GODFREY - Before opening for Eddie Money at the Coors Light Music Fest 3 at the Alton Wood River Sportsmen’s Club in Godfrey, Ill., Kansas City, Mo. natives and international classic rock group Shooting Star sat down with the Riverbender.com to talk about the current state of the music industry, their new album and the brotherhood that comes along with being musicians.

Throughout the band’s history, Shooting Star has gone through a number of line up changes. Two of the band’s founding members, guitarist and songwriter Van McLain, and drummer Steve Thomas, along with veteran keyboardist and vocalist Dennis Laffoon, welcomed their newest member, Todd Pettygrove, in 2013.

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“Todd is just smokin’ with this band now,” Laffoon said, “he has lifted the band up to the level it needed to be at again.”

Although Pettygrove is relatively new to the band, he and Laffoon go way back to the 1980s.

“We used to follow each other’s old bands around when we were performing. Yesterday, we had such a hoot talking and reminiscing around the pool with our families,” Laffon said.

Opening for Eddie Money at Music Fest has become a huge highlight in the band’s career, which has spanned several decades.

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“We are so excited to be performing with Eddie tonight,” said keyboardist and vocalist Dennis Laffoon, “We all got lunch today, and Eddie approached us and asked about our new album. He talked to us about the good old days in the industry. He’s such a good guy.”

In July 2015, Shooting Star released their ninth studio album, “Into the Night.” In something totally unheard of in today’s industry, the band decided to release their album for free on their website, TheShootingStarBand.com.

“The Internet makes a world of difference,” Laffoon said, “with this new album release, we’ve already had over 40,000 downloads. We’re also releasing a CD/DVD package.”

“A lot of our preorders have been from Europe; it’s amazing to know that our music is loved in places like England, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Germany.”

“It’s the lean, mean Shooting Star and I think we’re the best we’ve ever been,” said Pettygrove.

The two bandmates had nothing but well wishes for the night’s concert.

“It’s a beautiful night out there,” said Laffoon, “we’re going out here to have some fun, play some music and support our new album.”

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