We're an American Band

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For the title song, see We're an American Band (song). For the unrelated Yo La Tengo song, see I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One.
We're An American Band
Studio album by Grand Funk Railroad
Released July 15, 1973 (1973-07-15)[1]
Recorded June 12–15, 1973 at Criteria Studios in Miami, Florida
Genre Hard rock
Length 39:48
Label Capitol
Producer Todd Rundgren
Grand Funk Railroad chronology
Phoenix
(1972)
We're An American Band
(1973)
Shinin' On
(1974)
Singles from We're An American Band
  1. "We're an American Band"
    Released: July 2, 1973 (1973-07-02)[2]
  2. "Walk Like a Man"
    Released: October 29, 1973 (1973-10-29)[2]
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[3]
Robert Christgau B−[4]

We're An American Band is the seventh studio album by American hard rock band Grand Funk Railroad, credited as Grand Funk. The album was released by Capitol Records on July 15, 1973 (see 1973 in music) and was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America a little over a month after its release.[1] Two singles were released from the album. The first single, "We're an American Band", was released on July 2, 1973 and the second, "Walk Like a Man", was released on October 29, 1973.[2] Both singles were sung by drummer Don Brewer.

The album cover was originally covered in gold-colored foil on the outside, and the initial run of pressings were pressed in clear, dark-yellow vinyl. The album has been reissued many times and is currently available in the Compact Disc format. A Quadraphonic mix of the album was available in the Quadraphonic 8-Track cartridge format.

The album is #200 of the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM) Definitive 200 albums of all time.

Recording, production, artwork, and packaging[edit]

We're an American Band was the group's first collaboration with producer/engineer Todd Rundgren. Rundgren and the band recorded the album at Criteria Studios in Miami, Florida on June 13–15, 1973. Rundgren would go on to produce the band's next album, Shinin' On, before the band switched to Jimmy Ienner.

The album's original issue, as well as of the "We're an American Band" single, was on translucent yellow vinyl, symbolic of a "Gold record." The album labels, above the side numbers, instructed listeners to play "at full volume." It included four stickers (two blue, and two red) with the Grand Funk "Pointing Finger" logo. Emphasizing the shortening of the group's name, the word "Railroad" does not appear anywhere on the album sleeve, liner, or vinyl record, except as the title of the first song on side two of the album.

Reception[edit]

Upon the album's release, We're an American Band became the band's best received album by critics, so far. Robert Christgau gave the album a B-, his highest rating for a Grand Funk Railroad album, although Shinin' On and Grand Funk Hits would both receive higher ratings.[4] A modern review of the album by William Ruhlmann for Allmusic stated that the album was a departure from the band's usual material, which was mostly due to Todd Rundgren's production and Don Brewer's increase in lead vocal work. Ruhlmann also said that the album sounded more professional than their previous ones.[3]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "We're an American Band" (Don Brewer) – 3:27
  2. "Stop Lookin' Back" (Brewer, Mark Farner) – 4:52
  3. "Creepin'" (Farner) – 7:02
  4. "Black Licorice" (Brewer, Farner) – 4:45
  5. "The Railroad" (Farner) – 6:12
  6. "Ain't Got Nobody" (Brewer, Farner) – 4:26
  7. "Walk Like a Man" (Brewer, Farner) – 4:05
  8. "Loneliest Rider" (Farner) – 5:17

2002 reissue bonus tracks:

  1. "Hooray" (Brewer, Farner) – 4:05
  2. "The End" (Brewer, Farner) – 4:11
  3. "Stop Lookin' Back (Acoustic Mix)" (Brewer, Farner) – 3:04
  4. "We're an American Band [2002 Remix]" (Brewer) – 3:32

Personnel[edit]

Per sleeve notes[5]

Production[edit]

Per sleeve notes[5]

Charts[edit]

Chart (1973) Peak
position
Canadian Top Albums[6] 4
German Albums[7] 46
Norwegian Top 40 Albums[8] 12
US Billboard 200[9] 2

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Gold & Platinum Searchable Database" (PHP). Recording Industry Association of America.  Search for "Heartbreakers" to see results.
  2. ^ a b c Tedds, David K. (2006). Greatest Hits (CD liner). Grand Funk Railroad. Hollywood, California, United States: Capitol Records. 509992-34915-26. 
  3. ^ a b Ruhlmann, William. "Review: We're an American Band by Grand Funk Railroad". Allmusic. United States: Rovi Corporation. Retrieved July 8, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b Christgau, Robert. "Grand Funk (Extended): Consumer Guide Reviews" (PHP). Robert Christgau. Retrieved July 8, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b We're An American Band (vinyl sleeve). Grand Funk Railroad. Capitol Records. 1973. inner left sleeve. 
  6. ^ "100 Albums" (PHP). RPM 20 (10): p. 10. October 20, 1973. ISSN 0315-5994. Retrieved July 8, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Album – Grand Funk, We Are an American Band" (ASP). Media Control Charts (in German). Retrieved July 8, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Grand Funk – We Are an American Band (Album)" (ASP). Norwegian Charts. Hung Medien. Retrieved July 8, 2011. 
  9. ^ "Grand Funk Railroad: Charts & Awards – Billboard Albums". Allmusic. United States: Rovi Corporation. Retrieved July 8, 2011.