Styx is an American rock band that became famous for its albums from the late 1970s and early 1980s. The Chicago band is known for melding the style of prog-rock with the power of hard rock guitar, strong ballads, and elements of American musical theater.
The band is best known for the hit songs "Lady" (#6, 1975), "Come Sail Away" (#8, 1977), "Babe" (#1, 1979), "The Best of Times" (#3, 1981), "Too Much Time On My Hands" (#9, 1981), and "Mr. Roboto" (#3, 1983). Other hits by the band include "Show Me the Way" (#3, 1990), "Don't Let It End" (#6, 1983) and "Renegade" (#16, 1978). The band has four consecutive albums certified multi-platinum by the RIAA.
Twin brothers Chuck and John Panozzo first got together with their neighbor Dennis DeYoung in 1961 in the Roseland section of the south side of Chicago, eventually taking the band name "The Tradewinds". Chuck Panozzo left to attend seminary school for a year but returned to the group by 1964. Tom Nardin had been brought in to replace Chuck on guitar and Chuck decided to play bass guitar when he returned to the band. John Panozzo was the drummer, while Dennis DeYoung had switched from accordion to organ and piano. In 1965, the name "Tradewinds" was changed to TW4 after another band called The Trade Winds broke through nationally. By 1966, the Panozzo brothers had joined DeYoung at Chicago State University and kept the group together doing gigs at high schools and frat parties while studying to be teachers. In 1969 they added a college buddy, John Curulewski, on guitar after Tom Nardin departed. Guitarist James "J.Y." Young came aboard in 1970 making TW4 a quintet.
In 1972 the band members decided to choose a new name when they signed to Wooden Nickel Records; several suggestions were made and, says DeYoung, Styx was chosen because it was "the only one that none of us hated".
With Chuck Panozzo focusing on his health concerns, Glen Burtnik returned to Styx, this time as bass player, to fill Chuck's duties, with Chuck participating on a part-time basis, sitting in as his health permitted.
Styx's new lineup released several live albums and released the studio album Cyclorama in February 2003, which reached #127 on the Billboard 200 album charts failing to make much of an impact. Although a single "Waiting for Our Time" reached #37 on the Billboard mainstream rock chart, it charted for 1 week and failed to make much, if any, impact. Styx toured extensively during this period and released additional live albums.
Burtnik left Styx in 2003 and recorded a solo album, Welcome to Hollywood. He was replaced by Ricky Phillips, formerly of The Babys and Bad English.
On June 5, 2004, Styx participated in Eric Clapton's Crossroads Guitar Festival covering songs by Jimi Hendrix, B.B. King, and Slim Harpo with Jeff Baxter as a special guest.
In 2005 Styx released an album of cover tunes, Big Bang Theory, which reached the Billboard Top 50 on the album charts, their highest charting album since 1990. The song "I am the Walrus" received some radio play and a video was made for the song, which was subsequently featured in their live shows. Still the album had a short life on the charts and failed to make much of a dent.
DeYoung continued his solo career by re-arranging and performing his Styx hits with a symphony orchestra. In 2005, DeYoung released a CD of re-recorded Styx hits from a solo concert with a symphony orchestra (titled The Music of Styx - Live with Symphony Orchestra). The album also contained three new DeYoung songs. DeYoung's CD became a major hit in Canada, selling 50,000 copies there. Burtnik now often appears with DeYoung in his solo shows.
In 2009, DeYoung released "One Hundred Years From Now" in the U.S., his first full collection of songs that marked a return to form: that feature the same production and arrangement he brought to Styx. His touring band was formed with two singing guitar players that provide harmonies and guitar work very similar to DeYoung's prime in Styx.
As of April 21, 2006, according to the RIAA which awards artists and groups gold/platinum status, Styx ranks number 127 with 17.5 million records sold within the United States. The blurb on Amazon.com about Chuck Panozzo's book "The Grand Illusion: Love, Lies, and My Life with Styx" states that Styx has sold over 54 million records.
On April 16, 2007, Def Leppard announced a 50-date 2007 tour, which included Styx and Foreigner as supporting acts.
On October 16, 2007 Styx received the "Lifetime Achievement Award" from IEBA (International Entertainment Buyers Association) in Nashville, Tennessee.
In 2008, Styx performed on a double bill with Boston in a North American summer tour, playing 53 dates in 12 weeks.
In the opening sequences of the April 2, 2009, episode of the CW television show, "Supernatural", Sam and Dean, posing as FBI agents, introduced themselves as "agents DeYoung and Shaw," an apparent homage to the two Styx members.
In 2009, Styx went on tour with REO Speedwagon and .38 Special. Styx and REO Speedwagon teamed up to record a single entitled "Can't Stop Rockin", released April 23, 2009. That tour continued into early 2010.
On February 21, 2010 the current incarnation of the band performed before the Sprint Cup Auto Club 500 In Fontana, California.
In a North American tour beginning in May 2010, Styx were co-headliners of United in Rock with Foreigner and special guests Kansas.
In July 2010, Styx announced the forthcoming release of Regeneration: Volume 1, a new EP featuring six re-recorded hits and a new song entitled "Difference In the World". This coincides with The Grand Illusion / Pieces Of Eight Tour, on which both albums will be played in their entirety.
In November 2010, Styx announced that they would be filming their concert in Memphis on November 9 for a DVD. They also announced that they'd be touring the UK with Journey and Foreigner for 5 dates in June 2011.
As of March 18, 2011, Dennis DeYoung's name is not mentioned in the history section of Styx's official website