Rhino 39 was among the wave of punk bands originating in the Los Angeles, California area in the late 1970s. The band was notable for recording an early hardcore punk single ("Xerox"/"No Compromise") on the Dangerhouse label. Members Mark R. Malone (bass), Larry Parrot (guitar), Tim Carhart (drums) were with the band throughout its tenure. Original singer Dave Bratton (also known by his stage name, Dave Dacron) died in an auto accident in April, 1980, after which his younger brother Joel Bratton took on the role of vocalist and sang on their self-titled LP. Later Jason Scharback took over as vocalist. Rhino 39 was known for its good musicianship and anger-free, light-hearted showmanship. Rhino 39 disbanded in the mid-1990s.
Rhino 39's Millikan High School classmate, Jack Grisham, the vocalist for the punk band T.S.O.L. (True Sounds of Liberty) was inspired in part to start his own band when Rhino 39 performed at a Winter party he held in the late 1970s — the flyer touted Rhino as "dead band". After finding success in later years, Grisham and T.S.O.L. often tapped Rhino 39 as their supporting act.