Van der Graaf Generator




Van der Graaf Generator is an English progressive rock band, formed in 1967 in Manchester by singer-songwriter Peter Hammill and Chris Judge Smith. Unique among “prog” rock bands, they became considerably popular in Italy during the 1970s. Their distinctive and dynamic vocals combined with electronically treated saxophones, thick chordal keyboard parts and jazz-like drumming, compels this band to explore a complete range of phonaesthetics and time signatures throughout.


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  • Steve A

    The VdGG film doesn’t download!

  • Max

    sorry, where I can found this recording?

    • Sarah Kaizar

      Hi Max: The full episode has just been posted. Enjoy!

      Hi Steve: The original video cannot be downloaded, but it can be embedded, shared via social media, and emailed; these options are available in the horizontal bar at the bottom of the video embed. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to assist.

      Thanks for watching! — Sarah Kaizar, WHYY Web Producer

  • Alex

    Fantastic show! Thank you for doing this. Long overdue for these musicians. Too bad your show is not carried by our west coast stations.
    It would be great if the shows (not just the previews) were on YouTube – then they could be watched via TiVo and similar devices on home theater systems, not just on a computer.

  • Kezer

    Thank you for doing this! Loved it.

  • http://www.ohmtronseedling.com ohmtron seedling

    fantastic! thanks for showing such high quality musicians.

  • chas

    The flash doesn’t download :(

  • Jim C

    Fantastic show! Glad everyone has a chance to see that the band is as great as ever musically. And the Hammill interviews interspersed throughout are pure Hammill: insightful, humorous, thought-provoking, etc.

    Thanks!!!!

  • chris

    I’ve been a fan of these guys since 1971 and to finally see something like this happen is just great. I happened to have been at this show. They truly were “on” that night. Awesome and totally unique band. That’s for doing this.

  • JPaul

    One of my top five concerts of 2012 and that includes 10 bands at RoSFest. I was also at that exact show that night. I was awestruck. The real meaning of the word progressive was expressed and delivered on stage that night for sure. Incredible!
    Thank you very much for the production of this fine video! For those proggers in the NYC/NJ/Phila area, the 625+ seat Sellersville Theater just might be the best place within a 100 mile radius to see-n-hear this stuff. Happy Holidays & Prog On!

  • http://whyy.org/oncanvas Lisa Gray

    Thank you all very much for your positive comments about our recent On Canvas episode featuring the one and only Van der Graaf Generator!! Peter’s interview was very genuine and lighthearted, and I felt he gave his viewers an inside glimpse into the band’s motivations and vibe behind the music they put out. One of our goals for On Canvas is to educate and entertain our audience as to the quality bands and personalities that drive these bands, in a variety of genres. VdGG, by far, has truly defined progressive rock! Thanks again for commenting, and stay tuned for all new episodes coming in January!!
    Lisa Gray/Associate Producer/On Canvas

  • Mike_R

    Wow, I didn’t go to this show because I was at Nearfest(a progressive rock festival that recently ended) that weekend where VDGG performed on Friday night. I did however see Peter Hammill at the Sellersville Theater a few years ago. I saw VDGG at their first Nearfest appearance in 09 also. VDGG are one of the best bands that most people have never heard of. They are unique even among prog bands. Awesome band.

  • Mike_R

    Regarding Jpaul’s comment, the Sellersville theater is only 325 seats(or so)and definitely not 625. Still, it’s a good size theater and perfect for a band like VDGG.

  • Craig

    What browser is best to view this on?? I can’t get it to play on either Safari or Firefox. Great that you did a whole show on VDGG, looking forward to seeing it.




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On Tour is an Emmy Award winning music and performance program recorded live on location at local venues in and around Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey. The On Tour series features regional, national and international artists performing a wide range of musical styles including rock n' roll, R&B, country, jazz, blues, alternative rock, indie, folk and classical. The hallmark of On Tour is the seamless weaving of intimate artist interviews with great performances.


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