Deep Cuts From 1971:’Long Distance Runaround’- Yes. If you’ve been following my doodlings here over the years you may have noticed that I don’t listen to much of what would be called progressive rock. Just not my bag. The first Prog Rock I remember hearing is the Yes -Fragile album. Back in high school my friend Dan and I pretty much agreed on 99% of the music that we liked/disliked but we differed on Yes. I remember his enthusiasm for this album that he found at a yard sale. He played it for me – no. I borrowed the album and listened to it a few more times. No. He was into early Yes. I can appreciate the musicianship here- and in the genre- but it all seems to be a little overdone and self indulgent for my tastes. Anyway. One of the few Yes songs [and Yes is pretty good as far as Prog Rock goes] that I can listen to is ‘Long Distance Runaround’ from Yes’s fourth album. [ I will admit to this- last year I found the album in the discount bin for $1 and bought it- along with The Yes Album- it put me back a total of $2 but I figure they are worth a total of $2.] Just one more observation on Prog Rock- this may not be true but from my experiences the people that I know personally who like Prog Rock- are all musicians themselves.
Yes co-founder Jon Anderson wrote the lyrics to this song while allegedly remembering his encounters with religious hypocrisy and competition he experienced in attending church regularly as a youth in northern England. “Long time / waiting to feel the sound” was a sentiment toward wanting to see a real, compassionate, non-threatening example of godliness.