Rock royalty John Kay & Steppenwolf still going

John Kay and Steppenwolf, one of the architects of the hard-rock sound from the 1970’s, make a rare appearance at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills on Sept. 10.

In the late 1960’s, Steppenwolf embodied that era’s social, political and philosophical restlessness, building an impressive body of edgy rock ‘n’ roll that retains its emotional resonance more than four decades after the band’s formation.

Their big hits “Born to Be Wild,” “Magic Carpet Ride,” “Rock Me,” and “Monster” still stand amongst Rock’s most beloved anthems. The band’s worldwide record sales exceed 25 million units, with eight gold albums and 12 Billboard Hot 100 singles, of which six were top 40 hits, including three top 10 successes.

Its songs have been licensed for use in approximately 50 motion pictures and an even greater number of television programs. Kay, born Joachim Fritz Krauledat in Germany in 1944, and his fierce determination and never-say-die tenacity, is the reason for the bands remarkable resilience.  He is a driven soul.

Steppenwolf’s self-titled 1968 debut album, recorded in four days, introduced the bands iconoclastic approach, which combined tough, blues-rooted sound, a penchant for topical lyrics and the gritty growl of Kay, whose brooding presence and trademark shades made him one of the era’s most magnetic and identifiable figures.

They soon emerged as one of the few bands of the late ’60’s to successfully straddle the pop-oriented AM mainstream and the hip FM underground, scoring substantial success on both the single and album charts.

The band eventually splintered in the late ’70’s, but in 1980, Kay launched an all-new lineup and called the band John Kay and Steppenwolf.

The rebuilding period had put Kay and company back in touch with a large and loyal fan base – as well as an influx of younger listeners responsive to the bands enduring appeal – that has kept Steppenwolf rolling ever since.

Since then, John Kay and Steppenwolf have released seven albums and maintained a busy international touring schedule that keeps the band on the road for several months per year. The band also hosts Wolf Fest, an annual weekend-long festival that draws fans from around the world – fondly dubbed “the Wolfpack” – to the band’s adopted home in Tennessee.

Be a member of the “pack” at the Saban Theatre to enjoy this classic band.

For more information, visit:  http://sabanconcerts.com/

Photo Caption: John Kay at the Chesapeake Bay Blues Festival on August 4, 2007. Photo by David Podgor courtesy of Wikimedia Commons  

Steven Lieberman
About Steven Lieberman 28 Articles
Steven LIeberman is a veteran sports/arts/entertainment journalist. Lieberman has covered entertainment and professional sports, Including the NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball, for the past 14 years. Among his entertainment work, Lieberman covers concerts, theatre and events.