My Leg Ends of Pop Music – Part Thirteen – Yes

After 60 proper legends of pop (OK, you may have thought that some were a bit iffy), it is now time for my Top 20 Leg Ends of pop.  These are those groups or artists that have had hits and sold well, but by no means a favourite of mine.

I do know that some of you will really like these, as there is no accounting for taste.

Now, SB does not like the use of profanity in the articles (comments fine, not articles), therefore if I say, for example, “Clut” I mean that well known GP word which is a sign of endearment, and if I say the word “Fluff” it is a well know word beginning with F, four letters, last letter a K, 2nd letter a U and just in case there is doubt, the 3rd letter is a C.  The use of the word “Sausage” means that four letter word for when evacuating the bowels.

H/T to Brett of this parish, who very kindly sent me his play list of dire, dreadful, suicidal and basically fluffing songs generally done by right Cluts which are all pretty Sausage.

So, on we go with 8th on my worst list: –

The featured track Yes – Wonderous Stories is the official music video) as I wanted high quality, for a band I do not like, this is in my view quite superb.

Courtesy of Wiki:

Yes are an English progressive rock band formed in London in 1968 by lead singer and frontman Jon Anderson, bassist Chris Squire, guitarist Peter Banks, keyboardist Tony Kaye and drummer Bill Bruford. The band has undergone numerous line-up changes throughout their history, during which 19 musicians have been full-time members. Since May 2022, the band has consisted of guitarist Steve Howe, keyboardist Geoff Downes, singer Jon Davison, and bassist Billy Sherwood, as well as touring drummer Jay Schellen. Yes have explored several musical styles over the years and are most notably regarded as progressive rock pioneers.

Yes began performing original songs and rearranged covers of rock, pop, blues and jazz songs, as evidenced on their self-titled first album from 1969, and it’s follow-up Time and a Word from 1970. A change of direction later in 1970 led to a series of successful progressive rock albums, with four consecutive U.S. platinum or multi-platinum sellers in The Yes Album (1971), Fragile (1971), Close to the Edge (1972), and the live album Yessongs (1973). Further albums, Tales from Topographic Oceans (1973), Relayer (1974), Going for the One (1977), and Tormato (1978), were also commercially successful. Yes toured as a major rock act that earned the band a reputation for their elaborate stage sets, light displays, and album covers designed by Roger Dean. The success of “Roundabout“, the single from Fragile, cemented their popularity across the decade and beyond. Anderson and Squire remained with the group consistently throughout the 1970s, with Banks, Kaye, and Bruford all departing across the decade, and Howe, drummer Alan White, and keyboardists Rick Wakeman and Patrick Moraz, all becoming members at different points during these years. After a final album, Drama, and tour in 1980, both of which saw Downes and singer Trevor Horn replace Wakeman and Anderson respectively, Yes disbanded in 1981.

In 1983, Squire and White reformed Yes, with Anderson and Kaye returning, and guitarist Trevor Rabin joining. Rabin’s song writing helped move the band toward a more mainstream rock style. The result was 90125 (1983), their highest-selling album, featuring the U.S. number-one single “Owner of a Lonely Heart“. It’s follow-up, Big Generator (1987), was also successful. From 1991 to 1992, Yes were an eight-member formation after they merged with spinoff Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe for Union (1991) and its tour. From 1994 to 2004, Yes regularly released albums with varied levels of success. After a four-year hiatus, they resumed touring in 2008 and have released three new albums; their most recent is The Quest (2021). Over the long history of Yes, current and former members have often collaborated outside of the official band context; most recently, the group Yes Featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin,  Rick Wakeman toured from 2016 to 2018.  Among the longest serving members of the band, Squire died in 2015, and White died in 2022.

Yes are one of the most successful, influential, and longest-lasting progressive rock bands. They have sold 13.5 million RIAA-certified albums in the US, as well as more than 30 million albums worldwide.   In 1985, they won a Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance with “Cinema“, and received five Grammy nominations between 1985 and 1992. They were ranked No. 94 on VH1‘s 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock.  Their discography spans 22 studio albums. In April 2017, Yes were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, which chose to induct current and former members Anderson, Squire, Bruford, Kaye, Howe, Wakeman, White, and Rabin.


I have never been a lover of “Prog Rock”.  Far too pretentious for my liking, yet sometimes there are little gems that shine out.  Out of this group though is of course Rick Wakeman, who was probably the first card carrying conservative in the world of unionised performers.  I find him an all-round good bloke, very funny as well.

I suspect in some cases you will know the song, but never realised it was Yes playing it. Let’s try some:

Yes ~ Don’t Kill the Whale ~ Live at Montreux in 2003. Most excellent guitar work on this.

Yes – Your Move/All Good People (Songs from Tsongas – The 35th Anniversary Concert).  Not single material, but a good listen on an album

Yes – America – Good cover version, great vocals.

Yes – Going For The One live in 1977 an earlier song but one I remember from the album.

Yes – Leave It – Rock in Rio 1985

Yes – Love will find a way – 1987 – Aways liked this one, good harmony.

Their biggest hit though, I am sure you will know:
Yes – Owner of a Lonely Heart – Live 1984, very glam/heavy rock style clothing wise.  Great tune though,

Overall, a very distinctive sound, a highly successful group of albums, but for me apart from a few gems, I would hate to be tied to chair and made to listen to album after album of them.

Singalong, enjoy and be happy!

Links to previous Legend and Leg End articles:

1-Buddy Holly 2-Elvis Presley 3-Everly brothers 4-Cliff Richard 5-Joe Brown
6-Gerry and the Pacemakers 7-Roy Orbison 8-The Seekers 9-The Hollies 10-The Rolling Stones
11-Beach Boys 12-The Monkees 13-Rod Stewart 14-T-Rex 15-Slade
16-10CC 17-Pussycat 18-The Kinks 19-Blondie 20-Bryan Ferry/Roxy Music
21-David Bowie 22-Meatloaf 23-The Temptations 24-Dusty Springfield 25-Fleetwood Mac
26-Gilbert O’Sullivan 27-The Four Tops 28-Chas ‘n’ Dave 29-Diana Ross and The Supremes 30-Status Quo
31-Jim Reeves 32-The Small Faces 33-The Doobie Brothers 34-Manfred Mann 35-Creedence Clearwater Revival
36-Otis Redding 37-Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons 38-Squeeze 39-Duran Duran 40-Dire Straits
41-Chuck Berry 42-Thin Lizzy 43-ABBA 44-Carole King 45-Queen
46-Rod Stewart 47-Madness 48-Showaddywaddy 49-Pet Shop Boys 50-The Moody Blues
51-The Rat Pack 52-Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young 53-Kevin (Bloody) Wilson 54-ZZ Top 55-Amy Macdonald
56-Eurythmics 57-Darts 58-Smokie 59-The Eagles 60-ELO
Leg Ends of Pop Music
1-The Prodigy 2-The Darkness 3-Lou Reed 4- Red Hot Chili Peppers 5-Bob Dylan
6-Led Zeppelin 7-AC/DC 8-The Stranglers 9-U2 10-The Clash
11-Atomic Kitten 12-Genesis 13-Yes

Featured image: Hunter Desportes Yes-Tales from Topographic Oceans Tour-1974 Some rights reserved

© Phil the ex test manager 2022