Deborah Anderson; Courtesy of Trevor Rabin; Lee WilkinsonARW, the new prog-rock project featuring ex-Yes members Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman, kicks off its first tour tonight in Orlando, Florida. Subtitled “An Evening of Yes Music and More,” the tour promises concertgoers plenty of the band’s classic tunes, but Anderson and Wakeman tell ABC Radio that the new group will offer a fresh take on the material.

“We’re not going to go out and copy anything that’s been done before,” Anderson insists. “We’re going to perform things that have been done before, but always in a sort of 21st century feeling about the idea.”

Wakeman notes, “We want to try and take it to another level, because the music has lived on for…nearly 50 years. So it shows that it’s very adaptable with what we can do.”

With the formation of ARW, two bands now exist featuring key Yes members. Founding Yes singer Anderson, who was replaced in the group in 2008 after health issues forced him to take a break from touring, says he doesn’t think people should compare ARW and Yes’ current incarnation.

“We will be more different than you can imagine,” he notes.

As for Wakeman, he says he feels that Anderson is essential to a true Yes performance.

“There’s certain vocalists in certain bands that, if you take them away, suddenly you don’t have that band,” Rick maintains. “[Y]ou can take Robert Plant [with] Led Zeppelin…[Mick] Jagger with The [Rolling] StonesRoger Daltrey with The Who…And for me, personally, you can’t have Yes music without Jon’s voice.” (AUDIO IS ABC 1-ON-1)

Rounding out ARW’s lineup are bassist Lee Pomeroy and drummer Louis Molino III. The tour’s U.S. leg is mapped out through a December 3 show Indio, California.

Here are all of the group’s stateside dates:

10/4 — Orlando, FL, Hard Rock Live
10/6 — Hollywood, FL, Seminole Hard Rock Casino
10/7 — Clearwater, FL, Ruth Eckerd Hall
10/9 — Durham, NC, Durham Performing Arts Center
10/10 — Atlanta, GA, Fox Theatre
10/12 — Pittsburgh, PA, Heinz Hall
10/14 — Bethlehem, PA, Sands Bethlehem Event Center
10/15 — Glenside, PA, Keswick Theatre
10/16 — Glenside, PA, Keswick Theatre
10/19 — Boston, MA, Wang Theatre
10/21 — Wallingford, CT, Toyota Oakdale Theatre
10/22 — Huntington, NY, The Paramount
10/24 — Montclair, NJ, Wellmont Theater
10/26 — Red Bank, NJ, Count Basie Theatre
10/28 — Atlantic City, NJ, Borgata Event Center
10/29 — Akron, OH, Goodyear Theater at East End
11/1 — New York, NY, Beacon Theatre
11/2 — Buffalo, NY, UB Center for the Arts
11/4 — New Buffalo, MI, Four Winds Casino
11/5 — Chicago, IL, Chicago Theatre
11/7 — Nashville, TN, Schermerhorn Symphony Center
11/9 — St. Louis, MO, Fox Theatre
11/11 — New Orleans, LA, Saenger Theatre
11/12 — San Antonio, TX, Majestic Theatre
11/14 — Austin, TX, ACL at the Moody Theater
11/16 — Denver, CO, Paramount Theatre
11/17 — Salt Lake City, UT, Capitol Theater
11/19 — Las Vegas, NV, Pearl Theater at Palms Casino Resort
11/20 — Phoenix, AZ, Celebrity Theatre
11/22 — Los Angeles, CA, Orpheum Theatre
11/25 — San Francisco, CA, Masonic
11/29 — Portland, OR, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
11/30 — Seattle, WA, Paramount
12/2 — Anaheim, CA, City National Grove of Anaheim
12/3 — Indio, CA, Fantasy Springs Resort Casino

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