John Wetton, bassist and singer for bands such as King Crimson and Asia, died in his sleep on January 31, 2017 after a long battle with colon cancer. He was 67.
The British-born Wetton remains best known for his achievements within the progressive rock circles, notably with his stint in the 1970s in the second incarnation of King Crimson, the adventurously complex yet searing and grooving hard rock ensemble. During Wetton’s tenure, the band produced such classic offerings as Lark’s Tongue in Aspic, Starless and Bible Black, and especially Red, in which the trio of guitarist Robert Fripp, ex-Yes drummer Bill Bruford, and the muscular, soaring vocals and heavy yet perfect bottom end of Wetton took the group to untold heights, especially on mesmerizing tracks such as the gripping “One More Red Nightmare” and the haunting magnum opus “Starless.”
Greg Lake, co-founder of two prog rock giants — King Crimson and Emerson, Lake & Palmer — died yesterday after a lengthy battle with cancer, according to his manager. He was 69.
Lake’s manager Stewart Young posted to Lake’s official Facebook page today that the musician passed away on December 7, 2016 after “a long and stubborn battle with cancer.” The news comes just nine months after the death of Lake’s former ELP bandmate Keith Emerson.
Keith Emerson, large proponent in ushering in the prog rock sounds of the late 1960s with the legendary Emerson, Lake and Palmer, died on Friday at his home in Santa Monica, CA, according to a post by ELP on their official Facebook page. He was 71.
Undoubtedly a trailblazer of the Hammond and Moog keyboards, Keith Emerson and ELP created sounds which at once borrowed from a sort of blues/rock foundation with multilayered complex arrangements on top, and even mixed with a quasi-Classical feel to boot.
The supergroup Asia has announced that they have split with Steve Howe, the legendary guitar player whose work with Yes made him and that band one of progressive rock’s finest ensembles.
In a press release distributed today, the remaining members of Asia, — ex-King Crimson vocalist and bass player John Wetton, ex-Yes and Buggles keyboardist Geoff Downes, and backbeat drum prince Carl Palmer — talked about the split and moving forward to the next phase of the band with a new guitarist.
For over 40 years bass player Tony Levin has been one of the very best in the business. He has played with King Crimson, released a number of solo albums, and has recorded and played with countless artists including Peter Gabriel, David Bowie, Brian “Head” Welch, and Alice Cooper to name a few. Recently he teemed up with guitarist David Torn and Yes drummer Alan White on the fantastic new album, Levin Torn White.
The original blogger (he was doing it before it even had a name) gave me some great answers to my email questions, and explains just what in the name of prog “˜funk fingers’ is.
Geeks of Doom: Hello Tony, how are you?
Tony Levin: Quite well. Writing from the tour van, on a 7-hour drive from Atlanta, GA to Carrboro, NC – doing what I love to do (well, not driving in the van…) bringing my music to people.
Geeks of Doom: How did your latest band Levin Torn White come together?