Letters

Letters 02-08-2016

Less Ageism, Please The January 4 issue of this publication proved to me that there are some sensible voices of reason in our community regarding all things “inter-generational.” I offer a word of thanks to Elizabeth Myers. I too have worked hard for what I’ve earned throughout my years in the various positions I’ve held. While I too cannot speak for each millennial, brash generalizations about a lack of work ethic don’t sit well with me...Joe Connolly, Traverse City

Now That’s an Escalation I just read the letter from Greg and his defense of the AR15. The letter started with great information but then out of nowhere his opinion went off the rails. “The government wants total gun control and then confiscation; then the elimination of all Constitutional rights.” Wait... what?! To quote the great Ron Burgundy, “Well, that escalated quickly!”

Healthy Eating and Exercise for Children Healthy foods and exercise are important for children of all ages. It is important for children because it empowers them to do their best at school and be able to do their homework and study...

Mascots and Harsh Native American Truths The letter from the Choctaw lady deserves an answer. I have had a gutful of the whining about the fate of the American Indian. The American Indians were the losers in an imperial expansion; as such, they have, overall, fared much better than a lot of such losers throughout history. Everything the lady complains about in the way of what was done by the nasty, evil Whites was being done by Indians to other Indians long before Europeans arrived...

Snyder Must Go I believe it’s time. It’s time for Governor Snyder to go. The FBI, U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the EPA Criminal Investigation Division are now investigating the Flint water crisis that poisoned thousands of people. Governor Snyder signed the legislation that established the Emergency Manager law. Since its inception it has proven to be a dismal failure...

Erosion of Public Trust Let’s look at how we’ve been experiencing global warming. Between 1979 and 2013, increases in temperature and wind speeds along with more rain-free days have combined to stretch fire seasons worldwide by 20 percent. In the U.S., the fire seasons are 78 days longer than in the 1970s...

Home · Articles · News · Music · Styx Trix
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Styx Trix

Rick Coates - August 10th, 2009
Styx Trix
Hitmakers bring arena rock to Interlochen

By Rick Coates 8/10/09

Interlochen Center for the Arts has been enjoying a very successful concert season. For all practical purposes their concert season ends this Saturday with Styx (next week there is the Interlochen Guitar Festival to officially close things out) taking the stage at Kresge Auditorium. The band that dominated the rock music world in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s has their work cut out for them as Willie Nelson, Steve Miller and Kenny Loggins all blew the roof this summer.
But if any band can raise the roof to close out a concert season Styx is up to the task. Loaded with rock ballads and anthems “Come Sail Away,” “Babe,” “Lady,” “Renegade,” “The Best of Times,” “Blue Collar Man,” “Show Me The Way,” and “Mr. Roboto,” these classic rockers strung together eight consecutive albums that went platinum and have sold close to 60 million copies.
The band’s roots go back to 1961 in Chicago with founding members evolving the Tradewinds (TW4) into Styx in 1972. While the group was enjoying success in the Midwest, it was when guitarist, vocalist and songwriter Tommy Shaw joined the band in 1975 that the band finally became an international sensation.
Personality struggles would lead Shaw to leave the band at the height of their success in 1983. He went on to pursue a solo career and eventually formed Damn Yankees with Jack Blades of Night Ranger and Ted Nugent. The group had two big hits and sold five million CDs before Nugent departed to pursue his solo career again.
Today, Shaw and Blades have continued as a duo; they record and tour in between Styx and Night Ranger gigs.

RETURN TO STYX
Shaw returned to Styx in 1994. In 1999, in a much-publicized “firing” Dennis DeYoung, a founding member and writer of several big hits, was released from the band. A lawsuit followed with parties agreeing to terms with Shaw and band mates allowed to tour and record using the name Styx.
While there has been speculation in recent years that DeYoung might return for one tour, nothing has been confirmed. For Shaw and his band mates, the focus right now is simply giving the fans what they want: “Styx music live.”
“I think that the music of Styx goes beyond those of us in the band,” said Shaw. “There have been several lineup changes since the inception of the band and I think the group has done an excellent job in selecting members over the years and I believe I was one of those good choices.”
As for that “good choice” of being added to the band, Shaw joined in 1975 just after their first major label “Equinox,” was released (with the hit “Lady”) and just a couple of weeks before the group went on tour.
“I was in another band and the manager of Styx at the time had heard me sing so he called me and said they were looking for a singer and guitar player. When I hit the high note on ‘Lady,’ they told me I was in,” said Shaw. “I was just 23 and they handed me a couple of records and told me I had a week to learn the songs. I came back in a week and we rehearsed one night and hit the road.”

ENDLESS ROAD
They basically never left the road and from 1975 until Shaw left the group in 1983 the band found itself constantly at the top of the charts and the box office. His partnering with Ted Nugent in 1989 to form the Damn Yankees on the surface seemed like an odd pairing.
“I had been working with Michael Cartellone (current drummer with Lynyrd Skynyrd) for a few years. Well, during Styx’s heyday we constantly crossed paths with Ted as he was enjoying a lot of success at that time as well. This business is all about timing and so Nugent joined us and we hit it off right away in fact we wrote Come Again, the first day we were together.”
Born in Alabama, Shaw moved to Chicago as a teenager to pursue a musical career and even lived in Michigan for awhile. He currently resides in Los Angeles.
“I love Michigan. it is a great music state,” said Shaw. “I lived on a farm in Niles for awhile and loved it. The Midwest is a great place musically. From Seger to Nugent to Illinois bands like us, Cheap Trick and REO, a lot of great music was made in that region. I remember when I first came to Chicago touring small clubs around Michigan and as Styx. we love touring Michigan and the Midwest. after all, it was our fans there that stuck with us.”

Apparently their fans in Northern Michigan have stuck with them as well with tickets nearly sold out for their show this Saturday at Kresge Auditorium on the campus of the Interlochen Center for the Arts. For additional information or to purchase tickets visit www.interlochen.org or call the box office at 231.276.7800.



 
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