‘We still have a good rapport’: Geoff Downes is friendly with Steve Howe, despite exit from Asia

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When Steve Howe quit Asia, he was only leaving one of the two band lineups that he shares with Geoff Downes. The pair continues forward in the current edition of Yes — and Downes says there’ve been no hard feelings.

“We still have a good rapport with each other,” Downes tells Eric Blair in the video below.

Howe co-founded Asia with Downes, John Wetton and Carl Palmer, eventually appearing on five of the group’s studio albums — including its blockbuster 1982 debut and — after a long hiatus, then a 2006 reunion — on last year’s well-received anniversary recording XXX.

Howe was replaced by the 26-year-old Sam Coulson, in an announcement made later the same day.

“Having the original guys back together was really quite special,” Downes adds. “Certainly, we gave it a good six or seven years from when we got back together. Since Steve has left, we’ve been regrouping. We’ve got a young kid on guitar who is really a great guitarist. So, later in the year, we’re going to be doing some stuff with Asia.”

Howe has been a part of Yes through both of Downes’ stints with the group, first for 1980’s Drama and again since 2011’s Fly From Here.

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