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Flint’s Classic Rock – 103.9 The Fox

  • Writer: Kerry Livgren
  • Producer: Jeff Glixman
  • Recorded: 1976, Studio On The Country in Bogalusa, Louisiana
  • Released: November 1976 (album), January 1977 (single)
  • Players:
    Steve Walsh — keyboards, lead vocals
    Robby Steinhardt — violin, viola, vocals
    Kerry Livgren — guitar, keyboards
    Rich Williams — guitar
    Dave Hope — bass
    Phil Ehart — drums
  • Album: Leftoverture (Kirshner/CBS, 1976)
  • Also On:
    Two For The Show (Kirshner/CBS, 1978)
    The Best Of Kansas (Epic, 1984; reissued 1999 with bonus tracks)
    Live At The Whiskey (Intersound, 1992)
    The Kansas Boxed Set (Legacy, 1994)
    Live: Dust In The Wind (EMI-Capitol, 1998)
    King Biscuit Flower Hour Presents (King Biscuit, 1998)
  • “Carry On Wayward Son” was Kansas‘s first top 40 hit. Entering the Billboard Hot 100 on Christmas Day in 1976, it peaked at Number 11.
  • Guitarist-keyboardist and songwriter Kerry Livgren remembered, “We’d put out a few and had just given up on singles… As soon as we stopped trying… we got it!”
  • Leftoverture peaked at Number Five on the Billboard 200 chart.
  • Of Leftoverture, guitarist Rich Williams said, “We’d been playing for eight solid months, touring by the seat of our pants. We had no credit cards, no money… we just put everything out of our minds and worked on pleasing ourselves as best we could. Our taste and the audience’s had matured into being the same. It was the greatest feeling.”
  • Livgren wrote the song as a sequel to a song called “the Pinnacle,” on the band’s previous album, Masque.
  • Kansas had their biggest hit a year later with “Dust In The Wind.”


  • Walsh left the group in 1981 and was briefly replaced by John Elefante before the band broke up in 1983. They’ve since reunited and continue to record and perform.
  • Livgren became a contemporary Christian artist in the 1980s. He was replaced in Kansas for their 1986 reunion by guitarist Steve Morse of the Dixie Dregs.
  • Livgren still writes and records with Kansas, but no longer tours with them. he has a side band called Proto-Kaw.

Violinist Robby Steinhardt has also left the band. He was replaced by David Ragsdale, who was in the band in the ’90s.