Progressive Rock Pioneers,
UK TOUR, APRIL 2015
Renaissance is a band with a rich history unique unto themselves as progressive rock pioneers who rose from the ashes of the seminal UK rock band, The Yardbirds. Their career has spanned forty plus years spearheaded by the 5 octave voice of Annie Haslam and the masterful songwriting skills of Michael Dunford.
The band also featured John Tout on piano, Jon Camp on bass and Terry Sullivan on drums, all of whom further molded the sound of the band through the powerful technical command of their instruments. They were first acknowledged for uniquely blending progressive rock with classical influences and symphonic arrangements.
They are widely considered to be the band that most successfully and routinely utilised the sound of a full orchestra in their recordings.
In the early years Renaissance toured Europe extensively. It wasn’t long before influential progressive rock stations in the US, such as WNEW (NYC), WMMR (Philadelphia) and WHFS (Washington) were turning on America to Renaissance. Before too long the band started thrilling concertgoers on the world’s most distinguished stages, from Carnegie Hall in NYC with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, to the Royal Albert Hall in London with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Royal Chorale Society. In 1978 they had a top ten hit in the UK with ‘Northern Lights’, which has become a classic radio favourite, still demanding regular airplay to this day.
The band eventually disbanded in the late 1980’s at which time Annie Haslam launched a solo career. In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the original founding of Renaissance, Michael and Annie in 2009 decided to form a new touring band which consisted of; Rave Tesar on keyboards, David J Keyes on bass, Tom Brislin on keyboards and Frank Pagano on drums.
More recently they have toured North America, Canada, Japan and South Korea and produced their first album in 13 years entitled ‘Symphony of Light’. The album is a testament to the unforgettable melodies that Michael Dunford infused into his work, Michael died prematurely in 2012. The album starts off with powerful lyrics by Annie Haslam in the title track about the life of Leonardo da Vinci followed by ‘Waterfall’, a song written about the rainforests in Brazil. All the songs bathe the listener in flavours from far off countries, with lush orchestral arrangements and unusual lyrical content, with guest appearances from Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull) and John Wetton (Asia/King Crimson/UK).
The current personel of Renaissance include: Annie Haslam lead vocals, Rave Tesar keyboards, David J Keyes bass guitar, Jason Hart keyboards, Frank Pagano drums and Ryche Chlanda acoustic guitars.
14th: MILTON KEYNES, The Stables, Stockwell Lane, Wavendon, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire MK17 8LU www.thestables.org Time tbc Price tbc
16th: LONDON, Union Chapel, 19B Compton Terrace, London N1 2UN Doors 7pm £28.50 (adv) plus bf. 020 7226 1686 http://www.unionchapel.org.uk/
17th: FROME, Cheese & Grain, Market Yard, Frome, Somerset, BA11 1BE http://cheeseandgrain.ticketsolve.com/ 18.50 (adv) £22.00 (door). Tickets from b/o 01373 455 420 OR – Raves From The Grave 01373 464 666. Doors 8pm Fully seated event. Support - Amelia Orgill & The Teazle Band
18th: FARNHAM, The Maltings, Farnham, Surrey GU9 7QR 01252 745444 £28/£30 plus bf 8pm https://farnhammaltings.com/
19th: LEAMINGTON SPA, Assembly, Spencer Street, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire CV31 3NF, £21.50 7pm Ticketline 0871 220 0260 http://www.leamingtonassembly.com/
21st: WIMBORNE, The Tivoli, West Borough, Wimborne Minster, Dorset BH21 1LT £20 7.30pm http://www.tivoliwimborne.co.uk/
23rd: BILSTON, The Robin 2, 20-28 Mount Pleasant, Bilston, Wolverhampton WV14 7LJ 01902 401211 £20 (adv)/£22 (door) http://www.therobin.co.uk/ Time tbc
24th: ST.HELENS, Citadel Arts Centre, Waterloo Street, St Helens, Merseyside WA10 1PX 01744 735436 £20 Doors 7.30pm presented in association with the Classic Rock Society http://www.citadel.org.uk/