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Music / Saga

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SAGA, circa 1983. From left to right: Ian Crichton, Jim Crichton, Michael Sadler, Jim Gilmour, Steve Negus

Saga is a Canadian Progressive Rock band that formed in 1977 in Oakville, Ontario. They were known in their early days as "Pockets".

Their most well-known songs include "On the Loose", "What Do I Know", "Cat Walk" and "Wind Him Up".

Current Band Members:

  • Michael Sadler – vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards, synthesizer, drums
  • Jim Crichton – bass, keyboards, Moog synthesizer, guitar
  • Ian Crichton – guitar
  • Jim Gilmour – synthesizer, keyboards, vocals, clarinet, harmonica
  • Mike Thorne – drums, electronic drums, vocals

Former Band Members:

  • Brian Doerner – drums, backing vocals (2006–2012)
  • Rob Moratti – vocals (2008–2011)
  • Christian Simpson – drums (2003–2005)
  • Curt Cress - drums (1987-1989)
  • Steve Negus – drums (1977–1986, 1992–2003)
  • Gregg Chadd – synthesizer, keyboards (1979)
  • Peter Rochon – synthesizer, keyboards (1977–1978)


  • Saga (1978)
  • Images at Twilight (1979)
  • Silent Knight (1980)
  • Worlds Apart (1981)
  • Heads or Tales (1983)
  • Behaviour (1985)
  • Wildest Dreams (1987)
  • The Beginner's Guide to Throwing Shapes (1989)
  • The Security of Illusion (1993)
  • Steel Umbrellas (1994)
  • Generation 13 (1995)
  • Pleasure & the Pain (1997)
  • Phase 1 (1998) note 
  • Full Circle (1999)
  • House of Cards (2001)
  • Marathon (2003)
  • Network (2004)
  • Trust (2006)
  • 10,000 Days (2007)
  • The Human Condition (2009)
  • 20/20 (2012)
  • Sagacity (2014)

Not to be confused with the video game or the comic book of the same name.

Tropes Applying to the band Saga.

  • Album Title Drop: Saga has a handful of subversions and one played straight.
    • "Images" from Images At Twilight
    • "Misbehaviour" from Behaviour
    • "Shape!" from The Beginner's Guide to Throwing Shapes
    • Steel Umbrellas takes its title from the first line of "Bet On This".
  • Alliterative Title: "Waiting In The Wings", "Mouse In A Maze", "Someone Should", "The Nine Lives of Miss Midi"
  • Beneath the Mask: The narrator from "Shape!" sings about discarding his 'mask'.
  • Book Ends: "Chances Are" and "Chances Are #2" for Generation 13.
  • B-Side: "(Walking On) Thin Ice" for the "(You Were) Never Alone" CD single, however some releases of the Steel Umbrellas album include "Thin Ice" in the place of "Push It".
  • Canada, Eh?: Formed in Oakville, Ontario.
  • Concept Album:
    • A very out-there example, even for Prog Rock, with The Chapters. The Chapters are all released in different albums and out of order. But if played together, it chronicles the life of Albert Einstein (and later, the efforts of an alien race to preserve his brain). There were eight originally, spanning across their first four albums, but another eight has been added. They were released together and in their proper order for the album, The Chapters Live.
      • Chapters IV (Will It Be You) and VI (Tired World) are from their self titled album.
      • Chapters I (Images) and III (It's Time) are from their second album, Images At Twilight.
      • Chapters II (Don't Be Late) and VII (Too Much To Lose) are from their third album, Silent Knight.
      • Chapters V (No Regrets) and VIII (No Stranger) are from their fourth album, Worlds Apart.
    • A more straight forward example in the form of Generation 13. The album is the story of Jeremy, a member of what is known as the 13th Gen, whose future is full of uncertainties, such as unemployment or homelessness despite his nation's huge wealth.
  • Cover Version: Saga covered The Beatles' song "Taxman" for their album Pleasure & The Pain
    • On the German only compilation album The Works, Saga covered Peter Gabriel's "Solsbury Hill". It was released as a CD single along with "Gotta Love It" in Germany.
  • Cult Soundtrack: Their album Steel Umbrellas for the short-lived TV show Cobra.
  • The Drifter: "Giant" from The Beginner's Guide To Throwing Shapes is all about one.
  • Face on the Cover: ''Wildest Dreams'' is the only album cover to dispense with any fancy and abstract artwork in favour of a group shot of the band. I guess you could say that makes this one the Odd Man Out.
  • Fading into the Next Song: "The Nine Lives of Miss Midi" into "You And The Night".
  • Frameup: The song "Framed". Although the song mentions that the victim was soon released after a few days.
  • The Gambling Addict: Aldo from "Wind Him Up".
  • Great Escape: The music video for "On the Loose" involves a man escaping from prison with help from his girlfriend.
  • Greatest Hits Album: Several, but a few noteworthy examples include:
    • All The Best (1993) ~ which contains material from 1978 - 1993, excluding The Beginner's Guide To Throwing Shapes
    • The Collection (2013) ~ A comprehensive 3 CD set of the band's Golden Years from 1978 - 1989.
    • Now And Then (2015) ~ A 2 CD set containing one song from every one their albums.
  • Growing Up Sucks: "Goodbye (Once Upon A Time)".
  • Hearing Voices: The narrator expresses his frustration with hearing voices in "Odd Man Out".
  • Live Album: In Transit (1982) is their most well known, going platinum in Canada and gold in Germany.
  • Location Song: "Say Goodbye To Hollywood"
  • Lyrical Dissonance:
    • "The Perfectionist", an upbeat song about a man plotting to murder his dinner guests.
    • Another example is "Time To Go", another upbeat song about a schizophrenic young man.
  • Money Song: "Give 'Em The Money", "Where's My Money", "Money Talks"
  • Murder Ballad: "The Perfectionist"
  • The '90s: "The Nineties" from The Beginner's Guide To Throwing Shapes
  • Non-Appearing Title: Silent Knight, Worlds Apart, Heads or Tales
  • The Noun and the Noun: Pleasure And The Pain
  • Once Upon a Time: ''Goodbye (Once Upon A Time)"
  • One-Steve Limit: Jim Crichton and Jim Gilmour. And to top it off, both of them play keyboards.
  • One-Word Title: They're quite fond of this one.
    • Images At Twilight: "Images"
    • Silent Knight: "Compromise"
    • Worlds Apart: "Amnesia", "Framed", "Conversations"
    • Heads Or Tales: "Intermission"
    • Behaviour: "Misbehaviour", "Promises"
    • Wildest Dreams: "Angel"
    • The Beginner's Guide To Throwing Shapes: "Shape!", "Scarecrow", "Giant"
    • The Security of Illusion: "Entracte", "Voila!"
    • Steel Umbrellas: "Steamroller"
  • Rearrange the Song: Surprisingly averted with "You're Not Alone '97" from Pleasure & The Pain.
  • Recycled Lyrics
    • "Days Like These", a song from The Security of Illusion, is used as a lyric in "I Walk With You" from Steel Umbrellas.
    • The Scarecrow mentioned in "How Do I Look" gets his own song later in the same album.
  • Rock Trio: And a session drummer. At least, from 1986 to 1992, when Jim Gilmour and Steve Negus left the band temporarily.
  • Sampling: The Tom and Jerry short "Nit-Witty Kitty" is sampled for "Amnesia".
  • Self-Titled Album
  • Sequel Song: Generation 13 has FOUR pairs.
    • "Chances Are", "Chances Are #2"
    • "Generation 13 (Theme #1)", "Generation 13 (Theme #2)"
    • "All Will Change (Goodbye And Good Luck)", All Will Change (It's Happening To Me)"
    • "I'll Never Be Like You #1", "I'll Never Be Like You (Once Again)"
  • Snake Oil Salesman: Appropriately enough, "Snake Oil" from Generation 13 features one prominently.
  • Spoken Word in Music: Used to open up "How Do I Look" from The Beginner's Guide To Throwing Shapes.
  • Step Up to the Microphone: Jim Gilmour sings "No Regrets" from Worlds Apart.
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: Ellery Sneed does this in "The Perfectionist" with the wine.
  • The Band Minus the Face: For a brief period in 2007 to 2011, Michael Sadler left for personal reasons but soon returned. Keyboardist Jim Gilmour also left and returned for a brief moment in the mid-nineties.
  • Title Track: "Wildest Dreams", "The Security of Illusion", "Pleasure & The Pain".
  • Vocal Evolution: Michael Sadler's vocal performance from Worlds Apart and onward sounds noticeably different than Saga's three inaugural albums.