Styx’s Ricky Phillips On Whether “Mr. Roboto” Is Cool Or Corny

This Friday night, classic rock band Styx is taking the stage at the OC Fair, and to get us psyched for the show, we talked with bassist Ricky Phillips about the group’s amazing career this morning!

Styx is known for its deep catalog of hits including “Lady,” “Come Sail Away,” “Renegade,” Babe” and the list goes on. But without failure, the song that comes to many people’s minds when they think of Styx is the 1982 hit “Mr. Roboto,” which spawned its own catchphrase “Dōmo arigatō, Mr. Roboto.”

When Gary Bryan asked Ricky, who joined the band in its later years, whether he thinks the song is cool or corny, he said that “I think it’s a little bit of both.”

“People who were kids when that came out, they think that’s the coolest song ever,” he laughed. “I was a little past that to be quite blunt and honest about it…there’s so many great Styx songs that I hate it when that’s somebody’s reference point of Styx.”

However Styx is much more than that song, as diehard fans know. In recent shows, the band has catered their set-list to please those loyal fans by performing those deep album tracks that never saw much air play.

“We kind of started getting into the deeper cuts, because we realized the diehard fans love the songs like ‘Castle Wall’ and ‘Pieces of Eight,'” Ricky explained. “When we felt the surge from the crowd when we would do certain songs…we should start injecting these into the set.”

Fans heading to the group’s OC Fair show this Friday (and Ventura County Fair on Aug. 3rd) can expect to hear all the classic Styx hits, plus those deep tracks that aren’t played as often.

“The band has got a cool span…we have a wide diverse catalog, that depending on what the audience is, we can color it in that direction,” he explained. “It makes it really fun for us…we don’t do the same set every night.”

Styx rocks the OC Fair Friday night at the Pacific Amphitheatre. For tickets and more information, visit

Listen to our complete interview with Ricky Phillips below.

More from Britt Bickel

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