Yes, “Clap” from The Yes Album (1971): YESterdays

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After “Yours Is No Disgrace,” an opening tour de force on 1971’s The Yes Album, “Clap” initially seems to be an odd choice for inclusion at all — let alone as this project’s second song. However, the world’s greatest progressive rock band makes a bold statement with the solo composition by Steve Howe.

“Clap,” an homage to Howe’s guitar hero Chet Atkins, is a showcase of his finger-picking classical guitar talents. Additionally, Steve Howe excels at economical arrangements, and always-tasteful playing.

<<< BACKWARD (“Yours Is No Disgrace”) ||| ONWARD (“Starship Trooper”) >>>

Recorded live at the Lyceum Theatre in London on July 17, 1970, Yes’ “Clap” was also written in honor of the birth of Howe’s son, Dylan. On the reissued versions of The Yes Album, there is a studio version of the song, recorded during the album sessions at Advision Studios by Eddie Offord.

The song remains a Yes concert favorite, and is often combined with Steve Howe’s acoustic Fragile composition, “Mood for a Day.” Initially, it might have been difficult to imagine a three-minute acoustic track having such an impact. But after listening to “Clap,” it’s hard to picture The Yes Album – to say nothing of a Yes or Steve Howe concert – without it.

Preston Frazier’s YESterdays is a song-by-song feature that explores the unforgettable musical legacy of Yes. The series runs every other Tuesday.

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier is a bass-playing lawyer living in Atlanta. His first Steely Dan exposure was with an eight-track cassette of 'Pretzel Logic.' He can be reached at slangofages@icloud.com; follow him on Twitter: @slangofages. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Preston Frazier
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