Just the mention of their name ignites a fire in millions of fans who have followed their career for years. STYX, progressive rock band icons who never slow down and just keep on moving will be appearing at the Nashville Ascend Amphitheater on May 21, 2016.
I had the delightful opportunity recently, to speak with lead vocalist and keyboardist Lawrence Gowan, who shared some special moments in the history of this legendary group and shared his thoughts on the upcoming appearance with the Nashville Symphony.
NMG: Have you performed at the Nashville Ascend Amphitheater before and can you tell me about the experience? How many of the original members are appearing?
Gowan: We have performed with the Nashville Symphony several times in the past, and it is always such a rewarding opportunity. We truly enjoy performing at the Ascend Amphitheater. It is an amazing Symphony House. All original members of the group are on stage accept one.
Original members John and Chuck Pannozo, and Dennis DeYoung began the group as Tradewinds and when they signed with their first label changed the name to Styx.
Like a soundtrack to your soul Styx can capture every moment with a melody that is forever burned into your memory. Songs such as “Come Sail Away” and “Fooling Yourself”(The Angry Young Man) from the Grand Illusion Album and “Too Much Time On My Hands” from Paradise Theater, “Renegade” from Pieces of Eight, and “Suite Madame Blue” from Equinox. I could go on and on because there are so many memorable albums to choose from. Every single one is priceless and timeless.
Music has been said to soothe the soul, insight laughter, encourage dancing, and brighten the darkest of days. You’ll experience all of these in euphoric bliss with Styx. They are iconic and legendary with a career spanning several decades. They have multiple albums that have gone multi-platinum, double platinum and at least five of those consecutively and I believe there may have even been a triple platinum somewhere in there.
Styx has also performed with another well know symphony. The CYO , Contemporary Youth Orchestra. I asked Lawrence about their last appearance with the CYO.
NMG: You have performed with the CYO, Contemporary Youth Orchestra on several occasions. Can you tell me about that experience and your feelings on our youth and music?
Gowan: It has always been such a tremendous and rewarding experience to see how music affects our lives and makes it worth while. We performed with the CYO this last December and even though it was a new group and most of those we first initially met had moved on to bigger and better things we still found the same devoted enthusiasm and enriching desire with these young people. Very rewarding experience.
Styx is and always has been one of the most creative and artistically talented bands in the history of rock music. Their shows exude authenticity, unique creativity, and masterful execution of the lyrics, instrumentation, and performance envisioned at every show. I asked Lawrence about future endeavors for the band.
NMG: Most all of us has what we call a “Bucket List”, if Styx had a bucket list what do you think might be on it?
Gowan: Well, that’s a good question. I would say that we would want to keep coming up with the type of music that will continue to uphold our legacy, we have a strong following in South America and would love to go there and share our songs with them. We have also played the Super Bowl twice in the past and that would be something we would really enjoy doing again as well as going back to Asia.
Styx has always been a huge staple in the fabric of progressive rock music and will continue to be for years to come. May 21st will be here before you know it and you won’t want to miss the opportunity to share in the experience. The band likes to vary up the schedule through out the year doing shows with artists such as Def Leppard, they also have what they call “An Evening With Styx” which sounds absolutely wonderful.
For more information on Styx you can visit the following sites and there you will find information on future appearances and tours.
Note: John Pannozo, brother of Chuck Pannozo passed away in 1996. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Panozzo