Tag Archives: gary green

CRUISE TO THE EDGE OF TIME

CTTE_Poster_72dpiWhew, I did it again. Year number two taking a cruise out of Miami, something I thought I would never do. Once again the third annual Cruise To The Edge featured Yes along with performances by over 15 old and new progressive rock bands. It was another chance to rock to the jagged beat of prog, pop seasickness pills, collect some new t-shirts, and catch God knows what in the process.

Part of what drives me to these shows is the desire to see some of these artists while they are still gigging. At this point, several bands from the 1970’s continue on with just one or two original members, restocking the ranks with new recruits. While decried in some circles, this continued perseverance still results in some spectacular concerts. I prefer to liken it to the fact that symphonies all over the world still play the music of Bach, long after his death. I’m coming away from the experience with a renewed interest in some older acts, along with a few new bands to add to the collection. By all accounts, cruisers had a good time, and the event was again a success. The following is a summary of all the bands we witnessed over the 5 days, in alphabetical order:

Anglagard

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These Swedish prog-rockers topped the bill for this voyager, featuring their brand of moody, atmospheric tunes that take their cue from early King Crimson while remaining uniquely their own, steeped in the strong musical scene of the Netherlands. At center stage, Anna Holmgren leads or colors the mostly instrumental pieces with warm expressive flute, saxophone, and other wind and percussion instruments, with bursts of Mellotron for good measure. Founding bassist Johan Brand is a focal point, putting muscle into the mix via his Rickenbacker bass guitar and towering stage presence. Founding guitarist Tord Lindman also provided vocals on two tracks. Jonas Engdegard (guitars,) Linus Kase (keyboards) and Erik Hammarstrom (drums) round out the group. The band comes across as a very integrated, tight unit, giving voice to each musician in kind. At times their studio recordings can sound a bit cold and distant – not so when performed live – all the nuance and beauty of the pieces shine, balanced favorably against ample dissonance. I’ll do a whole article on this wonderful band in the coming weeks.

Martin Barre

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This long time Jethro Tull guitarist led his crack band of blues-rockers through a roots-oriented show on Saturday’s pre-cruise concert, focusing on new songs from his latest solo album, the excellent return to form Back To Steel. A follow-up Monday morning gig featured more Tull classics including a very condensed version of a Tull epic they called “Thin As A Brick” after which Martin expressed the desire to carry on indefinitely, threatening to play the 1973 opus A Passion Play backwards! On the new album and in concert, vocalist and second guitarist Dan Crisp shines, bringing his own style to the new tracks, and the older Tull songs. It’s refreshing to hear cuts like “To Cry You A Song” and “Minstrel In The Gallery” interpreted anew and sung once more with passion and punch. Clearly, all members of the band, which included skilled drummer George Lindsay and veteran bassist Alan Thomson were in fine form. Martin looked happy and relaxed, joking that it was the first gig they played on coffee, and announcing, “Thank you for choosing us over porridge…were going to be the best breakfast you ever had!” Truer words…

Caravan

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For one reason or another in the past I’ve never been able to catch this veteran act, one that was at the heart of the Canterbury scene back in the day. Instead, I’ve only seen individual members play live, as they came and went from fellow prog band Camel’s lineup. This was righted last week as Caravan’s founding member Pye Hastings (vocals, guitar) joined long time members Geoffrey Richardson (vocals, flute, violin, spoons) and Jan Schelhaas (keyboards) with Jim Leverton (bass) and Mark Walker (drums) for a set that touched on the band’s work over these last 45 years. The highlights for this fan were “Nine Feet Underground” from In The Land of Grey and Pink and the long song “For Richard” both demonstrating the enduring talent of this long standing group.

Haken

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Haken impressed with the raw power of their performances, at once rough yet often refined, particularly as their long form songs lead them to interludes that feature contrapuntal instrumentals and vocal madrigals. Lead singer Ross Jennings keeps the energy up, showcasing clean vocals and confident stagecraft.

Lifesigns

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This was the first band up on Saturday, the pre-cruise show, followed by a gig on the ship itself. They weren’t my cup of tea, but friends on the cruise reported loving their sets. It might be cause for repeated listening in order to “get it.”

Marillion

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Wisely, this band changed up their set list this year. Singer Steve Hogarth wrings emotional depth from song-stories that cover a variety of themes as he crisscrosses the stage to punctuate their delivery. The talented band hit many highpoints with the title track of their last album Sounds That Can’t Be Made, “Man Of A Thousand Faces” and a song about the vagrancies of fame, accompanied by film clips of departed artists from Marilyn Monroe to Elvis, John Lennon, Jim Morrison and many others who shone brightly but were taken too soon. Encore “The Invisible Man” was a spectacular way to close out the cruise on its final evening.

Moon Safari

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No relations to the French band Air, this Swedish outfit ended up being my wife’s favorite, and it was easy to see why as this young band plays a slightly less angular, and definitely more accessible brand of progressive music than many of their peers. The musical chops are there, with solid bass and drums supporting excellent leads on guitar and synthesizers. But the real strength of this band are their vocals, presented live in energetic performances that find the front line alternating leads and harmonizing beautifully throughout, ending the show with a 5 part a’capella capper that had the audience on their feet.

Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)

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Another band that brought me back for a second year, Italy’s PFM lit up the poolside stage on two successive days playing a set list heavy on selections from their masterpiece Photos of Ghosts (1973), and other 70’s favorites. Two more recent tracks from their ode to Mozart “Pfm in Classic – Da Mozart a Celebration” rocked discerning attendees. The set list was nearly the same as last year, but the musicians delivered two fun, energetic hours of fresh-baked Italian prog gems. Founding guitarist and vocalist Franco Mussida retired earlier this year, and was replaced for this tour by two excellent musicians, one of whom sings Franco’s vocal parts, and both of whom play acoustic and electric guitars respectively. On Wednesday a bit of bad luck hit, as accomplished drummer, vocalist and band leader Franz Di Cioccio missed the second day’s show due to illness, leaving power-bassist Patrick Djivas to lead the show, which he did with aplomb, though reporting at one point that it was definitely strange to play without Franz.

Saga

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This Canadian ensemble played an evening set on the last day of the cruise, taking the audience through a collection of their upbeat tunes, marked by the hit “On The Loose” finding vocalist Michael Sadler and band in top form.

Three Friends (Minus Two!)

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Last year Three Friends played the complex, thrilling music of Gentle Giant led by two original band members, guitarist Gary Green, and drummer Malcolm Mortimore, down from three after the departure of original master keyboardist Kerry Minnear. The band was a second major reason for me to return to the cruise, and the news that Gary Green suffered a heart attack a few days before the launch was disappointing, though fortunately by all accounts he is recovering swiftly. Instead of cancelling, the band played on, led by Malcolm front and center on drums, joined by vocalist Pierre Valentin, winds and violin player Charlotte Glasson, bassist Jonathan Noyce, and keyboard wizard Neil Angilley. While Gary was clearly missed, their gigs on pre-cruise Saturday and again on the ship demonstrated their chops, and in fact allowed for a bit of additional focus on the keyboard parts, so ably interpreted and augmented by Neil’s talented, percussive playing. The set list was not greatly changed from the last voyage, but a standout track was added from the album Octopus, as “Think of Me With Kindness”, pulled at audience heartstrings with a beautiful vocal rendition from Pierre. Also, the inclusion of “Mobile” from Free Hand, gave Charlotte a chance to step up on violin. The show was great, and all hands on deck wished Gary a quick recovery and a return to the stage, while we enjoyed Three-Friends-Minus-Two!

Yes

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I wasn’t certain what to expect from Yes this time out. Original bassist Chris Squire passed away earlier this year, having named Billy Sherwood his successor for a summer tour headlining with Toto. The tour found the band focusing on some of their more popular songs, and most of that set list remained for this show. It’s somewhat unfortunate, as long-time opener “Siberian Khatru,” and closer “Starship Trooper” were in place once again, as well as “Don’t Kill The Whale,” “Your Move,” “Time and a Word,” “Tempus Fugit” and other familiar choices. Given this a Yes cruise, packed with avid Yes fans, it would make more sense for the band to alter the set, prepare a list of rare cuts and make the event more unique and special. Also the band continues to slow the pace of their pieces for live performance. While ensuring maestro Howe hits every note on the original records, it robs the proceedings of immediacy and leaves drummer Alan White to keep a steady beat that never seems to change during the show.

Having said all that, the performance was otherwise strong, and a new track from Heaven and Earth, along with a couple of rarely played songs made it onto the set list, namely “White Car” from Drama, and the beautiful masterwork “Soon” from Relayer. The latter in particular demonstrated the care and skill brought to bass leads by Billy Sherwood, with runs that defined the track alongside Howe’s slide guitar in equal measure. It reminded me of how unique and wonderful Squire’s playing was, and I rooted for Billy along with the rest of the audience, as he not only did justice to Squire’s legacy both on bass and vocals, but also was able to inject a new energy and a unique personal style to the proceedings. In addition, Jon Davison at this point sounds like Jon Davison, not an echo of Mr. Anderson. It seems this has been true from his second outing on, but we really noticed this time how Davison brings his own personality and voice to the evening, along with his heartfelt, uplifting stagecraft.

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Honorable mention goes out to artists we missed this time out at sea. As always it’s impossible to get to every single band on a cruise that is essentially a moving festival with multiple stages, as there are bound to be scheduling conflicts. This time out we missed Jolly, Thinking Scientists, Spock’s Beard/Neal Morse, and IO Earth to name a few, each of which landed positive reviews from the other cruisers that attended their sets. I didn’t talk to anyone who caught Alan Holdsworth’s sets, so can’t report on that, though rumor was he almost bailed on the cruise before it’s launch.

As to the collection of bands this year, it was a great, if not exceptional lineup for those who have attended in the past. Circumstantially, several acts such as PFM, and Three Friends staged shows that were very similar to last year, and the absence of marquee names to replace Steve Hackett and U.K. was unfortunate. Still, Marillion changed it up quite a bit with a very different set and a performance that continues to draw us into their circle. Plus, Martin Barre, Anglagard and Caravan were all excellent, and the cruise overall must be deemed a success.

No doubt master-of-ceremonies Jon Kirkman has already received countless suggestions as to bands that might be invited next year. It would seem that another headliner is in order, such as Rush or a similar major act that would change things up a bit. I for one would also vote for adding quality jazz-fusion acts, such as Zappa Plays Zappa, Al DiMeola or Simon Phillips for example. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that this year’s fusion axeman Alan Holdsworth drew many attendees. Also prog from North America is under represented, and organizers could include Oblivion Sun (former members of Happy The Man) or even Kansas or Styx, as both bands have staged strong tours this past year. Possibly the Dixie Dregs could be reunited? It’s got to be increasingly hard to assemble enough veteran acts to join the neo-proggers, so hat’s off to Jon and the organizers of this event for delivering the goods!

This was definitely a memorable event, well run, on a well-appointed cruise ship from Norwegian Cruise Lines. The organizers of the Cruise To The Edge floating festival threw a lifeline to old and new progressive rock acts alike.

The Power and the Glory Rise Again

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Gentle Giant was one of the most adventurous and rewarding British bands to ply the progressive rock trade in the 1970’s. Their career represented a perfect arc from the beginning to the end of the decade, starting with their debut Gentle Giant, and ending with the more strident rock attack of Civilian. In between, Giant crafted nine studio and one double live release that remain important studies in composition rife with counterpoint, multi-instrumentalism, and eclecticism.

In 1974, at the mid point of their short career, the brilliant The Power and the Glory, was released. The compositions were tighter, a bit more straight-forward than their work to that point, and the album sported an excellent concept with intelligible lyrics detailing a story of power and corruption. Gentle Giant’s albums prior to this release represent some of the most esoteric, and uncompromising progressive rock ever put to vinyl. By this point, while still not being quite commercial, their work seemed even more assured, and less encumbered by more obscure sounds on their previous outings. It’s follow up Free Hand would become their most popular studio album and commercial success, but the writing, performance and recording technique that led to that accomplishment starts with this album.

P1010695While there have been several re-releases of Gentle Giant albums over the years to produce better CD sound, and to reproduce their artistic packaging, most have not resulted in state of the art sound. This time Steve Wilson took the helm, as he has with so many other bands of this era, and produced the now definitive version of this classic. There hasn’t been a lot of discernible tinkering with the stereo version that occupies disk one, just an overall improved mix, deeper bass response, and clarity in the midrange. Disc two’s DVD features a 5.1 surround sound mix which is a revelation. Like Jethro Tull’s A Passion Play, reviewed last issue, the surround mix allows for previously indiscernible sonic detail to come forth.

P1010704Extra tracks include “The Power and the Glory” single, not found on the original album, and on disc one an alternative instrumental version of “Aspirations.” The original version of “Aspirations” is one of keyboard, vibraphone player and raconteur Kerry Minnear’s most beautiful vocals. This instrumental version gives the listener a chance to try to sing as he did (probably in your car on the way to work) though it’s a mighty challenge to hit those choir boy tones!  On disc two, instead of only “Aspirations,” the entire album is presented a second time without vocals which allows the listener to catch even more of the complex musical interplay, particularly between guitarist Gary Green and Kerry Minnear’s many keys. Try tackling singer Derek Shulman’s exhausting vocals on Cogs in Cogs as a reminder of his range and power. This may be drummer John Weather’s best moment on record, and the gutsiest power-chords from guitarist Gary Green. The bonus studio track and a flat stereo mix are also included.

P1010701Making this release truly special, the 5.1 DVD presentation includes lyrics and videos prepared by bassist / multi-instrumentalist Ray Shulman which illustrate the story and content of each track. This presentation is unlike anything I’ve seen from another band. The content is graphical, using illustrations of playing cards, people, places, and things along with some fairly psychedelic imagery at times to represent the contrapuntal instrumental interplay. Lyrics appear or scroll through the picture in creative ways that add to your appreciation of the compositions. If you are inclined to pay attention while listening and watching you will be rewarded with these clever visuals that make the collection worth every penny.

On a related note, the tour that follows this album was captured on video in Germany and California on the wonderful Giant on the Box DVD release. It would have been fun to find the filmed material here as well but if you purchase that DVD as a companion piece you will own a complete set of the most rare Gentle Giant material available. Seeing this band play live is critical to gaining a complete appreciation of their work.

While some may wonder why this level of release didn’t begin with Three Friends, Octopus, or In A Glass House, there is something about the more friendly rock-and-prog The Power and the Glory which makes it a great place to start, beyond who owns the rights to the material. All in all, highly recommended.

Three Friends plus Three

P1000501Three Friends performed the music of Gentle Giant at the Cruise to the Edge voyage April 7-12, doing 3 sets on different dates, and in the process reinforcing the preeminent place where Gentle Giant belongs on the progressive rock mantle. I had the chance to see all three shows and interview Gary for Gonzo Weekly magazine, and it’s a week I’ll never forget.  The shows were exciting, diverse, and precise yet rocking, featuring Gary, Malcolm and all their friends, expertly arranging and performing these brilliant compositions.

The full band P1000795were led by Gary Green, the guitarist from all Gentle Giant albums, and Malcolm Mortimore who was the drummer on the 1973 album Three Friends.  As the story goes, after recording the nuanced, boyant drum tracks on that album and beginning the live gigs, Malcolm had to leave mid tour after a motorcycle accident that led to a broken arm and leg.  He went on to play with dozens of famous musicians including Ian Dury, Tom Jones, Van Morrison and many others, while the band went on with John Weathers.

For these P1000808shows, Gary and Malcolm were joined by a fantastic band of musicians including Charlotte Glasson on violin and winds of all kinds (recently winner of the Best Newcomer Award at Marlborough Jazz Festival,)  Neil Angilley on keyboards, who has recently been touring with the War of the Worlds extravaganza, and Mick Wilson on vocals, who has also been touring with 10CC and as a solo artist, and Jonathan Noyce on bass, known by many from his years playing with Jethro Tull.  The band obviously worked hard to master the clever, intricate parts originally played by composer/multi-instrumentalist Kerry Minnear and the Shulman brothers, Derek, Ray, and in the beginning, Phil.

I sat down for a chat with Gary on April 8, 2014 on the voyage:

D: When you look back, at the various stages of the bands career what’s your perspective now on the band’s history, which ended a couple of years after punk hit in Britain. Your swan song, Civilian, which I saw performed at the Roxy (their last ever show) seemed an apt title and a bit polarizing for fans.

G: Music is a product, like art is a product of who you are at a given time, it does reflect the times – and everything we went through. Certain of the albums were named because of knee jerk reactions– like In a Glass House was named precisely that because we felt that anything we were doing would be [shot down] by someone else. So IAGH seemed like a totally appropriate name. For Free Hand – we just joined Chrysalis and thought, they’re so good for us – they were letting us do what we want, and the music reflected those times. It did change – as a band we got a little frustrated that all our peers where getting fame and playing big gigs and we were lumbering on producing what we thought was good music to deaf ears –there’s pressure from the record company a bit to produce a hit, and punk had come out. Ray was always keeping his ears to the ground for what was new and happening and steered it that way. But really the best period was the early-middle third of the band.

P1000281D: Three Friends seemed like the album where the band was really coming together, after the very experimental Acquiring the Taste. And then new drummer Malcolm had to leave the group mid tour.

G: Yes, Malcolm had a motorcycle accident right when we were on an upswing. When John came in a started playing with us it just fell together. Malcolm went on to do a lot better than us – he was with Gary Moore, Ian Dury, and he’s done great.

D: The opening track from Three Friends, “Prologue,” is heard live from New Orleans in 1972 as an extra on the latest re-master of that album – and is performed very aggressively – was your playing different at that time?

G: Oh, the breakneck speed version – there’s a certain adrenalin – especially when we were playing an opening set for somebody – we had 40 minutes to do something. If you have a violin and cello opening for Black Sabbath, you had to do that. Then even if it didn’t rock, it was enthusiastic!

D: After Octopus Phil left, and In a Glass House not released in America (though it did great here as an import) What was the impact of that?

P1000511G: Phil really was the original leader of Gentle Giant and forged the direction with that statement on Acquiring the Taste (The statement: “It is our goal to expand the frontiers of contemporary popular music at the risk of being very unpopular”) That’s complete Phil and though I did not like it too much at the time, now I think that was a great statement to have made because that’s really the truth – we lost that kind of literal import to the words and philosophy of the band with Phil’s leaving.  At the same time he and his the other two brothers were always rubbing up against each other – so it was sometimes difficult to be around all that. When he left, there was an initial “oh my God the band’s gonna break up thing” and I think Ray and Derek actually did think that might be it. We loved Phil, but determined he was not critical to the band’s live success. We became a very strong 5 piece as a result of that and Derek took to fill his shoes with the lyrics.

D: For live performances, Derek would often sing Kerry’s parts – did they agree on that?

G: Kerry does not have a loud voice, and is not a strong live vocal performer – he has a high register with not a lot of force and in those days we had really crappy monitor systems– you couldn’t hear it well enough to do it – had it been today with in ear monitors – different thing probably.

D: With Three Friends did he do some lead vocals?

G: We didn’t do a lot of shows – but he did do “Think of Me with Kindness” live which was sweet – with Kerry singing it was lovely.

D: Why did Kerry stop playing in Three Friends?

G: He felt and feels an allegiance to Ray and Derek, who are not terribly happy about us doing this – not obstructionist, but they are not sentimental about these things. Kerry decided in respect to that he could not faithfully continue – and he never liked playing live a lot and hated travel – we went to Japan to Canada and he remembered “I don’t like this.” For me, I think, yes they wrote the music, but it took me and John to inject a lot of life to it – great work takes some great interpretation.

P1000245D: Do you think you will take this band out again?

G: Yes we are going week after next to Portugal – a nice little festival. The band does not play a lot purely because everybody is busy doing other projects. Everyone is busy doing other stuff. Mick is with 10CC – Jon Noyce [with several projects]. Neil Angilley with the War of the Worlds tour – phenomenal stuff. Honestly so many promoters we talk to want to say “we’d like to have you but we want to call it Gentle Giant” and I won’t have that cause it isn’t because there’s only that one Gentle Giant and there could never be another one. But there could be really good interpretations of the music by people who know how to play it and love to play it.

D: It seems this music can live on like classical music played into the future.

G: I think so and it deserves to, you know, and that was my and Malcolm’s whole reason for doing this again – yeah there was a resurgence of interest because of the internet and everybody enjoyed that – but I never felt Giant music in its day got a wide enough listen, and even those who heard it perhaps didn’t quite get it, and time has moved on and perhaps there’s another generation or two who have decided that Gentle Giant has subtle influences on what they’ve done.   I’d like to say “okay then, this is how it’s supposed to be played,” while I can still do it and I love doing it. I’m totally respectful of the music. Some of the recordings really irk me- I listen to it and think “I really rushed that phrase” – so now there’s a chance to correct some of those things and I find that really cool! It’s not to be perfect, but music lives and music deserves to be heard – especially this as its very wide ranging – Giants music – its got many styles and it goes to many emotional areas and I find that fascinating. And it’s a complete challenge to play. When you play something like “Schooldays” live it’s a bastard of a tune to play really and when you pull it off it’s like climbing a hill and thinking – I didn’t have a heart attack!

GGatGGD: There has been a lot of reissue work and scraping of the barrel – both audio and video, which is so important to us who did not see those shows

G: I was the archivist for the video – I was the one who went to the BBC after the show saying we need a copy of that. There is not any more that I’ve found – wish there were. We are talking ancient history – there’s little video back then.

D: Are you involved in the Steve Wilson re-master of Power and the Glory?

G: The rights to Power and the Glory have reverted back to us – so we own it thank God, and we don’t own all of them by any means, but this we’ve got and Steve Wilson is working on it with Ray for a 5.1 surround sound remix – I’m as anxious to hear that as anyone else cause I love that album

D: How did it come to pass that the “title track” single was left off the LP?

G: It was made as a single – it was obviously and determinedly meant as a single but it seemed to me and all of us that it’s not really part of the album.

P1000491D: In preparing for the Three Friends shows, what’s been hardest or most rewarding track to go back and play now?

G: “Schooldays” is very rewarding – we did it only a few times back then – we had decided it was not a good thing for a live audience because often times we were opening up for somebody. It’s good for a headliner where you have an audience and do what you want. Also now the technology is so different – it’s a whole different world of noises and the monitors are good – better at least. We just learned “The Moon is Down” – I never played on it originally – the guitar you hear is Ray and now I’m singing it with Mick – I’m not a great singer but I’m giving it a go! A lot of them are hard to play and some are challenging or both – the best might be “Free Hand” which is both.

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Gary’s words rang so sincerely during the three sets that unfolded over the week.  For the record, included in one of more of the shows was a cross section of some of the most complex and rewarding prog rock ever committed to record:

“Alucard” /  Gentle Giant (1970)
“Pantagruel’s Nativity”, “The Moon is Down”, “Wreck”, and “The House The Street The Room” / Acquiring The Taste (1971)
“Prologue”, “Schooldays”, “Mr. Class and Quality”, “Three Friends” / Three Friends (1972)
“The Advent of Panurge”, “The Boys in the Band”, “Think of Me With Kindness” / Octopus (1972)
“In a Glass House” / In a Glass House (1973)
“Proclamation”, “Playing the Game” / Power and the Glory (1974)
“Free Hand”, “Just the Same”, “Mobile” / Free Hand (1975)
“I Lost My Head” / Interview (1976)

P1000499It was beyond expectations that a band of such diverse musicians could pull off these tracks with such accuracy and enthusiasm.  The only thing that felt missing at all was Kerry’s vibraphones, though they were replicated by Neil’s exciting performances on keyboards.  Also for this fan the lack of medleys was a real plus as I’d always felt some of those detracted from the original compositions. Top that off with the set lists being so faithful to the core period of Giant’s catalog after so many years and you realized this was a new historical milestone for this music.

Hopefully not the last voyage for these many friends.

Cruise to the Edge Embarking

Very excited tScreen Shot 2014-03-30 at 1.38.52 PMo be going on the Cruise to the Edge trip to Honduras and Cozumel this coming April 7, 2014.  To date I’ve been a bit wary of going on a cruse as I’m not quite seaworthy and typically regret any time spent without feet on terra firma!  However, as this particular cruise will have as entertainment over a dozen famous progressive rock bands of the 1970’s and beyond I’m intrigued.

Besides Yes who host the event, we have Genesis Revisited (Steve Hackett), UK (John Wetton, Eddie Jobson, plus), PFM (Premiata Forneria Marconi from Italy), Three Friends (former members of Gentle Giant Gary Green and Malcolm Mortimer), Marillion, and Tangerine Dream.  Plus having ace keys player Patrick Moraz, stick man Tony Levin, and the great Simon Phillips on skins, among so many others made it too hard to say “no” to this cruise event.

As we’ve been able to catch Yes, UK and Steve Hackett recently, the biggest draw for me is being able to meet and see Gary Green play live once again after all these years.  Three Friends has not made it to the west coast in the states to perform the music of Gentle Giant, so this is a rare treat.  Also key is the inclusion of PFM from Italy.  Its rare to catch them outside their home country and this is arguably one of the best ever progressive rock bands of the past, and present.  Check out their latest disc for proof – the wonderful PFM in Classic da Mozart – a Celebration to witness how they have sustained their craft.

Planning to file reports as we go, as long as the Dramamine kicks in!