The MC5 is a band that came out of Detroit in 1966, and was an important precursor of and influence on punk rock. Their first album was Kick Out The Jams, recorded live on October 30 and 31, 1968 (the first Zenta new year). The album caused some controversy due to the title track's rallying cry of "kick out the jams, motherfuckers," and John Sinclair's inflammatory liner notes. When Hudsons (a chain store in the midwest) refused to stock the LP the MC5 responded with a full page advertisement in the Fifth Estate saying "Fuck Hudsons!" Hudsons pulled all records on Elektra, the MC5's label, and Jac Holzman, the head of Elektra, dropped the band. Their second album "Back In The USA" virtually provided a prototype for punk rock with its short, fast, hard-edged angry guitar rock. Their third album "High Time" would also prove influential on 1970s hard rock bands like Aerosmith and Kiss. The band broke up amidst drug-related problems in 1972. John Sinclair, the band's manager, was politically active with the White Panthers and Fifth estate. Singer Robin Tyner died in 1991, as did guitarist Fred 'Sonic' Smith in 1994. Guitarist Wayne Kramer is still active, and has released several solo albums.

2003 saw the three surviving members of the MC5 - Kramer, bassist Michael Davis, and drummer Dennis Thompson - performing as the MC5 at the 100 Club in London with vocal chores being filled by Dave Vanian of The Damned and Ian Astbury of The Cult

  • MC5 discography (incomplete)
    • Kick Out the Jams - 1969
    • Back In The USA - 1970
    • High Time - 1971
    • Babes In Arms - 1983
    • Power Trip - 1994
    • Looking At You (10") - 1995
    • Thunder Express - 1995
    • Teen Age Lust - 1996
    • Ice Pick Slim - 1997
    • Starship: Live at Sturgis Armory June 1968 - 1998
    • '66 Breakout - 1999

Films MC5 - A True Testimonial 2003