Jon Anderson said he was glad he’d seen the classic spoof documentary This Is Spinal Tap before Yes toured their 1983 album 90125.

The cult movie was released a few weeks after the British prog giants commenced a 110-date, 10-month global road trip in 1984.

Among the memorable events along the way was the cancelation of North American dates because guitarist Trevor Rabin needed surgery after a bizarre swimming pool accident. Later, due to a contract dispute, Yes had to screen two Bugs Bunny cartoons in place of an opening band at some shows.

READ MORE: Jon Anderson Open to Reunion With Former Yes Bandmates

Even more memorable was the group’s visit to Argentina soon after the Falklands War, when anti-British sentiment remained high. Escorted by Argentine jet fighters, a military motorcade and several hundred armed guards, they went on stage with Anderson being told he’d probably be the first target of any assassins.

“I was in the south of France and I’d let go of Yes because of a very bad experience with producers and managers, trying to make an album in Paris that never worked,” Anderson told Rick Beato in a recent interview, referring to having quit the band in 1980.

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But a few years later, when bassist Chris Squire invited him to listen to demos tracked by the remnants of Yes – then recording under the name Cinema – Anderson agreed. He loved what he heard: “I said, ‘It’s missing a few things,’ and Chris said, ‘I thought you’d say that … would you be interested in singing on the tracks?’

“And I said, ‘Well, yeah … I would, because I think the production is amazing; the production is a unique energy.’ And he said, ‘Well, come on in tomorrow and join the band, and we’ll call ourselves Yes.’ And I said, ‘Ahhhh! Because if [I] join then it’ll be Yes! Of course it will!’”

Anderson went on to reflect on the creative highs of working on the material for 90125, including standout hit single “Owner of a Lonely Heart.” He said: “It was a great experience to join the band again in the 90125 time and go on tour … [it was] total Spinal Tap upside down, it was.

“It was amazing. … Thank God I saw Spinal Tap before we started touring because I would have been so serious about it [otherwise]. But after that movie, I just said ‘Forget it!’”

Watch Jon Anderson Speaking to Rick Beato

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Gallery Credit: Ryan Reed

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