Night Ranger formed in San Francisco in 1982 and enjoyed widespread popularity in the 1980s. Over their 20-plus year career, they have sold over 10 million albums and sold out countless concerts throughout the world. The group formed out of the ashes… Read more
Night Ranger formed in San Francisco in 1982 and enjoyed widespread popularity in the 1980s. Over their 20-plus year career, they have sold over 10 million albums and sold out countless concerts throughout the world. The group formed out of the ashes of the funk group Rubicon. Once the group split up in 1979, three of its members—Jack Blades (vocals, bass), Kelly Keagy (drums), and Brad Gillis (guitar)—formed a melodic hard rock band called Stereo. Soon, the trio added lead guitarist Jeff Watson and keyboard player Alan Fitzgerald and changed their name to Night Ranger.
Their first album, 1982's Dawn Patrol, was a moderate success and features the group's first Top 100 hit "Don't Tell Me You Love Me." Their follow-up, Midnight Madness, would be the group's finest hour. The album was released in 1983, a time when radio-friendly heavy metal was tearing up the charts, and Night Ranger's slick sound, strong melodies, and hard rock edge helped the quintet gain some steam.
The record features their biggest hit, the classic power ballad "Sister Christian." The song was penned by drummer Kelly Keagy about a visit he made to his sister where he was stunned by how fast she had grown up since he had seen her last. Though they are known for this ballad, the group shows their ability to play slick hard rock, notably on favorites like "(You Can Still) Rock in America" and "Touch of Madness."
Though they went on to make more well-received albums, they never quite reached the popularity of Midnight Madness. Blades left the group in 1989 and formed Damn Yankees with Tommy Shaw of Styx and Ted Nugent. The group released two popular albums, but by 1994, Damn Yankees were no more. Blades returned to the fold in 1996, and since then, the group has released three more albums, including 2008's Hole in the Sky. Though the three records obviously didn't touch their previous successes, the band remains fairly popular, especially in Asia (where they are extremely popular), and they continue to play shows all over the world.