Colin Logue

Barclay James Harvest

Excerpt from Progressive Rock Unmasked

Music and in particular the boon of late sixties and early seventies artists who would form an eclectic mix which became known as Progressive Rock has been, not to put too fine a point on it, an obsession for these past fifty years.

From its infancy to the burgeoning number of artists aligning themselves with the genre, Progressive Rock would weather some seismic storms which would spell a shift of monumental proportions for some of its adherents, the demise of a few, the continuation of many and the birth of even more to carry the genre well into the 21st century.

If you search the web for “progressive rock” you will find a large number of websites devoted to the genre. Even over fifty years it remains a genre, generally speaking, still snubbed by mainstream press and radio. Many reasons are given for this situation prevailing but there was a time when the progenitors of prog were the darlings of the music press who could no wrong, whose each and every album release was eagerly awaited and then dissected and pored over by a large and devoted fan base.

To elicit any attention from the public or the press in the late 1960s each and every wannabe had to do the hard yards, often self publicising. The expression “paying ones dues” seems to have lost the meaning it once had as a plethora of talent shows parade an endless stream of hopefuls before a television audience of millions often allotting little time to each to display their talents or otherwise. Record companies have waned in the power and influence they once wielded and the days of a three record deal have long gone. Instant results are expected. In the past anyone entertaining thoughts of a career in music needed to exhibit an endurance bordering on self absorption. The road, often long and unrelenting, would be the testing ground and the financial rewards scant.