history

Album Photograph: Leftoverture

The Beginning

With a legendary career spanning more than four decades, KANSAS has firmly established itself as one of America’s iconic of classic rock bands. This “garage band” from Topeka released their debut album in 1974 after being discovered by Wally Gold, who worked for Don Kirshner, and have gone on to sell more than 30 million albums worldwide.

Composing a catalogue that includes fifteen studio albums and five live albums, KANSAS has produced eight gold albums, three sextuple-Platinum albums (Leftoverture, Point of Know Return, Best of KANSAS), one platinum live album (Two for the Show), and two one million-selling gold singles, Carry On Wayward Son and Dust in the Wind. KANSAS appeared on the Billboard charts for over 200 weeks throughout the ‘70s and ‘80s and played to sold-out arenas and stadiums throughout North America, Europe and Japan. Carry On Wayward Son continues to be one of the top five most played songs on classic rock radio, and Dust In the Wind has been played on the radio more than three million times!

Photo Credit: Don Hunstein

1998-2004

In 1998, KANSAS released an orchestral album; Always Never the Same, recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra at Abbey Road Studios in London. They followed with an orchestral tour accompanied by top-caliber symphony orchestras.

In 2000 KANSAS went back into the studio with original band member and songwriter Kerry Livgren to produce Somewhere to Elsewhere, the first album featuring all 6 of the original players in 20 years! The ten new songs were written by Kerry Livgren and recorded in his studio in Topeka, KS. Players included: Phil Ehart, Billy Greer, Dave Hope, Kerry Livgren, Robby Steinhardt, Steve Walsh and Richard Williams.

In 2002, KANSAS released a state-of-the-art DVD using the latest technology in film, audio and visual design, entitled Device-Voice-Drum and was the driving force behind the 2002/2003 tour.

Sony Music released a boxed set in 2004 titled Sail On which featured unique KANSAS cuts as well as vintage video footage on the DVD disc that was included.

Compilation of Album Artwork

2006-2009

In 2006, KANSAS released the two-disc (one CD/one DVD) anthology Works In Progress. Material was taken from a decade's worth of studio, live albums and home videos; 1992's Live At The Whisky, 1995's Freaks Of Nature, 1998's Always Never The Same and 2002's Device Voice Drum.

In 2009, in their hometown of Topeka, KANSAS celebrated their 35th Anniversary with a symphonic concert, accompanied by the Washburn University Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Larry Baird. The DVD release There's Know Place Like Home captured this unique live performance and featured special guests Kerry Livgren & Steve Morse with spectacular lighting and high-resolution clarity. Available on both DVD and Blu-Ray, There’s Know Place Like Home includes favorites such as Dust In The Wind, Carry On Wayward Son and Point of Know Return as well as a sampling from each album in their discography, with a special symphonic touch.

Photo Credit:

Carry On

Inspired by their 35th Anniversary DVD There's Know Place Like Home KANSAS conducted their Collegiate Symphony Tour from 2010-2012 performing their hits accompanied by various college and university symphonies throughout the United States to help raise funds and awareness for collegiate music programs. In 2011, this tour lead to a special collaboration with the US Army Orchestra culminating in the Carry On Concert honoring America’s veterans on Veteran’s Day 11/11/11 at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, DC.

Kansas' Carry On Concert with the U.S. Army Orchestra,
Veterans Day at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington.

Today

Coinciding with the celebration of their 40th anniversary in 2015, KANSAS was inducted into both the Kansas Hall of Fame and the Georgia Music Hall of Fame as recognition for their achievements from both their native state and adopted home state.

Now, in 2016, KANSAS released The Prelude Implicit, their fifteenth studio album. This wide-ranging progressive rock album is released on InsideOut Music and will mark the band’s first studio album release in 16 years.

The band, which is currently comprised of original drummer Phil Ehart, bassist/vocalist Billy Greer, keyboardist David Manion, vocalist/keyboardist Ronnie Platt, violinist/guitarist David Ragsdale, guitarist Zak Rizvi and original guitarist Richard Williams, continue to perform in front of large and enthusiastic audiences around the world.

Along with touring, KANSAS continues to remain a fixture of Classic Rock radio and has reached a whole new audience through their unmistakable presence on the popular video games Rock Band and Guitar Hero, and their songs’ inclusion on television shows such as Supernatural and South Park, as well as films Old School and Anchorman.

Photo Credit: Steinhardt Studios