Chris Squire Memorial Playlist

I haven’t done a playlist for you folks in a while. I’ll admit it, I got bogged down in other work and had to take a break.

So, my apologies for coming back on a bit of a downer note. Yesterday, one of my musical idols, Chris Squire, one of the founders of Yes, passed away. He had recently found out he had a rare form of leukemia and had had to drop out of the band’s summer tour – the only one in their entire history that had not involved him. That alone was stunning, but waking up yesterday to find out he’d died was really shocking. Chris was 67 years old.

Now progressive rock isn’t everyone’s cup of fur. Most of my punk rock cohort are going to run in the opposite direction from this playlist, and that’s ok. I grew up listening to Yes because they were my older sister’s favorite band. But I embraced them as one of my own favorites because of Squire’s bass playing.

The guy was utterly unique and his level of virtuosity was always just staggering.

Listen to the second track on this playlist – Tempus Fugit – from their Drama LP and note that crazily intricate, fuzzed-out bass line. Now listen to those harmony vocals that run throughout the song. That’s Chris too. And he nailed both live. There is a level of mental skill involved in being able to do two very complex things at once that is really special. Now add in that Chris Squire was a flamboyant performer who was swinging, swooping and liked to balance on one leg while playing and, well, the guy was otherworldly.

I took up the bass when I was 15 because I was tired of being unwanted by every band in town. A friend suggested if I wanted to be in a band more than I wanted to be a guitar player I should take up the bass, so I did. I didn’t want to be mediocre at it though. I wanted to be great, so I studied the greats, and Chris Squire was one of them. The day I first nailed playing Roundabout from beginning to end on my bass, playing along with the Fragile LP, is a moment I will never forget.

You will be missed, a lot, Chris.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: