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PAUL KANTNER along with MARTY BALIN founded JEFFERSON AIRPLANE in 1965. THE AIRPLANE were the biggest rock group in America during the 1960s and the first San Francisco band to sign a major record deal, paving the way for other legends like GRATEFUL DEAD & JANIS JOPLIN. They headlined the original WOODSTOCK FESTIVAL in 1969 and like THE BEATLES with whom they are critically compared, lasted a mere 7 years ... though their influence and impact on rock music continues well into the 21st century.In 1974 Mr. KANTNER created JEFFERSON STARSHIP and again with Mr. BALIN, enjoyed chart-topping success. PAUL, MARTY & JEFFERSON AIRPLANE were inducted into The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1996, the same year as PINK FLOYD. In 2005 they celebrated their 40th anniversary, playing 21 countries on their world tour. In 2007 they headlined “The Summer of Love 40th Anniversary Celebration” and performed at The Monterey Pop commemorative on the exact same stage as the historic landmark rock festival of 1967.JEFFERSON STARSHIP, the name created by PAUL for his 1971 solo debut “Blows Against The Empire” recording has endured 37 years as rock music’s premier “political science fiction” themed band. That recording was the first and only to ever be nominated for literary science fiction’s Hugo Award … a stellar achievement
DAVID FREIBERG is co-founder of the legendary Avalon/Carousel/Fillmore era San Francisco band who along with THE DEAD & THE AIRPLANE), often shared the bill. DAVID is an extraordinary singer, producer and multi-instrumentalist who plays guitar, bass, viola and keyboards. He has also been a member of both JEFFERSON AIRPLANE and JEFFERSON STARSHIP which he co-founded as a touring entity in 1974 … re-uniting with PAUL in 2005, after a 20 year absence. DAVID co-wrote one of the band’s all-time biggest hits, “Jane” – which he performs.
CATHY RICHARDSON is JEFFERSON STARSHIP’s newest member, anchoring the historic ‘role’ made famous by GRACE SLICK. She is an award winning music artist, graphic artist, and clothing designer. Her professional credits include fronting her successful rock band, producing and releasing seven albums on her various indie record labels. She was nominated for a GRAMMY Award for Art Direction of her band's 2003 release, “The Road to Bliss.” “The Road to Bliss” also received two DIY Awards (Do It Yourself in Film, Books and Music) for Album Art of the Year and Producer of the Year. Her latest release, “Delusions of Grandeur,” topped the 2007 DIYs when she won both Album and Producer of the Year. She portrayed Janis Joplin in the original Off Broadway cast of the hit show “Love, Janis” and also in Chicago, Sag Harbor, NY, San Francisco, Phoenix and Tucson, and sings with Janis' original band members, Big Brother and the Holding Co. Also, Cathy is set to launch her new line of hand dyed, organic cotton yoga pants, Shining Shakti As a top session singer, Richardson has recorded dozens of national commercials for companies like Kraft, McDonald's, Budweiser, Applebee's, Glade and State Farm Insurance. Her voice can be heard in the filmsSavage, HBO's the Vagina Monologues and Talledega Nights: the Ballad of Ricky Bobby.
JUDE GOLD is an acclaimed lead guitarist – joining in 2012 for a 10 country, three- month international tour – replacing longtime lead player Slick Aguilar who recently underwent a liver transplant. Jude also tours with contemporary stars Miguel Migs, Stu Hamm and JGB. He is also a instructor at the acclaimed Musician’s Institute in Los Angeles.
DONNY BALDWIN became part of the San Francisco music scene in the early 70s growing, up there. From 1973 to 1978 Donny was with the "Elvin Bishop" Band. During this time he toured and recorded six albums which included the #1 hit single, "Fooled Around and Fell In Love". From1981 to 1989, Donny was a member of the group JEFFERSON STARSHIP. In January 1994, he joined the JERRY GARCIA BAND. He has toured, recorded and played with artist such as KENNY LOGGINS, PABLO CRUISE, CHUCK BERRY, VAN MORRISON, RUSSELL HITCHCOCK, RONNIE MONTROSE, GREGG ALLMAN, HEART, LYDIA PENSE & COLD BLOOD, 38 SPECIAL and EDDIE MONEY.
CHRIS SMITH joined JEFFERSON STARSHIP in 1998, instantly winning the job of keyboardist. Having toured with THE SUPREMES and LOU BEGA, CHRIS has gone on to place music in film and television including the #1 rated series “CSI.” In 2000, following the departure of bassist JACK CASADY, CHRIS assumed the seeming impossible task of playing piano AND (synth) bass simultaneously … a feat only duplicated by the legendary RAY MANZAREK of THE DOORS. CHRIS has been keyboardist longer than any in the band’s fabled history.
RACHEL ROSE is JEFFERSON STARSHIP’s newest member, anchoring the historic ‘role’ made famous by GRACE SLICK she goes on tour with the band in 2016.
JEFFERSON STARSHIP a collaboration of celebrated musicians that plays from the rich songbook of its legendary forefathers JEFFERSON AIRPLANE and the original incarnation of JEFFERSON STARSHIP, prevails as one of the most critically acclaimed touring acts today. Steeped in the fantastic realms of science fiction and the contemporary American shadow land,JEFFERSON STARSHIP features a stellar cast of old and new players, including songwriter/guitarist/vocalist Paul Kantner, vocalist David Freiberg both of whom founded JEFFERSON STARSHIP and were crucial in developing the renowned "San Francisco Sound" that changed the course of pop music forever. In 1965, Kantner formed JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, embarking from San Francisco nightclub The Matrix. JEFFERSON AIRPLANE became the first San Francisco rock group to sign a recording contract with a major label.
Their first album on RCA, Jefferson Airplane Takes Off, was released in 1966. Vocalist Grace Slick joined the AIRPLANE in 1967, bringing with her, the hits "Somebody to Love" and "White Rabbit," anthems that announced the "Summer of Love" and permanently altered the perspective of an entire generation. Both songs hit the Top 10 that year, making JEFFERSON AIRPLANE the most successful rock band in America.
Born of the decade marked by civil rights activism, the war in Vietnam and the counterculture Mecca of San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury, Kantner's group defined the psychedelic nation with their appearances at the Monterey Pop, Woodstock and Altamont music festivals. Now icons in the reformation of American music and thought, the LPs Surrealistic Pillow, Crown of Creation, Bless its Pointed Little Head and Volunteers surpassed the limits of musical and lyrical expression previously unexplored, introducing strident and striking political tracts, yet capable of evoking the most tender emotions.
JEFFERSON AIRPLANE disbanded in 1972, leaving in its wake the canon of work that includes "It's No Secret," "My Best Friend," "Comin' Back To Me," "Plastic Fantastic Lover," "We Can Be Together," "Today," "Wooden Ships" (with David Crosby and Steven Stills) and "Volunteers" (which, in early 30 years after its inception, was featured in the Oscar-winning film Forrest Gump and the PBS documentary Baseball).Earlier, in 1970, Kantner embodied his utopian vision of music and community with the science fiction opus Blows Against the Empire. Recorded with Slick, Jerry Garcia, Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, David Crosby, Graham Nash and David Freiberg, Blows Against the Empire was nominated for science fiction literature'sprestigious Hugo Award. To date, the album is the only recording in rock 'n roll history to have been honored so. The Blows Against theEmpire collaboration was the prototype for Kantner's next ensemble, JEFFERSON STARSHIP, which he formed in 1974. Joined by Balin, Slick, lead guitarist Craig Chaquico, bassist Pete Sears and drummer John Barbata, the first incarnation of JEFFERSON STARSHIP reigned as one of the most artistically and commercially successful rock groups for a decade.
The band's initial release, Dragonfly, spawned the rock radio staples "Ride the Tiger" and"Caroline," both penned by Kantner. The band's breakthrough album came a year later with Red Octopus, which featured the hit single "Miracles" and catapulted the group to the top of Billboard's album chart four separate times in 1975. The band's subsequent releases -- Spitfire (1976), Earth (1978), Freedom at Point Zero (1979)Winds of Change (1981) and Nuclear Furniture (1983) -- generated the hits "With Your Love," "St. Charles," "Count on Me," "Runaway" and "Jane." In 1983, Kantner released his second solo album, Planet Earth Rock & Roll Orchestra, featuring guitarist Ronnie Montrose, Slick and China Kantner, the daughter of Kantner and Slick. The next year, Kantner departed from JEFFERSON STARSHIP to work on his own projects.
Kantner formed the KBC BAND, which produced the 1987 Arista release KBC Band (including the Kantner hit "America") and also featured keyboardist Tim Gorman from the Who and guitarist Slick Aguilar from David Crosby's band. In 1987, Kantner embarked on a factfinding tour of Nicaragua and the Sandinista government. Upon his return to the U.S., he published his journals of the trip in Paul Kantner's Nicaragua Diary. In 1989, Kantner briefly reunited with JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, a much-anticipated project that resulted in an album, Jefferson Airplane, and a summer tour.Two years later, Kantner was back on the road with a stripped-down, acoustic ensemble called PAUL KANTNER'S WOODEN SHIPS, a trio that included Aguilar and Gorman from the KBC BAND. In addition to his classic songs, Kantner and his group performed new material which received resounding praise. The success of this project prompted Kantner to reinvent his electric band, and JEFFERSON STARSHIP took off once again. In addition to Aguilar and Gorman, Kantner recruited former collaborators Jack Casady and the late blues violin master Papa John Creach; former Tubes drummer Prairie Prince; and former World Entertainment War vocalist Darby Gould.Papa John died in early 1993, weeks after touring Europe. Concurrently, a sensational young vocalist, Diana Mangano joined the group with her debut at “Woodstock In Mexico”,replacing Gould. In 1995, JEFFERSON STARSHIP headlined a tribute to Papa John at Hollywood's House of Blues, broadcast nationally on the CBS Radio Network Concert Series. With very special guest Grace Slick (in her last live performance to date), they debuted new material, together with timeless classics, comprising the 1995 release Deep Space/Virgin Sky. In 1996 PAUL KANTNER was inducted into The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame as founder of JEFFERSON AIRPLANE. In 1997,much sought, session keyboardist Chris Smith (DIANA ROSS, LOU BEGA) joined the band on a full-time basis. In 1998, JEFFERSON STARSHIP released their first collaborative studio recording in over ten years, “Windows of Heaven.” In 2000, JEFFERSON STARSHIP headlined the world famous High Times Magazine “Cannabus Cup” supported by Patti Smith, and were inducted into the Cannabus Cup Hall of Fame along with 60s Hog Farm commune icon, Stephen Gaskin (about whom GRATEFUL DEAD wrote “St. Stephen”). In 2005 DAVID FREIBERG, QUICKSILVER MESSENGER SERVICE co-founder and JEFFERSON AIRPLANE/JEFFERSON STARSHIP veteran returned to the band on a fulltime basis as they celebrated the 40th anniversary of JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, making them America’s longest enduring rock institution. Along with an all-star cast featuring original members of GRATEFUL DEAD, QUICKSILVER MESSENGER SERVICE, BIG BROTHER & THE HOLDING COMPANY and COUNTRY JOE McDONALD, they toured the world as part of the “JEFFERSON FAMILY GALACTIC REUNION.”
In 2007 JEFFERSON STARSHIP helped launch Microsoft Vista’s muchanticipated release by performing free concerts in Los Angeles, San Francisco. At Mardi Gras in New Orleans and SXSW in Austin. Last year they also celebrated the 40th anniversary of the iconic hippie cultural happening … “The Summer of Love,” with a 26 city tour and a headline appearance at Patee Fairground, the original site of Monterey Pop. In 2008 acclaimed vocalist CATHYRICHARDSON - wwwcathyrichardson.com) begins a new era as the band’s lead vocalist. CATHY has starred in the touring company of the hit Broadway show "Love, Janis," she has appeared in commercials and on "Sesame Street," and most notably toured the world fronting BIG BROTHER & THE HOLDING CO. Longtime JEFFERSON STARSHIP and JERRY GARCIA BAND drummer DONNY BALDWIN continues, now on a full time basis. On Sept. 1, the band released their first CD in ten years, the critically acclaimed “Jefferson’s Tree of Liberty” – and toured Japan, Italy, England, Scotland and across North America.
Since reforming in 1992, JEFFERSON STARSHIP has performed over 1,000 concerts in 21 countries. They not only perform all the timeless hits of JEFFERSON STARSHIP, but also perform the entire repertoire of JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, started by KANTNER 44 years ago. The band headlines “THE HEROES OF WOODSTOCK” Tribute Tour, summer 2009, commemorating the 40th Anniversary of JEFFERSON AIRPLANE’s appearance atthat iconic festival.
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