YES drummer ALAN WHITE dead at 72
Alan White, YES’s much-loved drummer and friend of 50 years, has passed away, aged 72, after a short illness. He died peacefully at home.
Alan had been looking forward to YES’s upcoming U.K. tour, to celebrating his 50th anniversary with the band and their iconic “Close To The Edge” album, where Alan’s journey with YES began in July 1972.
Alan was born in 1949 in County Durham. A number of health setbacks, since 2016, had restricted Alan’s time on stage with YES on recent tours with Jay Schellen filling in and Alan joining the band, to great applause, towards the end of each set.
Alan was considered to be one of the greatest rock drummers of all time and joined YES in 1972 for the “Close To The Edge” tour. He had previously worked with John Lennon‘s PLASTIC ONO band after a call, in 1969, to play at the Toronto Rock Festival. Alan continued working with Lennon including on the “Imagine” album and with George Harrison on “All Things Must Pass”. He also worked with several other musicians, over the years, including Ginger Baker‘s AIR FORCE, Joe Cocker, Gary Wright, Doris Troy and Billy Preston, to name but a few. Alan White was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame as a member of YES in 2017.
Formed in 1968 by Jon Anderson and the late and much-missed Chris Squire, YES has been one of the most innovative, influential and best-loved bands in rock music history. Their 1970s albums “The Yes Album”, “Fragile”, “Close To The Edge”, “Yessongs” (a triple live album set),“Tales From Topographic Oceans”, “Relayer” and “Going For The One” were ground-breaking in musical style and content. Their music also became synonymous with artist Roger Dean, whose distinctive YES logo design and artwork adorned the lavish gatefold presentation sleeves of many YES albums.
With sales of over 50 million records, the Grammy Award-winning YES was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2017, where they performed “Roundabout” from the album “Fragile” and the FM radio-friendly “Owner Of A Lonely Heart” from the 1985 album “90125”.
Photo credit: Jerry And Lois Photography