|Kansas, once simply a garage band from Topeka, released their first album in 1974, and it contained this statement:
|“From the beginning, we considered ourselves and our music different and we hope we will always remain so.”
In the 21st century — over 40 years later — it certainly seems likely. Little did this now-legendary rock group realize back in the early ‘70s, what seems “different” may just be ahead of its time.
Throughout their time, Kansas went on to record eight gold albums, three six-time-platinum albums, one platinum live album and a million-selling gold single, "Dust in the Wind." Kansas appeared on the Billboard charts for hundreds of weeks throughout the '70s and '80s and played to sold-out arenas and stadiums throughout the world. In fact, the song "Carry On Wayward Son" actually went to #1 in 1997, decades after its release!
In 1998, Kansas recorded an orchestral album with the London Symphony Orchestra, and followed it with a tour accompanied by top-caliber symphony orchestras. Then in 2000, Kansas went back into the studio to produce Somewhere to Elsewhere, their first album in 20 years to feature all of the original members.
2010 saw Kansas begin their Collegiate Symphony Tour, performing their hits accompanied by various college symphonies throughout the United States, to help raise funds and awareness for collegiate music programs. This tour lead to a special collaboration with the US Army Orchestra culminating in the Veteran's Day Carry On Concert in Washington, DC, honoring America's veterans.
The band, currently drummer Phil Ehart, bassist Billy Greer, violinist David Ragsdale, singer/keyboardist Steve Walsh, and guitarist Richard Williams, remains a fixture of Classic Rock radio and has reached a whole new audience through their unmistakable presence in the popular video games Rock Band and Guitar Hero, and through their songs' appearing in TV shows like Supernatural and South Park, and films Old School and Anchorman.
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