Former Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman is asking fans to visit his YouTube channel on Friday, July 3, to watch him do a special magic trick. The presentation happens to coincides with the official wide U.K. release of his latest studio album, The Red Planet.
The record, which initially was made available exclusively via MusicGlue.com, features eight new instrumental pieces that boast a heavy, prog-rock sound. The 70-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer recorded the album with a collective of musicians dubbed The English Rock Ensemble that includes guitarist Dave Colquhoun, bassist Lee Pomeroy and drummer Ash Soan.
The Red Planet is available on CD, as a two-LP red-vinyl set, as a CD/DVD collection and digitally.
Over the last few months, Wakeman has been posting a series of video updates and features on The Red Planet at his YouTube channel.
Meanwhile, Wakeman reports in a message on his official website that he is hoping to be able to return to the road in time for his planned Christmas tour this year.
He also reports that for 2021, “Lots of dates [are] being provisionally booked for prog concerts in the UK and hopefully around Europe plus a US piano tour and some South American keyboard shows, plus orchestral shows in Europe.” These plans, of course, depend on what happens with the COVID-19 pandemic.
In other news, Wakeman is featured in a virtual video performance of the late Ian Dury‘s classic 1977 tune “Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll” that was put together by his friend, U.K. TV presenter and veteran drummer Fuzz Townshend. The clip is part of a campaign to raise funds for the U.K. charity Help Musicians.
By Matt Friedlander
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