Originally known as Pockets, Saga formed in 1977 from the nucleus of Canadian rock band Fludd. In June 1978, they released their self-titled debut album Saga. A modest success in Canada, it would eventually sell over 30,000 copies in Germany as an import. It also became a major seller in Puerto Rico, after a local stereo equipment store featured the guitar-keyboard duet of the band’s single, “Humble Stance” as part of its radio advertisements. Two other songs, “How Long” and “Perfectionist” (a song about a psychopath, Ellery Sneed, who secretly poisons the attendants to a feast he has organized), also became local favourites.
Their 1979 follow-up album Images at Twilight gave them their first charting single in Canada with the song “It’s Time” peaking at No. 84 in the Canadian Charts. From the album, the songs “See Them Smile” and “Slow Motion” became strong radio favourites elsewhere. Saga’s next album, Silent Knight was released in 1980 and included the singles “Don’t Be Late” and “Careful Where You Step”.
In 1981, the band’s 4th album Worlds Apart was released. The lead single “Wind Him Up”, finally broke them into the Top 40, peaking at No. 22 on the Canadian Charts in January 1982. A second single, “On the Loose”, also fared well with the help of its music video receiving heavy rotation on MTV, and in December 1982, proved to be their breakthrough in America where it peaked at No. 26 on the Billboard Charts in March 1983. “Wind Him Up” became the second single in America, peaking at No. 64 on Billboard the following month. Eventually, Worlds Apart was certified Gold in the USA in 1983. The band opened for Jethro Tull on their North American tour in 1982.
Following on the success of Worlds Apart, the band won the 1982 Juno Award for “Most Promising Group of the Year.”
A 5th album Heads or Tales was released in late 1983 and became another success. The lead single “The Flyer” fared well in Canada and also became their final U.S. hit, peaking at No. 79 on Billboard in November 1983. The follow-up single entitled “Scratching the Surface” became popular in Canada, peaking at No. 45 in April 1984.
Their 6th album, Behaviour, was released in 1985 and included the singles, “Listen to Your Heart” and “What Do I Know?” (charted No. 57 in Canada).