Members: Chuck Panozzo, James "J.Y." Young, Tommy Shaw, Todd Sucherman, Lawrence Gowan, Ricky Phillips
Albums: Styx (1972); Styx II (1973); The Serpent Is Rising (1974); Man of Miracles (1974); Equinox (1975); Crystal Ball (1976); The Grand Illusion (1977); Pieces of Eight (1978); Cornerstone (1979); Paradise Theater (1981); Kilroy Was Here (1983); Edge of the Century (1990); Brave New World (1999); Cyclorama (2003); Big Bang Theory (2005)
Awards: 3 Grammy Nominations
Hits: "Lady," "Come Sail Away," "Babe," "Mr. Roboto," "Show Me the Way"
Other: First band to have released 4 consecutive multi-platinum albums.
While they may share a name with the mythical river that ferries souls to the afterlife, thanks to a string of wildly popular hits the prog-rock band Styx seems to have everlasting life. Formed by twin brothers Chuck and John Panozzo, Styx has enjoyed a lengthy career that has spanned nearly 40 years, and with a unique sound and a dedicated group of fans they are still going strong.
The Panozzo's began performing with neighborhood friends in the early 1960s, but it was not until the early. '70s that the band started to gain traction. They released their self-titled debut album in 1972 to very minimal fanfare and lukewarm critical reception. However their follow up, 1973's Styx II, proved to be a much bigger success. While the record as a whole peaked at number 20, it included the band's first top 10 hit, "Lady." The song reached number 6 on the charts and remains one of the tunes most closely associated with Styx even 37 years after its initial release.
After releasing several albums throughout the next few years that provided several mildly popular tunes such as "Lorelei" and "Suite Madame Blue," Styx discovered newfound success in 1977 after The Grand Illusion hit shelves. The record was responsible for a few popular tunes including the top-10 smash "Come Sail Away." The song peaked at number eight, and was largely responsible for the album becoming certified triple platinum and among the best selling albums of the '70s.
Spurred by the success of The Grand Illusion, Styx's net album, 1978's Pieces of Eight, was even more popular. The compilation contained a trio of hits that earned considerable radio play, highlighted by "Renegade," which managed to crack the top 20. The album performed better than its predecessor, reaching number six, and was also certified triple platinum.
The 1980s were kind to Styx as well, and in 1983 they released the ambitious rock album Kilroy Was Here. Though many people have forgotten the storylines, they certainly remember "Mr. Roboto," which became the band's best performing single when it reached number three. Another single, "Don't Let it End," also cracked the top 10.
Since the '80s, the members of Styx attempted to launch various solo careers, but in 1995 the band reunited, and they have been almost as active in recent years as they were in their heydey. In the last several years they have gone on tour with such acts as REO Speedwagon and Boston, and in 2010 they announced the release of a new album.