Grand Funk Railroad

Grand Funk Railroad

In my formative years, I spent many a satisfied afternoon listening to Grand Funk Railroad (GFR). I zeroed in on their “Mark, Don & Mel” double best-of album (which came with a large fold-out poster).

Grand Funk Railroad is an American hard-punching rock band that came out of Flint, Michigan in 1969 – comprising Mark Farner (vocals, guitar, keyboards and harmonica), Don Brewer (drums, vocals) and Mel Schacher (bass).

As I would tell my school cohorts, I didn’t realise three people can make so much loud noise. Later I would discover the likes of Jimi Hendrix Experience, Cream, ZZ Top, Rush, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Nirvana and Police.

My favourite GFR hit songs in the 70’s include “I’m Your Captain (Closer To Home)”, “Inside Looking Out” (a cover of the Animals song), “Footstompin’ Music”, “Paranoid” (not Black Sabbath song, GFR song earlier by a year), “Feeling Alright” (a cover of Dave Mason song), “Are You Ready”, “We’re An American Band”, “The Loco-Motion” (a cover of the Little Eva’s song), “Walk Like A Man” and “Shinin’ On”.

As a young kid who scrutinised album covers with awesome designs, I’m always amazed at the high quality of GFR albums –

The “Shinin’ On” album had 3-D glasses so that when you look at the album, the images would pop-up.

The “E Pluribus Funk” album was a circular metallic shiny shaped coin, like an actual gigantic coin.

The “Mark, Don & Mel” best-off album come with a large glorious fold-out poster.

The “We’re An American Band” cover was in pure shiny gold finish.

In 1972, the trio added keyboardist Craig Frost to make their sound fuller, from that of a raw garage rock and roll roots band to a more pop-rock oriented sound. The band even enjoyed the legendary likes of Frank Zappa and Todd Rundgren producing their albums. Somehow, I always gravitated to their early trio garage band albums.

In the age of CDs, I steadily acquired ALL the Grand Funk Railroad albums that I can find.

In gathering up my GFR CDs for this pix, I’m pleasantly amazed and amused that I have a total of 17 CD albums (above image).

In addition to their studio albums (especially up till “Shinin’ On” album), I also love listening to their live albums. They are a great audience-captivating live band.

My treasured GFR sticker on my Apple iMac (above image).