Monday, February 8, 2016


I'm so full of love I could burst apart and start to cry

1967.. the Summer Of

now the chance to see Grace Slick and Janis Joplin in the same place.. a few weeks apart back in the 1960s was pretty Earl Warren...chick singers that owned the airwaves....Grace with Jefferson Airplane and Janis with Big Brother and the Holding Company and then later solo...

it's hard to explain the times if you weren't there but I was..just a kid but thought Grace was a princess...god she was so beautiful with the hippie gowns and long shiny brown hair and big brown eyes ..and the rocking voice..the anthems: "Somebody To Love" written by her brother-in-law Darby Slick!

and "White Rabbit" by Grace..this was Grace's Band the Great Society before the Airplane...the radio played some honey in those days...the Airplane took those raw songs, polished them up and turned them into gold...and it didn't hurt to have Jorma and Jack rounding out the rhythm section!

so Jefferson Airplane's Paul Kantner died...75 years old...I can't think in those terms but David Bowie warned: look out you rock and rollers, pretty soon now you're gonna get older..CH-CH-Changes...

but Kantner was a manic rhythm guitar player with that Rickenbacker held close....those guitars from the 1960s are some of the best made instruments they command big money depending on condition or originality....hard to find a new Rickenbacker for less than $ old one is off the charts..but the Beatles and the Byrds and the Airplane used them so naturally guitar players want to duplicate that's hard to do with a cheap Korean guitar...

but I love hearing the Airplane even today....oh, listen to "Today" and it's just beautiful...Grace and Marty Balin singing...Marty and Kantner wrote it

there's some obscure stuff away from the Airplane and it's always interesting to hear.... Grace and Paul did Sunfighter and their song to daughter "China" is lovely...there's a legacy here, a musical legacy that's cast in stone

the San Francisco sound with the Airplane and Dead...the LA sound with the Doors,  Byrds, Beach Boys and Buffalo Springfield..and all the rest that filled the clubs: on the Sunset Strip....the Whiskey, the Troubadour, the, what scene that was!! it was very exciting...and the bands were coming and going up and down the coast...Kantner joined forces with Crosby and Stills to write "Wooden Ships"..Paul wrote most of the lyrics, Crosby the music and Stills added the "horror grips us as we watch you die" verse

it was a big business..these weren't a bunch of wayward dumb hippies..they were extremely talented capitalist musicians...

Neil Young sang on Time Fades Away: "there we were on the Sunset Strip, playing our songs to the highest bid, the businessmen crowded around, they came to hear the golden sound"

and they made a lot of money...and they worked hard!!! sure drugs were part of it but the drug use was hyped in most cases (except for Crosby)

"Wooden ships on the water, very free and easy"....inspired by a sailing trip on Crosby's boat, with Grace along for the ride

sure would like to play one of Kantner's Rickenbackers though

No comments: