Yes is a band that has endured more lineup changes than most, with 19 musicians being able to call themselves full-time members at one point or another. With so many cooks in the kitchen, it’s little wonder why they’ve managed to come up with so many creative songs and performances over the years.
The band does have plenty of power players and long-standing members, including Alan White, who joined Yes in 1972 as a replacement for original drummer Bill Bruford and essentially never left. He became the longest-holding member of the group following the passing of bassist Chris Squire in 2015. Jon Anderson and Steve Howe are among other band members with a serious legacy.
In 2017, the band was officially inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, which is obviously considered to be a huge honour for any musical artist or band to achieve. The band gave their induction performance for the Hall of Fame at the Barclay Center in New York City, performing one of their most iconic songs: ‘Roundabout’.
If it’s one thing that their show makes totally clear, it’s that they haven’t lost their groove as a unit even after so many years and plenty of shifts. ‘Roundabout’ is a song with so many shifts in rhythm and transitions, and it takes a great deal of teamwork and calculation in order to pull through on a picture-perfect show the way that they did.
The performance is so brilliantly polished, from Alan White’s perfectly syncopated drumming to the magnetic vocal overlay. The real joy is that the group seem to still be enjoying themselves — no matter the complexities.
Their induction performance shows that Yes truly deserve their place in the Hall of Fame. Their changes and shifts through the years, if anything, have strengthened the way they approach their craft and give them an additional edge as more years go by and they continue to deliver on incredible performances, even amid continued changes.
Even with some of the incredible talent that Yes has lost throughout the years, such as Chris Squire and now, more recently, Alan White, the band has a place in so many memories of their fans. If you want to hear their 2017 performance of ‘Roundabout’ live from the Barclay Center in New York City, you can find it down below.