On this day in music history: January 19, 1981…

On this day in music history: January 19, 1981 – “Paradise Theater”, the tenth studio album by Styx is released. Produced by Styx, it is recorded at Pumpkin Studios in Oak Lawn, IL from Spring – Fall 1980. Following the huge commercial success of their previous album “Cornerstone” and the smash ballad “Babe” (#1 Pop), the Chicago, IL based rock band opts to change gears and do something different for the follow up. Their tenth release is a concept album about the legendary Chicago theater with the songs following it through its opening to its eventual closure and abandonment. As with “Cornerstone”, Styx once again records at Pumpkin Studios, outside of Chicago and owned by former American Breed lead vocalist turned recording engineer Gary Loizzo. It spins off two singles including “The Best Of Times” (#3 Pop) and “Too Much Time On My Hands” (#9 Pop). A&M Records presses the initial run of vinyl copies with the bands logo laser etched on the second side of the LP.  Originally released on CD in 1984, it is remastered and reissued in 1993. It is remastered again in 2014 by Universal Japan as a standard redbook CD and as an SACD/SHM-CD. Out of print on vinyl for nearly thirty years, it is reissued as a 180 gram LP in 2015. “Paradise Theater” spends three weeks at number one (non-consecutive) on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 3x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.