Starcastle

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Starcastle
Origin Champaign, Illinois, United States
Genres Progressive rock
Years active 1969-1987
1997-2007
Labels Epic Records
Website www.starcastlerocks.com
Past members Gary Strater
Matt Stewart
Steve Hagler
Steve Tassler
Herb Schildt
Terry Luttrell
Ralph Goldhiem
Mauro Magellan
George Harp
Scott McKenzie
Bruce Botts
Mark McGee

Starcastle were a progressive rock band from Champaign, Illinois. Formed in 1969, the group played many shows under the names Pegasus and Mad John Fever before eventually settling on Starcastle. They inked their first record deal with Epic Records and received extensive airplay and frequently played in the St. Louis area. The original lineup included former REO Speedwagon vocalist Terry Luttrell and computing author/programmer Herb Schildt, while the mid-1980s lineup would briefly include guitarist Mark McGee, who would go on to join Vicious Rumors. They released four albums on both the Epic and CBS labels and their eponymous debut sold well, garnering worldwide airplay.

Their later albums - "Fountains of Light", "Citadel" and "Real to Reel" - did not sell as well as the first and they were often criticized for sounding too musically similar to Yes. They were opening acts for such bands as Jethro Tull, Gentle Giant, Fleetwood Mac, Kansas, Boston, Rush, Journey and others.

In 2002, Gary Strater, Steve Tassler and Steve Hagler all released solo albums on the band's own Sunsinger label. This led to work on the band's final album Song of Times, before Gary Strater's untimely passing on September 19, 2004 from pancreatic cancer. Song of Times was released in 2007.[1]

As recently as June 2012, some surviving band members were working on a new archive release.[2]

Personnel[edit]

  • Gary Strater - Bass, Moog Taurus (1969–1987, 1997–2004; died 2004)
  • Matt Stewart - Guitar (1969–1981, 1997–2006)
  • Steve Hagler - Guitar (1969–1980, 2006)
  • Steve Tassler - Drums (1969–1980, 2006)
  • Herb Schildt - Keyboards (1969–1978, 1997–2006)
  • Terry Luttrell - Vocals (1973–1978, 2006)
  • Ralph Goldhiem - Vocals, Keyboards (1979–1981)
  • Mauro Magellan - Drums (1980–1981)
  • George Harp - Vocals (1982–1987)
  • Scott McKenzie - Drums (1982–1987)
  • Bruce Botts- Guitar (1982–1985, 1997–2006)
  • Mark McGee - Guitar (1985–1986)

Timeline[edit]

Discography[edit]

Studio Albums[edit]

Year Title Notes
1976 Starcastle First studio album.
1977 Fountains of Light Re-issued on CD in 1998.
1977 Citadel Features cover art by the famous Brothers Hildebrandt. Re-issued on CD in 1998.
1978 Real to Reel Re-issued on CD in 1998.
2001 Chronos I Archive release featuring demos and unreleased tracks.
2007 Song of Times Starcastle's final album

Solo Albums[edit]

Year Title Notes
2002 eleven to the fourth twice Gary Strater. Synthesized electronic ambient music based on fractal equations.
2002 Alive Beyond Recognition All compositions, performances, programming and production by Steve Tassler.
2002 Echoes of Light Steve & Carol Hagler.

References[edit]

External links[edit]