James Gang: “Funk 49”

ALBUM: Rides Again

YEAR: 1970

WRITERS: Jim Fox, Dale Peters and Joe Walsh

Peaked at number-59 on the Billboard Hot 100.

That the first James Gang album contains a song titled “Funk 48” is indisputable. How it got that title, we may never know. But we do know how “Funk 49” got its title. Frontman Joe Walsh explains it — sort of. “We’re dumb stupid guys from Cleveland and everybody thought we knew somethin’. And we called it ‘Funk 48’ on Yer Album, which was the first album, and the intellectual content of ‘Funk 49’ isn’t your basic PhD thesis. And I said, ‘What do we call this? I don’t know. I don’t even know it’s a song, but we’ve recorded it.’ They said, ‘Well, ‘Funk 49.’ And everybody wants to know the real deep meaning of stuff like that.”

10 years ago today (August 10th, 2006), the reunited James Gang kicked off its first U.S. tour in 35 years in Sturgis, South Dakota.


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