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Rick Wakeman planning to release new prog album, plotting 2020 North American solo tour

Former Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman has kicked off 2020 by sharing a rundown of some of his plans for the year via a new installment of his Grumpy Old Rick's Ramblings blog.

According to Wakeman, among the first items on his agenda is the recording of "a new prog album for release in late March" that he'll be working on during January and February.

"It's going to be instrumental and very keyboard heavy! (now there's a surprise!)," he reveals.

The 70-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer also will headline a special Beatles tribute concert on January 31 at Stowe School in Stowe, U.K., that will be held after the unveiling of a commemorative plaque acknowledging a 1963 show that the Fab Four played at the school.

Wakeman says the concert also will feature his son Adam, has granddaughter Skyla, and founding Whitesnake guitarist Bernie Marsden.

Rick also has joined the lineup of a star-studded benefit show for the U.K.'s Royal Marsden Cancer Charity scheduled for March 3, 2020, at London's O2 Arena. Other artists on the bill include Eric ClaptonProcol Harum's Gary BrookerPink Floyd's Nick MasonYusuf, a.k.a. Cat StevensTom JonesSimply Red's Mick Hucknall; ex-Dire Straits bassist John IllsleyGenesisMike Rutherford; and Bonnie Tyler.

In addition, Wakeman says he plans to mount two 2020 North American legs of his Grumpy Old Rock Star solo piano tour, with the first leg taking place in April and May. Rick notes that the trek will visit "towns and cities that we didn't manage to get to on the tour last year," with each leg featuring 15 to 20 shows.

The 2019 North American Grumpy Old Rock Star trek took place in September and October.

Check out Wakeman's full update at RWCC.com.

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