Friday, September 23, 2016

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Kix

Song:Don't Close Your Eyes
Album:The Essentials

The hard rock band Kix scored their only big hit with the 1989 power ballad Don't Close Your Eyes. Though highly regarded by fans, it looks like they had difficulty distinguishing themselves from similar bands of the era. So they weren't as successful as they could have been. Kix are from Hagerstown, MD. They were formed in 1977 as Shooze led by bassist and main songwriter Donnie Purnell along with guitarists Brian Forsythe and Ronnie Younkins. Forsythe was the lead singer at first. But that changed when Steve Whiteman joined in 1978 and they also added drummer Jimmy Chalfant. Eventually they named themselves Kix after the breakfast cereal. They started playing local clubs and they released an album independently. This led to a deal with Atlantic Records. They released a couple of albums but they couldn't seem to get anywhere. I think part of the problem was Atlantic had a lot of hard rock bands on their roster at the time. For example, Ratt was successful so Atlantic was spending promotional funds on them as opposed to spending them on Kix. Having them work with Ratt's producer Beau Hill didn't help. Finally Kix had success working with veteran producer Tom Werner on the 1988 album Rock My Fuse. The power ballad Don't Close Your Eyes reached #11 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album was certified Platinum. So finally Kix had success. But it didn't help as Kix discovered they still owed a lot of money to Atlantic. And Atlantic was going through management changes which led to Kix switching to the new label EastWest. That killed Kix's momentum and the 1991 album Hot Wire was a financial failure. Atlantic then dropped them. This comp is a good intro to Kix's music. Kix split up in 1996. Whiteman formed the band Funny Money. Forsythe formed the band Rhino Bucket. In 2003 the two bands merged to become a Kix reunion. Purnell is not part of the Kix reunion. He had a falling out with Whiteman and Purnell now runs a recording studio in West Virginia. Kix released a new CD in 2014. Their website is down so they may have split up. Here's the video for Don't Close Your Eyes by Kix.

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