Liaison MusicFormer Yes frontman Jon Anderson and his latest musical collaborator, jazz violin virtuoso Jean-Luc Ponty, hit the road this past week for the first-ever tour by their new group, AndersonPonty Band. The trek is supporting the band’s new CD and DVD, Better Late than Never, which features a mix of reworked older material and brand-new songs recorded live and in the studio.

Anderson tells ABC Radio that he first had the idea to team up with Ponty decades ago, and remembers being impressed by the violinist when he saw him perform with the Mahavishnu Orchestra during the 1970s.

“I was just taken by the way he was. His playing was amazing,” the singer recalls. “And we spoke a little bit, and then, about 10 years later, we met again in [Los Angeles], and I sort of gravitated toward asking him, ‘We should do a project together, Jean-Luc. You’re a beautiful violin player, and we could try and do some ideas.’ And of course, 30 years later, here we are.”

The collaboration began by Anderson and Ponty sending musical ideas back and forth. Jon came up with vocal parts to some of Jean-Luc’s preexisting pieces, and Ponty says he was impressed by the results.

“I said, ‘My God, this works so well. I wish we did it years ago maybe,'” he tells ABC Radio. “And that’s when Jon said, ‘Well, yes, but better late than never,’ and there we had an idea for an album title before it was even recorded.”

AndersonPonty Band convened in Aspen, Colorado, last September to work on the bulk of the album, setting up shop in a new studio built at the Wheeler Opera House. After getting a set together, the group performed a couple of shows at the venue that were recorded for use in both the album and the DVD, which is enhanced with visual effects, such as animated celestial images.

Among the songs the group performs on Better Late than Never are reimagined versions of such classic Yes tunes “Owner of a Lonely Heart,” “Time and a Word,” “Wonderous Stories” and “Roundabout.”

About playing the well-known songs, Ponty says, “It’s not just to play the past as it was, it’s to make it alive and, therefore, different, with new energy.”

The video portion of Better Late Than Never is interesting, because the performances are enhanced with a variety of visual effects, such as animated celestial images. Anderson says it was his idea to have something extra added to the footage.

“The more I looked at [the initial footage,] the more I thought it was a little bit sort of dead or flat,” he tells ABC Radio. So I got together with a friend of mine, Sean McKee, who’s done a lot of these kind of productions, and just told him to go to town…and enjoy experimenting with some visual effects.”

Meanwhile, Anderson says he’s anxious to see how audiences react to the band’s concerts.

“We want to get better each show, and, you know, within a couple of weeks we’ll be really tearing away,” he maintains. “And the audience reactions will really help us as well.”

AndersonPonty Band’s 2015 tour is mapped out through a November 21 concert in Scottsdale, Arizona. Both Jon and Jean-Luc say that the group is planning to play more concerts in the U.S. and internationally next year. The two musicians also are working brand-new songs for a follow-up project.

Here are all of AndersonPonty Band’s remaining 2015 tour dates:

10/29 — Red Bank, NJ, Count Basie Theatre
10/30 — Ridgefield, CT, The Ridgefield Playhouse
11/1 — Munhall, PA, Carnegie Music Hall of Homestead
11/3 — St. Charles, IL, The Arcada Theatre
11/4 — South Milwaukee, WI, South Milwaukee Performing Arts
11/6 — Detroit, MI, Music Hall Center
11/7 — Toronto, ON, Canada, Danforth Music Hall
11/10 — Washington, D.C., Howard Theatre
11/11 — Huntington, NY, The Paramount
11/13 — New York, NY, New York Society for Ethical Culture
11/14 — Boston, MA, Berklee Performance Center
11/17 — San Francisco, CA, Regency Ballroom
11/18 — Sacramento, CA, Crest Theatre
11/20 — Beverly Hills, CA, Saban Theatre
11/21 — Scottsdale, AZ, Talking Stick Resort & Casino

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