Even though PASSENGER was no more, Ron Benoit & Frank Mendenhall continued to get together regularly. By now, both had discovered the value of having home studios.
SO STRANGE became a mix of studio work and home studio work. On some tracks, Ron plays all instruments, but on all tracks, all instruments are played by either Frank or Ron.
Shadow Box is admittedly a little "off the tracks". There's a lot of emotion packed into this CD. Everything from "Cry of the Morning" which deals with Ron's feelings on his adoption, to "Winds Way" that deals with universal suffering.
The cover photo is a picture of Ron's Dad, Don Benoit. A relationship you may recognize in "Raise the Window".
After a nationwide tour that ended in 1978, Ron regrouped with lifelong friend Frank Mendenhall. The magic was still there and in two brutal years, the team filtered through countless additions and subtractions (bass players, drummers, etc.) and finally PASSENGER was born. The group steered into their first studio session, back in 1980 with Ron Benoit, songwriter, arranger, guitar, vocals. Frank Mendenhall, lead guitar, Kirk Hittner, bass guitar, six string acoustic, Gerry Hinges, percussion.
Roses is the only release from the group as PASSENGER. Even though they returned the next year for a lengthy and successful session, the results of that session remain under lock & key.
As life would have it, members began to marry and have children, and the group had essentially disbanded by 1982. If you're from the Midwest, you may have heard PASSENGER rockin Westport on multiple occasions, and one...very memorable...concert at the Pavillion at Swope Park in Kansas City, MO.
ROSES is considered by many as a group classic.