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“We were only talking the other day about the possibility of rock music — in the next 10 years — really developing into a higher art form,” Jon Anderson told Sounds in 1971, the year Yes released two prog-rock classics, The Yes Album and Fragile. “Rock musicians will make music that will last a hell of […]

Rock stars are known for living life on the edge, so it should come as no surprise that many of them have endured some pretty serious near-death experiences. There’s a reason “sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll” remains the ultimate rock cliche. Many successful artists have embraced all three at the height of their careers, […]

Joni Mitchell held nothing back on her classic 1971 album Blue. From personal relationships to her own insecurities, every aspect of the singer-songwriter’s life was put on display. The raw emotion and sheer vulnerability of the songs helped make Blue one of the most acclaimed albums in history. Still, Mitchell was unsure that such personal […]

Was For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge the first misstep of Van Halen‘s Sammy Hagar era? Or was it exactly the back-to-basics move they needed to make? On its third album with its second singer, the band jettisoned the keyboards and genre experimentation that were a big part of their first two albums together in favor of straight-ahead rock. Thanks to producer […]

Few tours generated as much excitement and controversy as Guns N’ Roses‘ Use Your Illusion Tour. By 1991, the former Los Angeles gutter rats had become the biggest rock band in the world, riding high on the success of their multiplatinum debut album Appetite for Destruction and its stopgap follow-up G N’ R Lies. Guns N’ Roses had captivated audiences over […]

One of Tom Petty‘s earliest music videos was for “You Got Lucky,” the synth-driven lead single off 1982’s Long After Dark. Featuring the Heartbreakers, who arrive via hovercraft in a post-apocalyptic desert wasteland, the clip leaned heavily into a sci-fi theme that could not have been more appealing to the freshly launched MTV channel. The video and […]

George Harrison claimed a trio of chart-topping solo songs, and nine more that reached the Top 25 on Billboard’s Top 100 – including 1981’s No. 2 smash “All Those Years Ago.” Then there were his remarkable achievements as leader of the Traveling Wilburys. Still, as with Harrison’s tenure in the Beatles, he remained largely overlooked. […]

There are some artists who seem destined for the instrument they play. It’s impossible to think of the Beatles without Paul McCartney and his left-handed Hofner bass or the Who without microphone-swinging Roger Daltrey center stage. As most musicians can attest, being able to play more than one instrument is a skill that lends itself to all sorts of creative endeavors. […]

The relationship between David Gilmour and Roger Waters, it seems, was always fraught. Their shared time in Pink Floyd, the moments when they worked together most closely, brought the group’s highest acclaim – including 1971’s Meddle, 1973’s The Dark Side of the Moon and 1975’s Wish You Were Here. But it never seemed to come […]

The best rock song in the world doesn’t amount to a hill o’ beans if you botch the presentation. The biggest and best rockers in history have taken this truth to heart, and they’ve made their image an integral component of their artistry. Sometimes the only thing needed to rehabilitate a floundering career is a radical wardrobe change […]