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Greta Van Fleet is an American rock band from Frankenmuth, Michigan, formed in 2012. It consists of vocalist Josh Kiszka, guitarist Jake Kiszka, bassist Sam Kiszka, and drummer Danny Wagner. They were signed to Lava Records in March 2017[2] and a month later the band released their debut studio EP, Black Smoke Rising. Their debut single, "Highway Tune", topped the Billboard US Mainstream Rock and Active Rock charts in September 2017 for four weeks in a row.[3] Their second EP, From the Fires, containing the four songs from Black Smoke Rising and four new songs, was released on November 10, 2017, alongside a second single, "Safari Song".

Greta Van Fleet
Greta Van Fleet.jpg
The band onstage at the Red River Valley Fair, West Fargo, North Dakota, 2017 (L–R: Sam Kiszka, Josh Kiszka, Jake Kiszka, Danny Wagner)
Background information
OriginFrankenmuth, Michigan, US[1]
Genres
Years active2012–present
Labels
WebsiteOfficial website
Members
  • Josh Kiszka
  • Jake Kiszka
  • Sam Kiszka
  • Danny Wagner
Past members
  • Kyle Hauck

Their debut full length studio album, Anthem of the Peaceful Army, was released on October 19, 2018 and topped the Billboard Rock Album charts in the first week after its release, with the album's first single, "When the Curtain Falls", being released ahead of it in July 2018 and eventually becoming the band's third number one US single on the Billboard Mainstream Rock charts.[4][5][6] Anthem of the Peaceful Army also launched atop the Billboard Hard Rock charts and reached the number one spot on the Billboard Top Album Sales charts in the first week after its release.[7][8]

In December 2018, the band was nominated for four Grammy Awards, including Best New Artist, Best Rock Performance for “Highway Tune”, Best Rock Song for “Black Smoke Rising" and Best Rock Album for From the Fires.[9][10]

Contents

HistoryEdit

Formation and early years (2012–2015)Edit

The band was formed in Frankenmuth, Michigan, in 2012 by brothers Josh Kiszka, Sam Kiszka, and Jake Kiszka, plus Kyle Hauck.[11] The band name was created when one of its members heard a relative mention Gretna Van Fleet, a resident of Frankenmuth; their use of the variation on her name was done with her (subsequent) blessing.[12][13] At the time Hauck was the drummer, the band recorded two songs: "Cloud Train" and "Standing On". Hauck left the band in October 2013 and was replaced as drummer by Danny Wagner the same year. The initial guitar riff for "Highway Tune" was cited by guitarist Jake Kiszka as being written as early back as 2010[14], but the song, in its final form, was only recorded and released as a single on March 31, 2017[15][16] after Danny Wagner had become the band's new drummer. On February 28, 2014, a live EP was recorded in one take and subsequently released on June 7, 2014.[17] In 2014, their song "Standing On" was featured in 2014 Chevy Equinox advertisements in the Detroit area.[18]

 
Danny Wagner playing at Rock im Park, Nuremberg, Germany, 2 Jun 2018. Photo by rawpic.

"Standing On" is one of several songs, along with "By the Riverside", "Cloud Train", "Down to the River", "Motown Funk No. 4", "Sing in the Rain", "Thunder Stomp", and "Written in Gold", that were previously released but are currently unavailable.[19][20][21][22][23]

Black Smoke Rising and From the Fires (2016–2017)Edit

On January 17, 2016, the song "Highway Tune" was featured as a live performance by the band on the Showtime show Shameless.[24] On March 31, 2017 the final recorded version of "Highway Tune" was released on iTunes as the band's first official single. On April 2, 2017, iTunes started streaming the song "Highway Tune".[25] On April 18, 2017, the music video for the song "Highway Tune" was released exclusively on Loudwire.[26] The band's debut EP titled Black Smoke Rising was released April 21, 2017. On April 21, 2017, Apple Music named Greta Van Fleet new artist of the week.[27] The band toured with The Struts during May 2017.[28][29]

In October 2017, the band won Best New Artist at the Loudwire Music Awards.[30] The band released an eight-song double EP titled From the Fires on November 10, 2017. In addition to the four tracks from Black Smoke Rising, From the Fires features the new recordings "Edge of Darkness" and "Talk on the Street", as well as covers of Sam Cooke's "A Change Is Gonna Come" and Fairport Convention's "Meet on the Ledge". The four new tracks were recorded in September 2017 at Rustbelt Studios in Royal Oak, Michigan and produced by Al Sutton and Marlon Young, the same duo that produced Black Smoke Rising.[31] The band also released "Safari Song" as a single in October 2017.[32]

Greta Van Fleet opened for fellow Michigan native Bob Seger at the Dow Event Center in Saginaw, Michigan (just minutes from their hometown) on September 7.[33] In November 2017, the band announced that they would begin recording their first full-length studio album shortly after the release of From the Fires, and that they expected its release by mid-2018.[34]

Anthem of the Peaceful Army (2018–present)Edit

The group performed at Elton John's Academy Award Party on March 4, 2018 at the host's personal request. John joined Greta Van Fleet onstage for his "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" and their "You're the One".[35] After the set Elton John recommended the band get more dramatic and flamboyant with their performance and wardrobe.[36]

On July 26, 2018, the band made their TV debut on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon performing "When the Curtain Falls", the first single off of their upcoming debut album.[37]

Their debut album, Anthem of the Peaceful Army, was released on 19 October 2018.[38] According to Josh Kiszka, the name of the album "Anthem of the Peaceful Army" was taken from the title of a poem.[39] The album was the top selling album in its debut week in the US, selling 80,000 copies. Factoring in album equivalent units, it debuted at number three on the Billboard 200.[40] In December 2018, the band was nominated for four Grammy Awards, including Best New Artist, Best Rock Performance for “Highway Tune”, Best Rock Song for “Black Smoke Rising" and Best Rock Album for From the Fires.[9][10]

Music and influencesEdit

 
Josh Kiszka performing at the Mercury Lounge on August 24, 2017.

Greta Van Fleet's music has been categorized as hard rock and blues rock.[41] Although all four members bonded over blues, each does have his own musical tastes: Jake gravitates towards rock and roll, Sam likes jazz and Josh likes world music.[42] Jake stated in an interview, "that all three brothers had listened to their parents vinyls which included blues and folk music".[43] Sam stated that, "It's not like we set out to be a rock and roll band, it's just that sound that comes out [when] we get together and play."[41] Songwriting is done by the band as a whole after one of the four members finds the concept for a song.[44] Danny stated that a lot of their songs are first written in a "folk set up" before evolving into something else.[41]

Greta Van Fleet are often compared to Led Zeppelin.[45] Jake related that he "... went through a year of really intensely studying what [Jimmy] Page did to the point I knew how he thought.", but he has studied other classic rock guitarists in a similar manner, specifically mentioning Pete Townshend.[46] Likewise, on his voice being compared to Robert Plant's, Josh said that Plant has certainly been an influence, "though it's not what I was going for."[47] Stating that he did not even know who Led Zeppelin was until high school, he explained that his singing style came out naturally one day while struggling to be heard over the rest of the band.[46] In a March 2018 interview, Plant cited Greta Van Fleet as one of his favorite up-and-coming bands, saying "they are Led Zeppelin I" and describing Josh as "a beautiful little singer."[48]

Some of Jake's guitar influences include John Lee Hooker, Elmore James, Bert Jansch, Eric Clapton and Keith Richards.[49] Some of the drummers that inspired Danny are Carmine Appice, John Bonham, Mitch Mitchell and Michael Shrieve.[49] Sam's favorite bass player is Motown session bassist James Jamerson.[50] Josh Kiszka the singer has imitated the movements and onstage antics of Joe Cocker.[51]

MembersEdit

CurrentEdit

  • Josh Kiszka – lead vocals, tambourine, acoustic guitar (2012–present)
  • Jake Kiszka – guitars, backing vocals (2012–present)
  • Sam Kiszka – bass guitar, acoustic guitar, keyboards, organ, piano, backing vocals (2012–present)
  • Danny Wagner – drums, acoustic guitar, backing vocals (2013–present)[52]

FormerEdit

  • Kyle Hauck – drums (2012–2013)[53][54]

DiscographyEdit

Awards and nominationsEdit

Loudwire Music Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2017 Greta Van Fleet Best New Artist Won[55]

Grammy Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2019 Greta Van Fleet Best New Artist Pending
"Highway Tune" Best Rock Performance Pending
"Black Smoke Rising" Best Rock Song Pending
From the Fires Best Rock Album Pending

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Greta Van Fleet's Profile – Musicpage". Musicpage.com. Retrieved September 22, 2017.
  2. ^ "Chartbreaker: Greta Van Fleet on Led Zeppelin's Influence and 'Living In the Resurgence of Rock'". Billboard. November 10, 2017. Retrieved January 21, 2018.
  3. ^ "GRETA VAN FLEET's 'Highway Tune' Claims #1 Spot At U.S. Active And Mainstream Rock Radio". Blabbermouth.net. September 6, 2017. Retrieved September 22, 2017.
  4. ^ "Greta Van Fleet, Disturbed Dominate Rock Album Charts". Billboard. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  5. ^ SmithSeptember 6, Rob; 2018. "Greta Van Fleet Announce Debut LP, 'Anthem of the Peaceful Army'". Ultimate Classic Rock. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  6. ^ "Greta Van Fleet Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved November 6, 2018.
  7. ^ "Hard Rock Music: Top Hard Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  8. ^ "Top Album Sales : Page 1". Billboard. Retrieved November 8, 2018.
  9. ^ a b "Greta Van Fleet earns 4 Grammy nominations including Best New Artist". mlive.com. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  10. ^ a b "61st Annual GRAMMY Awards". GRAMMY.com. 2018-12-06. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  11. ^ White, Sue (June 6, 2014). "Here's the lowdown on Frankenmuth band Greta Van Fleet". Mlive.com. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
  12. ^ Frazier, Kelly (April 28, 2017). "Rock Band 'Greta Van Fleet' Call Frankenmuth, Michigan Their Home and Unleash a Bluesy Wonderland with New EP "Black Smoke Rising"". Huff Post. Archived from the original on April 29, 2017. Retrieved April 28, 2017.
  13. ^ Greta Van Fleet Talk Classic Rock Influences, the Woman Behind the Band Name, More (Q1043 New York interview, published to YouTube on December 18, 2017)
  14. ^ "Greta Van Fleet's Jake Kiszka Talks 'Black Smoke Rising' EP + More". Loudwire. Retrieved November 6, 2018.
  15. ^ Highway Tune, retrieved November 6, 2018
  16. ^ "The future of rock and roll is here with Greta Van Fleet". AXS. Retrieved November 6, 2018.
  17. ^ {{cite web|url=http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/gretavanfleet/updates/33686%7Ctitle=The Greta Van Fleet Live Video is Posted!|date=March 24, 2014|website=Pledgemusic.com|accessdate=April 27,
  18. ^ Boyer, Cara (March 19, 2014). "Get Lost in the Raw & Eclectic Sounds of Greta Van Fleet". Chevydetroit.com. Archived from the original on April 27, 2017. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
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  20. ^ "North Star Media Greta Van Fleet profile". North Star Media. Archived from the original on December 20, 2014. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
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  22. ^ Robert "Bo", White (January 9, 2014). "Greta Van Fleet: Gemutlichkeit & Pursuit of the Right Sound". Newreviewsite.com. Archived from the original on February 27, 2014. Retrieved April 29, 2017.
  23. ^ "Greta Van Fleet". Facebook.com. Retrieved September 22, 2017.
  24. ^ Shepherd, Jessica. "Showtime's 'Shameless' to feature song by Frankenmuth's Greta Van Fleet". Mlive.com. Saginaw, Michigan. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
  25. ^ "'The Future Of Real Rock' Greta Van Fleet Stream New Song ::Greta Van Fleet News ::antiMusic.com". Antimusic.com. Retrieved September 22, 2017.
  26. ^ Childers, Chad (April 18, 2017). "Greta Van Fleet, Highway Tune Exclusive Video Premiere". Loudwire.com. Archived from the original on April 26, 2017. Retrieved April 26, 2017.
  27. ^ "What a thrill to be @AppleMusic's #NewArtistOfTheWeek!". Twitter.com. April 21, 2017. Archived from the original on April 27, 2017. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
  28. ^ Ralph, Caitlyn (April 1, 2017). "10 new songs we bet you didn't catch this week". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on April 29, 2017. Retrieved April 29, 2017.
  29. ^ Simpson-Mersha, Isis (May 21, 2017). "Frankenmuth's Greta Van Fleet talks record deal, tour and graduation". Mlive.com. Frankenmuth, Michigan. Archived from the original on May 22, 2017. Retrieved May 22, 2017.
  30. ^ "Greta Van Fleet Win Best New Artist – 2017 Loudwire Music Awards". Loudwire. Retrieved April 17, 2018.
  31. ^ CHRISTOPHER, MICHAEL (October 25, 2017). "GRETA VAN FLEET ANNOUNCE DOUBLE EP 'FROM THE FIRES/". Loudwire.com. Retrieved October 25, 2017.
  32. ^ "Greta Van Fleet battles being "overly creative" with "Safari Song" – Music News – ABC News Radio". ABC News Radio. Retrieved January 19, 2018.
  33. ^ "Greta Van Fleet makes hot rock out of Frankenmuth". The Oakland Press. September 28, 2017. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  34. ^ "Meet Alice Cooper–Approved Kids Bringing Riff Rock Back on the Charts". Revolvermag.com. November 13, 2017. Retrieved January 19, 2018.
  35. ^ "Watch Greta Van Fleet Jam With Elton John". Loudwire. March 5, 2018. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  36. ^ "Greta Van Fleet's Jake Kiszka Reveals the Advice Elton John Gave". Loudwire.com. Retrieved October 19, 2018.
  37. ^ "Greta Van Fleet Get Standing Ovation For Blistering 'Tonight Show' Debut With 'When the Curtain Falls': Watch". Billboard.com. Retrieved August 7, 2018.
  38. ^ "The Metal Hammer 11: The best new music in rock and metal". Loudersound.com. Retrieved October 19, 2018.
  39. ^ Amazon Music, Greta Van Fleet: The Today in Music Interview, retrieved 2018-12-15
  40. ^ Billboard. Missing or empty |title= (help); Missing or empty |url= (help); |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  41. ^ a b c "[Interview] Greta Van Fleet Shed Light On Their Surprise Success And Life On The Road". Bullet Music. September 3, 2017. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  42. ^ "GRETA VAN FLEET Vocalist On LED ZEPPELIN Comparisons: 'We'll Take It'". Blabbermouth.net. September 16, 2017. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  43. ^ 102.1 the Edge, Greta Van Fleet's Jake Kiszka on their childhood upbringing and the renaissance of guitar rock, retrieved 2018-12-15
  44. ^ "Greta Van Fleet Interview: Danny Wagner". Blues Rock Review. October 27, 2017. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  45. ^ "Interview ~ Sam Kiszka of Greta Van Fleet". I'm Music Magazine. May 9, 2017. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  46. ^ a b "Greta Van Fleet's Misty Mountain Revival". Rolling Stone. January 9, 2018. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  47. ^ "Greta Van Fleet Bring Rock Back to the Future on Debut EP, Talk Influences & Brotherly Love". Billboard. August 23, 2017. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  48. ^ "Robert Plant on Greta Van Fleet: 'They are Led Zeppelin I'". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved April 3, 2018.
  49. ^ a b "INTERVIEW: Jake Kiszka and Danny Wagner of Greta Van Fleet". Go Venue Magazine. December 8, 2017. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  50. ^ "Greta Van Fleet Talks Bob Dylan, 'Highway Tune' + More – Interview". Audio Ink Radio. November 16, 2018. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  51. ^ Two Doods Reviews, Greta Van Fleet Called Out Over Led Zeppelin Likeness In Interview, retrieved 2018-12-15
  52. ^ Ywain Evans, Morgan (April 26, 2017). "Interview: Greta Van Fleets Black Smoke Rising might just make you believe". Metalriot.com. Archived from the original on April 27, 2017. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
  53. ^ "Greta Van Fleet". Facebook.com. Retrieved September 22, 2017.
  54. ^ "A BAND FOUNDED BY JAKE KISZKA, JOSH M. KISZKA, KYLE HAUCK, AND SAM KISZKA!". Facebook.com. August 7, 2012. Retrieved April 29, 2017.
  55. ^ "Greta Van Fleet Win Best New Artist – 2017 Loudwire Music Awards". Loudwire.com. Retrieved January 19, 2018.

External linksEdit