Boomer Bands – Styx

styx, dennis deyoung, chuck panozzo, john panozzo, lawrence gowan, babe, come sail away, seniorsEnjoy two classic Styx tunes ….Chicago twin brothers John (drums) and Chuck Panozzo (guitar) and neighbour Dennis DeYoung (vocals & keyboard) were young teenagers when they first got together in 1961 to form a band, eventually graduating to playing at high schools, and frat parties while in university. In 1972 they were signed to Wooden Nickel Records and chose Styx as the new name for their band. Guitarist Tommy Shaw joined in 1976, forming a quartet.

Their 1979 #1 hit Babe came during the band’s heyday. Below, Styx performs Babe with Dennis DeYoung on vocals/keyboard.

After Styx’s 1983 album release Kilroy Was Here, Dennis DeYoung and Tommy Shaw started recording solo albums, effectively placing Styx on hiatus. It wasn’t until 1989 that the group would re-form, replacing Tommy with guitarist Glenn Burtnik. Styx would break up and re-form again in 1995; and split yet again in 1999. Health issues plagued the original three band members in the late 1990’s; Chuck Panozzo battling HIV/Aids (he came out in 2001); John Panozzo died in 1996 from cirrhosis of the liver (he had been an alcoholic for years); and Dennis DeYoung contracted a viral eye infection that prevented him from touring. A nod to senior Dennis DeYoung, who turns 68 today, February 18 2015.

Dennis DeYoung was replaced on vocals & keyboard by Canadian solo artist Lawrence Gowan, who still performs with Styx today. Of the 3 original members, only Chuck Panozzo (age 66) still performs with Styx.

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