Album: They Only Come Out at Night (1973)
Charted: 18 1
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Songimage
  • This is one of the most famous instrumental rock songs. It got its title because of the intense editing that went into the song; it became a monster when it was pieced together in the studio. Said Winter: "When we were editing it in the studio, back in those days when you edited something, you physically had to cut the tape and splice it back together, so it was all over the control room, draped over the backs of chairs and the couch. We were making fun of it, trying to figure out how to put it back together, saying 'Here's the main body; the leg bone's connected to the thigh bone... ' Then Chuck Ruff, my drummer, says, 'Wow, man, it's like Frankenstein.' As soon as I heard that, I went, 'Wow, that's it!' The monster was born." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Mike - Mountlake Terrace, WA. U.S.A
  • This was edited down to a manageable single in a long, arduous process. Edgar had band members perform over and over in an attempt to get it right.
  • This wasn't supposed to be the single. It was originally released as the B-side of a song called "Hangin' Around." The sides were flipped when disc jockeys realized this was the hit.
  • Winter's band used to be called White Trash. By the time this was released, they were known as The Edgar Winter Group.
  • Rick Derringer produced this and played guitar on the track along with Ronnie Montrose. A member of The McCoys in the 1960s, Derringer had a hit on his own with "Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo" in 1974.
  • The group They Might Be Giants frequently does a bizarre cover version as their encore.
  • This was the first hit song that used a synthesizer as the lead instrument.
  • The single sold over 1 million copies and became a classic rock staple.
  • The group originally called this "Double Drum Solo."
  • Johnny Winter would use this on stage to introduce his brother Edgar, who played all the instruments in an exhibition of live musicianship. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Brad Wind - Miami, FL, for above 2
  • Buick used this in a commercial featuring golfer Tiger Woods.
  • Dan Hartman played the bass on this track. He had a solo hit with "I Can Dream About You." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 31

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 4th 1973, "Frankenstein" by the Edgar Winter Group entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #98; and on May 20th it peaked at #1 (for 1 week) and spent 20 weeks on the Top 100 (and for 7 of those 20 weeks it was on the Top 10)...
    Was track five of side two on the group's third studio album, 'They Only Come Out at Night', and the album reached #3 on Billboard's Top 200 Albums chart...
    One other track from the album also made the Top 100 chart, "Free Ride", it peaked at #14...
    Mr. Winter celebrated his 67th birthday three months ago on December 28th (2013).
  • Mark from Rogers, , ArA rock classic, now 40 years old. One of its kind and what memories are made of.
  • Karlin from Nelson, BcIs it just me or is the video out of synch with the sound? Like, at 1:05 see his fast fingers start going about 3 beats after it sounds.
    Oh well, nitpicky me. I have been listening the heck out of this lately.

    What is the story about [one of the brothers] selling his soul for talent?
  • Doug from Lincoln, NeWow, such misinformation about White Trash abounds here! Here's the real deal: Edgar's first album was called "Entrance", and it's incredible. Jazzy blues, hardly sounds like anything else he's ever done, although one of the riffs from "Frankenstein" makes its first appearance on Side One.

    After the first album, Edgar formed a band called "White Trash". Johnny was not in this band, but did some guest appearances. This was a big, swaggering horn-fueled band that put two albums in 1972. Definitely listen to the live album called "Roadwork" for some of the best live recordings of any band in the seventies. Rick Derringer was part of this band on the second album.

    Then, The Edgar Winter Group formed, which had absolutely nothing to do with White Trash. Completely different style, completely different members except for Edgar. After the first album, "They Only Come Out at Night", Ronnie Montrose (you may have heard of him) left the band and Rick Derrigner joined.

    So the takeaway from this long ramble is this:

    White Trash did not become The Edgar Winter Band.
    Johnny Winter was not a member of White Trash.

    Thanks for reading... btw, Edgar's going to be in my home town in a few days. Can't wait!
  • Phil from Paducah, KyWhite Trash was Johnny Winters band who Edgar played in before he got his own band, the Edgar Winter Band.
  • Phil from Paducah, KyThe first song to use Synth as the lead instrument, I Don't Think So!
    Let's try Roundabout by YES. The synth is not the only lead on ether. But it was definitely used by YES as a lead instrument first.I mean Really, when you've got Rick Wakeman in your band you've got to give him a turn out front!
    Also, Uriah Heep probably had a hit with lead synth before Frankenstein. Don't get me wrong, this is one of my all time Fav's. Wish I had a really long Version.
  • Oldpink from New Castle, InJust too much fun not to listen to, even after all these years of hearing it.
  • Quique from Mexico City, MexicoI think FRANKESTAIN is a Led Zeppelin´s MOBY DICK inspiration, 1st, the name... both are novels, 2nd... drooms, gitar, then... instrumental. Edgar Winter had an important contribution but I would be so much happy with out this concern. This is a masterpiece anyways and Overkill know this.
  • Skip from Honesdale Pa, NcI believe this was also one of the first hit songs to prominently feature synthesized percussion - see the clips on YouTube...
  • Mackenzie from Van Anda, BcThis song is amazing... the musical composition of it is sheer genius.
  • Jason from Denver, CoLISTEN EVERYONE,
    Frankenstein is a great song, however, there are other great Edgar Winter songs. Free Ride, Alta Mira and We all had a real good time, just to name a few. Get the album called "They onle come out at night".
  • Scott from Boston, MaMay have been first hit to use synth as the lead, but The Who are the masters of the synth.
  • Jerrold from On The Beach, Nj"This was the first hit song that used a synthesizer as the lead instrument."

    Didn't the Top 10 hit "Popcorn" by Hot Butter (from 1972, also an instrumental) feature the Moog Synthesizer as the lead instrument?
  • Eddie from Natchez, MsCurrent artist who try to play music like this cannot match the bands/artist that recorded in the late 60's and 70's. The engineers and band members really had to work on the music instead of canned stuff.
  • Pete from Laguna Beach, CaEruption is not even a fully structured song, and it doesn't even contain a synthesizer no less it being the main instrument. Technically, eruption is merely a preamble. Furthermore as a keyboardist I will say that Eb Eddie plays a keyboard about as good as he golfs. Frankenstein is an epic freak of a tune that was born strategically as assembled music parts on an editing block. It was a bunch of parts put together in the most ingenius way to form a complete embodied song, much like the way Frankenstein the scientist assembled body parts to create his masterpiece. That is why it was named Frankenstien. It is a legacy today, and one of the most monolithic synthesizer pieces ever created.
  • Andrew from Wimauma, FlWOOT! only song that could listen a 1000 times and kinda not get bored. go whitey go!
  • Frank from Fircrest, Wathe first time I heard this in '73, I thought that my radio was "crappin'" out. Then I heard about Edgar Winter.--Awesome
  • Dave from Oak Park, MiEdgar Winter does this song with a RAP when he performs it in Concert!
  • Fred from Dallas, TxFrankenstein is without a doubt one of the finest rock intrumentals ever made. If you like it, check out the Dixie Dregs doing "Take it off the top" from the "What if" album, it's my personal number 1
  • Rob from Vancouver, CanadaEruptions' alright, but to compare it to 'Frankenstein" is like comparing an orchestra to a string quartet.
  • Travis from Phoenix, Nyhow can you say Eruption is better than Frankenstein, they are not even comparable. that is a disgrace to say such a thing, may God have mercy on your soul.
  • Rocco Vanfanculo from Sanfrancisco, CaMONN TANNO MONDO was inspired by the song "Frankenstein" way back in the early 70's. The song was a Revolutionary hit as far as I'm concerned. The drumming is similar to the style of ED Montano II.
    Look for "Monn Tanno Mondo" on the web and you'll hear cool vibes that reflect this idea in the CD "TALES OF ETERNITY"
  • Lydia from Tulsa, OkThis is probably one of my favorite songs of all time. My parents used to go crazy every time we were in the car and it came on the radio.
  • John from Chalk Bluff, TxFor thoes who haven't discovered yet, JunkieXL does a modern version of this on the XBOX game Forza Motorsports. Check it out, it's great!
  • Sam from West Covina, CaEruption isn't even half the genius of this wonderful instrumental. Eruption reminds me of a little kid with ADD trying to get everyone's attention. There's no feel to Eruption and that whole stupid tapping "technique" is really not that hard to do. Speed doesn't make you a good player, feeling does.
  • Ivan from Jersey City, NjNeeds to be remastered! BIG TIME!!! This song is too good to sound as poorly as it does on CD. SONY needs to go back a do the whole album over in 24Bit!
  • T from Cleveland, OhPhish does an incredible cover of this song that I feel is better than the original. If you don't believe me, find a version and listen to it.
  • Jonathan from Oklahoma City, OkYep! in a Simpsons episode...good song....Like the way there are no lyrics
  • Evan from Orlando, FlEruption by van halen is a much better instrumental piece
  • Rich from Elkins, WvI'm going by memory here, but I think the album was called THEY ONLY COME OUT AT was full of good tunes... including 'Hangin'Around' and 'Autumn' to name a few.
  • Jon from Mountain Home, Idgood song to get adrenalized to. Its in a simpsons episode. Its a good song with a catchy title for how it was created.
see more comments

Thomas DolbySongwriter Interviews

He wrote "She Blinded Me With Science" so he could direct a video about a home for deranged scientists.

Mike Love of The Beach BoysSongwriter Interviews

The lead singer/lyricist of The Beach Boys talks about coming up with the words for "Good Vibrations," "Fun, Fun, Fun," "Kokomo" and other classic songs.

Richie Wise (Kiss producer, Dust)Songwriter Interviews

Richie talks about producing the first two Kiss albums, recording "Brother Louie," and the newfound appreciation of his rock band, Dust.

Pete AndersonSongwriter Interviews

Pete produced Dwight Yoakam, Michelle Shocked, Meat Puppets, and a very memorable track for Roy Orbison.

Dino Cazares of Fear FactorySongwriter Interviews

The guitarist/songwriter explains how he came up with his signature sound, and deconstructs some classic Fear Factory songs.

Boz ScaggsSongwriter Interviews

The "Lowdown" and "Lido Shuffle" singer makes a habit of playing with the best in the business.