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ASIA

Asia’s debut album exploded onto the music scene in March 1982 with several Top 10 singles and sales exceeding 7 million copies. The group came together in the spring of 1981. John Wetton’s acclaimed progressive rock band UK had collapsed a few years earlier. With the help of manager Brian Lane, he wanted to form a new group with guitarist Steve Howe, best known for his work with British Prog superstars, Yes. Drummer Carl Palmer came into the fold next, having just completed a decade of platinum releases and sold out tours with Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Keyboardist Geoff Downes, who replaced Rick Wakeman in Yes for the Drama album, had previously been half of the pop duo The Buggles. Labelled a "supergroup" by critics and the media from the onset, it was a tag they had never asked for. Asia’s music developed organically and effortlessly. Though all four men had seen chart-topping success in their previous bands, Asia had a special chemistry that fans and music industry insiders were quick to recognize.