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Yes Say ‘No’ to a Reunion

There are now two bands using the name "Yes," and both are touring this year. It's confusing. Let us help.

By Brian Ives 

On Friday night (April 7), members of two factions of Yes got together to perform a pair of songs at the band’s induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, leading some fans to hope for a reconciliation and reunion. It looks like that won’t be the case: there will, in effect, be two bands using the Yes moniker on tour this year.

At the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, guitarist Steve Howe and drummer Alan White, both of whom are still members of Yes, joined forces with ex-members Jon Anderson (vocals), Trevor Rabin (guitar, vocals) and Rick Wakeman (keyboards) for “Roundabout” (featuring Geddy Lee of Rush on bass, filling in for the late Chris Squire) and “Owner of a Lonely Heart” (which featured Howe switching from guitar to bass).

Before the performance, the five musicians, along with former drummer Bill Bruford, stood together and gave acceptance speeches and the vibes seemed to be warm between everyone. But Steve Howe made a point of mentioning current Yes members not included in the induction — singer Jon Davison, keyboardist Geoff Downes and bassist Billy Sherwood — and said that the current lineup is still very much an ongoing concern. In fact, the day before the event, Yes announced their summer tour dates, which will feature the current band. Interestingly, the tour will feature songs from the band’s first seven albums, even though no on in the current band was on the first two albums; Steve Howe joined for their third album, 1971’s The Yes Album, and White joined for the band’s sixth album, 1973’s Tales From Topographic Oceans.

Related: Yes Blow Minds at the Rock Hall with Jamming, Tales of Prostate Exams and Sexual Experiences

Meanwhile, this morning, a press release came out announcing that “Yes featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin, Rick Wakeman Announce North American Tour.” Those three former Yes members had been touring as “Anderson Rabin Wakeman” — the only change is in the name.

No word as to how Anderson, Rabin and Wakeman got the rights to use the name, but it’s noteworthy that they mostly leave the summer touring circuit to their former bandmates: the Yes tour wraps up on September 3, while “Yes featuring Jon Anderson Trevor Rabin Rick Wakeman” starts on August 26.

Indeed, in a Facebook post, Yes mentioned “And contrary to what you may have heard, Yes has no plans to tour with the guys from ARW next year. We do, however, have our own exciting plans to celebrate Yes’s 50th Anniversary in 2018, which we will announce this summer.”

Update:  Yes reached out to Radio.com with the following statement: “While Jon Anderson has rights to use the name as one of the co-owners of the trademark, Yes’ position is that every effort should be made by promoters, ticket agencies and all involved to respect Yes’ magnificent and loyal fanbase and minimize confusion regarding the use of Yes Featuring Anderson, Rabin, Wakeman.” 

The band formerly known as Anderson Rabin Wakeman has changed its Facebook page and website to reflect their new name.

The band known as Yes, featuring Steve Howe and Alan White, will headline their “Yestival” tour this summer, with opening acts Todd Rundgren and Carl Palmer’s ELP Experience. Here are their dates:

8/4 – Greensboro, NC @ White Oak Amphitheatre at Greensboro Coliseum Complex
8/5 – Boone, NC @  Holmes Convocation Center
8/7 – Baltimore, MD @ Pier Six Pavilion
8/8 – Upper Darby, PA @ Tower Theatre
8/10 – Mashantucket, CT @ MGM Grand at Foxwoods
8/11 – Brooklyn, NY @ Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk
8/12 – Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Center
8/16 – Greensburg, PA @ The Palace Theatre
8/17- Clarkston, MI @ DTE Energy Music Theatre
8/19- Elgin, IL- Festival Park @ Grand Victoria Casino
8/20 – Cleveland, OH @ Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica
8/22 – Oklahoma City, OK @ The Zoo Amphitheatre
8/23 – Sugar Land, TX @ Smart Financial Centre
8/25 – Phoenix, AZ @ Celebrity Theatre
8/26 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino
8/29 – Los Angeles, CA @ Microsoft Theater
9/3 – Tulalip, WA @ Tulalip Amphitheatre

“Yes Featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin, Rick Wakeman” will also tour. Here are their dates:

8/26 – Stockton, CA @ Bob Hope Theater
8/28 – Saratoga, CA @ Mountain Winery
8/31 – Las Vegas, NV @ Smith Center
9/2 – Layton, UT @ The Kenley Amphitheater
9/3 – Littleton, CO @ Hudson Gardens
9/5 – Kansas City, MO @ Kauffman Center
9/7 – Milwaukee, WI @ Riverside Theater
9/9 – Hammond, IN @ Venue at the Horseshoe Casino
9/12 – Kettering, OH @ Fraze Pavilion
9/13 – Vienna, VA @ Wolf Trap
9/15 – Akron, OH @ Goodyear Theater at East End
9/16 – Toronto, ON @ Massey Hall
9/18 – Quebec City, QC @ Grand Theatre du Quebec City
9/19 – Montreal, QC @ St. Denis Theatre
9/23 – Wallingford, CT @ Toyota Oakdale Theatre
9/24 – Brookville, NY @ Tilles Center
9/27 – Newark, NJ @ NJ PAC (New Jersey Performing Arts Center)
9/29 – Reading, PA @ Santander Performing Arts Center
9/30 – Trenton, NJ @ Patriots Theater at the War Memorial
10/1 – Philadelphia, PA @ Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Center
10/4 – Boston, MA @ Orpheum Theater
10/7 – Niagara Falls, NY @ Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino.
10/8 – Red Bank, NJ @ Count Basie Theatre
10/11 – Clearwater, FL @ Ruth Eckerd Hall

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