June 12, 1949 – January 31, 2017
John Wetton was an English bassist and singer who is best remembered for his time with King Crimson and for fronting his own popular prog-rock band, Asia. After several years of playing and singing in local bands, Wetton was invited by Robert Fripp to join King Crimson as bassist and lead singer. The year was 1972, and over the next two-plus years, he performed on the band’s critically acclaimed Larks’ Tongues in Aspic, Starless and Bible Black, and Red. Following the release of Red, King Crimson went on hiatus, s0 Wetton worked with several other groups, including Roxy Music, Wishbone Ash, and Uriah Heap. In 1980, he formed Asia, a super group with Geoff Downes, Steve Howe, and Carl Palmer. The band’s self-titled debut of 1982 reached #1 on the US and UK charts and went on to sell over 8 million copies worldwide. In later years, Wetton released several solo albums while collaborating with the likes of Steve Hackett and Renaissance. In 2006, he reunited with the original members of Asia to release Phoenix, their first since 1983. They went on to release a handful of new studio albums over the next several years. John Wetton died of colon cancer on January 31, 2017. He was 67.