Friday, September 17, 2010

Jon Anderson at the Paramount

My history with Yes

I am one of those old timers, who was fortunate enough to have seen Yes multiple times. My interest in the band waned with the second departure of Bill Bruford, after the Union tour. Other than BB, I have not seen any other members of that band perform in almost 18 years.

I have great respect for the alumni of Yes. However, I had to pass on the chance to see them, on the Yes and Asia tours, this past summer. When my friend called about this show, it seemed like it would be more interesting than the standard State Fair stop. Like Bruford, Jon's solo career was actually noteworthy. In fact, the Jon and Vangelis albums are fantastic.

The Venue

I have seen many shows at the Paramount, and have never had a bad experience there. I knew we had Orchestra seats, but didn't realize they were in the front row. When we got to our seats, I knew that we were in for something special.

The stage setup was sparse, with two guitars on stands, a ukelele, a mountain dulcimer, and a piano. Jon came out promptly at 8PM and began playing guitar and singing. The acoustics and sound were perfect, and I estimate that he played for about 70 minutes.

The music

I don't think that I can find any words to describe how fantastic this performance was. The consensus amongst myself and my friends was that Jon blew us all away.

Several times during the show, it seemed as though the Paramount had disappeared, and that I was in someone's living room. The best description I can manage is that Jon presented "a musical Autobiography." It was intimate, frank, and real.
Jon Anderson
Jon Anderson
Jon Anderson at the Paramount

Set List

Although I am very familiar with Yes and Jon's solo material, much of it was presented in medley form. He also reduced the arrangement, so that he could deliver them on a single instrument.

Before leaving, I was able to go up to the edge of the stage, pick up Jon's set list and take a picture of it. I expect to see Jon again.
Jon Anderson - Set List

Search for Jon Anderson