John Curulewski

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John Curulewski
Born(1950-10-03)October 3, 1950
Chicago, Illinois, US
DiedFebruary 13, 1988(1988-02-13) (aged 37)
GenresRock, progressive rock, hard rock
InstrumentsGuitar, Vocals, Autoharp, Keyboards
Years active1968–1975
LabelsWooden Nickel, A&M
Associated actsStyx, Spread Eagle, Arctic Fox

John Curulewski (October 3, 1950 – February 13, 1988), pronounced: "sir-lus-ki" and nicknamed "JC," was an American musician who was one of the original members of Styx.

Born in Chicago, Curulewski joined Dennis DeYoung, the Panozzo brothers, and James Young to form TW4 in 1968, which was renamed Styx in 1972. He played acoustic and electric guitar and wrote or co-wrote 12 songs on the band's first five studio albums: Styx, Styx II, The Serpent Is Rising, Man of Miracles, and Equinox. He left just before the Equinox promotional tour and was replaced by Tommy Shaw. Curulewski left Styx because he wanted to spend more time with his family and have more creative control in his work.

After leaving Styx, he taught guitar at the Mad Music in La Grange, Illinois, and ran a recording studio aptly called "The Studio". He also played guitar in a band called Spread Eagle and formed the group Arctic Fox, playing the Chicago area clubs. Curulewski also coached his son's baseball team, and would go into his son's elementary school as a lunch supervisor; he would bring in his guitar and play it to the kids.

Curulewski taught some of Chicago's best young guitar players. Many of his students went on to form a core group of heavy metal guitarists in Chicago. Curulewski became active in the mentoring of young bands in the western suburbs of Chicago, not only teaching guitar but coaching on performance and supplying support for live appearances and recording.

Curulewski died on February 13, 1988, from a brain aneurysm. He was survived by his wife and their son.