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Todd Rundgren Remembers Grand Funk

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Grand Funk Railroad photo by Michael Ochs Archives and Getty Images
Photo: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Revered producer-artist Todd Rundgren, who’s about to resume his extensive An Evening With… tour of North America, has been reminiscing about his days producing 1970s rock heavyweights Grand Funk Railroad.

Rundgren has been as busy as ever of late, with two 2015 album releases, the solo Global and the collaborative Runddans. After a break for the holidays, his current tour resumes at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills, California, on Wednesday (6 January), with dates booked all the way to 19 February.

Meanwhile, West Michigan entertainment guide Revue has previewed Todd’s upcoming show at the Kalamazoo State Theatre on 29 January with a new interview in which he comments on his days of producing two of the biggest albums in the Grand Funk canon, 1973’s We’re An American Band and Shinin’ On the following year.

The Beatles - Now And Then
The Beatles - Now And Then
The Beatles - Now And Then

Writer Steve Miller preempts Rundgren’s comments with some memories from Grand Funk drummer Don Brewer, who says that the producer came to Flint, Michigan to meet the band early in 1973. “He stayed at my apartment, the Knollwood Apartments in Grand Blanc,” Brewer says.

“We’d pull into a 7-Eleven to get some milk or something and he’d come in with me. I had the big Afro and he had the multi-colored hair. We’d walk into these places and jaws would just drop to the floor.”

For his part, Rundgren remembers: “I went to Michigan to meet with the band and listen to the material before I committed to doing the record. I was impressed with how self-aware they were. They knew where they were and what they had to do to get where they wanted to be. A lot of people thought they were a jam band before that. But they weren’t a bunch of stoners.”

Explore our dedicated Grand Funk Railroad Artist Page


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  1. Don Deas

    January 4, 2016 at 11:25 pm

    I have all their l.p.’s but never got to see them. Being in the military at the time of We’re an American Band I didn’t get to see them, Damn.

  2. Don

    January 5, 2016 at 2:45 am

    You can still catch Mark Farner every October at the Casino in Petosky. This is a 1970s GFR show. We go every year. Mark also plays various venues throughout the year. Check out his website for tour dates.

  3. Dave Dolezal

    January 6, 2016 at 12:15 am

    Grand most favorite time of all time. What I wouldn’t do to meet Mark Farner, shake his hand and thank him!

  4. Bruce

    February 12, 2016 at 1:30 am

    I was fortunate enough to meet Mark in Louisville ky and get his autograph. He was not with his original band members, but I told the band just who they were playing with in case they didn’t get the memo!

  5. Penni

    February 21, 2016 at 6:10 pm

    I saw GFR in Joplin, MO in 2013. Still putting on a great concert. It was like a time machine, and carried me back to memories of long ago and far away..

  6. John

    February 22, 2016 at 3:09 am

    They will never get into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with Jan Wenner being aleft wing looney and Mark Farner a born again christian. Too bad, they were one of the biggestacts of the 70’s and deserve to be there.

  7. TnT

    June 17, 2016 at 6:58 pm

    First time I saw them was at the Buddakon in Tokyo in 1975. Love Grand Funk Railroad!

  8. Wayne burnett

    June 17, 2016 at 7:34 pm

    What a band , id love to thank them for the timeless music that has given me so much thank you gfr

  9. Warren

    June 18, 2016 at 2:30 am


  10. Cindy

    June 23, 2016 at 2:49 am

    So what about Todd? He’s helped so many artist, producer, song writer , his own amazing career..

    Just One Victory

  11. Bill Lynn

    February 8, 2018 at 7:26 pm

    Saw them (very low on the bill) in Detroit when their first album “On Time” was just released and they hadn’t yet played the Atlanta International Pop Festival II that broke them nationally in 1970.

  12. Peter Egley, Jr.

    September 18, 2022 at 1:54 am

    Keyboardist Craig Frost, of course, was a member of Grand Funk when Todd Rundgren produced them. To me, Frost is Grand Funk’s Edward Van Halen as a musician. I really love the 1972-76 lineup that included Craig Frost. He also was a member of the band Flint that he, Mel Schacher, and Don Brewer formed and recorded a debut album that both Rundgren and Frank Zappa also contributed to.

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The Beatles Red and Blue Boxsets
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