Styx man Gowan’s Starr-struck moment
Styx singer, keyboardist and guitarist Lawrence Gowan found himself Starr-struck when he met Beatles drummer Ringo.
Gowan had hired the Liverpool icon’s studio to work on his second solo album in 1985 – but he didn’t expect to meet the man himself.
The Scots-born Canadian tells Citybeat: “I got a chance to record at Ringo’s home in Ascot near London. It was the house where John Lennon had recorded Imagine.
“It was a home studio there Ringo was letting us use. When I went to the door the first day he actually answered the door.
“I remember finding it difficult to bring words to my mouth, which usually isn’t that hard a thing for me to do. It took me a few minutes to realise I wasn’t in a scene from A Hard Day’s NIght, but actually talking to a guy in his house.”
Gowan replaced Styx founding member Dennis DeYoung in 1999, after 17 successful years as a solo artist. Since then the band have played more shows than they did in their preceding 28 years, and Gowan likes to keep those memories in photographic form.
He explains: “The best history I kept was, every night at the end of shows I took a Polaroid picture on stage. I took three or four and tossed some of them out to the audience, but I’d keep one for myself. My wardrobe case is stuffed with all these pictures – it’s a fantastic journal.
“In Kansas City at the end of the show I was reaching down and shaking people’s hands, and somebody threw up a picture of me the first year I was in the band. We had a great laugh backstage – we realised there are now old pictures of us together.
“My best documentation of the shows is that collection of Polaroids. I find find that what pictures evoke, the flood of memories you get from them, can be astounding. Particularly win you are in a heightened state, like being on stage in front of 10,000 people.”