Yes Releases Cover Of “Imagine” By John Lennon – Listen
Yes live in 2018 - Kevin Bernardo / Youtube
Can you “Imagine” the prog-rock act Yes covering John Lennon? Well, you’re in for a treat.
The Lennon cut from 1971 is connected to Yes – sort of. Before drumming for Yes, Alan White was a part of the Plastic Ono band and even played on the Imagine album. He also contributed on Lennon’s Live Peace In Toronto from 1969, 1970’s “Instant Karma!” and 1972’s Some Time In New York City album.
Yes’ rendition was recorded on the encore portion of the band’s final 2019 tour show, which also included the appearance of Moody Blues’ John Lodge. The cover will end up on the band’s new album, The Royal Affair Tour: Live From Las Vegas, which is set for release on October 30.
During the tour, the band made sure to highlight White’s role in the making of “Imagine”, flashing images of him alongside John Lennon and George Harrison while the cover was being performed.
“They put a special film together with footage from that time. We played ‘Imagine’ on the Yes tour, and they’d run it behind me. The first time I saw it, I turned around and went, ‘Who the hell is that guy?’” White said, laughing that he couldn’t recognize his younger self.
Lennon’s “Imagine” is one of the two covers that appears on the upcoming Yes album – the other being Simon and Garfunkel’s “America”. The rest are Yes hits like “Starship Trooper,” “I’ve Seen All Good People” and “Roundabout.”
“Having the opportunity to bring together the band members in the development of a well-refined set of songs that captures the band’s true potential is simply an honor for me,” says Steve Howe.