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Renaissance


Country of origin:

England

Type of music generally:

Classical music-influenced prog rock

Status:

Most recent release, Dreams and Omens: Live at the Tower Theatre, Philadelphia, PA 1978 (live, 2008); most recent release of new material, Tuscany (2001)

See also:

A Renaissance and Annie Haslam page

Ectophiles Guide page for Annie Haslam

Comparisons:

Yes, Emerson, Lake and Palmer

General comments:

Renaissance, my all-time favourite band, first in the late '60s with Jane Relf singing lead, then in the '70s with Annie Haslam. (Silme@ix.netcom.com)

Renaissance played classical influenced prog rock a la Yes or Emerson, Lake and Palmer. Their music was a bit more romantic in their musical compositions. This was also because of the lyrics and Annie's voice. My two favorite CDs from them are Scheherazade and Other Stories and Turn of the Cards (which contains the powerful "Mother Russia"). (wpm@value.net)

I've been a Renaissance fan ever since high school. I saw Renaissance perform in concert once in Middletown, Connecticut—they were spectacular. Renaissance has incredibly creative music and lyrics; their songs are lush and full of rich-sounding melodies. I think that Ashes Are Burning is one of the greatest albums of all time. (billonline@adlerbooks.com)

Sort of classically infused prog rock with stunning vocals. (jjhanson@att.net)

Renaissance rules. That's all. (gregdunn@indy.net)

I was a *big* fan of Renaissance oh so many years ago when I was in high school. For quite some time I thought their album Live at Carnegie Hall was the finest music ever laid down on vinyl. Unfortunately, that particular 2-album set is not available on CD to the best of my knowledge. I do believe they have a CD called Tales of 1001 Nights or something like that that would be a close representation of the tracks they do on the Live album. Annie was one of the first female vocalists that really caught my ear all those years ago and perhaps sent me down this listening path that tends to lean towards the female singer/songwriter side of the spectrum. (kcd@cray.com)

One of the few bands that has consistently met all my taste bud's expectations has been "early" Renaissance... (rholmes@cs.stanford.edu)

I'm not a big Renaissance fan. In fact, I missed ever hearing about them when they were around, but gradually came to enjoy their greatest hits discs a few years ago. Anyway, I had the same reaction to October Project. They reminded me of Renaissance, though I liked them much better. Everyone I've mentioned that to in the past has thought I was nuts though! (neal)

Comments about live performance:

One of the best concerts I ever saw was when I was at Wesleyan: Renaissance with Annie Haslam. They played in the hockey arena. (billonline@adlerbooks.com)

Recommended first album:

Scheherazade and Other Stories or Turn of the Cards

Recordings:

  • Renaissance (1969)
  • Illusion (1971)
  • Prologue (1972)
  • Ashes Are Burning (1973)
  • Turn of the Cards (1974)
  • Scheherazade and Other Stories (1975)
  • Live at Carnegie Hall (live, 1976)
  • Novella (1977)
  • A Song for All Seasons (1978)
  • Azure d'Or (1979)
  • Camera Camera (1981)
  • Time-Line (1983)
  • Tales of 1001 Nights (compilation, 1990)
  • Da Capo (compilation, 1995)
  • Live at the Royal Albert Hall: King Biscuit Flower Hour (live, 1997)
  • Songs from Renaissance Days (compilation, 1997)
  • The BBC Sessions 1975-1978 (compilation, 1999)
  • Day of the Dreamer (live, 2000)
  • Unplugged Live at the Academy of Music (live, 2000)
  • Tuscany (2001)
  • Live + Direct (live and compilation, 2002)
  • In the Land of the Rising Sun: Live in Japan 2002 (live, 2002)
  • Dreams and Omens: Live at the Tower Theatre, Philadelphia, PA 1978 (live, 2008)

Ashes Are Burning

Release info:

1973

Availability:

Wide

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended

Comments:

This one was one of my favorites in high school and it is still powerful for me. I love the flow of the music and the old feel of the lyrics. (brad@lightfallsdesign.com)

Songs from Renaissance Days

Release info:

1997—Repertoire Records

Availability:

Wide

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended

Comments:

The best post-Renaissance or Annie Haslam album to date, this song mostly contains songs recorded during the Renaissance days (as suggested by the very unoriginal but appropriate title). It includes concert favorites like the Paul Simon cover "America" and "DreamMaker", as well as others that all show off Annie Haslam's amazing voice. Some of the songs ("The Body Machine") are a little too much like the much-criticized electronic Renaissance album, Time-Line, but overall the album is a refreshing blast from the past, including only one previously released song, a re-recorded version of "Northern Lights." (jjhanson@att.net)


Thanks to JoAnn Whetsell for work on this entry.

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Progressive Rock

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Entry last updated 2011-01-17 15:20:46.
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