This article relies largely or entirely on a single source . (September 2012)
|Birth name||Dennis Eugene McCrohan|
|Also known as||Dennis Edmonton|
|Born||21 April 1943|
Oshawa, Ontario, Canada
|Associated acts||Steppenwolf, The Sparrows|
Dennis Edmonton (born Dennis Eugene McCrohan, 21 April 1943), also known by the stage name Mars Bonfire, is a Canadian rock musician and songwriter, best known for writing the hit song "Born to Be Wild" for Steppenwolf.
Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, and developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and later, particularly in the United Kingdom and in the United States. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, a style which drew heavily on the genres of blues, rhythm and blues, and from country music. Rock music also drew strongly on a number of other genres such as electric blues and folk, and incorporated influences from jazz, classical and other musical styles. Musically, rock has centered on the electric guitar, usually as part of a rock group with electric bass, drums, and one or more singers. Usually, rock is song-based music usually with a 4/4 time signature using a verse–chorus form, but the genre has become extremely diverse. Like pop music, lyrics often stress romantic love but also address a wide variety of other themes that are frequently social or political.
"Born to Be Wild" is a song written by Mars Bonfire and first performed by the band Steppenwolf, The song is often invoked in both popular and counter culture to denote a biker appearance or attitude. It is sometimes described as the first heavy metal song, and the second verse lyric "heavy metal thunder" marks the first use of this term in rock music.
Steppenwolf is a Canadian-American rock band, prominent from 1968 to 1972. The group was formed in late 1967 in Los Angeles by lead singer John Kay, keyboardist Goldy McJohn, and drummer Jerry Edmonton. Guitarist Michael Monarch and bass guitarist Rushton Moreve were recruited by notices placed in Los Angeles-area record and musical instrument stores.
Born Dennis Eugene McCrohan, he and his brother Jerry changed their surnames to Edmonton in the early 1960s. The brothers were part of a band called The Sparrows which later evolved into Steppenwolf. Another member of The Sparrows was Bruce Palmer, who later became a member of Buffalo Springfield.
Gerald Michael Edmonton was the drummer for the rock band Steppenwolf.
The Sparrows, also known as Jack London and the Sparrows from 1964 to 1965, was a Canadian blues rock band that existed in the 1960s. Notable for being the first group to break out musician John Kay into the mainstream, The Sparrows later morphed into the popular heavy rock group Steppenwolf.
Bruce Palmer was a Canadian musician best known as the bassist in the seminal American/Canadian folk rock band Buffalo Springfield, who were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.
Bonfire embarked on a solo career while his brother Jerry became the drummer for Steppenwolf. After leaving the band, he often collaborated with Kim Fowley, co-writing and recording on the recordings of Fowley and artists associated with Fowley.
In music, a solo is a piece or a section of a piece played or sung featuring a single performer, who may be performing completely alone or supported by an accompanying instrument such as a piano or organ, a continuo group, or the rest of a choir, orchestra, band, or other ensemble. Performing a solo is "to solo", and the performer is known as a soloist.
Kim Vincent Fowley was an American record producer, singer, songwriter and musician. He is best known for his role behind a string of novelty and cult pop rock singles in the 1960s, and for managing the Runaways in the 1970s. He has been described as "one of the most colorful characters in the annals of rock & roll," as well as "a shadowy cult figure well outside the margins of the mainstream."
On 22 June 2015, Bonfire was awarded the Cultural Impact Award by SOCAN at the 2015 SOCAN Awards in Toronto for the song "Born to be Wild".
Bonfire was a prolific hiker in Southern California for many years. He has completed the Hundred Peaks Section list 25 times.He was noted by the Los Angeles Times for his "affability and flexibility" as a hike leader.
Southern California is a geographic and cultural region that generally comprises California's southernmost counties, and is the second most populous urban agglomeration in the United States. The region is traditionally described as eight counties, based on demographics and economic ties: Imperial, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Santa Barbara, and Ventura. The more extensive 10-county definition, which includes Kern and San Luis Obispo counties, is also used and is based on historical political divisions.
The Hundred Peaks Section (HPS) is a mountaineering society within the Angeles Chapter of the Sierra Club that serves to provide mountaineering activities for Sierra Club members in the southern Sierra Nevada, the Transverse Ranges, and the Peninsular Ranges, and to honor mountaineers who have summited peaks in those mountain ranges.
The Los Angeles Times is a daily newspaper which has been published in Los Angeles, California, since 1881. It has the fourth-largest circulation among United States newspapers, and is the largest U.S. newspaper not headquartered on the East Coast. The paper is known for its coverage of issues particularly salient to the U.S. West Coast, such as immigration trends and natural disasters. It has won more than 40 Pulitzer Prizes for its coverage of these and other issues. As of June 18, 2018, ownership of the paper is controlled by Patrick Soon-Shiong, and the executive editor is Norman Pearlstine.
He currently resides in western Nevada with his wife.
Songs by Mars Bonfire recorded by Steppenwolf include:
Sound recording and reproduction is an electrical, mechanical, electronic, or digital inscription and re-creation of sound waves, such as spoken voice, singing, instrumental music, or sound effects. The two main classes of sound recording technology are analog recording and digital recording.
Nick St. Nicholas is a bandleader, bass guitarist, singer and songwriter. best known for his partnership in Steppenwolf.
Venus and the Razorblades were a short-lived punk rock band from Los Angeles, California, formed and managed by Kim Fowley after he severed professional relations with The Runaways. They are believed to be one of the first mixed-gender American punk band. The band included guitarist/singer Roni Lee, who had co-written the song "I Wanna Be Where the Boys Are" for the Runaways; guitarist/singer Steven T.; bassist Danielle Faye ; drummer Nickey Beat ; and singers Dyan Diamond and Vicki Razorblade. When the band formed, Diamond and Razorblade were only 14 and 17 years old respectively. Session musicians were used in some of the band's recordings.
Steppenwolf is the debut album by Canadian rock band Steppenwolf, released in January 1968 on ABC Dunhill Records.
The Second is the second studio album by Canadian-American rock band Steppenwolf, released in October 1968 on ABC Dunhill Records. The album contains one of Steppenwolf's most famous songs, "Magic Carpet Ride". The background of the original ABC LP cover was a shiny "foil", in contrast to later LP issues and the modern CD sleeve.
Early Steppenwolf is a collection of live recordings by Steppenwolf when they were still known as "The Sparrow" [nee: "The Sparrows"]. It was released in July 1969 on the ABC Dunhill Records label.
Steppenwolf Live is primarily a collection of recordings from a single concert early in 1970 at the Santa Monica Civic Center by Steppenwolf staged in support of their 1969 album Monster. Released in April 1970 by Dunhill Records, it contains Steppenwolf's well-known hits: "Born to Be Wild", "Magic Carpet Ride" and "The Pusher", as well as most of the songs from Monster, including the top 40 hit live version of "Monster".
Easy Rider is the soundtrack to the cult classic 1969 film Easy Rider. The songs that make up the soundtrack were carefully selected to form a "musical commentary" within the film. The album of the soundtrack was released by ABC-Dunhill Records in August 1969. It peaked at #6 on the Billboard album charts in September of that year, and was certified gold in January 1970.
"The Pusher" is a rock song written by Hoyt Axton, made popular by the 1969 movie Easy Rider which used Steppenwolf's version to accompany the opening scenes showing drug trafficking.
George Michael Biondo was the bass guitarist of the American rock band, Steppenwolf, from April 1970 to October 1976. Though born in New York, he has been based in Southern California throughout his ongoing career as a session musician and songwriter.
Gold: Their Great Hits was the first greatest hits collection released by the American rock band Steppenwolf. The album, released in 1971, charted at #24 on the Billboard Pop Albums charts and was certified "gold" by the RIAA on April 12, 1971. Initial pressings of the album came in a gatefold sleeve, with a detachable poster of the band.
Gabriel Mekler was an American songwriter, musician, and record producer who attained fame in the 1960s, helming albums for Steppenwolf, Three Dog Night, and Janis Joplin. He also collaborated with R&B singer Etta James for two critically acclaimed albums in the early 1970s, mixing blues, soul, land then topped it off with Genya Ravan production jazz and rock.
Live in London is the first album by the band now known as John Kay & Steppenwolf, originally released in 1981 on Mercury/PolyGram in Australia only.
Live at 25 is a live album released by the American hard rock band Steppenwolf in 1995.
Live in Louisville is a live album from John Kay & Steppenwolf which was released in 2004 on Rainman Records. It contains Steppenwolf's well-known hits, such as "Born To be Wild," "Magic Carpet Ride," and "The Pusher" as well as material from John Kay's 2001 release, Heretics & Privateers.
The Fire Escape was an American psychedelic rock band formed in San Francisco, California, in 1967. Existing mainly as a studio group composed of unknown session musicians, the band was masterminded by record producer Kim Fowley and Michael Lloyd. The project produced one album called Psychotic Reaction, which contained mainly cover versions of popular songs from the era. It is reported that Sky Saxon of the garage rock band, the Seeds and Mars Bonfire of Steppenwolf, played on some of the tracks.