Although based in southern California, Steppenwolf evolved out of a Toronto act, the Sparrow. John Kay (Joachim Fritz Krauledat, 12 April 1944, Tilsit, East Prussia; vocals), Michael Monarch (b. 5 July 1950, Los Angeles, California, USA; lead guitar), Goldy McJohn (b. 2 May 1945; keyboards), Rushton Moreve (d. 1 July 1981; bass) and Jerry Edmonton (b. 24 October 1946, Canada; drums) assumed their new name in 1967, inspired by the novel by cult author Herman Hesse. John Morgan replaced Moreve prior to recording. The bands exemplary debut album included Born To Be Wild which reached number 2 in the US charts. This rebellious anthem was written by Dennis Edmonton (aka Mars Bonfire), guitarist in Sparrow and brother of drummer Jerry. It was featured in the famous opening sequence of the movie Easy Rider, and has since acquired classic status (the song achieved its highest UK chart position, number 18, when it was re-released in February 1999)....
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