Greg Lake: “The Last Meaningful Movement Was Progressive Music”

Few topics in popular music are more hotly debated than the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and who deserves to be inducted. Among those feeling particularly shunned by the Rock Hall: fans of progressive rock. The genre’s only inductees (so far) are Pink Floyd and Genesis.

Bass player/singer Greg Lake has been a member of prog-rock titans King Crimson and Emerson, Lake & Palmer, and he explains that the genre’s groups marked a real change from what British bands had been doing up until the late ’60s. Instead of pulling their influences (and copying their accents) from American sources, Lake and his peers looked to European music for inspiration. He cites The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band as a turning point in the British music scene.

Fans of the genre may get some encouragement from hard rock: after being passed over for years by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the past decade has seen a number of iconic acts inducted: AC/DC (2003), Black Sabbath (2006), Van Halen (2007), Metallica (2009), Alice Cooper (2011) and Guns N Roses (2012). Prog bands that are eligible include ELP and King Crimson, as well as Yes, Rush, Jethro Tull, the Moody Blues and Procol Harum.

As for Lake, he’s currently on his “Songs Of A Lifetime” tour, where he’s playing music spanning his entire career. Emerson, Lake & Palmer recently signed a deal with Razor & Tie Records to distribute their back catalog. The first release has been Come And See The Show: The Best Of Emerson, Lake & Palmer.

–Brian Ives, CBS Local


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