It’s a testament to the staying power of a band when the 17-year member is considered “the new guy.” In the current lineup of the legendary multi-platinum group Styx —Tommy Shaw (vocals, guitars), James “JY” Young (vocals, guitars), Todd Sucherman (drums) and Ricky Phillips (bass), along with the occasional surprise appearance by original bassist Chuck Panozzo. Lead vocalist and keyboardist Lawrence Gowan joined the band in 1999, replacing Dennis DeYoung.

Styx is headlining a select number of summer dates including Jacksonville on June 26 at the Florida Theatre in the midst of a tour with Def Leppard and Tesla. “Fans are going to get a longer Styx experience,” says Gowan. The show will include the band’s catalog of hit songs, classic tracks, and fan favorites, including “Lady,” “Too Much Time On My Hands,” “Rockin’ The Paradise,” “Come Sail Away,” “Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man),” “Renegade,” and “Suite Madame Blue.”

In a recent interview from a stop in Ontario, Canada, Gowan expressed gratitude to the band’s longtime fans for sticking around and to the new generation that is younger than the band’s biggest hits. Comfort is part of the beauty of longevity but space still exists for Styx to stretch out creatively. Gowan says the band is always working on new music even if it’s not immediately released, changing up set lists and dusting off some of the more obscure tracks, which aren’t really obscure at all because the album’s have long since been absorbed in their entirety.

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by Mike Mettler

photo by Kevin Westenberg, courtesy of Universal Music

Legendary blues guitarist B.B. King passed away on Thursday, May 14, 2015, in Las Vegas at age 89. Styx guitarist/vocalist Tommy Shaw shares the following memories of one of his prime influences:

I’m listening to B.B. King’s “Sweet Little Angel,” and it’s reminding me of growing up in Montgomery, Alabama and playing that song as a teenager. It stirred something in me that I was just beginning to figure out how to call upon. Later on, “The Thrill Is Gone” would serve as the last song of the evening in a band called MS Funk, and by then, I had really gotten a handle on that thing that “Sweet Little Angel” had awakened.

We never met, but as a muse, he always reminded me to keep it simple and straight from the heart. He also showed how important live performing was for the spirit of those who found that joy in it, and that there was never an age limit to tapping into that joy. Thank you B.B. King for the great music, and influence. God Speed...

Tommy Shaw

Styx are gearing up to hit the road in June with Def Leppard for a summer full of rock ‘n’ roll at outdoor venues across the U.S. The two bands sealed a bond when they previously toured together in 2007 and, as Tommy Shaw tells Ultimate Classic Rock during a rare interview recently, he has fond memories of the trek and can’t wait to do it again.

“We just loved those guys. You know, we didn’t know them,” Shaw admits. “But from day one when we met them, they put our minds at ease and their dressing room doors were always open. They were in our dressing rooms and it was just a very funny, happy place, but very professionally run.”

“Then there was the music, good God, they are so f–king good! My daughter was in her early 20s when we toured with them and she came out and she flipped,” he recalls. “She had no idea they were that good and she became an instant Def Leppard fan and still is.”

The music of the Chicago-bred band has endured for more than four decades and their songs have survived the trends that have come and gone. “We had the insurance policy of being in what became classic rock status,” Shaw says. “We didn’t used to call it classic rock; it was just rock.”

As he looks out into the seats each night, he sees an audience that continues to get younger and younger.

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Photo courtesy of Terry Wyatt, Getty Images

Like or not, "Renegade" became the fight song for the Steelers defense, putting Black and Gold fans in a special rung of the Styx fan club with such luminaries as Adam Sandler and Mr. Eric Cartman.

That means Styx playing in the shadow of Heinz Field, as it did Friday night at Stage AE, is likely a bigger deal than most stops on its spring tour. And rather than the 50-minute Styx sandwiched between a few other classic rock acts -- this summer it's Def Leppard and Tesla -- this two-and-a-half-hour "Evening With..." was Styx with too much time on their hands (if you only like the hits) and just the right amount, if you like a few deep cuts.

Styx made it known repeatedly that it likes Pittsburgh as much as Pittsburgh likes Styx.

"This is a fantastic spot on the planet Earth," singer Lawrence Gowan said, "between the Warhol Museum and the stadium."

Gowan is the guy who took Dennis DeYoung's job back in 1999, and ran with it. Although he continues to say he would love a reunion, it isn't happening any time soon for the former singer who is in the theaters looking like a symphony pops act doing "The Music of Styx." Gowan is a fine musician/singer and rousing entertainer, who's mastered the spinning keyboard. Whereas watching most rock keyboardists tends to be unexciting, you never know where's going to be with that thing, including on top of it.

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Photo courtesy of Scott Mervis/Post-Gazette

It’s another busy year for classic rock artist Styx. Currently in the midst of headlining dates, including an outdoor show at The LC on Thursday night, the band hooks up with Def Leppard and Tesla this summer for a run of dates in arenas and at state fairs. They’ll also be doing some cruise dates in June.

While many interviewers may not consider Styx worth interviewing if they can’t talk to one of the original members (James ‘JY’ Young, Tommy Shaw), I was very excited to have a chance to speak with bassistRicky Phillips who has performed with Styx since 2003. Phillips has a long and storied music career including being a member of The Babys, Bad English, Coverdale/Page and Elements of Friction (a 2001 studio project which featured former MSG vocalist Robin McAuley and former Ozzy drummer Tommy Aldridge).

I had a chance to do a phone interview with Phillips recently. Here’s what he had to say.

Do you have a chance to do stuff on tour or is just ride the bus to the next city, roll into the venue for soundcheck and the show and then to the hotel after the show?

I like to play golf, get away from hotels and backstage and concrete – always have and have done it in almost every band I’ve been in. Not a lot of people in this organization get that, but our sound man will definitely sneak away with me and we’ll get a round of golf in. Lawrence Gowan will know something about a city or have read something so he wants to go see whatever that place is. Todd Sucherman goes straight to the music store to do a clinic. Tommy’s big on jumping on a bike and riding through parks and along rivers and getting out into the fresh air. It’s just whatever it is you need to do to keep your sanity on the road. It’s important to not just lock yourself into your hotel room and surf the net and get bored to death.

This is the first band I’ve ever been in that all hangs together. Everybody is hysterically funny. There’s a lot of humor involved in this band and I think that’s an important factor in getting along. We see each other more than we see our own families.


Ricky Phillips has been a rockstar almost his entire adult life. He was in “The Babys”, he worked with Ted Nugent, he was a member of Bad English and now he’s a member of 80s rock icons “Styx.” Ricky Phillips is a bass guitarist who is living his American rock n’ roll dream. He was relaxed and it was a pleasure to shoot the breeze with this veteran musician. He was a guy who appreciates where he is at and the journey he’s been on. He shared some of his adventures and stories of some of the amazing people he’s crossed path and made music with. Trust me. I think one days this guy’s going to be able to write a great book. Make sure you catch Styx on tour this summer and you can learn more about the band by visiting and on assorted social media.

Chris A: Styx has been around since 1972 and continues to draw great crowds. What do you chalk up Styx continued success to?

Ricky: Probably diversity. Styx started off as a real kinda gritty rock band then shot into some prog and stayed there for quite awhile. As they went through their changes, even if it was a poppy kind of song with a lot of Top 40 airplay, there was never another band that sounded like them. What happens in music is that to get airplay bands homogenize and start sounding like everyone else. To get on the radio back in the 80s you really did have to sound a certain way, I experienced that when I was in Bad English. You want to get on MTV and on the radio and have a successful record but it got to the point where you had to follow a formula. Styx seemed to always have their own sound. I remember when I was in The Babys, John Waite and I would go down front during our tours with Styx and watch them. There was three lead singers which was unusual. It’s hard to explain Styx. There were different voices between the singers and then the guitar sounds created between James Young and Tommy Shaw when he joined the band in ’75. There was a sensibility in the band between the main song writers and a lot of bands don’t have that. That sensibility has done well for me for 12 years. When I discovered I was going to be in the band I studied every lick that Chuck Panozzo played. James Young led the band to where it is today, and makes sure we stay true to the original songs. If there is a note that is expected that people want to hear, we play that note. There are plenty of places in the catalog to stretch are legs and show off our musical skills but we do it in the appropriate place and don’t impact the song. We are very careful to stick to the original recordings but we have room to move. I really never play the exact same licks from night to night except on those “must play” notes.

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Photo by: Chris A.


Since May of 1999 he's been the lead singer of Styx. Prior to Styx he enjoyed a successful solo career. So, how do you make the transition? We put that question and more to Mr. Lawrence Gowan, Styx's lead singer.

Q - How does it feel to be the face, and since you're the lead singer of Styx I'm calling you the face, of what Rolling Stone magazine once called "a faceless band"?

A - (laughs) It's very self-effacing. I don't think it's possible to be faceless since everyone's carrying a digital camera now. If a band plays over a hundred shows a year, as Styx does, and there's a few that do that from our era, you can try as hard as you want to remain faceless, but your face is out there whether you want it to be or not. I think what they were referring to back then is that in the '70s, as the genre of the Classic Rock album was being perfected by the bands of that era, the spotlight was being shown on the band as whole and what the band was able to bring to the arena. After all, that's the era when that was kind of perfected, the whole idea of Arena Rock. In the arena back then you were a little, tiny thing on stage making a great big noise. What really mattered was that sound you were making. So, the focus on image was for less an individual thing and much more to do with the band as a whole. What did Styx look like? What did Yes look like? What did Genesis look like? It really came down to what the spirit of that name represented. You could be a different thing to everyone. The little details of the Pop star faces was really not of any significance.

Q - Styx wasn't the only group to be referred to like that. There was Foreigner, Journey, REO.

A - I remember meeting Roger Rodgson one day in Toronto. I'm from Toronto and grew up in Toronto. I remember I met him in the street. I knew what he looked like. I stopped the car 'cause I was playing a Supertramp record. I put the window down. He stuck his head in and said, "I must say you have wonderful taste in music." I knew it was Roger Rodgson, but no one stopped him on the street. Now today, the ubiquitous nature of the Internet, everything's concected to a face. It's a different era. To be one of the faces in a faceless band is quite an irony, isn't it?

Q - You were born in Scotland. How is it you found yourself in Canada? Was your father in the military?

A - My dad was in the British Navy, but that's not how we came to Canada. In the late '50s there was a large influx of particularly British immigrants. We lived in Glasgow, Scotland. My mom and dad just wanted to see... they were actually on their way to America, but on their way they stopped in Toronto, or my did initially. It felt right to him. Something just spoke to him and he decided to stay there. He got a job at I.B.M. That was during the time when you could get a job for thirty-five years, (laughs) and a great pension. That's how he decided Toronto was the right place for us. So we moved from Glasgow, Scotland to Toronto and I grew up there and still live there.

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Interview by: Gary James

Photo by: Jason Powell

A band with 40 years of experience and big hits is back on the road and rolling into Southwest Louisiana this weekend.

Rock act Styx is performing at 8 p.m., Saturday, April 25, inside The Grand Ballroom of the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Lake Charles, La. for ages 21 and older only. Tickets are $40 - $65 at all Ticketmaster outlets.

Saturday’s concert is only the third date of the current trek, which began Thursday, April 23, in Poplar Bluff, Mo. It’s not a full-blown tour, as the group has no other shows until May 7 and May 8. The group will perform four dates in mid-June in Nassau, Bahamas, before kicking off its massive U.S. summer co-headlining tour with Def Leppard and opening act Tesla.

“We never take too much time off between shows,” said Lawrence Gowan, keyboardist and vocalist for Styx. “It’s only been three weeks since our last show at the end of March. This isn’t a full tour either, but we just like to make sure to keep the rust off the edges.”

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Photo by: Tommy Mann Jr.

Sessions X is the new online music series. Having just launched April 16, 2015, this free service has paired with your favorite artists to bring you exclusive video! Artist sessions include a six song live set, and behind the scenes footage of their session. Visitors to Sessions X can watch an entire session or cruise around the site to view other performances.

Check out Lawrence Gowan's set at

James "JY" Young was one of the founding members of Styx when they signed with Wooden Nickel Records in 1972. Over the course of their career, the band has released 15 studio albums and eight live albums.

Styx became the first band to receive four triple-platinum RIAA Certified albums in a row: “The Grand Illusion” (1977), “Pieces of Eight” (1978), “Cornerstone” (1979), “Paradise Theater” (1981). They are one of the few groups who have achieved Top 10 singles in three different decades under four different presidential administrations.

Take us back to the beginning. What inspired you to pursue a career as a musician and form Styx?

The origins of Styx began on the south side of Chicago where Dennis DeYoung and The Panozzo brothers [John and Chuck] lived across the street from one another. I grew up about 5-6 miles from them. I had my own band called The Monterey Hand and we were doing quite well for ourselves. The first rock festival in Illinois was at Kickapoo Creek the year after Woodstock in 1970. My band did quite well and got a standing ovation playing there.

Anyone who has ever seen The Pittsburgh Steelers defense rally in the fourth quarter knows just how much “Renegade” plays a role in the way the team surges under pressure. Since January 2002, the Steelers have regularly shown a video compilation of its defense in action with “Renegade” as the soundtrack on the JumboTron at Heinz Field whenever the team needs a boost. During a recent event, Jerome “The Bus” Bettis, star running back for the Steelers from 1996-2006 (he retired after the team won Super Bowl XL) and a 2015 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee, exclusively told Styxworld how special the song has been to him and his former team.

“I want to let those guys know how important it was to me as a player, because sometimes, they don’t know the impact they make,” says Bettis. “‘Renegade’ is a song that has taken on a life of its own, and as a football player from Pittsburgh, I just wanted to let those guys know I appreciate it — the fact that they allowed us to play that song, because it brought us so much joy. But it also brought some wins. It helped the defense pick it up. It made a difference with us, and those guys need to hear it from me how important that was.”

Is there one game where Bettis feels “Renegade” made its biggest impact? “I remember one good one, when we were playing The New York Jets in Pittsburgh, and it was a playoff game [the AFC Divisional playoff on January 16, 2005],” The Bus recalls. “We were losing that game. They played ‘Renegade,’ and I’ll never forget seeing those towels — The Terrible Towels — all waving at us, and it was amazing. I would definitely attribute that song to making a big difference in that game. It was like the 12th man. It was huge.” The Steelers ultimately tied the Jets in the fourth quarter and then won the game in OT, 20-17, with a field goal. Bettis ran for 101 yards in the game and scored a touchdown.

Bettis’ heartfelt words are not lost on the creator of “Renegade,” Styx guitarist/vocalist Tommy Shaw. “I'm completely blown away by this,” Tommy says. “I wish Jerome knew how much that means to me as the songwriter, and I’m sure the rest of my bandmates feel the same way. I wrote that song in my living room on my piano back when I lived in Michigan. Nobody else was around, and for it to become something like what Jerome described is so surreal to me!”

On January 11, 2009, Styx was in Pittsburgh to perform our National Anthem and sing some of “Renegade” at Heinz Field before the team’s AFC Divisional playoff game with The San Diego Chargers — a game the Steelers won, 35-24.

Bettis, 43, is the NFL’s sixth all-time leading rusher with 13,662 yards, and he currently works as a studio analyst for ESPN. More information about The Bus can be found at his website,

by Mike Mettler

photo courtesy of

Styx fans have a new concert special to look forward to on March 15 — but you don’t have to wait until Live at the Orleans Arena Las Vegas premieres on AXS-TV to get an exclusive glimpse of the show.

Ultimate Classic Rock presents this live rendition of “Renegade,” a Styx classic culled from the set list for Live at the Orleans Arena Las Vegas. Directed by Larry Jordan, who helmed the band’s 2012 live DVD The Grand Illusion/Pieces of Eight Live, the film captures the band on its Soundtrack of Summer package tour, which featured co-headliners Foreigner and special guest Don Felder.

After making its March 15 premiere on AXS-TV, Live at the Orleans Arena Las Vegas will head to stores on May 26, when it’ll make its debut on DVD and Blu-ray — adding a bonus interview with Styx’s current lineup — as well as CD and digital formats.

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A jovial lunch conversation with the incomparable Lawrence Gowan of Styx that covers Canada, Princess Diana, and The Monkees. The gracious vocalist is just as entertaining off the stage as he is on.

StageShottz Magazine: On your bio page there is a line that says “My large head introduced itself to the world in 1956 and has been doing it daily ever since.” I’m just curious to know what you meant by that?

Lawrence Gowan: (Giggles) I think first of all it means I have a big head! And it came into the world on that day, and it’s still in the world. Every morning I wake up and it is reintroduced to planet earth.

SSM: So every day it just says “hey! I’m here!”

LG: Exactly!

SSM: You have been in the music industry for quite some time and I read once where you said the biggest hurdle was transitioning from the 80′s to the 90′s and that it took you years to figure out how to realign yourself. What part of you felt you need realignment and when did you feel you had achieved it?

LG: That’s a great question and people in the states probably wouldn’t be as familiar as to what I was referring to as people in Canada would be. In Canada in the 80′s I had quite a successful run there. The videos were really the centerpiece of how we promoted our records. I had a song called Criminal Mind and I had a character on there. I had one called Strange Animal and I played a character in that. There was one in 1987 called Moonlight Desires where I was on top of a Mayan Pyramid conversing with the ancient spirits. You know, all that over the top 80′s production that I really look back on extremely fondly now because I love that it was very much larger than life and speaks very loudly of the classic rock dream which was the unapologetic rock God! However, it seems at the turn of every decade there is a seismic shift. Suddenly in the 90′s with the grunge movement and simultaneous to that was the acoustic kick back to the overblown 80′s stuff, I realized I couldn’t rely on that video image anymore. So over the next 3 years I transitioned. I am a piano player but I thought “I’m going to have to take a completely different approach to be relevant in this next decade of music.” So, I began to play the acoustic guitar and take a more straight forward approach to singer/songwriter songs and videos accordingly. That transition was tough because I didn’t want to be completely out of step with the times and I feel like I am a good enough musician to not be relegated to that video image entirely.

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Photo by Jason Powell





~MAY 26, 2015~

New York, NY—On May 26, 2015, Eagle Rock Entertainment will release Live At The Orleans Arena Las Vegas from Styx on DVD, Blu-ray, CD, and Digital Formats [Pre-book Order Date May 1, MSRP TBA]

Filmed in High Definition on July 25, 2014, Live At The Orleans Arena Las Vegas is a sonic showcase ofStyx’s live prowess and razor-sharp musicianship. This show features the band, backed by huge video screens, performing a set list packed with hit songs, classic tracks, and fan favorites, including “Lady,” “Too Much Time On My Hands,” “Rockin’ The Paradise,” “Come Sail Away,” “Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man),” “Renegade,” and “Suite Madame Blue.” The evening also held a special surprise when Don Felder – former Eagles guitarist – took the stage to join the band on “Blue Collar Man (Long Nights)”.

In addition to the live set, Live At The Orleans Arena Las Vegas features a bonus interview with band members Tommy Shaw (vocals/guitar), James “JY” Young (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Todd Sucherman(drums), Lawrence Gowan (vocals, keyboards), Ricky Phillips (bass, backing vocals), and Chuck Panozzo(bass guitar).

Formed in Chicago in 1972, Styx played a key role in defining the AOR genre, and established themselves as one of America’s greatest rock bands. Their blend of soaring melodies, hard rock guitar, and prog-rock elements led to millions of global record sales and numerous platinum and multi-platinum albums. With over 40 years of rockin’ under their belt, the band isn’t slowing down any time soon, and will embark on a national tour this summer with Def Leppard and Tesla. See below for dates.

Eagle Rock Entertainment is the largest producer and distributor of music programming for DVD, Blu-Ray, TV and Digital Media in the world. Eagle works directly alongside talent to produce top quality, High Definition programs, both concerts and documentaries, including The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, The Who, Queen, The Doors, Jeff Beck, Peter Gabriel, Paul McCartney, Ozzy Osbourne, Genesis, Alice Cooper, Eric Clapton and Aerosmith. Eagle is a Grammy Award winning company and has received over 40 multi-platinum, over 80 platinum and over 144 gold discs, worldwide. Eagle Rock Entertainment has offices in London, New York, Paris and Hamburg.

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Track Listing:

1) The Grand Illusion

2) Too Much Time On My Hands

3) Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man)

4) Lady

5) Suite Madame Blue

6) Light Up

7) Crystal Ball

8) Superstars

9) Blue Collar Man (Long Nights)

10) Come Sail Away

11) Rockin’ The Paradise

12) Renegade

Photo by Jason Powell

There were plenty of highlights for Styx during last year's The Soundtrack of Summer Tour with Foreigner and Don Felder. But chief among those was the return of "Light Up," a fan and radio favorite from 1975's Equinox album, to the show. That will be chronicled on Live at the Orleans Arena Las Vegas, the band's new AXS-TV concert special debuting 8 p.m. ET on March 15.

" 'Light Up' was not part of our set for the longest time, for a variety of reasons," guitarist James "J.Y." Young tells Billboard. "But with the legalization of marijuana in Colorado, it seemed sort of appropriate again, and timely, and we always look for tracks we can resurrect that are good to play live. We know we have to play 'Come Sail Away' and 'Renegade' and 'The Grand Illusion' and 'Too Much Time On My Hands' and 'Fooling Yourself' and a few others, but it's fun to bring in some others. And 'Light Up' is a song of celebration and it's a fan song people can participate in, and the crowds really responded to us. It succeeded mightily on stage last year."

Young adds that he and his bandmates also feel "Light Up" was a visual plus in the show. "We prided ourselves on doing these junior Pink Floyd things with the visuals in our production," he explains. "The spectacular visuals which we were attempting to create, and I feel we succeeded in creating on this last tour, are best captured in my judgment in our performance of 'Light Up' and how the visuals all went and the lights and what have you. It was really captured absolutely fantastically."

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There is never a time when the Styx juggernaut isn’t forging ahead at breakneck speed to accomplish ever new and marvelous acts of musical grandeur. This year has barely even begun and already the band has an incredible set of adventures mapped out all the way into October! By the end of March, they will have wrapped up their current tour and appeared on AXS TV. And shortly after that, they will embark on their summer extravaganza with Def Leppard and Tesla. Yesterday, AXS had the privilege of speaking with the spectacular showman Lawrence Gowan (keyboards and vocals).

“We really are a constantly touring act, and we have been for the past 16 years that I’ve been in the band,” Lawrence acknowledged. “That was part of the mandate when I joined. As a band, Styx felt that it had under-toured in previous years and the members wanted to commit themselves to the new reality of the music world, which takes into account the fact that playing live has become of a far greater significance now then it ever has before. In the past, some bands could survive and almost never tour, but now, it is such a vital component of the whole experience that it has become central to our existence.”

Styx has a powerful and lasting magic that has kept the band both thrilling and relevant in a live setting for over four decades.

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By Allen Foster

Photo By Jason Powel

Styx garnered a mention on the hour-long series finale of the long-running CBS comedy Two and a Half Men, which aired at 9 pm EST on Thursday, February 19.

The namecheck occurred during a scene at a kitchen table where Alan Harper (Jon Cryer) and Walden Schmidt (Ashton Kutcher) were discussing a possible revenge plot by Alan’s brother Charlie Harper. Charlie had been presumed dead 4 years ago, but was actually being held against his will in a well in a basement dungeon by his mentally unstable stalker-cum-wife, Rose (Melanie Lynskey) before he escaped through a window. Charlie was, of course, played for 8 seasons by Charlie Sheen until his infamous meltdown over a conflict with Men creator Chuck Lorre, leading to his being fired from the show in March 2011. (Spoiler alert — Sheen never appears in the finale himself.)

“I’ll say it one more time,” Alan pleads to Walden. “Resort hotel until the cops find him. We can be in Vegas in 2 hours. Styx is playing Mandalay Bay!”

As all good Styx fans know, the band has played Mandalay Bay a number of times, most recently at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on May 22, 2010. Prior Styx gigs at Mandalay Bay occurred in 2000, 2002, 2006, and 2007. Most recently in Las Vegas, the band played at the Pearl Concert Theater at the Palms Casino Resort on January 18, 2015. And a sold-out Styx concert filmed at the Orleans Arena at the Orleans Hotel & Casino on July 25, 2014 will begin airing as an AXS-TV special on March 15 at 8 pm EST.

This final Men episode — number 262 of the show’s 12-year run — was written by Chuck Lorre, Lee Aronsohn, Don Reo, and Jim Patterson, and can be viewed on demand, on the CBS Mobile app, or through the CBS All Access service. The Styx mention occurs about 46 minutes into the hour-long show.

Written By: Mike Mettler

Photo Courtesy Of CBS

SAN ANTONIO – The rock gods are smiling down on the Alamo City.

It’s been three years since multi-platinum rockers Styx have performed at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo. And the band can’t wait to hit the stage on Friday.

“It’s great playing in San Antonio, but the rodeo audience is a little different,” Styx keyboardist/vocalist Lawrence Gowan said during a recent phone interview. “You’ll have your diehard Styx fans, but you’ll also have fans that might not know a lot about your music. I take it as a challenge. It’s a good chance to give those music lovers a little insight to a different way of life.”

Styx, featuring Tommy Shaw, James “JY” Young, Todd Sucherman, Ricky Phillips, Gowan and occasionally a surprise appearance by original bass player Chuck Panazzo, has been gearing up for another year of bringing their multi-platinum hits - and some surprises - to the masses.

“We’ve been busy preparing for the 2015 onslaught,” he said. “We spent two weeks working our way up the California coast. That is a great area this time of year. We get to do longer shows and scope out what will make the set when we go on the road this summer with Def Leppard.”

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By: Chris Hoffman

Photo By: Jason Powell

February 24, 2015 – It’s been over two years since a full STYX concert was broadcast on national TV (“Styx: The Grand Illusion/Pieces Of Eight Live” DVD, which aired on VH1 Classic and the Palladia HD channel). Now comes time for a brand new live event that’s set to premiere on AXS TV on Sunday, March 15 at 8pm Eastern Time/5pm Pacific Time.

The band’s show was filmed at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, NV in front of a sold-out, adoring audience during last year’s “The Soundtrack of Summer” tour. STYX performed many of their greatest hits, including “Come Sail Away,” “Renegade,” and “The Grand Illusion.” They even dug deep into their catalog for such fan favorites as “Light Up,” and were joined on stage by tour mate and former Eagles guitar legend Don Felder for “Blue Collar Man.” Felder’s show earlier that same night was also filmed for AXS TV, which will air immediately following STYX’s special. Felder’s special culminates with special guest STYX guitarist Tommy Shaw trading vocals and the classic electric guitar licks on “Hotel California.”

Meanwhile, as STYX’s headlining tour continues to work its way across the U.S., the legendary Rock band has confirmed a massive summer tour supporting another legendary Rock band, Def Leppard, along with Tesla. The three-month trek will launch in June and conclude October 4 in Bismarck, ND at the Bismarck Civic Center. Combined, STYX--Tommy Shaw (vocals, guitar), James “JY” Young (guitar, vocals), Chuck Panozzo (bass), Lawrence Gowan (vocals, keyboards), Ricky Phillips (bass) and Todd Sucherman (drums)--and Def Leppard have sold over 100 million albums worldwide.

“Our 2007 tour with Def Leppard forged a friendship that's never wavered,” proclaims STYX singer/guitarist Tommy Shaw. “It was such an unforgettably fun experience for us. We've all been waiting for the planets to align so we could do it again. Well friends, they have indeed aligned! And this time, those soulful bad boys from Sacramento, Tesla, will be there, too. What a night of music this will be!Is summer here yet? Come on!”

Guitarist James “JY” Young is equally as excited. "The mutual admiration society between Styx and Def Leppard began in the UK in 1978 when Joe Elliott attended Styx's first-ever performance in Def Leppard's home town of Sheffield, England,” he says. “Both bands having emanated from working class beginnings, either on the South Side of Chicago, or the Steel Town of Sheffield, England, there is a natural camaraderie and synergy amongst them. I feel like these guys are long-lost brothers of mine. It's going to be Guitars A-blazin' and Drums A-poundin' regardless of who’s on the stage, featuring arguably the most successful rock band of the late 1980's, paired with one of the most successful bands of the late 1970s, early 1980s. The ingestion of too much sugar can lead to illness, but ‘Pour Some Sugar On Me’ is a recipe for healthy smiles and a fun night for everyone!!!”

Check out STYX at any of the following stops (with more to be added in the coming weeks):

STYX Headlining:

Thu 2/26 Tulsa, OK The Joint/Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa

Fri 2/27 San Antonio, TX AT&T Center

Sat 2/28 Fort Worth, TX Billy Bob's Texas

Thu 3/12 N Myrtle Beach, NC House of Blues

Fri 3/13 Cherokee, NC Harrah's Cherokee Pavilion

Sat 3/14 Orlando, FL Universal Studios Florida - Music Plaza Stage

Fri 3/20 Norman, OK Riverwind Casino

Sat 3/21 Mulvane, KS Kansas Star Arena

STYX With Def Leppard and Tesla:

Thu 6/25 West Palm Beach, FL Cruzan Amphitheater

Sat 6/27 Birmingham, AL Oak Mountain Amphitheatre

Sun 6/28 Atlanta, GA Aaron's Amphitheatre at Lakewood

Tue 6/30 Charlotte, NC PNC Music Pavillion Charlotte

Thu 7/2 Bristow, VA Jiffy Lube Live

Fri 7/3 Virginia Beach, VA Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach

Sun 7/5 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun Arena

Tue 7/7 Gilford, NH Bank of NH Pavilion at Meadowbrook

Thu 7/9 Mansfield, MA Xfinity Center

Sat 7/11 Bethel, NY Bethel Woods Center for the Arts

Sun 7/12 Darien Lake, NY Darien Lake Performing Arts Center

Tue 7/14 Toronto, ONT. Molson Amphitheatre

Fri 7/17 Clarkston, MI DTE Energy Music Theatre

Thu 7/23 Wantagh, NY Nikon at Jones Beach Theater

Fri 7/24 Saratoga Springs, NY SPAC

Sat 7/25 Holmdel, NJ PNC Bank Arts Center

Fri 8/7 Davenport, IA Mississippi Valley Fair (STYX ONLY)

Sat 8/8 Sioux Falls, SD Sioux Falls Arena

Tue 8/11 Kansas City, MO Starlight Theatre

Fri 8/14 Sedalia, MO Missouri State Fair

Sat 8/15 Des Moines, IA Iowa State Fair

Mon 8/17 Cincinnati, OH Riverbend Music Center

Tue 8/18 Nashville, TN Bridgestone Arena

Fri 8/21 Dallas, TX Gexa Energy Pavilion

Sat 8/22 Woodlands, TX Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

Sun 8/23 Austin, TX Austin360 Amphitheater

Thu 8/27 St. Paul, MN Minnesota State Fair

Fri 8/28 Grand Forks, ND Alerus Center

Sun 8/30 Noblesville, IN Klipsch Music Center

Tue 9/1 Allentown, PA The Great Allentown Fair

Thu 9/3 Louisville, KY KFC Yum! Center

Fri 9/4 Maryland Heights, MO Hollywood Casino Amphitheater

Sat 9/5 Tinley Park, IL First Midwest Bank Amphitheater

Wed 9/16 Auburn, WA White River Amphitheatre

Thu 9/17 Ridgefield, WA Amphitheater Northwest

Sat 9/19 Mountain View, CA Shoreline Amphitheatre

Tue 9/22 Chula Vista, CA Sleep Train Amphitheatre

Wed 9/23 Phoenix, AZ Ak-Chin Pavilion

Fri 9/25 Albuquerque NM Isleta Amphitheater

Sat 9/26 Denver, CO Pepsi Center

Mon 9/28 West Salt Lake City, UT USANA Amphitheatre

Wed 9/30 Spokane, WA Spokane Arena

Fri 10/2 Bozeman, MT Breeden Fieldhouse

Sun 10/4 Bismarck, ND Bismarck Civic Center

Many classic rock-era bands have found second lives and extended careers by taking their shows on the road, but Styx not only survived the departure of two key members – Dennis DeYoung and Tommy Shaw – but reformed and thrived.

Styx became a year-round touring act in 1999 and in the intervening years has created a well-oiled machine and learned the fine art of balancing personalities, crew schedules and creating opportunities to keep the performances and music fresh. It’s a model that could be unique in the concert business.

Certainly, it could be emulated by any artist hoping to have a career last decades. Moderator Danny Zelisko, whom the band credits with being one of the promoters who unfailingly believed in it over the course of some 40 years, led the discussion with Styx manager Charlie Brusco of Red Light Management, agent Rod Essig of Creative Artists Agency, tour manager George Packer and band members John “JY” Young, Shaw (who returned to the band 20 years ago), and Lawrence Gowan.

Styx had its greatest success in the late 1970s and early ‘80s, but had been inactive for some time when its record label decided to issue a greatest hits album but couldn’t get permission to add “Lady” to the record. Young called Shaw, who had just wrapped a tour with Damn Yankees, to see if he’d be interested in re-recording the track for the album.

Read more at!

By: Deborah Speer

Photo By: Jason Powell

So I’m really into Styx and always have been. Luckily I was able to score an interview with vocalist Lawrence Gowan in preparation for their upcoming show at The Joint at the Hard Rock Casino. Gowan joined the band in 1999 to serve as vocalist and keyboards.

You had a pretty successful career in Canada prior to Styx.

Gowan: Yeah, I know it still comes as a surprise to a lot of people in the states because my records weren’t released here. I had a deal with Columbia Records, where it seemed like it didn’t matter how many records I sold or multi-platinum records or how many number ones I had, I just couldn’t get a release here. It’s the way the music industry was then … just because there was an act that was huge in England, it din’t mean that they would necessarily come out in America. Some did and some didn’t, and I fell into that category.

But at the same time, I had a great 14-year career playing my solo stuff and going back and forth across Canada. … But it never went on a national thing. … You have to look at it as a little bit of a blessing in disguise, that it was probably … due to the fact that I had a long career that they became aware of, because they were incredibly popular there. And when when we did shows together, they saw firsthand … how I could fit in and be part of Styx.

You had a very successful career already and were still enjoying different facets of your career when the Styx thing happened. So you were like here’s this really established band and what do I want to do here.

Funny thing. It wasn’t the slam decision that some people might think. It just so happens, the way things were unfolding in the late 90s, I was going to England a lot and was playing there and I’d just come back from a tour (opening for a band called the Stranglers). … About halfway through the tour, I would go up onstage during their encore and play guitar or something along with the encore song. And my publicist there mentioned to me, “You know, what’s likely to happen with your career, internationally speaking, is that some band is going to need a lead singer.” She mentioned the fact that she was doing a tour with Brian May in the fall and she was like, “If I get you on that tour, who knows, who knows … you never know what that could lead to.”

So she started putting that idea in my head and, at the time, I didn’t think it made much sense because, as you say, I had a long established tour as a solo artist. But my mind opened up to it and, when I got the call from James Young and Tommy Shaw, I just thought the world was trying to say something. And I listened to Styx and I really enjoyed their show and the shows that we did together. I just thought I could see myself fitting into this band. So on the one hand, I thought seriously about it and, on the other hand, I was like “Who the hell would say no to this?”

Read more at!

By: Tim Hudson

Photo By: Jason Powell

An authoritative hard rock wrecking crew will soon be traveling across North America towards an amphitheater near you. The announcement that the members of Styx will accompany hard rockers Tesla in support of Def Leppard during their upcoming summer tour has been met which much excitement from dedicated listeners, in what is quickly being considered one of this year’s most anticipated treks.

Styx certainly aren’t strangers when it comes to impressive summer tours, having just last year hit the road alongside Foreigner and Don Felder for an extensive headlining run, however this is bound to be one of the most memorable tours in the band’s history. This formidable power trio will begin their five month sprint with a June 23 performance in Tampa, Florida, before continuing across the remainder of the United States and Canada.

Music Enthusiast recently sat down with Styx bassist Ricky Phillips for an exclusive interview discussing the band’s upcoming tour, what he enjoys most about performing live, his thoughts on the group’s latest studio efforts, his stance towards new material, and his ongoing work on the final Ronnie Montrose recordings.

William Clark: Let’s start with the popular topic of the week: it’s been announced that Styx will head on tour with Def Leppard and Tesla this summer! Are you personally looking forward to the tour?

Ricky Phillips: Oh yeah! We haven’t toured with Def Leppard in quite a while, but we did go out with them for several legs about five years ago, and for me it’s a lot of fun because Sav [Rick Savage] and Joe [Elliott] and I play a little bit of golf on days off and get away from the hotels and concrete. We just love those guys, it’s a good time. The two bands really get along well, and the music seems to get along very well. I think Tesla was a good add to that, as well. We’ve done shows with Tesla and it’s a good pallet, you know? It’s a really good compliment of music for the evening. We were busy when we first heard about it, we were doing a bunch of shows and didn’t really have time to digest it, but thinking about it over this past week now that it’s hitting the airwaves that we’re doing this tour, it really sounds like it’s going to be a great night of music.

Read more at!

Written By: William Clark

– Styx and Tesla Set To Join The Tour As Special Guests –

LOS ANGELES (Feb. 12, 2015) – Def Leppard returns to the road this summer for an extensive North American tour. The Live Nation-promoted tour hitting nearly 50 cities across the U.S. and Canada will kick off on June 23 in Tampa, Fla. at MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre. Joining Def Leppard on their massive summer outing are rockers Styx and Tesla. Please see full tour routing below. Citi® cardmembers will have access to pre-sale tickets beginning Wednesday,Feb. 18 at 12 p.m. local time through Citi's Private Pass® Program. For complete pre-sale details, General tickets for the tour go on sale starting Friday, Feb. 20 at 10 a.m. Please see below for full details and on sale information.

Def Leppard’s influential career includes numerous hit singles and ground-breaking multi-platinum

albums—including two of the best-selling albums of all time, Pyromania and Hysteria, capturing the group’s legendary tracks, bringing together classic Leppard hits such as “Rock of Ages,” Pour Some Sugar on Me” and “Foolin.” The upcoming tour follows on the heels of the band’s massive 2014 co-headlining tour with KISS, last summer.


All dates, venues and cities below subject to change. All shows on sale Feb. 20 unless otherwise noted.

June 23 Tampa, FL MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre

June 25 West Palm Beach, FL Coral Sky Amphitheatre

June 27 Birmingham, AL Oak Mountain Amphitheatre

June 28 Atlanta, GA Aaron's Amphitheatre at Lakewood (on sale Feb. 21)

June 30 Charlotte, NC PNC Music Pavilion (on sale Feb. 21)

July 02 Bristow, VA Jiffy Lube Live (on sale March 6)

July 03 Virginia Beach, VA Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach

July 05 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun Arena (on sale Feb. 21)

July 07 Gilford, NH Bank of NH Pavilion at Meadowbrook*

July 09 Mansfield, MA Xfinity Center (on sale Feb. 21)

July 11 Bethel, NY Bethel Woods Center for the Arts (on sale Feb. 21)

July 12 Darien Center, NY Darien Lake Performing Arts Center

July 14 Toronto, ON Molson Canadian Amphitheatre (on sale Feb. 21)

July 17 Clarkston, MI DTE Energy Music Theatre

July 23 Wantagh, NY Nikon at Jones Beach Theater (on sale Feb. 28)

July 24 Saratoga Springs, NY Saratoga Performing Arts Center

July 25 Holmdel, NJ PNC Bank Arts Center (on sale Feb. 28)

August 08 Sioux Falls, SD Sioux Falls Arena

August 11 Kansas City, MO Starlight Theatre

August 14 Sedalia, MO Missouri State Fair*

August 15 Des Moines, IA Iowa State Fair*

August 17 Cincinnati, OH Riverbend Music Center

August 18 Nashville, TN Bridgestone Arena

August 21 Dallas, TX Gexa Energy Pavilion

August 22 Woodlands, TX Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

August 23 Austin, TX Austin360 Amphitheater

August 27 St. Paul, MN Minnesota State Fair*

August 28 Grand Forks, ND Alerus Center

August 30 Noblesville, IN Klipsch Music Center

September 01 Allentown, PA The Great Allentown Fair*

September 03 Louisville, KY KFC Yum! Center*

September 04 Maryland Heights, MO Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre (on sale Feb. 21)

September 05 Tinley Park, IL First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre

September 16 Auburn, WA White River Amphitheater (on sale Feb. 21)

September 17 Ridgefield, WA Amphitheater Northwest (on sale Feb. 21)

September 19 Mountain View, CA Shoreline Amphitheatre

September 22 Chula Vista, CA Sleep Train Amphitheatre

September 23 Phoenix, AZ Ak-Chin Pavilion

September 25 Albuquerque, NM Isleta Amphitheater

September 26 Denver, CO Pepsi Center

September 28 West Valley City, UT USANA Amphitheater

September 30 Spokane, WA Spokane Arena*

October 2 Bozeman, MT Brick Breeden Fieldhouse*

October 4 Bismarck, ND Bismarck Civic Center*

*-Non Live Nation Date

About Def Leppard:

Def Leppard--Joe Elliott (vocals), Vivian Campbell (guitar), Phil Collen (guitar), Rick "Sav" Savage(bass) and Rick Allen (drums)—continues to be one of the most important forces in rock music. With 100 million records sold worldwide and two prestigious Diamond Awards to their credit, the group’s spectacular live shows, filled with powerful melodic rock anthems, continue to sell out venues worldwide. For the past thirty years the band’s epic live shows and arsenal of hits have become synonymous with their name, leading Def Leppard to be heralded as an institution in both the music and touring industry.

For more information on Def Leppard’s US tour and tickets please visit the band’s web site at

About Styx:

Spawned from a Chicago basement in the early ‘70s, STYX would eventually transform into the virtual arena rock prototype by the late '70s and early '80s, due to a fondness for big rockers and soaring

power ballads. Over the course of their 38-year career they’ve released 15 studio albums, six best-

of compilations and four live albums, garnering eight Top Ten singles. STYX has sold over 30 million albums worldwide. Throughout their illustrious career, they’ve performed more live shows since 1999 than all of the previous years of its career combined. Two Super-Bowl appearances, Pollstar box office chart-topping tours with Def Leppard, Journey, Boston, REO Speedwagon and Bad Company (to name only a few), two more studio albums and no end in sight, STYX continues to conquer the planet, one

About Tesla:

TESLA -- Jeff Keith (vocals), Frank Hannon (guitar), Brian Wheat (bass guitar), Dave Rude (guitar) andTroy Luccketta (drums)— One of Rock n Roll's most respected bands, multi-platinum sellers TESLA have remained true to their "no frills" style since the first day they hit the music scene nearly 30 years ago. Their catalog reads like a soundtrack to the lives of a generation of fans worldwide. With their latest chart topping release "SIMPLICITY" they have proven they are a band that continues to consistently deliver energetic, hard-driving, blues-based rhythms with thought-provoking lyrics that die-hard fans expect and today's generation craves.

About Live Nation Entertainment

Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) is the world’s leading live entertainment company comprised of global market leaders: Ticketmaster, Live Nation Concerts, Live Nation Media & Sponsorship and Artist Nation Management. For additional information, visit

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SOURCE: Live Nation Entertainment

For Def Leppard, contact:

Carleen Donavon

Nina Lee

For Live Nation, contact:

Victor Trevino

After spending last year on the road as special guests for Kiss, Def Leppard will be back atop the bill this summer and taking Styx and Tesla along for the ride, Billboard is exclusively announcing.

The 48-date tour kicks off June 23 in Tampa, Fla., running through Oct. 4 in Bismarck, N.D. And Def Lep frontman Joe Elliott tells Billboard that it will be a band-of-brothers situation.

"We've toured with both of these bands before," Elliott says. "Styx is a great bunch of guys and as American as mom's apple pie all the way through. And we had Tesla on board when we did the Hysteria tour back in '87; they were out for at least six or seven months with us before they went off to do their own thing. So it'll be a great time on stage and backstage, I think."

Elliott adds that, "We've always been keen on taking out bands that people know. It's done us a world of good to go out with a name on the poster that doesn't just say, 'Plus special guest...' We've tried it; We had Tripping Daisy in the '90s, who were great people to work with but nobody knew who they were, and it didn't make for a great evening of anticipation, if you like. People would go, 'Who's this lot onstage?' Nobody's going to go see Tesla and Styx and not know who they are. They're going to say, 'I know all those guys and all those songs. That's a show I want to see.'"


Written By: Gary Graff

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