Mike Portnoy, Haken join Yes cruise lineup
By David Sands
September 4, 2015
The crew may not be swabbing the decks for their visitors quite yet, but things are starting to fall into place for the annual Yes fan cruise, Cruise to the Edge.
Organizers have announced this year’s program will feature an all-star tribute to the late Chris Squire. Former Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy, the Neal Morse Band and the London-based prog Metal group Haken have also been added to a 25-plus band lineup that will be led by Yes and Marillion.
With Squire gone, the makeup of Yes itself will be looking quite different this year. Billy Sherwood will be taking charge of the the bass and vocal parts once handled by the legendary musician, a role he’s been carrying on the group’s summer tour with Toto.
Billed as “the ultimate prog rock cruise sailing the Carribean,” this year’s musical sea journey will take place November 15-19 on Norwegian Cruise Line’s 2,394-passenger Norwegian Pearl.
The Cruise to the Edge will kick off with a special pre-cruise event on Nov. 14 in Miami, featuring music from Martin Barre of Jethro Tull, Three Friends and Lifesigns. That show, which will take place at the Magic City Casino, will also include an after-hours “Electric Prog Jam” for cruise patrons. Afterwards the Pearl will sail for Bahamian waters, making stops in Key West and Great Stirrup Cay in the Bahamas.
In addition to the acts named earlier, the cruise audience will also have the opportunity to listen to performances by Anathema, Allan Holdsworth, PFM, Saga, Caravan, Spocks Beard, Nektar, Änglagrd, IO Earth, Airbag, Casey McPherson, Messenger, Dave Kerzner, Moon Safari, Barracuda Triangle, Jolly, Enchant, Thank You Scientist, Steve Rothery, Bad Dreams and AHEPJ. UK journalist and respected Yes authority Jon Kirkman will serve as the host of this year’s cruise, while Mike Portnoy will act as the official “music director” for the All-Star Tribute to Chris Squire.
In addition to these performances, the cruise will also feature special “Storytellers” concerts that will include behind-the-scenes stories from select groups. There will also be Prog Panel Q&A sessions, Meet & Greets, a Bon Voyage Sail-Away Concert and more.
As for the ship itself, cruise patrons will have access to 13 bars and lounges, numerous eateries, casino, spa, fitness center, basketball and volleyball court, bowling alley and other amenities.
The cost of booking a cabin on the cruise is now $499 (US) per person. This year organizers are offering two new pay options: a zero-interest installment plan and a paid-in-full advance plan that provides a five percent discount to the base fare.
Cruise to the Edge is produced by On The Blue, a theme cruise company that also oversees The Moody Blues and Monsters of Rock cruises. For more information, visit CruisetotheEdge.com.
Chris Squire Is Gone, But Yes Will Live On
Chris Squire, Legendary Prog Rocker, Dead At 67
FBPO Interview With Chris Squire
Billy Sherwood Talks Past And Future