Most people have heard of progressive rock (or prog rock, or simply prog) but the great majority of them treat it with mild disdain (at best) or outright hatred (at worst). Most of the criticism is a mindless rejection based on current trends and a misunderstanding of the genre; “dinosaur” is a common term of abuse, neatly parodied by Adrian Belew on King Crimson’s 1994 album Thrak
There is an increasing quantity of literature on the subject, ranging from the analytical or academic (Edward Macan, Rocking the Classics; Kevin Holme-Hudson, Progressive Rock Revisited) to the fairly straightforward lists (Charles Snider, The Strawberry Bricks Guide to Progressive Rock.) There are also thousands of fans out there who not only continue to attend concerts, but also contribute to a growing network of fanzines and on-line forums. Fans are even served by Prog, a glossy magazine from Future Publishing now in its ninth year, entirely devoted to prog in all its forms
The ProgBlog has been put together to encourage discussion about progressive rock music illustrated by personal observation
The award-winning ProgBlog
The original aim of the blog was to promote discussion about all and any facet of progressive rock but from time to time, bands and musicians contact ProgBlog with new prog-related material that they want to expose to a wider audience; ProgBlog's album of 2017 An Invitation by Amber Foil was one such approach.
The DISCovery section has been introduced to better serve the requirements of musicians who contact ProgBlog with the aim of increasing the audience for their music; without music there can be no discussion of music.
Thomas Hamer Kelly V was born on April 18, 1952 and grew up in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. His mother took Tom to a concert by Andres Segovia when he was five and thus began his great love affair with the guitar. His mother procured one for him and found a student of Segovia’s to give him lessons. He eventually learned other instruments, especially keyboards of all kinds, but the guitar was his first and deepest commitment.
Inspired by classical composers like Claude Debussy and Gustav Holst and the burgeoning music of the 60s, especially psychedelic and classical rock, he began composing his own songs and formed several bands. Still, Yellow Autumn and Museum were the three precursors to his longest-lived collaboration, Mistress Quickly (named after the Shakespearean character.)
By the time Museum was formed in 1971 he was writing all of his original music in notation, which he would hand out for the band members to learn and perform. He wrote primarily symphonic rock that carried his own particular stamp, certainly in what now would be called the Progressive vein, yet firmly in his distinctive style, classically inspired, with multiple time signature changes and often quixotic lyrics with a penchant for quick, dark humour. It was described by a music producer of the time as 'chamber music for electric instruments.'
Mistress Quickly was selected to record some demos, but by the time they were done and delivered to the recording company, the Progressive wave was over and Disco was lapping on the shores of the music industry. The record company lost interest, the band parted ways and Tom began to work solo, at which point he dispensed with lyrics, yet often continued the tradition of his lyrical style with the titling and subtitling of the material.
Three recordings, Burnt Peas, A Quail's House and Spinning through Eternity are being made available after his untimely death in 2017. Each album was composed and performed entirely by Tom alone in the years after Mistress Quickly's demise, and are available as downloads or CD via CD Baby