When rock bands split up and go their separate ways, it often puts fans in the difficult position of defending one side against the other. Many a fanbase has been split when bands go through divorce-like divisions. To say there's been a bit of acrimony over the years between principal members of Styx, who parted company with popular keyboardist/vocalist Dennis DeYoung in 1999, would be a definite understatement. Their disagreements have been widely documented on an MTV "Behind the Music" episode, as well as myriad interviews over the years.
That's why I found it refreshing when guitarist/vocalist James Young told me this summer that he had finally arrived at a place of forgiveness when it came to his feelings toward DeYoung, noting that in hindsight, despite the anxiety and frustrations that are part of a collective creative experience, they all made each other's songs better — and, in the end, that's what counts the most.
"This is the tranquil heavenly notion (of) God bless all of us, because the work we did changed people's lives and helps people along and inspired people and motivated people and healed people even," Young said. "Music has the power to soothe, to calm and heal. ... What we have comes from a higher place, and we are the humble stewards of this great power. When we take the stage, we take the stage with joy and we push this wave of joy out to the audience and they bring it back to us, and by the end of the night, we're all just surfing this giant wave of joy."
— Doug Fox