A somewhat successful debut album, Kansas, was released in 1974, and showcased Kansas' signature mix of guitars, keyboards, vocals, and Steinhardt's ever-present violin submerging American-style boogie-rock in complex arrangements and changing time signatures. Relentless promotion by Kirshner and touring behind the debut album and its two followups slowly brought Kansas' name to households across America. By the time the band's fourth album, Leftoverture (1976) was released, Kansas was popular enough for the album to be a smash hit and a constant presence on the burgeoning AOR radio format, as was the followup Point of Know Return (1977).
After a few more albums, Kansas began to fall apart in the early 1980s. Hope and Livgren became born-again Christians and Walsh formed a new band, replaced by John Elefante. In spite of a successful 1982 album called Vinyl Confessions, the group split in 1983, only to reform in 1986 with the album Power. The 1990s saw a string of barely noticed releases, and Kansas has continued to tour sporadically, but the band has never been able to regain any mass popularity or critical notice.