They were one of the most commercially successful American bands of the Seventies. They sold more than $20 million in albums, and 11 of their LPs went gold or platinum. They consistently packed arenas and set records for gate sales. They had two No. 1 singles and a handful of others that are instantly recognizable.
Why, when you mention Grand Funk Railroad, do people often react with Grand Huh?
The Sanctuary checked and there's no GFR in the archives. Shouldn't there be? I mean, we remember "We're an American Band" and "Some Kind of Wonderful" and neither of these songs nor the mention of them cause us to break out in hives. Their music is often categorized as heavy metal, but after what followed you'd have to agree it's not really that extreme. If heavy sweat boogie were a genre we'd be talking today about the godfathers.
Grand Funk enjoyed this wild success between 1970-76 -- a great time for rock music -- despite being panned widely by critics and having their music ignored, at least in the early going, on radio. This clearly was your prototypical Band of the People that beat the odds down by turning the volume up. One sociological observer of Grand Funk's audience explained it this way in a Billboard publication: "They aren't looking for answers, they're looking for confirmation. This music is the possession of teenagers who want something of their own." Packed stadiums and surging record sales suggest they may have found what they were looking for.
The seeds for this discussion were sewn by a self-described flower child who makes no bones about her favorite band of that era. "None other than ... Grand Funk Railroad," she writes. "And my favorite song by them is 'Some Kind of Wonderful.' I used to play it until the album wore out. I had to replace the album with an 8 Track. ... OMG an 8 track ... too funny."
If you want to test drive Grand Funk with an 8 track we suggest you try EBay. If you prefer a more recent format we've provided a link. We're not saying it's wonderful, we're just saying it's some kinda...