Listen: Flowerman / The Syn SynFlowerman.mp3
In January ’06, original members Steve Nardelli (vocals), Gerard Johnson (keyboards) and Chris Squire (bass) put together a lineup (sans Pete Banks) of The Syn and toured America. Huh? Why? I suppose the drawing power via the Yes connection was enough to fill the small clubs they played. It certainly worked in New York. They were great when they clumped together three of the four songs that made up their two lone Deram singles from ’67. They sounded exactly like what the entire audience seemed to have waited almost three decades to hear, and thankfully didn’t try to squeeze into the orginal paisley coats and floral patterned trousers adorned in their youth. Perfect, gave us all tingles.
‘Flowerman’ was properly titled for that summer of ’67. Although perfect from the very start, it does go to eleven at 1:34, when the horn riff adds an unexpected and period piece sonic (a wonderfully typical studio staple from the Decca/Deram production handbook).
I even found the location of the picture sleeve shot: It’s in Fitzroy Square, just off Tottenham Court Road, when walking west toward Cleveland Street, in front of The London School Of Economics residence halls. Just happened to stumble on it one wet, deserted Sunday afternoon in November a few years back. I froze in my tracks.