Jon Anderson at work on new studio album with former Union-era Yes collaborator

As a much talked-about project featuring Yes alums Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman continues to percolate, Anderson is hard at work on his next solo album.

The former co-founding Yes frontman, who released the well-received Survival and Other Stories last year, tells Steve DellaSala of Audioholics that he is collaborating with Jonathan Elias — who co-wrote seven tracks on Yes’ 1991 album Union.

Those sessions, which have been taking place over the last few months in between other engagements, represent the first time that Anderson has worked in an actual studio for some two decades, he says. Survival and Other Stories was constructed via file sharing over the internet.

That’s likely the way that the oft-delayed Anderson-Rabin-Wakeman project would be handled, Anderson tells DellaSala — if and when it comes to pass — since each remains so busy in their post-Yes careers.

[SOMETHING ELSE! INTERVIEW: Former Yes member Trevor Rabin examines his legacy within that legendary progressive rock amalgam, and goes in-depth on his stirring 2012 solo release.]

Wakeman, who is releasing a lavish new reissue of his early 1970s solo album Journey to the Centre of the Earth, was a member of Yes five different times over four decades — from 1971-1974 and 1976-1980, and then 1991-1992 and 1995-1997; and then, finally, over a period from 2002-2008.

Rabin, a member of Yes between 1983’s platinum smash 90125 and 1994’s Talk, just released the all-instrumental Jacaranda. Anderson, meanwhile, sang on 19 Yes albums between 1969-1978 and then from 1983-2001. He last appeared in concert with Yes in 2004, and officially split with the legendary prog-rock outfit four years after that.

Over those crisscrossing tenures, Anderson and Rabin would develop a warm working relationship into the 1990s. Rabin also toured with Wakeman in support of Union, and appeared on Wakeman’s Return to the Centre of the Earth in 1999.

A trio collaboration has been talked about for some time now, but scheduling has been an issue.

“Well, like anything, it’s a process,” Anderson says. “It will happen when it happens. I’m never that sure when it will happen, but I just know it will happen. I’m in touch with Rick and Trevor all the time. They’re busy doing things and you know, I’m busy doing things, but we’ve talked about some ideas we’ve come up with and music that we’ve come up with and it’s really a question of timing. Maybe next year is going to be the year.”

As for Anderson’s concurrent project with Elias, he tells DellaSala: “I’m trying to put together a long form piece; I’ve been working on it. … I’ve known Jonathan for a long time, he’s a great composer. We’ve written some really beautiful songs together. We’re just putting that album together as we speak, over the next couple of months. We’ve been working on it on and off, most of the year. Spending a week here a week there, because he’s a very busy guy too. It sounds really, really good. I’m very excited about the album.”

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