White was considered one of the best drummers in the history of progressive rock.
This May 26 will be remembered as a sad day in the history of music. Following the sudden death of Depeche Mode keyboardist Andy Fletcher, we learned that Alan White, drummer for legendary progressive rock band YES, passed away at the age of 72 after a short illness. This was announced by the band in a statement:
“It is with great sadness that YES announces that Alan White, their beloved drummer, and friend of 50 years, has passed away at the age of 72 after a short illness. The news has shocked and saddened the entire YES family,” they wrote. Some health problems had kept Alan White away from the stage and Jay Schellen had taken his place.
White had just celebrated 40 years of marriage to his wife Gigi and was about to join his band at the ‘Close to the Edge’ 50th-anniversary celebration.
Alan White, considered one of the best drummers in history, was born in 1949 in County Durham. Before working with YES, Alan was part of Plastic Ono, John Lennon’s band, and the famous ‘Imagine’ album. He also worked with another Beatle, George Harrison, on ‘All Things Must Pass, in addition to multiple collaborations with musicians such as Ginger Baker, Joe Cocker, Gary Wright, Doris Troy, and Billy Preston. In 2017, the drummer entered the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with his fellow YES members.
Yes, would tour the UK to celebrate the band’s 50th anniversary and the release of their album Close to the Edge’, with which Alan White joined the band in 1972. Now, Yes will dedicate their tour, which starts in June 2022, to the memory of their drummer.