After a long battle with colon cancer, singer and bassist John Wetton has died at the age of 67. As an integral member of such bands as King Crimson, UK, and Asia, his was one of the distinctive voices in progressive rock, lending a human touch to often difficult music.
by Jon Davis, Published 2017-01-31
Wetton's tenure in King Crimson spanned the albums Larks' Tongues in Aspic, Starless and Bible Black, and Red, widely considered to be one of the band's creative peaks — if not the peak. After Robert Fripp disbanded Crimson in 1974, his brief stint with Uriah Heep produced two albums (Return to Fantasy and High and Mighty) before he formed the "super group" UK with Bill Bruford, Allan Holdsworth, and Eddie Jobson. UK's self-titled debut is widely regarded as one of the best progressive rock albums produced in the latter part of the 70s.
And then there's Asia, another "super group," one which achieved great commercial success and became a bone of contention among fans of progressive rock, having set aside any ambitions of innovation or complexity in favor of easily accessible mass-market appeal.
Wetton also recorded a number of solo albums, starting with Caught in the Crossfire in 1980, as well as contributing bass and vocals to recordings and live performances by many other artists.
Filed under: Obituaries
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