Beaudreau ~ Keyboards
Jerry Erickson ~ Bass
Dean Kirkpatrick ~ Drums
Phil Kraushaer ~ Keyboards
Michael Knight ~ Vocals
Willet (Bill) Lussenden ~ Guitar
Mike Poe ~ Rhythm GUitar
I was already playing in a band with drummer Dean Kirkpatrick, when we met Bill Lussenden in 1968. Bill had established a local reputation in the Longview-Kelso area as great guitar player when he was in the Canterburys. Dean and I were more than happy to form a new band with him. Bill brought along Jerry Erickson on Bass, Mike Knight on vocals, and our original keyboard player, Larry Beaudreau. Larry was an excellent keyboard player, but he working a day job at the time and opted out of the travel that our new band would require. Larry was replaced by Phil Kraushaer, and the line up of Crystal Lion.
We played the Evergreen Ballroom in Olympia, Washington, the Smith Center in Longview, WA and other similar venues of the day throughout SW Washington and Portland, Oregon from 1968 until 1971.
The band members continued to play in other local and regional bands, while Willet (Bill) Lussenden departed for New York to further his musical career. He recorded an album with the "Blues Project" released in 1972 on Capital Records catalog # SMAS-11017. He later performed with a New York band called Teen Age Lust. Bill eventually moved to Southern California, where he currently resides and continues to play guitar.
Sadly, Bill and I are the only surviving members of Crystal Lion from the above picture. Mike Knight, Jerry Erickson, and Phil Kraushaer all died in their 40's, and Dean Kirkpatrick died a few years later in his mid 50's. Larry Beaudreau (the original keyboard player) died tragically in a house fire a few years after leaving the band.
Mike Poe, March 2012
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