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Thread: Describe your descent into prog...

  1. #26
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    When my circle of friends, who were metal heads, graduated high school in the mid-70s, i started at associate with a group of audiophiles who all had a different favourite prog band.

    In the 80s I moved to an area where prog was dead. In the early 90s, a teacher bought me a guitar magazine as part of our Secret Santa. On the cover was the title, "The Newest Guitar God?" along with a picture of John Petrucci. I read, investigated, and found that prog was actually very much alive, hidden In the recesses of the internet.

  2. #27
    Member adap2it's Avatar
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    As a blues fan, went to see Julie Driscoll-Brian Auger & the Trinity in the late 60's. Opening band was THE NICE...that was a monumental moment for me.
    Dave Sr.

    I prefer Nature to Human Nature

  3. #28
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    I was born in '62 and had been playing the classical guitar since I was 5. Loved Bach, Beethoven, Stravinsky, Bartok, etc.

    My dad was a jazz musician so I grew up with a lot of Miles and Coltraine.

    Then my older brother went to university. On winter break he came home with a cassette that had Fragile on Side One and Tarkus on Side Two.

    As soon as the first notes of "Roundabout" hit - I too was Prog's eternal bitch.

    This, of course, let me to Pink Floyd, King Crimson, Jethro Tull and Gentle Giant.

    The rest, as they say, is history.
    Prog's Not Dead

  4. #29
    Orange Tick Squasher Buddhabreath's Avatar
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    For me, like Markwoll, it was college radio in the DC area (WGTB & WAMU), hearing a friend's copy of Dark Side of the Moon, but most of all seeing Gentle Giant open for Jethro Tull during the Minstrel in the Gallery tour. They then became my favorite band in high school and there was no looking back. It was later cemented when discussing music with a older freaky hairy radical looking dude at the old U. of Md. co-op record store who said "You have to hear this" and pulled out Pawn Hearts. I bought it on the spot, was blown away and nearly obsessed with it at the time and VDGG became my new favorite band.
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  5. #30
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    Late '60s: Peter and the Wolf, Bernstein's YPC-->Rubber Soul-->Abbey Road-->Jesus Christ Superstar-->Switched-on Bach
    Early 70s: Met a friend a year behind me in school who had older brothers. Wakeman 6 Wives-->Yes-->Genesis-->KC
    Late '70s-early 80's: Concert after concert after concert
    Late 80's-Y2K: The jazz/academic years
    2000-Present: Reconnect with loved music of the first two categories, discover new music along similar lines, find common threads between all categories.

    Not so much a descent as a great. long, ongoing train trip.
    David
    Happy with what I have to be happy with.

  6. #31
    I was at an impressionable age when Rush released Moving Pictures and Genesis released Abacab. Prog is the only music I've ever known.
    Volume 1, Volume 2, and Volume 3 of my best ambient stuff from last year. 1 is the Frippertronic stuff, 2 is the knob twiddling, and 3 is one big meditative piece.
    And there's still that weekly ambient guitar soundscape podcast.

  7. #32
    ALL ACCESS Gruno's Avatar
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    It was back in the 90s... friends of mine were into prog, so I checked some out and was bored with most of it. I do find select tracks here and there that are fun, so I continue to see if I can find a gem within the drivel. I have worked side-by-side with prog musicians and find most to be pleasant.

  8. #33
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    Born in 1962

    70-71 - West Side Story Soundtrack, Jesus Christ Superstar

    72-75 - Alice Cooper, David Bowie, Black Sabbath, Rush, Angel, Rainbow, Judas Priest

    76 - 80 - Yes, ELP, Gentle Giant, Steely Dan, Brand X, The Good Rats, Dixie Dregs, Happy The Man, Frank Zappa, Jean Luc Ponty

    81 - 90 - John MacLaughlin, Allan Holdsworth, Pat Metheny, Michal Hedges

    91 - present - Jazz, avant garde & anything offbeat
    no tunes, no dynamics, no nosebone

  9. #34
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    My very first albums were by Elton John and 10cc at age 12 in 1975, I was always fascinated by the instrumental aspects of these acts and of course the song writing. Then in 1977 I saw Yes on Top Of The Pops with their Wondrous Stories video and bought Going For The One with my meagre pocket money. I'm not sure I could comprehend it at first but when the penny dropped, I was mesmerised and indeed still am, Awaken is my fave track ever. Then I discovered A Farewell To Kings and 2112, And Then There Were Three and Hemispheres and the rest of the Yes, Rush & Genesis back catalogue followed as soon as possible afterwards. In '79 I started work and the mass buying of LP's really got going! 1st gig: Jon Anderson at the Royal Albert Hall in London followed by Yes (Drama tour) a week or so later...

  10. #35
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    When I was nine or ten (1975 ish) we used to go to a friends house to play marathon games of Monopoly during the school holidays. For some long forgotten reason we used to play in his older sister's bedroom as she had moved out and she had a mono record player plus three albums - Foxtrot, Fragile and Tales From Topographic Oceans. One day we decided to play them and were quite freaked out by this weird music (especially the percussion freak out in Ritual!) but we played them a lot and I became particularly taken with the musty otherworldly feel of Foxtrot.
    Fast forward a few years, I had started to buy a few albums (ELO and 10cc) with my birthday and pocket money and one day I saw the new album by Yes in WH Smith's record section. I remember them, I thought, and bought it (it was Tormato but we all have to start somewhere). Then it was Close To The Edge for Christmas and I never looked back

  11. #36
    Member Lopez's Avatar
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    The first inkling of something strange going on out there was in 1965. I was in the sixth grade and Mrs. Bonanno, the traveling (old biddy) music teacher, came to the class. "Auuggghh" sighed most of us because we knew it as going to be the usual classical stuff she drilled into us since the first grade. Instead she played some recordings of "machine music." Don't remember who recorded the stuff, but some was German speak-singing and some were straight-out bleeps and blips from giant Univac computers. That started my quest for off-beat music. Got into the Electric Prunes in '65 and the Byrds at the same time. Switched on Bach and the Moody Blues in 1968. But the push over the edge came one Saturday afternoon in the Fall of 1969. I rarely went out being shy and studious. I was doing homework and listening to the local Brown University radio station, WMBR, in Providence, when the DJ played a string of songs that included King Crimson, Edgar Broughton, the Moodies, and Thunderclap Newman. Laws yes, I was hooked.
    Lou

    Awarded the Krusty Brand Seal of Approval. It's not just good, it's good enough.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by nosebone View Post
    Born in 1962
    ...
    76 - 80 - Yes, ELP, Gentle Giant, Steely Dan, Brand X, The Good Rats, Dixie Dregs, Happy The Man, Frank Zappa, Jean Luc Ponty
    ...
    Didn't think I would ever see "The Good Rats" mentioned on this web site. Love them guys.

    My own story:
    Born in '61, Long Island NY. Older brother listened to all sorts of stuff. If it had guitars, he would listen. So, Alice Cooper, UFO, Sabbath..but also Tull, Floyd, Eloy. I liked it all, with the 'proggier' bands having a slight edge. Then one day, I was home from school, sick, listening to the radio, and the station played Nektar - Recycled. I think it was Marvelous Moses. The proggy goodness of the band mixed with Larry Fast's keyboards was the straw that broke the camel's back. In a good way.

  13. #38
    Member since March 2004 mozo-pg's Avatar
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    Cool stories! Really interesting thread idea! My older brother saw Genesis in Quebec City and gave me Genesis Live at Christmas 1975. I thought it was god awful but keep playing in and grew to lovingit - and a friend pointed out I was going to play the groves off the LP. I remember being at a party in the mid-70s with stobe lights while Genesis' Trick Of the Tail was playing. It made an immediate impression. I saw Genesis around my 14th Birthday (Trick Of The Tail). It was a wild experience, the guy in front of me had an inverted v shaved on his head and sold me a nickel bag of Mexican pot. I remember various parts of the show, the way Steve Hackett stood on the stage, Phil's routine with the tamborine, on a huge streamer (large inflated tube) that was on the sides of the stage. I subsequently saw Tull and Rush and Styx in 1976. Tracking back, I bought a stereo system (basic) when I was 14 and ELO's Eldorado (still a favourite) was in the collection. My brother gave me a copy of Dark Side Of The Moon for helping him with a move. There was a huge record store sale in my first year of high school and I bought a ton of Yes albums, cheap! I then had the chance to see Yes live in 1979 and it was magical. Incidentally, we did call it progressive rock at this time.

  14. #39
    Member bill g's Avatar
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    Was into Sabbath, Cactus, Ten Years After etc... and one night, I was 14, rather stoned, someone cranked Meddle. I was completely blown by 'One of These Days'. I remember over and over saying 'I can't believe music can sound like this'. Shortly after, at the same friends house 'Court of the Crimson King' blew me away completely, and KC and PF immediately became my favorite bands. Didn't know it was called 'progressive', but Tarkus and Close To The Edge were next and I no longer cared about my former favorite bands. I was spoiled. Selling England trumped everything once I heard it. The subtle detail continued to unfold over the course of a year or two. This was the music of my heart.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morphy65 View Post
    When I was nine or ten (1975 ish) we used to go to a friends house to play marathon games of Monopoly during the school holidays. For some long forgotten reason we used to play in his older sister's bedroom as she had moved out and she had a mono record player plus three albums - Foxtrot, Fragile and Tales From Topographic Oceans. One day we decided to play them and were quite freaked out by this weird music (especially the percussion freak out in Ritual!) but we played them a lot and I became particularly taken with the musty otherworldly feel of Foxtrot.
    Good story. That would be a great scene in a coming-of-age movie. I wonder if those were the only three albums she owned or the ones she chose to leave behind!

  16. #41
    Member Dave the Brave's Avatar
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    May sound strange but it was the release of Switched on Bach by then Walter Carlos.
    That piqued my interest in synths.
    Then the first time I heard Lucky Man by ELP I was hooked.
    Then came Yes, Genesis and the rest of the 'classic proggers of the 70's

    DTB

  17. #42
    Born in '58. Grew up loving pop music, the Beatles (Yes, I saw them on Sullivan; only I and my Gramma liked them). Then into Pavel Mehkartnyeh's stuff like Uncle Albert.

    My "gateway" drugs were Quadrophenia and some of Chicago's more experimental stuff. Then a friend played me Genesis Live around '75 and I was hooked by "Get 'Em Out by Friday." As a big science fiction fan (still am), I couldn't resist lines like "This is an announcement from Genetic Control..." Bought Lamb and was hooked on Genesis through3SL (can't stand anything after that).

    The same friend told me I should look into Gentle Giant and King Crimson, so I picked up some cheap cassettes of LTiA and Octopus from the old Wherehouse. GG I "got" right away; KC was too out there for me to grok until I heard them live on USA. Been a yuge fan ever since, and that opened me up to things like Yes, ELP, and non-top-40 Kansas. We discovered Nektar together, and we're still great friends though he lives 350 miles or so away.

    It's been a progressively (ha!) downward slope ever since then.
    Ring the bells, that still can ring,
    Forget your perfect offering.
    There is a crack - a crack in everything.
    That's how the light gets in.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bartellb View Post
    Around 1977 when I was just barely a teenager and while in my friend's older brother's pick up truck he put on a Yes Fragile 8 track and I liked it immediately.
    Similar for me, just a few years earlier ; my best friend's older brother played Brain Salad Surgery and Close to the Edge when he drove us around (also Fly Like An Eagle) and I was hooked on prog. We all played in a drum corps together, and Carl Palmer fit in well with what we knew.

    Picked up both on LP, and started expanding the collection of ELP and Yes.
    "Normal is just the average of extremes" - Gary Lessor

  19. #44
    Listening to Radio 1 one Saturday afternoon and 21 CSM was played. Totally blown away and never looked back.

  20. #45
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    Born in 1957.
    When I was 15, I heard Uncle Meat.
    Immediately, it was like a door opened up to a technicolor-filled world (cue that scene in The Wizard of Oz, especially apropos considering the sped-up munchkin vocals that are all over this album), and I also distinctly remembering the feeling that this was the music I had waited my entire (15 year old) life to hear, but didn't know actually existed until that moment.
    Steve F.

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    "You run a great label, but sometimes you go out of your way to be a jerk." - Jed Levin

    "The older I get, the more I realize that cynicism is just realism spelled wrong."

    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  21. #46
    I had a friend who was a couple years older than me when I was about 14 who was also a drummer. He was obsessed with Phil Collins and pointed out to me how Phil could do these syncopated off beat patterns on the ride cymbal. Then he pointed out his articulate work on the high hat. He also explained that doing this over the top of odd time signatures made him the best. Once I understood that, I started listening to rock music in a different way. I also became aware and impressed by these sophisticated drummers who clearly had advanced training at their profession. Suddenly I could tell which bands had these great drummers and which didn't. I learned that the bands that had these drummers would later be called prog rock bands. I learned that music genres are mostly defined by what the rhythm section is up to. Once I educated myself on these matters, I developed a huge disdain for drum machines, fake samples etc which still goes on today. It's a crime to throw these great drummers under the bus in favor of drums in a box, loops, samples etc... just to save money or pretend you are making credible progressive rock music.

    The genre certainly wasn't being defined by guitar players. There were plenty of amazing rock guitarists, but they didn't play across 11/8 meter 7/8 etc... or other poly rhythmic structures. What would Van Halen sound like playing across a prog rhythm section? The world will never know.

  22. #47
    There was this white light at the end of the tunnel........
    NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF STUPID PEOPLE IN LARGE GROUPS!

  23. #48
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    I left this out of my original post, but seeing several people mention radio stations, I have to include WLAV in Grand Rapids Michigan. They had a DJ / Program Director named Aris Hampers who was big into prog. In the early 80’s they were one of the first stations to get behind Marillion to the point where the band sold out a 2500 seat venue as a headliner on the “Childhood” tour and then again on “Clutching”. Along with the usual prog suspects of Genesis, Yes, Tull etc. this station was also my first exposure to Camel and other more obscure act that they would give airplay. Even up to the early 90’s WLAV was one of the first stations to get on board with Dream Theater. My first time seeing them was a free concert put on by the radio station playing to a packed house. Today WLAV is just another classic rock station, but back in the day they were a big part of my prog education. I know there are several other members of this board that grew up with WLAV as well.

  24. #49
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    Thanks for all the replies everyone! Lots of cool stories, and, to you older folks, it mustíve been nice to hear prog on the radio.

    As for me, I got into prog in a somewhat odd way at the beginning of 2014. I was planning on studying abroad the following semester, and one of the main places I wanted to go was Sweden. I wanted to familiarize myself with Swedish culture, and, as a part of that, I wanted to listen to some Swedish bands. I quickly learned that metal is incredibly popular there. I had never listened to more than the occasional metal song before, and I initially disliked most of the Swedish metal bands I listened to due to my aversion to harsh vocals. Luckily, however, I discovered Opeth, a band that uses both harsh and clean vocals. At first I still hated the harsh vocals, but I gradually came to love the depth, complexity, and darkness of their albums Heritage and Damnation. I listened to those over and over, and I also began listening to the clean parts of their metal albums. I gradually came to tolerate, then enjoy the CMVís. Through them I discovered Steven Wilsonís music as well as other older prog bands, and the rest is history.

  25. #50
    i think Pixies first got me into off kilter rock music. from there I eventually ended up become a big fan of Muse for a time, really up until I heard The Mars Volta, who had some of the elements I liked in Muse but progged the fuck out. After I got into TMV, a second hand record store opened up in my town with lots of great prog in the cheap section, so I would call in every day after school and explore. I think what really sealed the deal was finding a bunch of prog and jazz fusion records that I recognised from samples in hip hop songs I loved. This really drove me to explore more and more and now most of my favourite music is some form of prog and I'm currently knee deep in avant prog and RIO and going deeper.

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