It was only last month that we reported Yes’ bassist and founding member Chris Squire was diagnosed with leukemia, and it gives us great pain to report that Squire died this past Saturday. He was 67 years old.
“An individualist in an age when it was possible to establish individuality, Chris fearlessly staked out a whole protectorate of bass playing in which he was lord and master,” said Bill Bruford on Sunday, who played drums in Yes with Squire on some of the band’s most well-respected albums like Close to the Edge and Fragile. “I suspect he knew not only that he gave millions of people pleasure with his music, but also that he was fortunate to be able to do so. I offer sincere condolences to his family.”
Squire was the only member of the band to have played on every single Yes release, which includes 21 LPs and over a dozen live recordings. His contributions to the band were undeniable and irreplaceable, whether it was the monstrously catchy bass lines in “Roundabout” or his excellent songwriting prowess in some of the band’s most successful cuts like “I’ve Seen All Good People.” Squire’s unmistakable, fuzz-laden tone would be one of the most iconic aspects of the band’s revolutionary take on the style of progressive rock and would go on to influence musicians well outside of the scene. There’s no question that some of his contributions to the realm of both rock and eventually heavy metal will be eternal and will always give bassists worldwide another good reason to play out while still keeping a rock-solid foundation. You probably wouldn’t be familiar with bands like Dream Theater and Between the Buried and Me if it wasn’t for this man’s adventurous and unorthodox approach to musicianship, or at least familiar with them in the same fashion.
All of us here at Heavy Blog send out our deepest condolences to his family, the entire Yes crew and all those who have been touched by his music over the decades. Progressive music lost a true legend on Saturday.