Onward Through the Fog: An Exclusive Interview With James Young
by Allan Hirt
Interview conducted via phone on July 11, 2003
This interview is ã 2003 Allan Hirt and cannot be copied, altered, broadcast, or reproduced without my permission.

This is an interview that has been a long time in the making. I started discussions with the management of Styx around the 1997 tour to get this interview. With the release of Cyclorama, it looked like the right time and circumstances would align. Sure enough, it finally happened.

Special thanks to Sterling Bacon from TBA for finally making this happen.

JY called me at 10:30 EST from his hotel in Boston.

Instead of transcribing it all, I've encoded it as a series of RealAudio files (click here to go to Real's site to download free version of the player).

NOTE: Unfortunately, due to a technical problem the first question was not captured on tape. I asked JY "What happened in the past couple of years in the writing process of Cyclorama - how was it working with five different writers and what was the process of compromise?". He gave about a 3 to 5 minute answer that was really good. To paraphrase his answer, everyone contributed, and when they sat down, they all agreed on the proportion of songs, etc. So they went into Cyclorama a unified band, especially in terms of vision.

This is about a 60 minute interview. I really appreciate JY spending a gracious amount of time to speak with me. It is a pretty candid interview about many topics.

Part One (4 MB) - Band credits, rejected songs, package tours, and putting a set list together
Part Two (5 MB) - Re-recording "Mr. Roboto", splintering of the fan base, the box set, 5.1 mixes, live albums, opening the archives, and the state of the music industry
Part Three (5.6 MB) - New solo projects, Todd Sucherman, audition process for Gowan/replacing lead singers, stage props, and JY's guitars
Part Four (6 MB) - "Son of Edge" demos and the 1991 - 1995 period, and the Styx legacy and the future