We’re An American Band – Grand Funk

THIS DAY IN MUSIC……………………………………..on June 12th of 1973 Grand Funk record “We’re An American Band”, which will become their first US number one single by the following September. This was written by Grand Funk drummer Don Brewer who explained how the song came about “we’re coming to your town, we’ll help you party it down.’ That’s really what we were doing – we were coming into town and we were the party. That’s where the line came from, and the next thought I had was, ‘We’re an American band.’ It wasn’t to wave the flag or anything, it was just simply what we were. It was a true description and it kind of rolled off my mind. I went home and worked on the concept for a while and picked up a guitar; I’m not really a great guitar player, I can play tow-finger chords and that kind of stuff. I worked out the chord structure and I brought it in to rehearsal one day and there you go – we just let it go from there. It had a mind of its own. The lyrics are about little things that were going on on the road during the Phoenix tour. All of them are true. Up all night with Freddie King, I’ve got to tell you, poker’s his thing”. Brewer sang lead on this. Grand Funk guitarist Mark Farner sang most of their songs, but Don was the lead vocal on songs like “Shinin’ On,” “Walk Like A Man” and “Gimme Shelter.” He and Mark shared vocals on “Some Kind Of Wonderful.” Grand Funk was one of the best-selling bands of the ’70s, and this was their biggest hit. Critics were often very harsh, especially Rolling Stone magazine, but they had a huge fan base and got lots of radio play. This was the first of two #1 singles by Grand Funk – the other was their remake of “The Loco-Motion” a year later. This was Grand Funk’s first major hit after shedding their original manager, Terry Knight (they were originally Terry Knight and the Pack). It was also their first single as Grand Funk, rather than Grand Funk Railroad. The song was not released as a single in the UK.