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The Grand Illusion by Styx
Album: The Grand IllusionReleased: 1977
The "Grand Illusion" is the world as framed by the media. The song was written and sung by Styx keyboard player Dennis DeYoung, who told Rock Cellar magazine: "'The Grand Illusion' was my way of expressing to the audience that the pressure that is put on them by advertising, media and yes, rock stars, to believe in an illusion that really does not exist was not healthy for them. I was trying to point out to them that simply they shouldn’t believe the myths that other people create for them and they should understand that it really is in some ways a form of entertainment or simply advertising."
In a 1978 radio interview, Dennis DeYoung explained how he told a friend that he wanted to title a song "The Grand Illusion." Some time later, Dennis was talking to this friend on the phone and the friend said, "Hey, whatever happened to that song idea you had about a grand illusion?" Dennis said, "Man, I forgot all about that." He hung up the phone and went to work. He already had the music, so he started playing the tune and the words to "The Grand Illusion" came out.
Styx had good reason to take on the media: critics were brutal to the band. In this song, they take away their power by painting what they do as an illusion.
Tommy Shaw grew irritated with many of Dennis DeYoung's bombastic songs and grand concepts, but he appreciated the sentiment of this one. "This profession can really play tricks on your head," he said. "You're out there on stage being what everybody wants you to be but behind that facade you're still trying to be the same person you've always been."
The album The Grand Illusion
was released on July 7, 1977, (7-7-77), and it was Styx's 7th studio album released.