Mark Farner, one of the founders of Grand Funk Railroad, recently spoke about his displeasure with the 1960s British Invasion. He wasn’t alone in his feelings; his friend, the iconic Janis Joplin, felt similarly.
During an interview with Rock History Music, Farner elaborated on why he wasn’t a fan of British bands like Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones. The crux of his grievance? They sang in American English. Joplin shared this perspective, he said:
“We once talked about it, and she expressed her frustration by smearing chocolate all over the helicopter seats reserved for the Rolling Stones. ‘They might call it a British invasion, but they’re singing in our language because they know we’re the free ones. They were born under a crown; to me, they’re just pretenders!’ I remember agreeing wholeheartedly with her.”
Farner laughed as he recollected Joplin’s mischievous act: “She covered the fancy helicopter seats with chocolate, the same helicopter with interiors that felt like a deluxe RV. And to think Mick [Jagger] used to wear those white satin pants! And in Florida’s heat? That chocolate was bound to melt. They must’ve had quite the surprise awaiting them.”
Farner further pointed out that imitation is often seen as a compliment. However, he cautioned:
“Being flattered isn’t the intent of those imitating. It’s when people start believing the imitation; that’s when it becomes misleading… You must remember who you truly are and always be grateful.”