The R&B group War is comprised of members from a variety of cultural backgrounds. They formed in 1969 and shot to prominence in the 1970s. The band’s roots may be traced back to a high school R&B group named The Creators, which was established in 1962 in the city of Long Beach, California, by Harold Brown and Harold E. Scott. A short time later, Charles Miller, Morris Dickerson, Lonnie Jordan, Lee Oskar, and Papa Allen joined The Creators as members of the band. As a result of the majority of the members have grown up in ethnically mixed neighborhoods in Los Angeles, the band featured members of multiple races and embraced a wide variety of musical genres. The Creators collaborated with Doré Records on the recording of multiple singles. In 1968, The Creators changed their name to Nightshift because of Harold Brown’s employment at a steel yard, which required him to work nights.
In 1969, record producer Jerry Goldstein and former Animals lead singer Eric Burdon witnessed the band as they were doing background vocals for Deacon Jones at the Rag Doll in North Hollywood. Goldstein was drawn in by the band’s music and their mission to fight racism, starvation, gangs, crimes, and turf battles through the use of their instruments and voices. Goldstein’s interest in the band was sparked by their sound as well as their message. Goldstein became the band’s manager, and not long after that Nightshift changed their name to War. Having Eric Burdon as a band member and performing throughout Southern California helped them grow their fan base. When it was released in March of 1970, their first album was given the name Eric Burdon Declares War. The album gave birth to the popular single “Spill the Wine,” which served as the band’s introduction to the music industry.
As a result of the success of the record “Eric Burdon Declares War,” the band went on a lengthy tour that included stops in both the United States and Europe. Due to the success of this tour, Eric Burdon and War decided to work together to create a second album, which they titled The Black-Burdon Man’s, and released in 1970 as well. Burdon made the decision to leave the group shortly after the record was made public and while they were on tour in Europe. Despite the setback, the band continued on with the tour and re-recorded their debut album under the name War.
1971 marked the release of the band’s third studio album, titled All Day Music. The album featured two songs that were huge hits at the time: “All Day Music” and “Slippin’ into Darkness.” In June of 1972, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) bestowed a gold disc on both singles in recognition of the fact that they had each sold more than one million copies.
The World is a Ghetto, which was released by War in 1972 and went on to become their most commercially successful record, The song “The Cisco Kid” went on to become a gold single, and the album itself climbed to the number two spot on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart in 1972. In 1973, it went on to become the best-selling album of 1973, earning it the title of Album of the Year from Billboard Magazine.
War went on to produce their “Greatest Hits” album in 1974, which featured previously unreleased tunes with Eric Burdon serving as the lead singer. The record also featured the band’s name in the album’s title. War was unable to recreate the level of success it had in the early 1970s as a result of the growing popularity of disco. In 1980, the band said goodbye to Charles Miller, who was killed the previous year. The band officially broke up in 1996 so that its members may pursue jobs outside of the band.
|Love Is All Around|
|Why Can’t We Be Friends?|
|Deliver the Word|
|The World Is a Ghetto|
|All Day Music|
|The Black-Man’s Burdon|
|Eric Burdon Declares “War”|
Frequently Asked Questions
Who Is The Lead Singer Of War?
The lead singer of War is Lonnie Jordan.
How Many Original Band Members Are In War?
There are four original band members in War. They are: Leroy “Lonnie” Jordan, Howard Scott, Charles Miller, and Harold Brown. The band has had a number of different lineups over the years, but these four musicians are the core of the group. They have been playing together since they formed the band in 1969. War is best known for their hit songs “Spill the Wine,” “The Cisco Kid,” and “Why Can’t We Be Friends?” but they have a catalog of other great songs as well. The band is still touring and making new music today.
What Was Wars Most Famous Song?
Wars’ most famous song is “We Will Rock You.” This song was released in 1977 and became an instant hit. It has been covered by many artists and has been used in films and television shows.