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New Edition of Bill's Autobiography

Date: 21.04.2013

"Bill Bruford -The Autobiography" continues to go from strength to strength. A second edition of the paperback has just been published by Foruli Publications with different photographs and layout, and an additional 1100 word Prologue from Bill. Signed copies are on pre-order from Burning Shed online shop. Unsigned copies available at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com.


Bill filmed interview.

Date: 30.03.2013

A fresh filmed interview with Bill has just been posted at the excellent online magazine iDrum here.


The stories behind history's greatest rock bands.

Date: 27.11.2012

YES men Jon Anderson, Rick Wakeman,Steve Howe and Bill Bruford get Close to the Edge On It’s 40th Anniversary ‘InTheStudio’.

The full interview can be streamed now.

Dallas, TX - Nov 26, 2012. North American syndicated Rock radio show InTheStudio: The Stories Behind History’s Greatest Rock Bands gets a first hand account from YES current and former members Jon Anderson, Rick Wakeman, Steve Howe, and Bill

Bruford about perhaps the pinnacle moment for progressive rock with the release forty years ago of YES Close to the Edge. Coming off the breakthrough success of the band’s Fragile album just nine months earlier, YES had now gained a level of

commercial capital that they intended to spend. It wouldn’t come in the form of three and a half minute pop songs, instead appearing as an album of only three songs. Close to the Edge would debut at # 3 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart and crown YES as progressive rock royalty for decades to come. Jon Anderson tells In The Studio host Redbeard that the band did not intentionally aspire to create complex lengthy songs.


Second shop opens!

Date: 24.11.2012

Bill has opened a second multi-currency online shop stuffed to the hilt with all things Bruford, signed and unsigned. What with currency, exchange rate, shipping and tax hassles, the thinking is that this one may be more convenient for European and customers from the rest of the world outside North America. The North American shop continues to thrive, and wishes all its customers a happy holiday season. Not all items are necessarily in permanent stock in both shops all the time, but if you can't find what you want in one, it's probably in the other! Admin


All hardbacks now despatched

Date: 03.11.2012

Just to advise that all the When in Doubt, Roll! limited edition (blue) hardbacks, autographed and inscribed with your dedicated messages, have now been despatched from Los Angeles, CA. They're on the way! Many thanks to the folks at Foruli in the UK and to Amy who runs the shop in California, for making this happen.

If you missed the special edition, not to worry, the basic (red, pictured) paperback is available and in stock here.


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Bruford offers some thoughts on the first Yes album -1969.

Date: 20.08.2010

On stage May 1969: L-R Banks, Bruford, Anderson, Squire

Sal suggests that very little has been said about Yes’ first album, so I thought I’d try to be helpful.

Of course we Yesmen were new to each other, and from wildly different musical, social, and geographical backgrounds. In a country where regional accents can vary within 60 miles, and somebody who lives 250 miles north of London (Jon Anderson, Accrington) can be virtually unintelligible to a southerner, it may come as a surprise to North American Yes-watchers that early Yessers had practically nothing in common. Jon was all Sibelius, Beach Boys and vocal harmony, as was Chris. I was a jazzer who wanted to be Max Roach who knew little about rock or vocal-orientated music. (Harold Land was a hard-bop tenor saxophone player, dead now, but quite why we named a song after him I can’t remember.) Pete was big into being Pete Townsend but knew Wes Montgomery’s octave-sound. And I don’t think anyone asked Tony Kaye what he liked.

From this unlikely smorgasboard we had to fashion something. Perhaps more than contemporay bands, we were a ‘covers’ band. We played music from the Fifth Dimension, the Beatles, David Crosby, and Leonard Bernstein, inserted vast amounts of ripped off digestible classical music and TV themes, and made the whole lot sound like a cross between Vanilla Fudge and the Beach Boys. My kind of band!

I suspect I thought we were great – in the manner of most 18-year olds. Atlantic gave us a four-page recording contract, and off to the studio we went. Probably Advision, then in Bond Street, London. It was my first time recording, and I had to learn fast. I remember it only dawned on me at the end that you could alter the mix you got in the headphones. I hung on through grim death through the album with a deafening Peter Banks in one ear and precious little of anything in the other – quite a feat when you remember much of ‘I See You’ is a guitar and drums duet.

I detect vibes on Yesterday and Today. Jon was entirely encouraging to all comers on all instruments, irrespective of ability, in an early presage of his love of an orchestrally-wide tonal pallette. Tony Kaye stuck religiously to his Hammond organ, and the minute we found a Rick Wakeman who was able to deliver a much broader range of sound colours, Tony’s days were numbered. My mallet playing got as far as Fracture with Robert Fripp and King Crimson, and my own first albums with Bruford, but then I let it drift, with too much else to do.

We didn’t know any producers - other than George Martin, who was probably busy - and didn’t know anything about production. Accordingly we were assigned someone called Paul Clay who ensured that the stuff got safely to tape, with some sort of stereo image and not too much distortion. That was about the extent of that. I don’t remember attending any mixing sessions.

A possible moral of the story for young bands starting out is that I’m a keen believer in starting with covers, but then ‘re-imagining’ them when you are beginning to find your stylistic feet. If you already know the Star-Spangled (Mangled?) Banner, it’s a lot easier to detect the bit about it that is specifically Hendrix when he plays it. If you know Bernstein’s ‘America’, you can more easily hear Keith Emerson’s Hammond organ spitting fire all over it. Covers are a good place to start, you don’t have to write your own stuff until you are more confident.

So, all in all, Yes’ first was a simple, naïve affair. A beginners’ album which got us some headway, and most importantly gave the budding Anderson-Squire writing partnership its first recorded results. It sold poorly after great reviews.