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Thread: Rick Wakeman's Six Wives of Henry VIII- First Impressions

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    Moderator Sean's Avatar
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    Rick Wakeman's Six Wives of Henry VIII- First Impressions



    This week my bro Vaylor got to hear Six Wives for the first time and really liked it. He was actually really familiar with Rick's Journey TOCOTE. He had that as a kid and loved it. So we discuss that one a bit too, and his other 70s works.

    This really is Rick's best album and this vid just confirms it all the more.....

    When did you first hear Six Wives?

    Next week we confirm that Robert Fripp actually had a sense of humor pre-Toyah, via The Cheerful Insanity of Giles, Giles and Fripp....

    It's really not that cheerful or insane, truth be told. It's a bit twee....
    Last edited by Sean; 01-26-2023 at 10:57 PM.

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    Member Kcrimso's Avatar
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    I heard Six Wives first time in the early nineties just when I was tipping my toes into the prog pond. In fact, I think it was one of the first 20.30 prog albums I bought.

    My review of the album: https://pienemmatpurot.com//review-r...nry-viii-1973/
    My progressive music site: https://pienemmatpurot.com/

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    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    The soloalbum from the YES-members that I have enjoyed the most.

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    Member proggy_jazzer's Avatar
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    The first album I bought with my own money, in 1975, and I still have that copy, shredded inner sleeve (A&M record ads) and all. I can still play it in my mind front to back. With both Bruford and White drumming, it felt like a crossover between the Fragile and CTTE versions of the band. It was my favorite by a mile of his solo records until 'Criminal Record' came out, which today is still a close second for me.
    David
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    Member Kcrimso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeuhlmate View Post
    The soloalbum from the YES-members that I have enjoyed the most.
    Fish Out Of Water and Feels Good To Me are on the same level as Six Wives in my opinion.
    My progressive music site: https://pienemmatpurot.com/

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    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kcrimso View Post
    Fish Out Of Water and Feels Good To Me are on the same level as Six Wives in my opinion.
    Yes, I agree with 'Feels Good To Me' - I never really clicked with 'Fish', actually I enjoyed Beginnings more inspite of Howes 'interesting' vocals.

  7. #7
    When I got tickets to see Yes in June 1979, I asked an older friend to loan me a couple of their albums since I had no clue about their music. He gave me Yessongs and Tormato (the album they were then touring). After the show, which I loved, I decided to grab some Yes albums, and since I knew of Wakeman's reputation and I'd enjoyed the excerpts of Six Wives on Yessongs, I picked this up too. At the time, it sort of threw me that it was all instrumental, but I pretty quickly got over that. This record became an important step for me in getting into Prog Rock, and I think it holds up incredibly well after all this time.

    Bill

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    Actually Rick Wakeman is the only Yes member I have solo-albums by. My first Rick Wakeman album was Criminal record, which still is a bit of a favorite, exept for the blues piece.

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    Member Paulrus's Avatar
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    I think I inherited Six Wives along with the rest of my older brother's record collection (which included most of Yes' classic output), when I was about 14. To my ears it sat perfectly alongside Fragile or Close to the Edge. What a great album.
    I'm holding out for the Wilson-mixed 5.1 super-duper walletbuster special anniversary extra adjectives edition.

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    Parrots Ripped My Flesh Dave (in MA)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sputnik View Post
    since I knew of Wakeman's reputation and I'd enjoyed the excerpts of Six Wives on Yessongs, I picked this up too. At the time, it sort of threw me that it was all instrumental, but I pretty quickly got over that.
    I've only ever borrowed this one; I don't own it, but I seem to recall it having vocals on maybe half of it?

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    Member Paulrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave (in MA) View Post
    I've only ever borrowed this one; I don't own it, but I seem to recall it having vocals on maybe half of it?
    There's a bit of wordless female choir on a song or two, plus some glorious examples of the Mellotron choir patch. But no vocals as on other RW albums.
    I'm holding out for the Wilson-mixed 5.1 super-duper walletbuster special anniversary extra adjectives edition.

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    Parrots Ripped My Flesh Dave (in MA)'s Avatar
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    Maybe I'm thinking of one of the other ones I also borrowed. I only own Journey... and the one with the distorted picture that you're supposed to look at with a reflective tube when you're high, or something, but I haven't played either LP in a long time because it's hard to use a turntable with Cornish Rex cats in the house.
    Oh, I also got the Greatest Hits CD, the less said about that, the better. At least it was cheap.

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    Member Quantum Cat's Avatar
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    Wakeman's first and easily his best solo album IMO. After 45 years I can still spin it and enjoy it. Great playing, arrangements and melodies.

    My second favorite is the sometimes-panned No Earthly Connection, so that's probably a real minority opinion on that. I bought that the day it came out, and even remember rolling that stupid reflective sheet into a tube to view the gimmick cover.

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    Member Guitarplyrjvb's Avatar
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    This and Criminal Record are the only RW records I care to own. I bought Journey to the Center of the Earth when it came out and thought it was horrid. The vocals, especially.

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    Member jake's Avatar
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    Looks like it’s the season to check out the Six Wives.

    https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL...nqEJ7D6k9DK7Zf

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    Moderator Sean's Avatar
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    It's sort of bums me out at these cursory listen one time listen videos do so well when it comes to views. They all seem so soft ball. Meanwhile on our videos my friend actually composes a piece of music in the style of the album we're talking about. And not only does he listen to it once he listens to it for a whole week and then goes back and shares even more thoughts on it. I lament the fact that his channel doesn't get more attention but I'm doing what I can to spread the word.

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    Member Paulrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean View Post
    It's sort of bums me out at these cursory listen one time listen videos do so well when it comes to views. They all seem so soft ball. Meanwhile on our videos my friend actually composes a piece of music in the style of the album we're talking about. And not only does he listen to it once he listens to it for a whole week and then goes back and shares even more thoughts on it. I lament the fact that his channel doesn't get more attention but I'm doing what I can to spread the word.
    Most of those one-listen reactors are gaming the system, Sean. They're posting reviews of heavy metal albums just to get the eyeballs. Hell, some of them sucked me in with prog reactions. But I try to stick to people who have some kind of musical knowledge. But if Vaylor wants more views he should branch out to cover other kinds of music.
    I'm holding out for the Wilson-mixed 5.1 super-duper walletbuster special anniversary extra adjectives edition.

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    Sean, I'm really enjoying this series, even though I know pretty much every album by heart. One thing to note for those new to the Strawbs: Wakeman doesn't appear on Grave New World, but does appear on the previous album, From the Witchwood, which remains one of my favorites by Rick (and my favorite Strawbs) since I first heard it around 1972.

  19. #19
    Moderator Sean's Avatar
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    Thank you for pointing that out. I guess my Wikipedia skills were a little scattered this week....

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    Moderator Sean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paulrus View Post
    Most of those one-listen reactors are gaming the system, Sean. They're posting reviews of heavy metal albums just to get the eyeballs. Hell, some of them sucked me in with prog reactions. But I try to stick to people who have some kind of musical knowledge. But if Vaylor wants more views he should branch out to cover other kinds of music.
    He does, this season is the only one that's really prog rock oriented. The previous year he was reviewing things his 20 year old daughter liked including stuff like Taylor Swift. I can't really say that it did any better. As a matter of fact that season didn't do as well. Next season is all requests so it should be all over the board when it comes to styles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean View Post
    It's sort of bums me out at these cursory listen one time listen videos do so well when it comes to views.
    Perhaps you should put a thumbnail of him doing a stupid gurning/'shocked' face. Some people (not me) seem to like that given how many of those damned things there are, I guess.

    Quote Originally Posted by Quantum Cat View Post
    Wakeman's first and easily his best solo album IMO. After 45 years I can still spin it and enjoy it. Great playing, arrangements and melodies.

    My second favorite is the sometimes-panned No Earthly Connection, so that's probably a real minority opinion on that.
    It's an opinion I share. I've always really rated NEC. I also have a lot of time for much of White Rock- a soundtrack but before his synth sounds went skewiff, so there's lots of great sounds on it.

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    Interesting that 'Anne Of Cleves' was a favourite. The 'jamminess' does make it seem different from the other tracks, to me.

    One other thing worth noting is that there was another track recorded in that Six Wives period. Sadly this has never been added to a CD re-release. (It features Squire, Howe and Bruford.)


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    And this becomes a very close cousin of 'Anne Of Cleves' towards the end. I've always thought this was great...that creepy section starting about 1:30 in is just awesome!


  24. #24
    Jazzbo manqué Mister Triscuits's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJ88 View Post
    One other thing worth noting is that there was another track recorded in that Six Wives period. Sadly this has never been added to a CD re-release.
    Wakey did incorporate part of that music into “Catherine Howard.” And of course, it’s not his composition, but a segment of Bizet’s l’Arlesienne. The words to sing to the opening theme, per Josefa Heifetz, are:

    Georges Bizet
    Thought pinot chardonnay
    Had more bouquet than vin rosé
    Or Manischewitz.
    Hurtleturtled Out of Heaven - an electronic music composition, on CD and vinyl
    https://michaelpdawson.bandcamp.com
    http://www.waysidemusic.com/Music-Pr...MCD-spc-7.aspx

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    Member proggy_jazzer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJ88 View Post
    Interesting that 'Anne Of Cleves' was a favourite. The 'jamminess' does make it seem different from the other tracks, to me.

    One other thing worth noting is that there was another track recorded in that Six Wives period. Sadly this has never been added to a CD re-release. (It features Squire, Howe and Bruford.)

    Definitely hear the connection compositionally, but Squire, Howe, and Bruford on that track? Maybe Bruford, but unless Howe is strumming some acoustic and Squire is playing completely against his style and sound, I don't hear it. Not doubting you, per se, but to my ears it's a stretch.
    David
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