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38 Special Biography

Home > Music > Other > 38 Special > Biography

Birth Place: Jacksonville, Florida, United States
Years Active: 1974-present
Genres: Boogie Rock, Hard Rock, Southern Rock, Country Rock, Arena Rock

38 Special (also stylized .38 Special or Thirty-Eight Special) is an American rock band that was formed by neighborhood friends Don Barnes and Donnie Van Zant in 1975 in Jacksonville, Florida. The band's first two albums had a strong southern rock vibe. 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. The current lineup consists of Barnes, Van Zant, guitarist Danny Chauncey, bassist Larry Junstrom, keyboardist Bobby Capps and drummer Gary Moffatt.

Their self-titled debut album was released in 1977 on A&M, their first of many on the label.

Their breakthrough hit was "Hold On Loosely" (1981), off their fourth studio album “Wild-Eyed Southern Boys,” which made it to #3 on the Mainstream Rock chart and #27 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The album was later certified platinum.

"Caught Up in You" (1982) from the Top 10, platinum certified album “Special Forces” became the band's first #1 single on the Billboard Mainstream rock chart. It also became one of the band's two Top 10 pop hits, reaching #10 on the Billboard Hot 100. "If I'd Been the One" (1983), from their platinum certified “Tour de Force” album, also hit #1 on the Mainstream Rock chart. The single "Second Chance" (1989), from the gold certified “Rock & Roll Strategy” album, proved to be #1 hit on Billboard's adult contemporary chart.

In 2005 they released “Drivetrain” which was largely featured in the Broken Lizard movie “Super Troopers” with "Trooper with an Attitude” providing an intro for the movie.