28 Best Yes Songs

Formed in London in the late 1960s, the progressive rock band Yes helped to shape the coming decades of music. But what were their top hits?

Read on for a quick list of the best Yes songs ever.

0. “Starship Trooper” by Yes

Song Year: 1971

We'll start this list with a fan favorite, Starship Troopers! Now, I'll admit. We mistakenly left this off during the first version of this list, and many fans rightfully let us know about it in the comments. So we've added it now. 🙂

1. “Owner Of A Lonely Heart” by Yes

Song Year: 1983

In the 1980s, Yes had faded from the public eye. “Owner Of A Lonely Heart” helped them make their comeback and cement themselves back into the music industry.

Debuting at #1 in the United States, Trevor Horn famously reworked the song several times. The impression from Horn was that no one would care about the track if they didn’t make it a spectacle. Eventually, he managed to convince the band to record the track.

Though Anderson gave new lyrics and Squire reworked the song, Rabin’s guitars punch the song. Signaling a turning point for the band, “Owner Of A Lonely Heart” is a flag in their already-immense discography.

2. “Love Will Find A Way” by Yes

Song Year: 1987

Probably the second most famous Yes song of all time, this song about unrequited love is a special one. For much of the tune, they sing of love finding a way if the couple wants it to. It sounds like a love song, until a line that talks about their partner wanting to get over them. That reveals the real meaning behind this hit.

3. “And You And I” by Yes

Song Year: 1972

Next on our list is one of Yes’s most legendary songs. Close To The Edge is arguably the band’s most popular album. This track is a ten-minute rock opera that comes from the band trying to push the envelope.

Despite personal issues among the band members during the album's recording, it did not affect their musical abilities. It motivated them to push their limits. And You And I became a landmark track for Yes and highlighted the album's perfection.

4. “Roundabout” by Yes

Song Year: 1972

“Roundabout” is a track that people who don’t know who Yes is can still recognize within seconds. After reaching the height of fame around its release, “Roundabout” had a strange resurgence.

Reappearing in the 2010s as a meme, this curious new resurgence is said to have introduced thousands of younger people to Yes. For its part, “Roundabout” was one of the songs that helped Yes break into the international scene. “Roundabout”’s album, Fragile, was viral in the United States.

“Roundabout” is such a staple that the band performed the track during their induction to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. If you’re starting from scratch on learning Yes’s music, “Roundabout” is the first song to listen to.

5. “Close To The Edge” by Yes

Song Year: 1972

The title track of the album Close To The Edge is a song that most would claim to be the band’s best. Indeed, we’ve placed it so high because of its quality and because, Yes fans wouldn’t expect to see it any lower.

The song “Close To The Edge” is the album's centerpiece. Its length of almost 19 minutes required multiple recording sessions. Drawing inspiration from Lord of the Rings and Sibelius' symphonies, this track is a prime example of Yes' musical excellence. Its grandeur and uniqueness make it a hit song.

6. “Heart Of The Sunrise” by Yes

Song Year: 1972

Closing out Fragile is a band that Bill Bruford considered to be the band’s ultimate template. Saying that the song had everything the band needed, he refers to the song as a shorter version of what Close To The Edge would become.

The song’s primary inspiration is the band slowly falling out of love with city life. Wanting to leave London and move to the outskirts of the countryside, the band writes a love letter to the sunrise.

7. “Yours Is No Disgrace” by Yes

Song Year: 1971

The Yes Album shows the band pushing their efforts in terms of music composition. Highlighting the band’s creativity and instrumentation, there are hints of Jimmy Hendrix and American influence on this song. From a reference to Bonanza to inspiration from Las Vegas, the song looks at the meaning of life.

There’s a strong religious note to the track as well. Jon Anderson once stated that the point of human life is to find a “divine connection with God.” Whether this song accomplishes that or not is your call.

8. “I’ve Seen All Good People” by Yes

Song Year: 1971

The Yes Album has hit after hit, but “I’ve Seen All Good People” is one of the more accessible. Progressive rock is typically hard to grasp for incoming fans. With 20-minute tracks and conceptual tracks, beginners are hard to convince.

“I’ve Seen All Good People” is a phenomenal track for keeping prog’s complexity without the inaccessibility. This 7-minute track brings everything to bear while remaining easy enough for newcomers.

This track is a can't-miss with religious overtones and a cappella that grabs your soul.

9. “Siberian Khatru” by Yes

Song Year: 1972

Another concert staple, “Siberian Khatru,” is one of the iconic tracks for Bruford’s replacement, Alan White. The newcomer joined just before a world tour that opened with this track. As such, many classic fans associate the track with the end of Bruford’s time with the group before joining Crimson.

The symphonic track uses Siberia as a source of mystery for under nine minutes. Rivers, blue tails, and avian life add foreign exoticism to the band’s music.

Spiritual metaphors bring the audience through an epic journey of adventure. Considered one of the band’s discography peaks, it’s a unique track in their arsenal.

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15 Comments

  1. You have no idea what you’re talking about. You have dates wrong. You obviously haven’t heard Jon Anderson explain the origins and meaning of Close to the Edge.
    Any song with the 1970s lineup is far superior to anything the 1980s group produced.
    CTTE at #5? Are you nuts? Ask any true Yes fan what their pick for finest Yes song is, and 99% of them will say CTTE.
    Stick to current pop music, or better yet, keep your opinions to yourself.

  2. Can’t believe you haven’t included “Wonderous Stories ” one of the best tracks you’ll hear anywhere.

  3. Interesting list. I wouldn’t have included anything from 90125, but I’d have a few from Yes and Time and a Word; Sweet Dreams, Survival, No Opportunity etc. And I don’t get all the negatively about Tomato – it’s brilliant, not a bad track on it. They never did anything as good again.

  4. Many great songs to choose from, but hard to conceive that Starship Trooper is not in the top 3, let alone missing from the list.

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