour the spring of 2017. The newly formed Anderson/Rabin/Wakeman group will appear at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville, Tennessee on Monday, November 7th, 2016.
Would you be intereseted in sharing your thoughts on the legacy of Memphis music?
What do you think of Stax and Hi Records, etc.?
I have quite a collection of Stax records and my jukebox at home is probably 30% Stax and Atlantic music. I just loved that era...sixties period and indeed played in a seventeen piece soul band in the mid sixties myself covering the likes of Otis, Sam and Dave, Wilson Pickett, Booker T, Dave "Baby" Cortez and many others.
What about the Sun studio stuff?
Sun Records ceratinly impacted on all young musicians in the UK but it was really the Stax productions that sealed it for me.
Jerry Lee Lewis?
I loved Jerry Lee Lewis and actually met him the one time when he was recording at Advision Studios in London. It was a very quick hello!
Booker T. Jones?
I love Booker T. and always will...I always love players who have a unique style and sound and Booker T. had just that.
Tonight is the first show of the tour...how are things going?
The ARW tour is looking seriously hot to trot. The band is playing so well and the atmosphere is one of musical happiness!
The Nasville show at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center has every indication of being a very special event...
....coming to Nashville is always special. A truly wonderful music town and I always enjoy visiting and especially when you get to play.
The worldwide ARW Tour is being produced by legendary concert promoter Larry Magid, who is considered an architect and leader of the modern concert business. With over 16,000 concerts to his credit and still counting, he has produced national and international tours for Yes, Richard Pryor, Bette Midler, Stevie Wonder, Robin Williams, Kristin Chenoweth, Earth Wind & Fire, Il Divo, The Allman Brothers Band, Patti LaBelle, Grover Washington Jr. and many others. In 1985 Larry Magid co-produced the American portion of Live Aid and in 2005 he was the producer of Live 8.