[An early picture of Don playing drums]


It all started back in the mid-60s when a popular Detroit, MI disc jockey by the name of Terry Knight was checking out a local band called The Jazz Masters. Terry enjoyed the band so much that he asked if he could join them. The band agreed and, playing on Terry's large radio show following, they renamed themselves Terry Knight and the Pack with Terry acting as front man and lead vocalist. The drummer in the band was Don Brewer.

The Pack was playing around Detroit at a time that the "motor city" was fairly well known for its ability to produce musical talent. Several name musical acts came out of the Detroit music scene at that time. Terry Knight and the Pack eventually developed a large local following and started doing some recording that also found significant local success. The Vietnam war was escalating at the same time and the Pack's guitar player (Kurt Johnson) was drafted. Mark Farner was then "drafted" to join the band on lead guitar.

The Pack lasted for several years in and around Detroit. And, even though their large local following had them in the recording studio several times, they couldn't quite make it into the Top-40 national music scene. Toward the end of the band's career, Craig Frost replaced the Pack's keyboard player but, in 1968, the band fell on hard times and broke up.

[An early picture of Mark playing guitar]


Mark and Don stayed together for a while to do some recording but found themselves wanting to do something a little different. They moved back to their home town of Flint, MI -- a smaller industrial town with several large factories just up the road from Detroit -- and recruited Mel Schacher (formerly with the group ? and the Mysterians) to play bass. It was here, in Flint, MI, that the trio started putting together a different sound -- a powerful, bluesy sort of music that had a strong and funky beat. In looking for a name that fit their new style of music, Mark, Don, and Mel had to look no further than their home state for a state-wide landmark called The Grand Trunk Railroad. Since their music had a funky quality to it, the Trunk was changed to Funk and a legend was born ...

Grand Funk Railroad.

Terry Knight signed on as the band's manager and took out a $500 loan to get the band into the studio for a demo tape. Then, Grand Funk hit the festival circuit starting with their incredibly powerful performance at the 1969 Atlanta Pop Festival. The demo, combined with the growing demand from their new and vocal fans, landed the band a contract with Capitol Records before the end of 1969. The demand for Grand Funk's music was so great that Capitol had to rush the release of their first album.

[An early picture of Mel playing bass]
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