38 Special (2010)
|Genres||Southern rock, hard rock, arena rock, country rock, blues rock|
|Lynyrd Skynyrd, Van Zant, Grand Funk Railroad|
|Donnie Van Zant
The band's first two albums had a strong southern rock influence. By the early 1980s, .38 Special shifted to a more accessible arena rock style without abandoning its southern rock roots. This shift helped to usher in a string of successful albums and singles. Survivor co-founder Jim Peterik has been a frequent songwriting collaborator of the band's since 1980, which may account for this shift and subsequent success.
Their breakthrough hit was "Hold On Loosely" (1981). "Caught Up in You" (1982) and "If I'd Been the One" (1984) both hit No. 1 on Billboard magazine's Album Rock Tracks chart. "Back Where You Belong" (1984) continued the annual sequence of radio favorites. In 1985 they had another hit with "Teacher, Teacher", written by Jim Vallance and Bryan Adams. The song climbed to #4 on the Billboard Top Tracks Chart, spending 10 weeks on the chart from the soundtrack of the 1984 film Teachers. "Second Chance" was a No. 1 hit on Billboard's adult contemporary chart in 1989, from Rock & Roll Strategy, followed by "The Sound of Your Voice" in 1991 (Billboard Hot 100 #33) from Bone Against Steel and "Fade to Blue" from the album Resolution which made it to #33 on the Mainstream Rock chart in 1997.
In 2007, 38 Special was the opening act on Lynyrd Skynyrd and Hank Williams Jr.'s Rowdy Frynds Tour, and on September 27, 2008, they filmed a CMT Crossroads special with country singer Trace Adkins, performing both artists' hits from over the years. In 2009, 38 Special opened for REO Speedwagon and Styx as part of the "Can't Stop Rockin' Tour."
As of 2014, the lineup consists of Don Barnes, guitarist Danny Chauncey, keyboardist Bobby Capps, drummer Gary Moffatt, and bassist Barry Dunaway. In 2012 a notice was posted on 38 Special's website saying Van Zant would not tour with the band due to health issues related to inner-ear nerve damage, although he would continue to write and record with the band. In 2013, after nearly a year of missing performances, it was confirmed that Donnie Van Zant had officially left 38 Special after 39 years, and was retiring from music. In 2014, longtime bassist Larry Junstrom was replaced by Barry Dunaway. Dunaway previously filled in for Junstrom for a handful of shows in 2011, and a few shows in 2013 as well. Junstrom was forced to retire due to a hand injury that required surgery. This leaves only Don Barnes as an original member, although Barnes was absent from the band from 1987 until 1992.