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REO Speedwagon – Their Peak Album Getting Overhaul

Fans of REO Speedwagon’s High Infidelity album should be happy to know it’s getting a significant facelift.  Remember July 19th for the release date.  Snippets from the Epic/Legacy press release:

Anniversary Package To Include Previously-Unreleased Demos of Nine Songs and Liner Notes From Front man Kevin Cronin, Available Everywhere through Epic/Legacy

Marking its 30th Anniversary, the highest-selling rock LP of 1981 is being commemorated with HI INFIDELITY: 30th ANNIVERSARY EDITION, with special, never-before-released demos and more, available at all physical and digital retail outlets on July 19th through Epic/Legacy, a division of SONY MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT.

The HI INFIDELITY: 30th ANNIVERSARY EDITION will pair the original album with a second CD of previously unreleased ‘Crystal Demos’ of nine of the album’s 10 songs.  Additionally, the album packaging will include notes from original lead guitarist Gary Richrath and the liner notes were written by lead singer Kevin Cronin, taking the reader on a trip behind the curtain to the roots of many of the songs:  “I remember writing the verses to piano, after sleepwalking into my home studio around 4:00 a.m….A long simmering response to the bullies of my youth came in the form of ‘Tough Guys’…Bruce wrote and sang ‘Someone Tonight,’ which is one of the gems from the Crystal Demos… ‘I wish You Were There’ [was] a little gospel thing that I had written in the house where I grew up in suburban Chicago.”

Disc One – Selections: 1. Don’t Let Him Go • 2. Keep On Loving You • 3. Follow My Heart • 4. In Your Letter • 5. Take It On The Run • 6. Tough Guys • 7. Out Of Season • 8. Shakin’ It Loose • 9. Someone Tonight • 10. I Wish You Were There.

Disc Two: The Crystal Demos – Selections: 1. Someone Tonight • 2. Tough Guys • 3. In Your Letter • 4. Follow My Heart • 5. Take It On The Run • 6. Don’t Let Him Go • 7. Keep On Loving You • 8. Shakin’ It Loose (Instrumental) • 9. I Wish You Were There.  (All tracks previously unreleased.)

“The heavens, our emotions, the music business, and REO fans all over the world, were all perfectly aligned.  There was a common sense of purpose, of longing and loss, within the band members’ collective psyche, that erupted with a burst of creativity, and resulted in the music of Hi Infidelity.”

– from the liner notes written by Kevin Cronin of REO Speedwagon

Originally formed in Champaign, Illinois, REO Speedwagon is still led today by keyboardist Neal Doughty (founding member since 1967), Kevin Cronin (who has fronted the band since 1972 on lead vocals and guitar), and bassist Bruce Hall (who joined in 1977) – along with lead guitarist Dave Amato (member since 1989) and drummer Bryan Hitt (since 1990).  Together, REO continues to define the essence of two enduring genres, arena rock on the performance side, and classic rock on the audio and video side.  Summer tour dates begin at Los Angeles’ Greek Theatre on June 4th and take the band through more than 40 shows where they’ll showcase the best of Hi Infidelity with the live performances that audiences have grown to love over the last three decades and continue to sell out time and time again.

“Kevin and I go way back, having met right about the time I joined Styx.  There was probably no one more keenly aware of their chart positions than we were for all those weeks back in 1981. Most exciting days indeed!”                        – Tommy Shaw of Styx

As Cronin writes, “Hi Infidelity was a major life changer for all of us.  On our eleventh album, we went from being the perennial Midwestern underdog, to at last hitting the global big time.  Suddenly, the world was listening, and watching… But the truth is, it all still boiled down to the music, the songs, some inspired performances, and a great deal of good fortune.  We were a tight knit, dedicated group of individuals, with a dream, a purpose, and no doubt that we would pull it all off.”

The band these days:

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