Remembering Robby Steinhardt: Kansas Founder Dies at 71

Robby Steinhardt

Fans of the rock band Kansas will undoubtedly remember the name Robby Steinhardt. After all, the talented violinist and singer was one of the pillar members of the group, lending his immense level of talent to some of their biggest hits. Unfortunately, it was recently announced that the talented musician had passed away.

Fans in Mourning

Clearly, this has been a huge blow to the people who knew him personally as well as to the fans of the group. At 71 years of age, he wasn’t exactly a spring chicken, but that doesn’t make the news any easier to take. It was announced on the 20th of July that he had died as a result of complications that had occurred from pancreatitis, a severe inflammation of the pancreas that can happen for various reasons. His death had occurred just three days earlier. Unfortunately, this disease is more common than most people might initially believe. It can happen as the direct result of a poor diet, due to cancer or because of other complications related to things like high blood pressure or diabetes. Unfortunately, people with low immune systems are more susceptible to it, as are individuals who are of an advanced age. In short, the older that a person gets, the more likely he or she is to contract pancreatitis or something similar. Unfortunately, that was the case for Steinhardt.

Performing with the Group

While Steinhart wasn’t actively performing with Kansas the entire time the group was active, he was with them during many of their most formative years. The first time, he routinely played with the group from 1973 until 1982. At that point, he took a step away to pursue some other interests. In 1997, he returned to the group Kansas, this time staying with them until 2006. Many of the group’s most dedicated fans staunchly supported him, even going to the point of crediting his involvement with the band for some of the most notable songs that the group has ever produced, including Carry On Wayward Son and Dust in the Wind. Throughout the group’s career, they have sold more than 15 million copies of records. Many people are quick to voice their opinions that without Steinhardt’s skills as a violinist and vocalist, they never would have reached anything close to this milestone.The band itself is still performing, although there are only two original members left.

Death

Sadly, Steinhardt was just embarking on a solo career that he had been working on for some time, at the time of his death. In fact, he had just finished his first solo album and was getting ready to go back on tour when he fell ill. This was something that was reiterated by his wife, Cindy, when she announced his death. Apparently, he had been excited about having a solo career for a number of years and had finally decided to put everything in place in order to make that dream become a reality. Unfortunately, he had just solidified a number of tour dates at the time of his death. It’s highly unfortunate that he won’t have the opportunity to see that dream come to fruition, as he was seemingly quite excited about the prospect of going back on tour.

A Man Who Loved Playing Music

Steinhardt was never shy about letting everyone know how much he loved music. For him, it wasn’t just about playing on stage, nor was it always about the attention that his success had garnered. It really came down to the ability to simply play something that allowed him to connect with people from all walks of life. For him, music was a way of communicating with people on a grand scale. He himself had mentioned in many interviews over the years how much it meant for him to play certain songs like Dust in the Wind and witness the feedback of the audience on a first-hand basis. This is something that many musicians seemed to feel acutely. Music has an innate ability to transcend across barriers such as race, nationality and religion. People feel music that touches them in a way that is on an entirely different level from almost anything else. It’s easy to understand why someone who has the talent to produce something that moving is intrigued and even overjoyed when they have the opportunity to witness thousands of fans being moved by a single piece of music, all at the same time. That was the reason that he loved playing with Kansas and it is the reason why he was so excited to embark on a solo tour as he shared new music with an entirely new generation of fans.

A Ripple Effect

There is no doubt that Steinhardt’s death has caused a ripple effect in the music industry, as many famous musicians have already taken to social media to express their condolences over his death. Unfortunately, most people didn’t even know that he was ill. At this point, the original members of Kansas, as well as other musicians, are determined to remember his passion for playing music and his ability to connect with fans in ways that few others have ever been capable of doing. It isn’t yet known what will happen with Steinhardt’s new music. As previously mentioned, he had recorded a solo album just prior to his death. At the time being, there is no reason to think that that album won’t be made widely available to the public so that everyone has the opportunity to enjoy the music that he created. It is a shame that fans, both old and new, won’t get the opportunity to see him perform live. However, it might soften the blow just a bit if they are at least able to hear the new music that he has created and see for themselves what it is all about.

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