Phil Ehart - Drums
Billy Greer - Bass/Vocals
David Ragsdale - Violin/Vocals
Steve Walsh - Lead Vocals/Keyboard
Richard Williams - Lead & Acoustic Guitar
KANSAS' first public statement appeared on their self-titled debut album in 1974. "…from the beginning, we considered ourselves and our music different and we hope it will always remain so…"
Little did this legendary rock group realize that back in the early 70's, what "seemed to be different" was actually ahead of its time! That was then, and it remains the same today. The members who make up KANSAS are PHILL EHART (drums), BILLY GREER (bass guitar, vocals), ROBBY STEINHARDT (violin, vocals), STEVE WALSH (lead vocals, keyboards) and RICHARD WILLIAMS (lead and acoustic guitar).
From the beginning, KANSAS achieved the success that they were looking for by sticking to their instincts and playing only their original music. Music that the band felt should be heard and would be appreciated. Going from a "garage band" in Topeka Kansas to a headliner is rare, even by today's standards. They were discovered by Don Kirschner in 1972 and released their first album, Kansas, in 1974. This set the stage for a progressive rock sound that became the foundation KANSAS used to show the world that their adventure and genius in lyrics and arrangement would never look back, but move forward. Together, KANSAS made a commitment to spark the imagination.
Following solely their own creative instincts, KANSAS has produced eight gold albums, two multi-platinum albums (leftoverture, Point of Know Return), one platinum live album (Two For The Show) and a million selling gold single, "Dust In The Wind." While the group won fans every night at the concert hall, strong radio support gave them the ammunition they needed by playing such hits as, "Play The Game Tonight," "Dust In The Wind," "Carry On Wayward Son" and "Point of Know Return". It was their dedication to each other and their determination to deliver the music live that propelled them beyond hit radio into heading status. The airwaves allowed KANSAS the opportunity to appear on the Billboard charts for over 200 weeks throughout the 70's and 80's. In fact, as of 1998, Leftoverture and Point of Know Return - two of the most critically-acclaimed albums of the 70's - each surpassed 6,000,000 in sales. A huge fan base allowed them to sell out arenas and stadiums in virtually every city in North America to Europe and Japan. KANSAS is still in heavy rotation on classic rock radio today... In fact, according to a recent Roling Stone survey of stations, "Carry On Wayward Son" was the #1 most popular song on the classic rock airwaves. This has contributed to KANSAS being known as "America's Greatest Progressive Rock Band."
The group's drummer, PHIL EHART, sums it up best... "What put KANSAS on the map in the first place was the band's sense of adventure, and it's that same spirit that still inspires us. We're still committed to making the kind of music that moves you emotionally, physically and mentally. I like to think of KANSAS as an ongoing musical experiment that's constantly full of surprises."
KANSAS is more than a "band." KANSAS is style, dedication, harmony and versatility in creativity. there have been many transitions which have taken place in the life of the legendary rock group. Transitions which allow the lyrics to flow, the music to flourish and ideas to mark its course. These transitions have kept KANSAS apart from other bands and makes one realize the best is yet to come.
KANSAS features four original members, including founder PHIL EHART, whose timing and energy still rage within his gifted wrists. Frequently featured in musician and drummer's magazines, and honored on their "best of" lists, PHIL is truly one of the greatest drummers of our time.
Bass guitar player and vocalist, BILLY GREER has been with KANSAS for thirteen years. His talent and dedication to the band and its music give KANSAS depth and continuity.
STEVE WALSH's famous soaring lead vocals, keyboard wizardry and high energy delivery are instantly familiar. Fans will be interested to know that his original member is back to the keyboards full time.
RICHARD WILLIAMS - lead and acoustic guitar player - is world renowned. He too, is an original member of the band. From his subtle acoustic work on "Dust In The Wind" to the power of "Carry On Wayward Son", RICHARD highlights the variety and genius of KANSAS compositions. The band is proud to announce the return of "front man" and original member ROBBY STEINHARDT, who is back after a 15 year hiatus. ROBBY has been playing the violin since the age of eight with a background in classical music. This laid the foundation for what he is today, a virtuoso whose violin gives KANSAS the unique sound for which they are famous.
STEVE WALSH concludes, "We're heading into a new century with new ideas and discoveries ahead. Once again, we want to "spark the imagination." Only this time, the sparks will come from an orchestral tour beginning in April of this year, with an album, Always Never The Same (featuring the London Symphony Orchestra), being released on May 19th.
KANSAS will take their musical genius and together, with the accompaniment of the various world-class symphony orchestras, will be giving audiences the gift of their musical talent in a new setting that is strictly KANSAS... ahead of its time... again!
More bands announced as they are signed!
*Schedule and lineup are subject to change without notice.