Do you think it's time for your favorite drummer to retire?

T.Underhill

Pioneer Member
Last night I had a disappointing but wonderful experience at a Yes concert, one of my favorite bands. Lemme 'splain.

The good - Yes has a new vocalist Jon Davison that brings so much energy, presence, and vocal power to the show. He is exceptional live and I enjoyed that part a lot, in fact I was blown away. Jon is a fantastic addition to Yes!

The bad - Alan White made many, many mistakes. He got completely lost during South Side of The Sky and Siberian Khatru, leaving Steve Howe turning around to direct him. Completely fell off the beat, which in prog rock is pretty bad and slowed the tempo of most of the songs. Most of the more difficult parts that he wrote have been diluted into more 4/4 beats and leaves a lot to be desired...there's no spark anymore. Lastly, their new album has lackluster drumming that drags down what good content exists.

As a real Alan White fan it sucked to see it and the frustration could be seen in the band member's faces. I don't have to say this but it's obvious what Alan has meant to Yes since he joined and was thrown down the gauntlet of replacing Bruford on tour and recording Tales right off the bat.

Anyway, the rest of the band still has the speed, chops, and vocals to record and tour. I know a replacement drummer could be the shot they need to sound amazing once again. It's worked for a lot of other bands when they replaced the drummer and people kept coming to see them.

Any thoughts on bands that could replace the drummer or any other member?
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
The only gig I ever attended where the drummer badly let the side down was Ginger Baker playing with Hawklord (reformed Hawkwind) around 1980 (ish). Ginger was appalling, but so was the entire act, so I guess it's a different deal compared to your Yes experience.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
I agree, that had to be a real bummer to watch that show. But it was one show on the tour, and there may have been some issues you weren't aware of -- everything from a bad or malfunctioning monitor, all the way to illness -- that caused the disconnect. If it's an every-night sort of thing, it will probably sort itself, because sorry to say nobody likes to tour with a member who can no longer cut the mustard, even someone as pivotal to their success as Alan has been.

And I fully suspect that as upset by his performance as you were, he was even more so.
 

Otto

Platinum Member
I'll Do It!!


Oh Ohh...ME!! ME!! ; )

I'll even write some hits to go along with the experience...that is, if they'll make me a real member of the band...

Can you imagine working with squire and howe?...what a thought...
 

Duck Tape

Platinum Member
I can't think of one but I wouldn't feel nice naming them.

Everyone would reach a stage where their skills start going downhill. Who can tell them to stop playing? Only some anonymous jerk on a forum lol
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
That is a sad story. Like alparrott said there could be some reasons and it might have been just that one performance.



Alan just turned 65 years old. I think all drummers should retire at 64.
After 64 you are too old to play the drums.

.
 

Red Menace

Platinum Member
On a more positive note: I thought of Judas Priest. They went with Scott Travis, who is an absolute machine, in 90' for the Painkiller album and revitalized their whole sound. I have seen them live 3 or 4 times and there is just something wonderful in the combination of these older metal cats and this hotshot beast of a drummer.

Beyond that, all my favorite drummers are long gone.
 

8Mile

Platinum Member
I thought Max Roach's last recording before he passed away was hard to listen to. When Bill Bruford announced he was retiring from live performance, he cited that recording as an example when talking about how he didn't want to be a player who hung on too long. Max was hugely important to me and I felt sad listening to that album.

But in the end, it's up to the musician to decide when s/he is ready to hang it up, not us fans.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
Charlies Watts, Ringo, Still touring, still doing what they do. Having fun, making people laugh and feel good.. when they fall off of the stool then it's time.
 

No Way Jose

Silver Member
Charlie Watts is really cool. He has this big band going on as a side project. "The A,B,C,D Of Boogie Woogie" I think it's called.
 

SquadLeader

Gold Member
Yes are also one of my favourite bands.

Probably the band, in my life, I have listened to most of all.

I stopped going to see them live when Benoid David was singing. Went to see them in Manchester and thought they were utterly crap. Quite possibly the most disappointing concert I have ever seen (edit: no. I'm being unfair. That honour goes to Iron Maiden when they played the MEN Arena and didn't play a single 'classic' Iron Maiden song).

Not actually Alan, but everyone else. No spark at all. Howe's guitaring was, how can I best explain this, errrr missing something. Lacklustre. And a bit 'out' in parts.

The lead vocals were ok...Benoid did a good job, but Squire's backing vocals were just absolute garbage. His bass play was superb of course. And he was wearing these weird trousers which had sort of a cod piece on them....I felt violated seeing them.

I think Rick Wakeman's son was on keyboards. I just remember thinking 'meh' as he tried to fumble his way through key solos. I'm sure he's demonic on keyboards. But it didn't cut the mustard for me.

My better half bought me a Christmas present that year...a recording of THAT specific gig on MP3. No idea where she got it from and it's a massively thoughtful pressie which I was really grateful for. But have never played. And never will.

I'll never go watch Yes again. Insofar as Live performance is concerned I think they're done and I'd rather listen to their albums and some of their astonishing Live performances in the car or at home.

This is just my opinion.
 

Cuban

Senior Member
I agree, that had to be a real bummer to watch that show. But it was one show on the tour, and there may have been some issues you weren't aware of -- everything from a bad or malfunctioning monitor, all the way to illness -- that caused the disconnect.
Sadly not the case.
A huge YES fan, I recently had the opportunity of working along side the band and sadly, I too found the same issues, but not just with Alan.

The new singer was great, but the rest made themselves sound like a very bad tribute band.

I had been warned it was working well now, but never expected that!

To preserve the great memories dating back to the 1970's, I left the show.

Sad to see and hear, but I think bands should know their current limits and stay within in them or as was originally asked, retire.
 

JimFiore

Silver Member
I too was sad to see Bruford retire but after reading his autobio I can at least understand his decision.

Enough with the drummers, what about bass players? Why is it that many of my favorite prog bass players look like absolute sh*t these days, all puffy and doughy, even though they can still play? I can't bear to look at Squire, Wetton or Lake any more. It's not like it's inevitable. Look at Tony Levin. The guy's 68 and looking fit enough to tear down the house.
 

Cuban

Senior Member
Why is it that many of my favorite prog bass players look like absolute sh*t these days, all puffy and doughy, even though they can still play? I can't bear to look at Squire, Wetton or Lake any more. It's not like it's inevitable. Look at Tony Levin. The guy's 68 and looking fit enough to tear down the house.
Healthy living vs excess perhaps?
 

T.Underhill

Pioneer Member
I agree, that had to be a real bummer to watch that show. But it was one show on the tour, and there may have been some issues you weren't aware of -- everything from a bad or malfunctioning monitor, all the way to illness -- that caused the disconnect. If it's an every-night sort of thing, it will probably sort itself, because sorry to say nobody likes to tour with a member who can no longer cut the mustard, even someone as pivotal to their success as Alan has been.

And I fully suspect that as upset by his performance as you were, he was even more so.
I could tell some issues had come up like Alan's monitors. For at least two of the songs he wears a pair of headphones which I assume has a click track. Once he fell off, it was hard to recover.

As far as the overall playing it's not a one night flub, I've seen them on every tour since the 30th anniversary.
 
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