Rick Wakeman

"To play music, you have to understand it.... You see, a piece of music, just because it was written three or four years ago, shouldn't die. Gone are the days when you hear a record for two months and then it just disappears. People are writing pieces of music to last."--Rick Wakeman (Rolling Stone)

All you can do is follow your heart. If someone was to list the ten biggest musician cliches, that would surely top the list, but it's still the truth. I believe very strongly in what I'm doing. It takes me over a year to write something, prepare it and iron out the faults before I'll play it before a live audience. If I get booed off the stage, then I'll obviously deserve it, but at least I will have bombed on my own terms. To me, that's better than playing something that's a guaranteed success."--Rick Wakeman (Rolling Stone)

"I'm a great believer in that if you're going to do something you should do it properly.... If you believe you can do it better or as good as someone else, then do it. If you can't, then don't bother."--Rick Wakeman (Rolling Stone)


"Rick Wakeman is a major world class talent. Rick's got tremendous originality. He's determined to give entertainment and he does."--Derek Green in Music Week July 3, 1977


Wakeman was signed to A&M Records because he was a member of the Strawbs. A&M allowed Wakeman to work with the band Yes provided he made solo albums for A&M.

Rick Wakeman invested $50,000 in the making of his album Journey to the Centre of the Earth.

The staging of The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and the Knights Of the Round Table at Wembly Pool in London for three days in 1975 cost about $150,000. The concert included the 58 members of the New World Symphony Orchestra, the 48 voices of the English Chamber Choir, the 8 Nottingham Festival Singers, 17 professional ice skaters, orchestra conductor, narrator and Rick's English Rock Ensemble plus a physical stage including a castle. 

The 20-stop North American tour supporting both the Journey and Six Wives of Henry VIII included 118 people because he used the National Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir of America.


Myths and Legends Of King Arthur...New Music On A&M Records
Lisztomania New Music On A&M Records
No Earthly Connection New Music On A&M Records
White Rock New Music On A&M Records
Rick Wakeman's Criminal Record New Music On A&M Records
Recollections: The Very Best Of press release

  1. Journey to the Center of the Stage. Cameron Crowe. Rolling Stone, January 30, 1975.
  2. Wakeman to Portray Merlin the Magician. RPM, May 3, 1975.
  3. U.S. Labels Stronger Than Ever in Britain In Bicentennial Year. Nigel Hunger. Music Week, July 3, 1976.
Recording Years / Label
1973-1980 -  A&M Records
keyboards, vocals

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