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Styx to bring the hits to Artpark

Arena rock icon Styx returns for a show Aug. 16 as part of the Tuesdays in the Park series at Artpark.

Styx released its first hit, “Lady,” in 1973, but the band didn’t hit superstardom until singer-guitarist Tommy Shaw joined the group in 1976 and in 1977 released the hit album “Grand Illusion.”

Founding member Dennis DeYoung and Shaw became dueling musical forces, with DeYoung favoring a rock-opera sound and Shaw more straightforward rock. DeYoung won and the result was 1983’s odd “Kilroy Was Here,” which broke up the band and spawned the boppy 1980s hit “Mr. Roboto.”

In spite of a late ’90s reunion, DeYoung eventually left the group due to illness and Shaw found Canadian singer/keyboardist Lawrence Gowan to replace DeYoung. The band has endured the death of founding drummer John Panozzo, the departure of his bass player brother, Chuck, and a chronic disrespect from snobby rock critics who failed to credit Shaw for being the guitar virtuoso he is.

Its current lineup is probably its best since DeYoung left, including founding member James Young. Shows feature high-energy, hit-driven sets including “Renegade,” “Too Much Time on My Hands” and “Come Sail Away” that validate the band’s place in classic rock history.

Gates open at 4:45 p.m.; opener Tim Montana and the Sherdnecks hit the stage at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the Artpark box office, artpark.net or by phone at (888) 223-6000.

– Robbie-Ann McPherson

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