Oh, Grand Funk, how misunderstood, how maligned! Critics, even those that lived in your Detroit town, called you ham-fisted fools proffering mindless boogie music for shirtless rock festival fools who couldn't tell Dylan from Ochs.
But yes, that was the point, and what's so wrong, anyway? Some bands need to speak to the inner dunderhead in all of us, the voice inside that demands to dance to over-amped blooze-and-booze guitar rock that has lots of chest hair on it and addresses the ecology, and love, people! And the war, brothers and sisters! And, you know, important stuff like that.
All of which is prelude to the fact that I pulled out a bunch of the CD reissues that came out a few years ago, and Shitgodamn, they sounded great! Grand Funk were kinda dumb, but I love these bands that knew exactly who they were and what they were trying to accomplish, and never really stepped outside of those lines. Of course, Grand Funk re-invented itself as a Top 40 band in the latter part of their career - quite deftly, too ("Bad Time," "We're an American Band" - what's not to love here?) So they were in fact more versatile than critics gave them credit for.
Sad part: Trolling the web to find out "where they are now," I see that there's some bogus Grand Funk band touring around with drummer Don Brewer but not its leader-singer-songwriter-guitarist Mark Farner, who is touring with his own band. Kids, can't we all just get along? People let's stop the war!