Slim Jim Phantom

Mark Farner

former lead singer of Grand Funk Railroad

Mark Farner is the songwriter, the guitarist and the unmistakable voice that powered Grand Funk Railroad to 12 platinum and 15 gold albums.

A true rock ‘n roll legend, Mark Farner found fame and success at 20 years of age as the leader of one of America’s biggest bands, Grand Funk Railroad.  The band recorded 17 albums with total sales of more than 30 million records, and toured the world, which isn’t bad for a guy who only had three formal guitar lessons.

Putting various bands together, Mark played the usual dates a teenage band would play – high school dances, VFW halls, wedding receptions and the like.  Upon leaving high school, Mark turned professional, working with Terry Knight and the Pack, The Bossmen (with Dick Wagner), back to Terry Knight and the Pack, then just the Pack (this time with no Terry Knight, but with drummer Don Brewer).

In 1969, Mel Schacher, who had been a member of Question Mark and the Mysterians, was invited to join Mark and Don, and Grand Funk Railroad – one of the first American power trios – was born.

Then came the Atlanta International Pop Festival in July 1969.  The only unsigned act on the show, Grand Funk Railroad played before 180,000 people in 110-degree heat and the acclaim was instantaneous.  Following their Atlanta appearance, the band was signed by Capitol Records and their first album On Time, was recorded and released within four months.

The saga of Grand Funk Railroad is well documented.  The albums included such titles as Grand Funk Railroad, Survival, Live Album, Closer To Home, E Pluribus Funk, Phoenix, Good Singin’ Good Playin’, Caught In The Act and All The Girls In The World Beware, among others.  The hit singles included “I’m Your Captain (Closer To Home),” “Foot-Stompin’ Music,” “Loco-motion,” “Mean Mistreater,” “Bad Time” and “Some Kind Of Wonderful,” plus many more.  In 1971 they set the attendance record at New York’s Shea Stadium for a concert, surpassing the record set by The Beatles in 1966, and a record that still stands today, some 30 years later.

In early 1977, Grand Funk Railroad called it quits, and after taking a year or so off, Mark Farner signed a solo deal with Atlantic Records and issued two critically acclaimed albums: Mark Farner and No Frills.

In 1981, a reunited Grand Funk recorded a new album, Grand Funk Lives for Full Moon/Warner Bros. Records, and a second album, What’s Funk, shipped in 1982.

In 1995, Mark toured with Ringo Starr’s All-Star Band with Ringo introducing him night after night as “Mr. Grand Funk, Mark Farner!”  He then toured with The Northwest Airlines All-Stars in 1996 before reuniting with Don Brewer and Mel Schacher to record their Bosnia album for Capitol-EMI.  Grand Funk Railroad toured in 1996, 1997 and 1998 and was named to Pollstar’s Top 100 Tours of 1998.  VH-1’s “Behind The Music” on Grand Funk Railroad aired throughout 1999, as well as the Grand Funk Railroad Anthology, released on Capitol Records in May 1999.

— Long revered and acknowledged as a primary force in popularizing the American power trio, Mark Farner reemerges with both guns blazing and perhaps his most defining album of his solo career, For The People.
Rock icon Mark Farner’s latest album portrays a return to his roots--the roots of American rock.  Laden with powerhouse tracks, For The People harkens back to the artist’s definitive style that has been embraced by tens-of-millions of fans worldwide. The inimitable knack for a well written song, perfectly placed power-chord, hooky melody line, blistering guitar solo and, of course, an ever-soulful vocal makes this album perhaps Farner’s high-water mark as a solo artist.  “For The People” leads off the album with a political message that doses the listener with a driving guitar that seamlessly weaves itself into the lyric creating a perfectly meshed pop track.  “Nadean” follows suit and has been likened to Farner’s “Bad Time To Be In Love,” often cited as a pure pop classic.   “You’re My Girl” again, slams into the realm of powerhouse rock with Farner’s take-charge rock attitude in full bloom.  “Where Do We Go From Here” poses powerful political questions and reminds fans that Mark Farner has many layers to this persona that go way beyond Mark Farner, Rock Star.  Long-time fans will readily recognize his message and new listeners will perhaps be enlightened by his inspired point of view.  No matter how you approach this record, For The People has something to say and the artist takes that message on the road live this summer in support of this defining work.

Mark Farner has a rich history that sometimes overshadows his solo work.  This is a syndrome that is common to so many great artists that were vital members of iconic bands, i. e., John Fogerty of Creedence Clearwater Revival.  Ironically both artists emerged simultaneously onto the late-sixties rock scene to great acclaim and Farner and his band mates in Grand Funk Railroad proceeded to blow the roof off the rock world in 1971 by selling out New York’s Shea Stadium faster than The Beatles! With monster hits including: “I’m Your Captain (Closer To Home),” “The Locomotion,” “We’re An American Band,” “Bad Time” and “Mean Mistreater,” Grand Funk Railroad went on set attendance records and record sales throughout the world.  Mark Farner remains in touch with that legion of fans and has truly made and album, For The People.

Mark Farner’s solo tours continue to roar with high-powered energy as rock’s premier guitarist, vocalist and Frontman entertains sold-out audiences around the world.

…Are You Ready?!

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