Born in Brisbane, Yorke left Australia for the UK in 1966 to act as International Operations Manager for Sunshine Records, being responsible for launching Normie Rowe in the European market. In 1967 he managed the international promotions for Chris Blackwell of Island Records. The same year he relocated to Toronto, Canada. He began working for the Toronto Telegram before being appointed the Globe & Mail’s first full-time rock writer in 1968.
In 1970, Yorke worked as International Peace Envoy with John and Yoko Lennon on their War Is Over If You Want It peace campaign. With musician Ronnie Hawkins he traveled the globe, carrying War Is Over! posters around the world in 1970 in a “52,000 mile world tour”. When they took their placard messages to the Chinese border (25 miles from Hong Kong), they “were stopped by Red Gaurds [sic] and warned they would be shot if they didn’t leave.”
In 1971 Yorke's book on Canadian rock Axes, Chops, & Hot Licks was published, being the first rock history book "devoted entirely to a music scene outside of the United States and England".
In 1972 Yorke organised the "Maple Music Junket”, in which a number of continental writers, radio and tv programmers, editors and film makers were inviting to visit Montreal and Toronto to observe five concerts (three in English, two in French) that were staged in Montreal and Toronto.
Yorke was named journalist of the year at the annual Juno awards in 1972, being cited for his “contributions to the Canadian music industry through is recently published book “Axes, Chops and Hot Licks,” a survey of the Canadian music industry, his instigation of the Maple Music Junket and magazine writings”.
In 1976 he published the “Hisotry of Rock ’n’ Roll”. The book represented the “summarised account of Yorke’s original quarter-million word script for the 60-hour CHUM-produced documentary” of the same name.
In 1986 Yorke returned to Brisbane and began writing for the Brisbane Sunday Mail in 1987.
Amongst the many publications he contributed to, Yorke was the Canadian Editor of Rolling Stone (1969–70), Canadian Editor of Billboard (1970–80), and was the Senior Music Writer for the Brisbane Sunday Mail for 20 years (1987-2007).
He has written biographies on Led Zeppelin and Van Morrison and also written for publications including Billboard, Circus, Jazz & Pop, Los Angeles Free Press, Los Angeles Times, Melody Maker, Miss Chatelaine, Modern Hi-Fi, Mojo, New Musical Express, Ottawa Journal, Rolling Stone and TV Week.