Kansas has announced another addition to its lineup in the wake of singer/keyboardist Steve Walsh's decision to leave the band. Earlier this month, the veteran prog rockers revealed that Ronnie Platt, former frontman of the group Shooting Star, will be taking over Walsh's lead-vocal duties soon, and now Kansas has announced via its Facebook page that David Manion "will be handling the main keyboard parts for the band on stage."
Manion is a founding member of longtime Kansas bassist Billy Greer's side project Seventh Key.
He says in a statement, "To say how excited I am for the opportunity to be playing keyboards with Kansas would be the understatement of my life…It truly is a dream come true. To be a part of a band with a 40-year history, with so many albums out, and one that has proven to have put so much of the 'prog' in progressive music since virtually the beginning of the genre, is the greatest feeling I have had in quite some time."
Kansas drummer Phil Ehart says about Manion joining the group, "It's going to be great having David up on stage. He's a world class keyboard player and a longtime member of the Kansas family."
Adds Greer, "I've been working with David since the mid eighties…For me, he has always been the 'go to' guy when any keyboard work was needed…David has done a phenomenal job on all the Seventh Key stuff and will bring the same integrity to the music of Kansas!"
Both Manion and Platt will make their live debut with Kansas at a September 12 concert in Oklahoma City. Walsh revealed his decision to resign from Kansas in late June. His last performance with the band is scheduled for August 16 in Sioux City, Iowa.
Meanwhile, Greer has sent a statement to MelodicRock.com expressing his feelings about Walsh's departure from Kansas. "It really saddens me to see Steve leave the band," he writes. "I have about a 34 year history with Steve, so, it makes it extra hard to see him go. I owe a lot my success in the music business to Steve and for that I am very grateful. To me he is still one of the greatest voices in rock 'n roll!"
He adds, "I wish him all the best, love him like a brother and will be there for him if he ever needs me!"
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