Dear John
by Styx

Album: Return To Paradise (1997)

Songfacts®:

  • Styx guitarist and vocalist Tommy Shaw wrote this in memory of John Panozzo, the drummer for Styx who died in 1996 from cirrhosis of the liver, which was brought on by his chronic alcoholism. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Dan - The Bestmont, IL
  • There are no drums in this song in tribute to Panozzo. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Fred - Winters, CA

Comments: 7

  • Matthew from Richmond, Vamy best friend - the best man at my wedding - died recently way too young. I've felt numb the past couple of days. We were both Styx fans and listening to this song finally brought the emotions out of me. "Heaven help me I miss my friend" .. so true.
  • Eric from Mentor, OhPerhaps the last great song to feature the classic harmonies of Dennis, Tommy and JY. Truly haunting.
  • Mia from Syracuse, NyThis is a very heart felt song that Tommy wrote about John Panazzo, his dear friend and former drummer of Styx. They were real close friends. Tommy has said that it brings teas to his eyes every time he plays it and that it took a while to record it because he had a hard time controling his emotions. It is a very beautiful song and a great tribute.
  • Bobbi from Kenhorst, PaI love this song. It is so appropriate when you lose a loved one. The feelings expressed such as "I swear I saw you on a crowded street today
    I almost called your name"
    are so true.
  • Tim from Denver, CoJohn Panozzo was the brother of bass player Chuck.
  • Sean from Boston, Mamakes me remember sad times of my life
  • Dawson from Draper, Utthis is such a sad song
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Director Paul Rachman on "Hunger Strike," "Man in the Box," Kiss

Director Paul Rachman on "Hunger Strike," "Man in the Box," KissSong Writing

After cutting his teeth on hardcore punk videos, Paul defined the grunge look with his work on "Hunger Strike" and "Man in the Box."

Al Kooper

Al KooperSongwriter Interviews

Kooper produced Lynyrd Skynyrd, played with Dylan and the Stones, and formed BS&T.

Jules Shear - "All Through The Night"

Jules Shear - "All Through The Night"They're Playing My Song

Shears does very little promotion, which has kept him secluded from the spotlight. What changed when Cyndi Lauper had a hit with his song? Not much, really.

Lecrae

LecraeSongwriter Interviews

The Christian rapper talks about where his trip to Haiti and his history of addiction fit into his songs.

Kim Thayil of Soundgarden

Kim Thayil of SoundgardenSongwriter Interviews

Their frontman (Chris Cornell) started out as their drummer, so Soundgarden takes a linear approach when it comes to songwriting. Kim explains how they do it.

Jesus Thinks You're a Jerk: Rock vs. Televangelists

Jesus Thinks You're a Jerk: Rock vs. TelevangelistsSong Writing

When televangelists like Jimmy Swaggart took on rockers like Ozzy Osbourne and Metallica, the rockers retaliated. Bono could even be seen mocking the preachers.