Favourite Musicians


The first Prog band I got into (albeit in the late 1980s). The first truly Prog album I properly listened to was Fragile (1972). Initially, I found the sounds amusing and dated (in the same way 1980s music sounds to us now!), but I soon warmed to the musicianship.


Genesis (up until the departure of Steve Hackett in 1977) created a wonderful version of Progressive Rock, incorporating a very classical feel and elements of Victorian England, at the same time being able to let rip and rock out.


Canada's response to the British Prog bands of the early 1970s. Rush fused the power and hard rock of Led Zeppelin with the complex arrangements of Yes and Genesis and forged the beginnings of what would become Progressive Metal. They went through a number of style changes throughout the years, but remained basically a great rock three-piece. A fantastic band live.

Jethro Tull

At their finest for me in the mid to late 1970s (from their Prog to folk Prog period), Tull created wonderfully complex arrangements with a very earthly feel - all very tongue-in-cheek.

Mike Oldfield

My favourite solo musician, Mike has produced a number of great albums (although he's lost his way in recent years in my opinion). At his best in the early 1970s and early 1980s for me.

Steve Hackett

Guitarist for Genesis during their classic Prog period. Steve remained loyal to the more contemplative music of Genesis and when they moved towards pop he 'abandoned ship'. Equally at home with a full rock band or Spanish guitar, he manages to incorporate a wide range of influences into his music. Hackett continues to tour with a great bunch of musicians.

Spock's Beard

Great U.S. band with a terrible name. Spock's Beard comprises a group of very talented musicians who got together in the 1990s with a view to writing modern and original music in a classic Prog Rock style.

Dead Can Dance

Difficult to label. Their name suggests gothic obsessions with death, but is meant to describe the fact that living music can be made from dead, inanimate materials. DCD combine elements of medieval and early European music with international influences.


Need no introduction. Britain's finest pop/rock band of all time in my opinion. Their songwriting skills as a team and individually were phenomenal. I think there are a lot of lesser known album tracks which are just as good if not better than their singles.

The Cult

Pure rock, without all the image trappings of heavy metal. Music to ride motorbikes to! All of their albums are good in their own way.

The Police

Again, great songwriting from Sting in particular. The Police managed to take the energy of pop and fuse it with some fantasic musicianship. Stewart Copeland was a drum hero of mine.


An often overlooked band, but again some great songs were written by the band and their albums were always strong. I particularly loved their 2000 album, Minor Earth Major Sky.


The only band in recent years to have made my ears prick up. Muse have made great musicianship fashionable again. Now dubbed New Prog, they've always managed to fuse classical influences and great musicianship, just like the original Prog bands. With their The Resistance album, they finally came out of the Prog closet with their Exogenesis Symphony.

Honourable mentions to...

  • Alphaville
  • The Beach Boys
  • The Beatles
  • Big Country
  • The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band
  • Buddy Holly
  • The Buggles
  • Candidate
  • Captain
  • City
  • Cozy Powell
  • The Decemberists
  • Die Ärzte
  • Die Prinzen
  • Die Toten Hosen
  • The Divine Comedy
  • EAV (Erste Allgemeine Verunsicherung)
  • Eddie Cochran
  • Electric Light Orchestra
  • Emerson, Lake, and Palmer
  • Extreme
  • Falco
  • Frost
  • Gold
  • Grobschnitt
  • Gryphon
  • Helge Schneider
  • The Human League
  • Incantation
  • IQ
  • Iron Maiden
  • It Bites
  • Jean-Michel Jarre
  • John Shuttleworth
  • Jon Anderson
  • Jon and Vangelis
  • Kraftwerk
  • Laibach
  • Led Zeppelin
  • The Mars Volta
  • Men At Work
  • Michael Cretu
  • The Monkees
  • Münchener Freiheit
  • Nena
  • Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark
  • Ozric Tentacles
  • Pasadena Roof Orchestra
  • Porcupine Tree
  • Primus
  • Propaganda
  • Rammstein
  • Rick Wakeman
  • Rio Reiser
  • Sally Oldfield
  • Spike Jones
  • Spliff
  • Tangerine Dream
  • Trio
  • U2
  • Ultravox
  • Vangelis
  • Vin Garbutt
  • Rick Wakeman
  • Yello

Recent Blog Entries

Guilt by Association

Jeremy Corbyn has appointed Andrew Murray his Chief of Communications. The far-left Murray only left the Communist Party of Britain in December 2016. It’s a standard tactic of many on the Left to attempt to shut down debate by accusing others of being far-right, if not directly, then through ‘guilt by association’, irrespective of the … Continue reading


Vigenonilateral Negotiations and Stockholm Syndrome

As Lawrence Tomlinson explains in the above excerpt, the reason negotiations between the EU and other nations take so long is because they are not in fact bilateral, but have been vigenonilateral – i.e. not between two parties, but between 29! This is a long-standing problem in the EU. How do you reconcile the balance … Continue reading


This website and its content are copyright of John Chivers - © John Chivers 2017. All rights reserved.