US prog rockers Kansas have announced that violinist Joe Deninzon, a founding member of the US prog group Stratospheerius, has joined the band, replacing current violin player Dave Ragsdale, ahead of the band's 50th Anniversary tour.
The singer and violinist, dubbed "the Jimi Hendrix of the violin" in the US, has worked with the likes of The Who, Ritchie Blackmore, Michael Sadler, Renaissance, Bruce Springsteen, Sheryl Crow and more.
“We are extremely excited for Joe Deninzon to be the newest member of Kansas," says founding member and drummer Phil Ehart. "We believe Kansas fans will enjoy what Joe will bring to the band. We are excited to kick off the Kansas 50th Anniversary Tour. As the paragraph in the band’s first album said, ‘KANSAS IS A BAND’ and we remain so to this day.”
“As a lifelong fan of Kansas, I am overwhelmed and humbled to have been invited to join this legendary band," adds Deninzon. "I have the deepest respect for Robby and David and will do my best to honour and build on their musical legacy."
Ragsdale himself replaced original violin player Bobby Steinhardt in 1991, who returned, replacing Ragsdale in 1997, before departing to again be replaced by Ragsdale in 2006.
Kansas recently released the career-spanning three-CD collection, Another Fork In The Road – 50 Years Of Kansas, and embark on a US tour in support of the release on June 2 at Pittsburgh, PA on June 2, when Deniznon will make his live bow with the band.