Donnie Iris & The Cruisers
Saturday May 13th at 7:30
Donnie Iris found his early successes in the industry while performing with The Jaggerz and Wild Cherry. While with Wild Cherry in the late 70’s Donnie Iris found his identity as such, after performing under his birth name Dominic Lerace for the earlier part of his career. Struggling to build off the success of “Play that Funky Music”, Wild Cherry would break up in 1979. Nevertheless Iris had already sunk his teeth into another project with fellow bandmate Mark Avsec. Their first release saw the disco-influenced single “Bring on the Eighties” backed by a cover of “Because of You” in 1979; however it failed to garner attention. Iris and Avsec decided to go in a harder direction for their next release and returned to the studio with guitarist Marty Lee Hoenes, bassist Albritton McClain and drummer Kevin Valentine, who at the time was in the band Breathless with Avsec, to record his first full-length album. This line-up would form what would become known as Donnie Iris and the Cruisers. Iris released his first album in July of 1980, titled Back on The Streets, through Midwest Records based out of Cleveland, Ohio. Thanks to the track “Ah! Leah!” receiving attention through airplay in Boston, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh, MCA Records took notice and signed Iris to a five album deal before rereleasing the album nationally in October that year. Since then Donnie Iris & The Cruisers have gone through changes in lineups, but have continued on, releasing eleven studio albums, one EP, two live albums, and two compilation albums. He continues to sporadically release new material and tour throughout Pennsylvania and Ohio.
Donnie Iris & The Cruisers return to The Kent Stage to celebrate his 80th Birthday in Kenton Saturday May 13th, 2022. Show starts at 7:30 P.M, and both the doors & box office will open an hour prior to start time.