.38 Special Biography
Southern-Rock band formed in 1975 in Jacksonville, Florida USA and fronted by singer+guitarist Donnie Van Zant, the brother of Lynyrd Skynyrd's Ronnie and Johnny, the original line-up comprised guitarists Don Barnes and Jeff Carlisi, bass player Ken Lyons, drummers Steve Brookins and Jack Grondin.
The group signed a record contract with A&M Records who released their eponymous debut album in 1977 and "Special Delivery" before the year's end; Lyons left the band and was replaced by bassist Larry Junstrom, the new line-up released the 1979's "Rockin' Into The Night" which appeared in U.S. Pop Albums chart; the next year saw the light the group's fourth effort, "Wild-Eyed Southern Boys", it crashed into the top 20 of The U.S. Pop Albums chart spawning three Mainstream Rock top 40 hit singles including the #3 "Hold On Loosely", "Fantasy Girl" and the title-track.
In 1982, 38 Special, issued "Special Forces" that peaked at
#10 on Pop Albums chart and generated the #1 Mainstream Rock hit "Caught
Up In You" one of their most successful single ever, it also ranked
in the top 10 of the U.S. Official Pop chart; the album contained two
more Mainstream Rock top 10 smash singles: "Chain Lightnin'"
and "You Keep Runnin' Away".
The sextet returned only one year later with "Tour De Force", the record hit #22 on The Billboard 200 chart, its single, "If I'd Been The One", topped The Mainstream Rock chart and "Back Where You Belong" entered the top 20 in the same chart.
In 1984 the band with the non-album single written by Bryan
Adams, "Teacher Teacher", continued the series of successful
Mainstream Rock singles reaching the #4. Two years later 38 Special released
"Strength In Numbers" which included "Somebody Like You",
the single hit #6 on Active Rock chart and pushed the album into the top
20 of The Billboard Top 200 list, around the same time, "Four Wheels",
a single taken from the debut album climbed the Mainstream Rock reaching
In early 1987 the band contributed a song to the movie soundtrack of "Revenge Of The Nerds II", the single "Back To Paradise", once again, hit #4 on Mainstream Rock chart and became part of the collection "Flashback: Best Of".
Shortly after the release of "Back To Paradise", Don Barnes
left the band to pursue a solo career and also Brookins left; Danny Chauncey
joined on guitar, Brookins was replaced by keyboard player Max Carl and
38 Special resurfaced in 1988 with "Rock & Roll Strategy"
which featured the ballad "Second Chance", this single peaked
at #6 and #2 respectively on the Billboard's Hot 100 and Mainstream Rock
Tracks charts; the album yielded two more Active Rock top 20 hits: the
title-track and "Little Sheba".
Three years later the band released "Bone Against Steel", their first album for Charisma Records but the record scraped the lower reaches of The Billboard Top 200 chart, its single "The Sound Of Your Voice" gained much attention at Mainstream Rock radio reaching the #2. In the following years Barnes returned to the fold, Bobby Capps replaced Carl and in the summer of 1997 was issued "Resolution", it generated only one Active Rock top 40 single, "Fade To Blue".