The band Chicago will perform at the Luhrs Center on Saturday, May 21, at 8 p.m.

Second after The Beach Boys in the number of Billboard singles and albums among American bands, Chicago is one of the longest running pop / rock and roll bands and known as the first American band to hit the top 40 albums in five decades.

Known for a series of best hits such as “25 or 6 to 4”, “Wishing You Were Here”, “Saturday in the Park”, “If You Leave Me Now” and “Hard to Say I’m Sorry”, the band also released a new Latin American music project with 12 of its greatest hits called “Chicago ¡Exitos!”.

Walt Parasider, the band’s founding member and saxophonist, set aside time from their hectic schedule for a recent phone interview.

“We are in the middle of our spring tour and a couple of weeks will come to you – he said to El Paso, Texas – we are very happy to give fans another chance to sing on stage with the band.”

For the second year in a row, Chicago is joining forces with the American Cancer Society to create a Sing With Chicago campaign that raises money to fight breast cancer.

This year’s tour started in California on April 1 and will last until May. Fans in each city can bet on a package that includes a meeting with the band, two bonus tickets, travel behind the scenes and the opportunity to sing on stage with the band.

“Anyone can bet, and we encourage our fans who come to the show in Schippensburg to visit our chicagotheband.com website and follow the tips, “Walt said.” Personally, cancer has affected my own life and the lives of many of our audiences, and this action is not only a great time for our fans, but also a great contributor to breast cancer. “

During his career in Chicago got five albums number 1 and entered the top 10 hits.

“We love to do it and are very grateful that we are still performing,” Walt said. “Being the first American band to have hits in all five decades is really phenomenal, and if all goes well with our third Christmas album (which will be released in October), we will enter six decades.”

Because of their longevity Chicago entertains all age groups at its concerts.

“We performed in New Jersey, and I saw in the crowd a 13-year-old boy singing ‘Does Anybody Really Know What Time Is’ from our first album, and later I said, ‘Dude, how do you know that.’ song? ‘ He said it was in his grandparents and his older brother listened to us and thought our old things were damn good. I thanked him and thought, “Wow. It’s unbelievable. “

Not to sound on his horn, but the saxophonist said no other band has toured at the Chicago level for 44 years in a row.

“We’re lucky to have a job and something we love to do,” he said. “And we have a great fan club and fans.”

He added that the band is very excited to come to Schippensburg University.

“The place will be shaken and we hope to see a lot of new faces,” he said.

When he ran out of time, Walt said he and his wife, both Civil War supporters, were hoping to visit Gettysburg.

“Despite the whole trip we’ve made, a visit to Gettysburg is still on my list,” he admitted.

Walt said that despite a busy schedule, there is nothing better than being in the “happiness business”.

“Our music makes you feel good, and if we can make people forget about the crazy things that happen in our world for just a couple of hours and have a good time, then all is well,” he said. “A little sun won’t hurt anyone.”

The H. Rick Lurce Center for the Performing Arts is located on the campus of the University of Schippensburg. For information on tickets, call the Luhrs Center box office at 477-SHOW or visit luhrscenter.com.

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