The Rationals actually predated the MC5/Stooges by quite some time, both chronologically and stylistically. When they began recording for the local A2 label in 1965, they were, like many garage bands, heavily influenced by the British Invasion, although they gave their material a more soulful flavour than most similar units. "Gave My Love" was a chart-topper in Ann Arbor (and a hit in Detroit), as was a follow-up single of "Respect" (which predated Aretha Franklin's version). Picked up for national distribution by Cameo/Parkway, it nudged into the lowest regions of the national charts as well.
Similar distribution of follow-up singles by Cameo and Capitol, which found them pursuing a more blue-eyed soul-oriented direction on cuts like "I Need You" and "Hold on Baby," followed the same story: big success in Michigan, nothing doing elsewhere. Morgan turned down a spot in Blood, Sweat & Tears, and the Rationals finally got an album out on Crewe Records in early 1970. By that time, though, their moment had passed: their best work was behind them, and attempts to modify their energetic pop/soul approach for the psychedelic album market were ill-fated.
The Rationals broke up in the summer of 1970. Morgan continued to build his cult credentials over the next 25 years on sporadic recordings with Sonic's Rendezvous Band (which also featured the MC5's Fred Smith), the Scott Morgan Band, and Scott's Pirates. Licensing hurdles, unfortunately, have prevented their batch of fine '60s singles for A2, Cameo/Parkway, and Capitol from being reissued on a coherent anthology, although some have dotted obscure garage compilations. This is a shame, as their sole album, and a recently released live CD of a show from late 1968, are unrepresentative of the band as they sounded at their best.