Say Yes To Jon Anderson’s Birthday

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(Photo courtesy of last.fm)

(Photo courtesy of last.fm)

Today is former [lastfm link_type="artist_info"]Yes[/lastfm] singer Jon Anderson‘s birthday!

And to mark the occasion, Jack FM is making “Roundabout” our Song of the Day.

We would have bought Jon a gift, but we spent all our money on a Mike Napoli butter sculpture.

With nearly 50 million albums sold worldwide, Yes are one of the most successful and popular British progressive rock bands of all time.  And after more than 40 years together, they are still going strong.

Formed in 1968 by singer Jon Anderson and bassist Chris Squire, Yes released two albums before finally breaking through with 1971′s The Yes Album.  The album was a Top 5 hit in the U.K. and peaked at #40 in the States.  The single “I’ve Seen All Good People” landed in the Top 40 on Billboard‘s Hot 100 chart.

With their new keyboardist Rick Wakeman, Yes released their fourth album, Fragile, in November 1971 (it was released in the U.S. two months later).  Solidifying the band’s progressive rock sound, Fragile was a commercial hit, selling over two million copies and reaching #4 on the Billboard 200.  The album’s opening track, “Roundabout,” was inspired by a long bus ride from northern Scotland to northern England, and it became one of Yes’ best-known songs.  “Roundabout” peaked at #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was the band’s highest-charting single of the ’70s.

Yes’ success continued over the next several years with the release of such albums as Close to the Edge, Tales from Topographic Oceans and Tormato.  However, by 1980, tensions within the band had reached an all-time high, resulting in the departures of both Jon Anderson and Rick Wakeman.  Following the release of Drama, Yes’ management announced in 1981 that the band was no longer together.

A year later, Yes reformed and began work on a new album.  The pop-friendly 90125 was released in November 1983 and marked the band’s return to the top of the charts.  90125 peaked at #5 on the Billboard 200, and the single “Owner of a Lonely Heart” was a #1 hit on both pop and rock radio.  The song’s video was played heavily on MTV, earning Yes a whole new generation of fans.

Since then, Yes have continued touring and recording, while undergoing several line-up changes over the years.  Their most recent album, Fly from Here, was released earlier this year and features new singer Benoit David, who replaced an ailing Jon Anderson in ’08.

Yes will kick off a European tour November 3 in Lisbon, Portugal.

Check out Yes performing their big hit “Owner of a Lonely Heart.”  And any ladies out there who are owners of lonely hearts, feel free to give Jack FM a call.  We’ll help you to not feel lonely anymore.

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