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Starship to headline Chingawassa

Rock band Starship will be the headline concert of Chingawassa Days 2012, the Chingawassa Days Committee announced Monday.

Starship is a newer act than previous rock bands to headline Chingawassa Days.

“This will be the first rock act Chingawassa Days has presented that actually had the majority of their hits in the 80s and 90s instead of 60s and 70s,” committee spokesman Clayton Garnica said.

Starship got off to a hot start in 1985 with a pair of No. 1 singles from the band’s debut album, “Knee Deep in the Hoopla.” “We Built This City” and “Sara” both reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The band added another No. 1 hit in 1987 with “Nothing’s Gonna to Stop Us Now” from the album “No Protection,” along with eight other songs that reached the charts.

Starship’s repertoire also includes songs from vocalist Mickey Thomas’ time as lead singer of Jefferson Starship from 1979 to 1984, a time when that band had eight singles reach the top 100. Every Starship and Jefferson Starship album starting in 1979 has reached at least gold certification.

“Starship evolved from Jefferson Airplane, so rock fans from the 70s are going to hear some of their favorite songs,” committee spokesman Jessie Nikkel said.

Band members include vocalist Thomas, bassist Jeff Adams, guitarist Mark Abrahamian, keyboard player Phil Bennett, drummer Darrel Verdusco, and vocalist Stephanie Calvert.

Chingawassa Days begins June 1 in Marion’s Central Park with a barbecue and entertainment. There will be numerous activities and entertainment options June 2, culminating in Starship’s concert at 9 p.m. A community church service June 3 will close festival.

Nikkel and Garnica are optimistic that with Starship as the headline concert, this year’s schedule will be one of the festival’s best. More events and details will be announced later.

Starship’s website is http://mickeythomas.com. For more information about Chingawassa Days, go to http://chingawassa.com or call the Marion Chamber of Commerce at (620) 382-3425.

Last modified Feb. 16, 2012

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