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  18 & LIFE: BILLY SHERWOOD OF YES

Chris Nelson


chris nelson



billy sherwood

For this issue of 18 & Life we welcome Billy Sherwood, bass player with Yes from 1997 to 2000 and again from 2015, replacing Chris Squire who sadly passed away this year.

As well as his work with Yes, Billy also has a new solo record, 'Citizen', released on Frontiers Records.

1. WHO'S THE BEST BAND YOU'VE EVER SEEN LIVE?
Yes.

2. ARE YOU AFRAID OF ANYTHING AND WHAT'S YOUR FEAR?
No.

3. IF YOU COULD HOST A DINNER PARTY AND INVITE ANY TWO PEOPLE FROM HISTORY ALIVE OR DEAD WHO WOULD YOU CHOOSE, AND WHY?
Chris Squire and Jaco Pastorious, an evening of talking about music with those two would great.

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4. WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE MOVIE AND WHY DOES IT MEAN SO MUCH TO YOU?
Star Wars... Great story, amazing production and the characters; I'm a huge fan.

5. WHO ARE YOUR HEROES, THE PEOPLE WHO INSPIRED YOU TO GET INTO MUSIC?
That would be my parents, both musicians. Booby Sherwood (Dad) was a band leader/actor starting back in the early 1940's and Phyllis (Mom) was working on Broadway in the chorus lines, dancing and singing. The two met, fell in love and started a family...I was raised in a house of music and so followed the path.

6. WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE TYPE OF FOOD/DISH?
Breakfast... the most important meal of the day.

7. WHAT WAS THE FIRST ROCK ALBUM YOU EVER BOUGHT, AND THE LAST?
The first was Yes, 'Tales From Topographic Oceans' and the last was the self-titled album by Paramore.

billy sherwood

8. WHAT WOULD YOU SAY YOUR CAREER HIGHS AND LOWS HAVE BEEN?
Yes as a band would have to be a high point. I've had a long relationship with the band and in many capacities, playing/producing/mixing/writing and eventually joined the band. When Chris phoned me to ask to step in while he battled leukemia I was heartbroken, knowing it was that serious...

He was a good friend and responsible for introducing me into the Yes realm back in the late 80s. We remained friends through the years and along the way I ended up working with many different members of the band by proxy. It's made the Yes journey a unique one for me personally, especially now with Chris's passing it's made this particular returning to Yes surreal.

Chris was a huge inspiration playing bass/singing etc... fate had it we became friends, he spoke to me of Yes moving ever forward... which has me at present honoring that request and hoping he (and perhaps even Jaco) are smiling.

The low point would have to be losing Chris Squire…

9. DO YOU BELIEVE IN GHOSTS OR UFOS AND HAVE YOU HAD ANY EXPERIENCES YOU CAN SHARE WITH US?
When I was a kid growing up I used to read UFO Magazine, I love sci-fi stuff...it's seemingly a pretty big universe out there, anything is possible.

10. YOU'RE CHILLING AT HOME AND PUT ON AN ALBUM BY AN ARTIST, SOMEONE WE WOULD NOT ASSOCIATE YOU WITH. WHAT WOULD BE YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE?

I like a lot of different variety genres, my iPod is loaded with music... that said Weather Report always works for me, still after all these years, I find those records timeless.

billy sherwood

11. IF YOU COULD CHOOSE ONE BOOK TO TAKE ON A DESERT ISLAND WITH YOU, WHAT WOULD YOU CHOOSE AND WHY?
"Surviving A Desert Island For Dummies"...for surviving.

12. WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE COMEDY TV SHOW OF ALL TIME?
I'm a long time fan of Saturday Night Live, followed it since its dawn, still hanging in there.

13. HAVE YOU A PET, IF SO WHAT IS IT AND WHAT IS HIS OR HER NAME?
We have a cat, "Super Socks Explorer Junior Two".

14. WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE ALCOHOLIC DRINK?
Hard question, not so much a drinker...more of a coffee junkie.

15. WHAT'S YOUR FUNNIEST TOUR BUS STORY?
I'm not at liberty to share state secrets.

16. WHAT WAS THE FIRST ROCK/METAL GIG YOU EVER WENT TO?
Journey, in the 80s, at The Forum in L.A.

17. WHAT SPORT DO YOU ENJOY PLAYING OR WATCHING THE MOST, AND HAVE YOU A FAVOURITE TEAM?
Sports/Teams...? I've heard of these things you mention, I will have to look into this.

18. WHAT ARE YOU UP TO AT THE MOMENT AND WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE NEXT SIX MONTHS?
I'm currently rehearsing/preparing for the next Yes tour cycle in November with several Shows in Florida and then we embark on what is known as "Cruise To The Edge", which leaves port on the 15th of Nov for a week long adventure.

I have a new solo record coming out on Frontiers Records on Nov 6th called 'Citizen', it features a host of great guest artists from the prog genre. I'm looking towards its release and also getting it onto a stage.

Between Yes and 'Citizen' there's plenty going on. My last solo record 'Divided By One' is being released on CD, whereas it was previously available for download only. Also, I have a sort of 'Best Of' CD being released entitled 'Collection'. This contains a song from each of my 7 previous solo records plus 2 bonus tracks.



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