CLEARWATER — Legendary rockers Styx will perform Thursday, Jan. 30, 8 p.m., at Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 McMullen Booth Road, Clearwater.
Tickets start at $40.50. Call 727-791-7400 or visit www.rutheckerdhall.com.
The road never ends for members of the multiplatinum band Styx. The current lineup features Tommy Shaw on vocals and guitars, James “JY” Young on vocals and guitars, Lawrence Gowan on vocals and keyboards, Todd Sucherman on drums, and Ricky Phillips on bass. When on tour, it’s not unheard of for original Styx bassist Chuck Panozzo to make a surprise appearance on any given night.
Styx kicked off their latest tour Jan. 10 in Phoenix, Arizona. They will visit the Sunshine State for a string of dates this month before moving on venues such as the Beacon Theatre in New York City, the Warner Theatre in Washington, D.C., and the Avalon Theatre in Niagara Falls, Ontario.
Styx released “The Mission,” the band’s 16th studio album, in 2017. Billed as the band’s most ambitious, most challenging, and most rewarding album to date, “The Mission” debuted on various Billboard charts, including No. 6 Top Rock Albums, No. 11 Physical Albums, No. 11 Vinyl Albums, No. 13 Current Albums, No. 14 Billboard Top Albums, No. 16 Retail, No. 17 Mass Merch/Non-Traditional, No. 29 Digital Albums, and No. 45 Billboard 200.
“The planets truly aligned for ‘The Mission,’ and I couldn’t be prouder,” said Shaw in a press release promoting the tour. Shaw co-wrote the album’s storyline with longtime collaborator Will Evankovich. “It’s our boldest, most emblematic album since ‘Pieces of Eight.’”
“In the 40th anniversary year of our release of our biggest selling album of all time, ‘Grand Illusion,’ it just seemed truly appropriate to save our new studio album until this year,” Young said. “Needless to say, I’m very excited.”
The highly anticipated reissue of “The Mission” was released July 27, 2018, via Alpha Dog 2T/UMe. The two-disc package includes a CD of the original album, as well as a Blu-ray of “The Mission” mixed in 5.1 Surround Sound by Shaw and Evankovich accompanied by stunning visualizations for each of the album’s 14 songs based on the album artwork. Other extras on the Blu-ray include “The Making of the Mission Documentary,” featuring exclusive interviews of Shaw and Evankovich, and four music videos, including two versions of “Gone Gone Gone,” and two versions of “Radio Silence.” Also featured are three hi-res audio playback modes.
Styx draws from over four decades of barn-burning chart hits, joyous singalongs, and hard-driving deep cuts. Like a symphony that builds to a satisfying crescendo, a Styx set covers a wide range of stylistic cornerstones. The band’s classic hits include “The Grand Illusion,” “Blue Collar Man,” “Lady,” “Miss America,” “Man in the Wilderness,” “Crystal Ball,” “Come Sail Away” and “Renegade.”
Styx hit its stride with guitarist/vocalist Tommy Shaw’s first LP with the band, 1976’s “Crystal Ball,” and then they become the first group to score four triple-platinum albums in a row: “The Grand Illusion” in 1977, “Pieces of Eight” in 1978, “Cornerstone” in 1979, and “Paradise Theater” in 1981. Over the ensuing decade, Styx weathered the shifting winds of the public’s musical taste, reconvening for a highly successful 1996 “Return to Paradise” tour that was expertly documented on both CD and DVD in 1997.
At each tour stop, Rock to the Rescue — spearheaded by Shaw’s daughter Hannah — researches local nonprofit organizations and picks one to see if they are interested in volunteering to help the band sell $10 tickets for a drawing to win a signed Styx guitar at the shows. Rock to the Rescue is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded by the band. Its mission is to build strong, healthy communities through the support of grassroots organizations across the country.