Jefferson Airplane Concert Reviews
updated: January 16, 2007
A supplement to JAbase, compiled by Scott Abbot
Additions to this collection are welcome. If you have any reviews or memories of Jefferson Airplane concerts, please send them to me at:
Copyright (c) 1998-2007 by Scott Abbot and by the authors of the reviews.
This compilation may be distributed freely, provided it is neither published nor sold for profit, and that this notice appears on all copies.
May 22, 1966 - Cabana Hotel, Palo Alto CA
The Airplane played around the pool no less! I was there it was the first time I saw the Airplane live (but not the last). The band that I was in at the time ended up loaning the Airplane our humble PA, cause the hotel had provided two little wimpy speakers for the PA. I will never forget that afternoon having Marty Balin staring down on me as I tried to control the mics that were all stuffed into the inputs of a Fender Bassman Amp head!
contributed by Dean Coy (email@example.com)
October 6, 1966 - Basketball Pavilion, Stanford University, Stanford CA
Another show where I was there. After the Cabana gig we (the drummer and I) saw the band down in San Jose when they played at Losers South, it was there that Signe's husband, Jerry, [ed. note - Jerry Slick was not married to Signe Anderson] befriended us, so when they played this gig at Stanford we were able to go back stage and hang with the group. I spent a lot time that night talking to Signe and watching Mike Bloomfield play Jorma's Guild Thunderbird guitar on stage that night.
contributed by Dean Coy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
May 3, 1968 - Fillmore East, New York NY
Went with a friend of mine, we were both tripping, so everything was very exaggerated. Arthur Brown opened, first his band came out and played for about 5 - 10 minutes. Then from the back of the theater burst out 6 black guys in leopard skin underwear, carrying a throne on a long board, and in the throne wearing a crown with flames shooting out of it came Arthur Brown! Well you could imagine - our minds were blown. They rushed him down to the stage, where he jumped off and began to sing. After the that, the Airplane was practically anti-climactic, I can't remember much.
contributed by Larry Fradin <email@example.com>
May 18, 1968 - Family Park, Santa Clara County Fairgrounds, San Jose CA
Saturday at Santa Clara Fairgrounds. Hot weather and a good sound system. About 8000 people came to hear the rock bands.
There were a lot of long-haired people there, but
the major part of the audience was 15-17 year old white, kids. Lots of short
sleeves, some Bermuda shorts. Kids with straight faces held in that
anticipation, waiting for themselves, waiting for Stars, waiting to be turned
on, waiting to be sent into combat, intent on what was happening but not used to
bursting out. Kids who were used to being told, 'Sit up straight and don't make
faces.' They had become the nice children their parents had raised them to be,
and now they were looking for something beyond that.
Last year they could have eased their changes maybe with a transitional music like Herman's Hermits, the Monkees or even Early Beatles: boys who didn't look like they'd push a girl too far, boys who were willing to come in and meet the parents before a date. Now that kind of act is out, perhaps a victim of the general polarization of attitudes that is going on in America. Now there is a vacuum, a lack of in-betweens. These kids came from Scouts, Sunday School, mowing the lawn for chores and maybe getting a pony for Christmas. And they're going straight out of that toward the world of Pigpen and Janis.
It's a big jump, and they were slow in getting involved in the music that day. They weren't dumb, they just hadn't been anyplace yet, and they rather shyly waited to be shown around. They were like the farmers who gathered in Ottawa, Illinois in 1858 to hear the first Lincoln-Douglas debate:
After their first debate in Ottawa, the New York Evening Post reported: 'All prairiedom has broken loose. It in astonishing how deep an interest in politics these people take."
The bands went through a slow and roundabout courtship with the audience, trying to turn them on. Here were all these hairy gang-bang bands all ready to whoop it up like they'd just driven the herds into Dodge City all the way from the Mexican border, and the crowd was like the school-marm who wonders if kissing with the tongue is ladylike. So ... it took time.
Finally the Youngbloods started to get to them with 'Let's Get Together.' They're a trio now. Jerry Corbett has quit to do some record producing. Jesse said, "He got tired of running around playing rock band gigs." Then Crome Syrcus, a developing band, still not there. Some parts work and some don't. They ended with their ballet score from 'Astarte' which just didn't have anything to say in an outdoor rock concert. Then the Steve Miller Band, the first really hard band of the day, all tight and together. Like watching a good middle-weight contender. They set the crowd UP.
Next came the Grateful Dead. Tom Donahue announced that their new album is out this week and suggested that the Dead might play some numbers from it during their set. Jerry Garcia smiled benignly to himself. He said they'd do 'Alligator' and they did, for about 40 minutes. That was their set and it blew the place wide-open.
Most bands hit a song fast, then stretch out for a while, then end up with a bang. The Dead go Into a song slowly, tentatively, and build up an atmosphere until everybody is inside the music. And then they take off, exploring the figures over and over again over that super rhythm section. if you're outside it, it can be boring. But when they get to you, it's incredible and hypnotic as if the music was happening inside you. In Santa Clara it blew everybody's mind. It was as though we were hearing for the first time in our lives and we stood in a kind of trance scarcely knowing that we were listening. The ending was very drawn-out, on purpose. From that incredible middle they trailed off slowly into percussion sounds, then down to just cymbal noise, and from there to silence. When it was over, we didn't clap much, we just stood there open-mouthed. Who was that Masked Man?
Then Big Brother and the Holding Company came on completely out front, pouring everything into just that moment, as though there is no tomorrow, only right now. Raw power and excitement. The most intense band around. And yet they're all so gentle. They look like they'd scare hell out of a waitress at a drive-in (What'll you boys have? she asked. Raw meat, they answered) and yet they'd be great with children.
And they're all so tasteful They make their choices like old-time country musicians. Janis looks like a gramma, and like a little girl, and like she's burning up with a white flame. While she was singing, the wind was blowing the cottonwood trees behind her, and the leaves were turning over, from green to grey-green and back, as though in time with the music. They're presently recording an LP for Columbia in L.A. They're good people and I hope they get home all right.
And top of the bill. Jefferson Airplane. What a complicated bunch! Casady, Dryden and Jorma laying down their music, and Paul, Grace and Marty Balin out in front doing some weird version of Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolfe, making little remarks, gestures, giggles and faces at each other like they were passing notes in a schoolroom. Their last number was Do You Want Somebody to Love. They led up to it with and air of mixed boredom and relief, like -0h, not this again," but when they got into it, they really got with it and cheered up and smiled and bopped around.
The crowd reaction began with 0 Wow, the Hit! and then warmed up into: Yes, I do want somebody to love actually. Then the festival producers and monitors started shooing away the fans who were standing on the stage: All right, kids, maybe you want somebody to love, Not right now, run along home. That all happened behind the Airplane, who were having a really good time by then. Then they ended and we all ran along.
Source: SF Express Times, May 23, 1968, written by Sandy Darlington
August 4, 1968 - Newport Pop Festival, Costa Mesa CA
I remember going to one Newport Pop Festival - I'm fairly sure it was that show. The Airplane closed the show. Late in their set - it was getting dark and finally cooling off - they (JA) had hundreds of pies delivered to the crowd. Some people ate them some threw them. It was quite a scene. After the show as we were driving back to LA, listening to the radio, we heard Crown of Creation - just released - for the first time.
Thanks to JA it was a great experience. Better than one would have expected to have in a big, hot, crowded field somewhere in Orange County.
contributed by Steve G. (bsinc@PACBELL.NET)
August 31, 1968 - Isle of Wight
Despite all of this homegrown talent, it was the Jefferson Airplane who provided the real highlight of the festivities. They ambled on stage and immediately began to rock.
Lead singers Grace Slick and Marty Balin prowled the stage, their searing harmonies like twin headlights. With additional vocals from guitarist Paul Kantner, their vocal attack remains unparalleled in rock music to this day. Meanwhile, lead guitarist Jorma Kaukonen and bassist Jack Casady - later to form the independent band Hot Tuna - wove instrumental lines of angular virtuosity. The sheer ferocity of the Airplane at this time was almost a physical threat.
It was quite different from anything even hardcore fans had expected. The folky love ballads of Jefferson Airplane Takes Off and Surrealistic Pillow had been replaced by harder hitting material from the then unreleased Crown Of Creation LP. Geoff Wall distinctly remembers being shocked by the vastly revamped version of "Somebody To Love"
"Gone was the fast, frantic, driving pace (that I loved on Surrealistic Pillow) and in its place we were presented with a slower version that I later came to love on Bless Its Pointed Little Head. Songs such as "Watch Her Ride" demonstrated just what a brilliant rhythm guitarist Paul Kantner was. As for Grace Slick, she was beautiful! I felt she was probably the most splendid creature in the world - and she could sing too!"
On the huge screen next to the stage, the Airplane's "lite-show", which they had brought over from San Francisco, displayed ever-changing liquid slides that matched both the mood and the moment. They had brought an entourage of thirty lighting technicians and sound experts and five tons of electrical equipment, a revelation for English audiences. As Dick Taylor remembers, "they used lots of slides, The set looked like a Viking ship".
Nevertheless, the Airplane's drummer Spenser Dryden - wearing a cowboy hat to combat the cold - was none too happy with the Festival. During their ninety-minute set, none of the group could hear each other and they were constantly forced to stop and re-tune in an attempt to get a uniform sound. Coupled with this, the group's psychedelic screen show had to be cut right down in case the field's thick covering of dust damaged valuable lens. Despite this, they continued with a static light show - which the Record Mirror described as "their reversed optical illusion projections" - and got easily the best reception of any of the fourteen groups to appear.
The Airplane had already played Brussels and Stockholm on their short European tour, and were to play a few days later at Parliament Hill Fields, another concert to enter the realms of legend. This lineup reformed in 1989, and made a comeback LP, but the paraphrase BB King, the thrill was definitely gone.
Ron Smith remembers paying them 1000 pounds for their performance which seems the bargain of the century until he mentions that Fairport cost only 80 pounds.
from "Message to Love" by Brian Hinton
May 2 or 3, 1969 - Winterland, San Francisco CA
First time I saw them still remains the best when they played with the Dead at Winterland. Must have been early '69. The first set consisted mostly of material from their current album Pointed Head and was very exciting but Go To Her and Pooneil were highlights. At some point during this set some stoned out nude hippie climbed onto the stage while the Airplane were performing and walked over to Grace. She smiled and said something to him while pointing to the audience. With that he calmly walked over to the edge of the stage and proceeded to walk off like it was solid ground, flipping over and landing on someone's lap! Got a rousing cheer from the crowd as well as a concerned inquiry later from an amused Grace.
But the second set was by far the best I've seen them. The doors were open and people wandered in from the street and there was a sense of freedom and clear light in the room after the initial rush and mayhem of the first set. With the classic line up, the relatively happy Airplane performed 'till the early morning hours from their studio album Crown to the remaining jubilant fans that converged around the stage. I'll never forget the image of seeing Marty singing Pooneil Corners, his romantic balladeer get up and his clear tenor voice riding high over Jack's thunderous bass with the light show behind him consisting of this immense colorful picture of the earth exploding with fire. Beautiful.
Contributed by Robert Piercy (RobertPy@aol.com)
August 2, 1969 - Atlantic City Pop Festival, Atlantic City NJ
Atlantic City Pop Festival. First weekend in August, 1969. Three days. Saturday headliner, Jefferson Airplane.
The show began Friday afternoon with Procol Harum and then Joni Mitchell. Notwithstanding the fact that it was total bad scheduling for Joni to be out there when the gig was just beginning and everyone was just arriving, and all that socializing, greeting chit-chat was going on, Joni was singing her second tune - I don't remember what because though I was/am a great fan of Joni's music, I was socializing at the time and not really paying attention, and she stopped playing all of a sudden, in the middle of the song, and announced that she had just sung the wrong lyrics, and nobody even noticed because nobody was listening and she stopped singing and walked off the stage. Other than that, Friday was fun.
Saturday. Airplane headlines. The story, as I've gotten it, was that they oversold the capacity of the racetrack (this is at the Atlantic City Racetrack - oval track, stage in the center of the oval. Big four corner stage piping with light platforms about 2/3rds up, entire structure covered with a big tarp with a huge peace sign in the middle), and that the crowd for Saturday's show was over 70,000. That made this show bigger than Monterey, and until two weeks later, the biggest rock and roll show to date. All I know was that I took the teeniest little orange barrel I ever had, and it turned out to be the strongest trip. After about ten minutes of tongue melt, I was in total body melt. I was lying on the concrete, Creedence was playing, my face was smeared on the cement, probable drool puddle, which may have been part of the feeling of swimming through this fluid matrix, with many blobs of flashing lights. I remember really enjoying the Creedence set, and really thinking about how beautiful the universe is. Well, we all know about how dangerous that thinking stuff can be.
For the Airplane set I rallied to my usual position of maniac flailing in front of the band. If I remember correctly, they opened with You Me and Pooneil, which began with a near eternity-length feedback, with guitar being slammed into the amplifier by Jorma, and from there it all went straight up. I just remember the GOODness of it all. Now, for those who may not psychedelisized along these lines (and I've got to say it's been a real long time since I've run into anything strong like that), but when buzzed on acid at that level, buzz is one of the keywords. You know that stuff about tasting colors and hearing smells. With all those neurotransmitters scuttling across those synapses, the normal perception boxes are scrambled, and one may not be sure if you are hearing something, or smelling it, or tasting it, or vice versa. Maybe the note is smelling me. Overall, there is a buzz about. What it's about I'm not quite sure, but it's all about. And standing in front of the stage listening to the Airplane that night, pretty much everything was abuzz.
But a large chunk of troubling buzz had to do with hearing sounds from ?, with sounds like too crowded, shut-down, police action. Finally, there was a small bit of reality check (my last of the evening?) when Grace announced that the place was too crowded, and that the cops were making them stop, and this would have to be their last song. I can remember flipping out, crying and wailing. I was in no shape for the Airplane to stop playing. I needed more Airplane. I mean, I REALLY needed much more Airplane (still do).
If I remember correctly, it was Other Side and they played and played that tune for about thirty - forty minutes. As I recall, every time it seemed like the tune was wrapping up, someone would start a jamout, and they just kept pumping it out. I recall being nearly hysterical when the tune would seem to be ending, and then lost in the jam again, until the next imagined end brought on another wave of panic ... then more music ... then finally, it was over. I was a wreck. Meanwhile the cops are lurking wanting the gig over and the Airplane just kept on playing that one last song. That was cool. That was the Airplane.
All that background buzz was now all there was to listen to. That and the general internal noggin buzz, but I was in no shape to tell the difference, at that point. I knew there was no more show, I knew people were doing all this activity stuff and moving and walking and emptying out of the track. And I knew that I had to move.
As I left the track I remember getting this idea that what was going on in my head was very important (oh, ego man, where would I be without you?), and as I sort of meandered along with others, I got this idea that I was a central figure in something of importance, and I decided to go across the highway to the gas station (I knew of the layout from having been there before), to the phone booth and call my parents and ask them if they were watching me on television. So I'm walking along, I have my hand in my pocket, and I'm fingering change, getting ready for that phone booth. I've got money. I've got money. Everything's OK I've got money. Crossing the highway. No problem, of course, because I was invincible. So when the car slammed on its brakes as I crossed the road, and it stopped with me having my hand on the hood, I was not surprised at all. I mean, I couldn't be killed. Not where I was. For all you kids watching at home, do NOT do this. I have subsequently discovered that just because you get very high and think you are invincible, a car can still run you over and cause great bodily harm. This story is for demonstration purposes only.
So I made it across the road, and at the time, the car brake screeches were an interesting soundtrack to that part of my walk. Then I got confused (thank all forms of higher beings for that), and somehow took a wrong turn and couldn't find the pay phone I was looking for on which I was going to call my parents and ask them if they were watching me on television. Like I said, thanks to all the forces that came together and made me not make that phone call. But I was confused. I had now lost my purpose. What was I doing here? So there's the gas station. Bathrooms on the side. A bunch of cars parked there (my own car was by my tent across the road, next to the track somewhere). I opened the door to a car and sat in the drivers seat. I'm sitting there confused. It seemed so clear before, and now it's so fuzzy. God, what am I supposed to do now? I'm sort of sitting there praying, spacing, meditating, and I'm watching a steady stream of folks going in and out of the bathroom. The bathroom is a pay toilet, there's a coin slip right on the door, you know, put a dime in the slot, turn the handle, and voila, entrance obtained. Well, somebody had placed a cardboard soda bottle holder in the door so it wouldn't close. And people are streaming in and out, and I'm spaced, wondering what to do, and then a voice comes to me. Go through the door. Go through the door and on the other side is a lovely field and Grace Slick is waiting for me. Yeah, now this is finally starting to make sense. So I get out of the car and start to walk to the door, and as I get there the person coming out kicks the cardboard and the door closes all the way, and there I am, on the outside of a locked, coin-operated door, and Grace Slick is in a field on the other side, waiting for me. Damn! Wait! Money. I have money. I have coins in my pocket. I never was supposed to call my folks anyway. That was a stupid idea. Meeting Grace in a field, now that's where it's at. So, I go for the coins. Still in my pocket, feel the round metal, some smaller. Dime, that's what I need. Those small dimes I was fingering on the way to the phone. Carefully take the coins out of my pocket. A nickel and four pennies. I mean, what is going on here? Maybe God doesn't love me. I was so psyched to go meet up with Grace in that field inside the bathroom door, and now, here I am, back confused, not knowing what I'm supposed to be doing. So I went back into the car. Really spaced out praying for guidance for a while. The car door opens and the car's owner apologizes for disturbing me (gee, those really were the good old days), but say he's got to go, so out I go.
Now that I've covered the Grace part, I'll just zip thru the rest of the evening. I made my way back across the highway, and back in the track. I got this Messianic idea in my skull that the reason for the confusion was my lack of purity, so I divested myself of my earthly possessions. I threw away my shoes, and walked across the cut stone parking lot barefoot, thinking the pain was cleansing. I ended up getting the idea that I was supposed to climb the top of the stage, somehow I would pop out of the tarp and, while standing on top of the peace sign over the stage, world peace would happen. Well, I did, and it didn't. I threw away everything in my pockets - my comb, handkerchief, car keys (yeah, I know, STUPID), and my wallet. My wallet which contained my Woodstock ticket for two weeks hence. The funny thing is that the following week I got a manila envelope in the mail with my wallet and cards and stuff, but not my Woodstock tic and the few bucks I had were gone. But I always thought that it was nice of somebody to have sent me back my wallet. So I threw away all my earthly possessions and climbed the stage. That was tough. I'm afraid of heights, and I was really praying a lot. Are you sure this is what I'm supposed to be doing? Finally, there I was crawling along the stage supports, over the middle of the stage - pretty high up there - and right below the peace sign there is a raised up triangle of the pipe /\ , so I grab hold, expecting to be shot through the tarp somehow and be standing on top of the peace sign, so I went for it, I mean I'm just following God's instructions, right? So I grabbed the triangle pipe and ... I just dangled. Forty - fifty feet above the stage, I'm dangling. Come on. I've done everything you told me. I mean, if I let go, I'm dead. But I'm definitely not popping through the peace sign. I'm just dangling. Which may be some sort of metaphor for the psychedelic experience. As Dr. John sings, "Such a Night".
To wrap this up, suffice to say, with much prayer I made it down (I'm really afraid of heights, and once I sort of realized that God wasn't guiding me in my climb, I got pretty scared). Eventually I found my tent. My friends were really happy to see me - they had last seen me during Creedence and had no idea. Somebody hotwired my car for me so I could drive home. By the time I got to Woodstock, I didn't need the ticket. And though I had a lot of orange barrels, that tiniest one for Airplane at Atlantic City was the best. And the weirdest. And I've always been kind of sorry that I never made it past that door, into the waiting arms of Grace in that beautiful meadow in the bathroom at the gas station across the road from the Atlantic City Pop Festival.
contributed by David Kreitzer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
March 20, 1970 - Rhode Island College, Providence RI
The show was in a old gym at Rhode Island College 1970... spring I think. I remember well.
I had a friend at my high school who was into the Airplane and as we talked about them often enough he said he could get tickets and I gave him $5 or something and didn't see him again until I was in line to get into the show, the first show and he handed me a ticket for the second show.
So the first show ends and I have worked my way into a good position sitting on the floor and all the people leave. Except me 'cause I figure I got a ticket, why not just stay here.
After all the people are gone a big guy with a beard comes out and starts walking around the stage go I went up to him and told him my situation and he said "fine... sit right here", and that is on the steps to the stage. So now all the people have left and out comes Jack Casady who goes on to the stage, plugs in and starts looking for a blown speaker in the array. Then Marty came out looking dazed and confused. Jack just honked away making rude sound until he was able to locate the problem and then the roadies took over and Jack went away.
When they opened the doors to let the crown in, the first person I saw was a girl I knew from my home town and she's working for the school newspaper and it's her job to interview Jefferson Airplane and she knows nothing at all. Except that I am a big fan and that she had just got very lucky. She grabs me and we are let past a few burly fellows to where the band is held up between shows.
John Hammond and his two sidemen are in the room too. We are warned before we go in that there will be a time when this person will come into the room and order everyone out and wanted us to understand that there was no other way and we agreed and then were let into the room.
I talked to Paul first. I was very impressed with him as a person. He was obviously very intelligent and very polite. Nice. I thought that he had a lot of discipline, self-discipline. I remember thinking that I was a little surprised because I thought he acted a little like a military man. Officer.
Then I got to talk to Grace. I cannot remember a single thing that I said to her. She was wearing a fishnet blouse and only big fish could get caught in that net. For modesty's sake, two patches, about 3" square were sewn on to protect Grace's privacy. We were sitting in school desks across the aisle from each other and while my friend transcribed, Grace was leaning over pretending to hang onto my every word while providing me with a view to which my teenaged eyes dared not look. It still makes me laugh to think how she scared me.
Then I spoke to Jorma. He was sitting wiping off a guitar and I asked him "how do you come up with those riffs" or something equally cool and he says "do you play?" and I nod, and he hands he the Stratocaster he was polishing and picks up a Gibson and starts playing some blues in "A", me strumming along.
Then the big guy yells "Everybody Out!!" That was pretty much the end of the story.
contributed by Richard Baker (email@example.com)
May 7, 1970 - Fillmore East, New York NY
This was a few days after the Kent State massacre, and the Airplane were finishing a two day run, two shows per, at the Fillmore East. We saw the late show - i.e. the fourth show of the run.
To say that things were tense at the time would be a megahyperbolic understatement. After Kent State happened, it seemed as though the revolution was no longer just a verbal exercise, but was reality. THEY were killing us now. What was to come next was anybody's guess.
With this as the background to the show, my friends and I trucked off to New York. The show was weird from the get-go. As I recall, tickets had gone on sale a few days earlier for a week run by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, and there had been no ticket limit policy and a very few scalpers had bought up all the tickets, and the New York concert going crowd were just super P.O'd at Bill Graham. I remember some major argument Bill had with some folks before the show even began. There was definitely hostility in the air. I think Manfred Mann opened and were not given much attention. In those days, the Airplane would open the show with some appropriate video - there was the scene from Disney's "Alice in Wonderland" - ending with the cheshire cat telling Alice that "We're all mad around here" as he fades away to just tail; there was the scene from "North by Northwest" where Cary Grant is chased by the airplane in the field; I think the show that night was the end of King Kong where after Kong falls from the Empire State Bldg. someone says "Well the airplane's done it", and then the movie dude says, "No, it wasn't the airplane, it was beauty killed the beast". Well, these were always big-fun openings, but that night it was different. People were booing the movie. I knew it was going to be a strange night.
The Airplane started playing, and I recall they sounded pretty bad - which was not all that unusual in those days because they played so loud, and without tuning devices that are available today, they would often be very loud very out of tune. I just remember they sounded bad, and with all those weird vibes, the show couldn't get on track.
And Grace was in rare form. She was pretty wasted (projection? - I know I was totally wasted), and she got into some discussions with some members of the audience. Now there were invariably a few New York Aholes at Fillmore shows, but this night there were a few extra. Anyway, I seem to recall the discussion starting with Grace kind of innocently suggesting that since it was such a groove out in California, that we all pack-up New York and move out West. The response of some was f**k California, and that turned into a pretty mean f**k you Grace conversation between Grace and several aholes in the audience. Well, by now the audience is getting pretty hostile among themselves, with the many berating the few. This went on for a while. The band in the meantime had left the stage and Grace was just having this tremendously horrendous verbal exchange with the idiots. This went on for a time-distorted 'long' time, I'd say at least twenty minutes to a half-hour with just Grace on the stage arguing with whomever wanted to argue with her. Then she stopped cold on the stage, looked around, and seeing she was alone, wondered where everybody else was. Marty and I think Paul came out and led her off-stage. The audience was restless. Things were pretty bleak in my mind. The Airplane were Love and Revolution to me, and now there was just the Revolution. What the hell was going on?
Jack and Jorma came out, Jorma with acoustic guitar in hand, and I was stunned. This was something I had been dreaming about for years, to hear Jorma play acoustic guitar. The first Tuna album had not yet been released, and this was amazing. Thay started playing and the aholes were booing and yelling to get off the stage. Jack started to walk off and Jorma grabs him and says that they have to do this, and they did a nice Hot Tuna set in the midst of audience bedlam.
Then the band came back on stage. Grace apologized, saying she had done too much drugs and, besides, she was "on the rag", and all she was trying to do was tell people how nice the scene was out west, and well, it kind of started all over again. And Paul said something about the folks being killed at Kent State, and that was maybe why things were so weird. And, boy, were things weird. By the end of the show - it like seven in the morning, the doors are all open, the sun's streaming into the theatre and everyone's standing on their seats, cheering the band, not allowing them to stop playing, screaming to put some meaning into the night's happenings. I remember thinking that us "good" guys were victorious over the ahole "bad" guys that had added so much negativity to an already downer of a week. "Such a night".
Now some of this is straight memory, and some is from a copy of the tape from the second set that I amazingly ran into a few years back. Some of you may know this tape as the 'shrimp-shit' tape. During Grace's rap in "Somebody to Love" she tells how she can just call up room service at the hotel anytime, even the middle of the night and get whatever she wants, even some 'shrimp-shit' (I think she was referring to shrimp salad). Anyway, what she says is not an ego boast that she's so special, but that we're all special, that we all deserve the finer things, and it's up to each one of us to make it happen in our own lives. It's a message that I've always been grateful to Grace and Paul and the Airplane for.
contributed by David Kreitzer (kreitze1@JEFLIN.TJU.EDU)
September 14 or 15, 1970 - Fillmore West, San Francisco CA
In 1970 I moved to San Francisco with some college friends. We went to the Fillmore one night and did some drugs with Paul Kantner. We were invited back to 2400 Fulton where we played pool with Graham Nash. My friend and I decided to check the house out. We made our way upstairs - and saw Grace Slick by herself, sitting in this chair with only a purple light on. We both froze in our tracks. It was the most mystical experience of my life. It was almost like a religious experience. I saw JA approximately 15 times in the late 60's and early 70's.
contributed by Laura Cupo (CUPODIRECT@aol.com)
November 25, 1970 - Fillmore East, New York NY
I had been to the Fillmore before, but never to see JA.
This was a dream
show; I could swear that some of he photos in the JALY box set came from
this show. Great time for concerts; $7.50 seats, balcony; show starts at
8:00? but ended at 2:30AM. I was about 15; collapse in seats, overcoming
the reds from the afternoon to control the blue-dot-lunch; I wanted to
remember the show.
Opener: Buddy Guy & Junior Wells (Blues at its best, Junior Wells is now deceased).
Hot Tuna opened (a 'new' concept, just a year and a half since the first LP) Played from 8:00 till almost 10:00; electric set) I remember some songs from FPUTPD like Trimmed, Candy Man, but not much else, great jams. Come Back Baby lasted about 20 min, I thunk* maybe Rock Me Baby as well.
JA comes out at about 10:30(?). A screaming 'Saucers' opens the first set, that much I remember. In the breaks, someone throws a big stuffed snake on the stage, Grace picks it up (she's pregnant, ya know) turns to Paul, then to the crowd & says something like "Well, shit, this looks like the thing that got me this way!" A roar from the crowd. They shared some vocals on Marty/Grace songs; then they part company, Marty offstage, Grace offstage. Wooden Ships comes to mind..
Can't detail the sets, (can't detail last week), but the CROWN was my first CROWN - I was lifted; and in a haze of raw-music-power, first CROWNS are like first Dark Stars to GD-folks. Long show; pour out onto 2nd Ave.: cold, clear all senses beaming. Never did I see *that kind* of show from them again. I had the ticket stub till about '81, then lost it in my life somewhere.
Later, in '89, I took my wife to see them on the reunion tour. No, it wasn't the Fillmore but when they hit CROWN - I got a rush like you don't get anywhere else. That '70 show for me was a dream, and reality. This was after the Dead at SUNY Stony Brook some weeks before, there was no comparing the two.
contributed by John Riccio (firstname.lastname@example.org)
August 18, 1971 - Gaelic Park, Bronx NY
Gaelic Park, in the Bronx, is/was an outside venue; stage at one end of the field, not big, the NYC subway system runs right next to the field, hence the best way to get there was by subway from mid-town after the LIRR from LI. Quite a freak show on the subway.
Opener: I have no fu*king idea, if there was one, and so it goes.
Jefferson Airplane, about dark (8:30?), the sound was lost in the air, it was windy and fearing rain, not the most comfortable show, but not the worst.
Highlights were Rock and Roll Island (a fav) and Feel So Good. Most of the vocal songs (Grace) Law Man(?) were really lost in the sky; the sound was not good. Alas, Marty was gone, of course.
I remember telling a friend "It sounds like they are screaming through coffee cans". Jorma and Papa John stand out both in sound and in attack - lots of energy. The guitars/fiddle were the only stand outs, even Jack sounded muddy.
I know we (4) went because we knew what was coming, JA-disband, (I remember tears on the photo on the Rolling Stone cover that confirmed the rumor) but of course had no idea what JS was to do in 74. I had a early CORNELL/JS poster, but lost it - AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!.
contributed by John Riccio (email@example.com)
August 12, 1972 - Festival of Hope, Roosevelt Raceway, Westbury NY
The Airplane was flown in from NYC. I was not on the flight, my buddy was. I was at the Festival of Hope turning the helicopters around and loading/unloading - The Airplane marched off, right to the trailer. I got off work an hour later for the show. Later, I find out that the Airplane (Grace really) blew a fit when they were told that there was food: hamburgers. She (and others) wanted Italian Food - now. They would not play without food, and they wanted Italian Food. A run was made to the local joint, full buckets of everything you could imagine. Papa John could care less; he's drinking with the truck drivers.
Now they were happy. A great set (no list, no memory left, lots of LJS stuff) followed, proceeded by Stephen Stills & Manassas. They got a dancer, (some female) on the side of the stage, inches her way on, during Feel So Good (I think) and the crowd begs her to drop her top. She does a flash, to keep em' happy and it's that Grace gives her the biggest hand.
I get back to the trailer w/ 4K other people now, fences down ... a good time was had by all.
contributed by John Riccio (firstname.lastname@example.org)
August 15, 1972 - Central Park, New York NY
The concert that's clearest in my mind is the Central Park concert, I believe it must have been the summer of '72 in NYC. Two reasons it sticks in my mind is that it was halted by rain, the band left the stage and Grace came out to give a little talk about the dangers of rain and electrical equipment, she made sure that she didn't step on any wires as she walked across the stage, and talked from several feet away from the microphone. When the concert resumed, a woman got out on stage (I don't know if she was a volunteer or a pro) and took off her clothes and danced topless through several numbers. Grace was the only one on stage who seemed to pay any attention to her. Often looking at her as she danced (especially when she just vibrated to a drum solo, Slick appeared impressed). When she left the stage, Grace made some comment like "That was for all you horny guys out there". That was the only time I saw them outside of the Fillmore East. But by that time they had pretty much outgrown it. That topless incident sticks in my mind because it seemed so un-JA. It was also the last time I saw JA in concert. I was too far back in the crowd to really enjoy it like the guys down front did.
contributed by Joseph Strella (JOSEPH.F.STRELLA@hanover.valley.net)
September 22, 1989 - Greek Theatre, Berkeley CA
Knew things were going smoothly when the people I had tickets for showed up on time, no doubt a lingering aftereffect of the papal blessing, and quite literally ran into Seastones in the rush out of the Tied House; thence followed a chase through the BART system where the various groups would recombine and lose themselves, only to wake up somewhere in Berkeley: you know you've done well for yourself when the first phrase greeting you out of Shattuck is "Die Yuppie Scum." Damn, overdressed, and the weather contradicted the Jerry show by being clear and warm.
Hmmph, started on time, how dare they.
Only had time to dart into the Triple Rock and grab the fourth member of our expedition, Kevin, and whipping Larry, Alan, Mark, and Seastones along, we collided with the mob (heh, heh, with one puzzled-looking scalper yelling "a dollar? how about a dollar, then?") as the crowd rushed by to the opening strains of "She Has Funny Cars." The normal setlist progressed into "Somebody to Love," which seemed rather arbitrary under the circumstances, with "Won't You Try/Saturday Afternoon" loosening the group up as the crowd grew accustomed to the very concept of the Airplane playing. What finally marked the evening as special: the early inclusion of "Good Shepherd," the song that stood out at the Fillmore '88 concert, here done with the group giving an indication that, yes, they had come home; Jorma's guitar took on that crystalline quality, Marty and Grace hovered in the wings, and the old Airplane sound suddenly appeared, not the rehearsed, canned sound, but that of a group of comfortable musicians playing with songs so old that they could improvise and even improve.
What I think I'll remember of this concert (besides the fantastic light show!) is how they played so many songs that I detested and actually made me like the live versions--even the loathsome "Miracles" gave a fine moment for Marty, who was otherwise hoarse and holding back, but aided by a conserved Grace and a Jorma who managed to be as quirky as the singers, made a top ten song improvisatory. Which is why a "Wooden Ships" really worked: a good stint on the road has made them rely on each other, and, covering up the reluctance to overstrain the voices, the singers twisted and insinuated around the guitars as it should be, instead of grabbing for the spotlight.
"Lather" seemed to be a focusing point; after years of tongue-in-cheek putdowns of those earlier dreams, here the band was really facing the middle-aged blues belatedly, and with a shrug, acknowledging that this was the peak long dreaded yet so fulfilling. Now a _real_ hippies are dead party week!
Whatever the reported dump of Jorma in the mix was, it sounded here as if it had been fixed (can't wait for the intimacy of the Fillmore). The second set of Tuna into Airplane by way of "Third Week in Chelsea" flowed with only a minimal amount of carping between the band members (Grace saying of Paul's son, when he came on to strum during an early "Planes," was that he was sometimes a bit too much like his father in being loud: the best bitchy line of the evening). Sorely missed was "Trial by Fire," but there will be time for that at any of the other five concerts this week.
--"Oh," Grace blurted out early in the evening, "free concert next Saturday? We wouldn't know anything about that!" What a surprise: but okay guys, where _is_ the damn thing going to be?
The Panda song was an unexpected strong moment; Grace at the keyboards is always tense, but when the sirens from traffic outside intruded, she sort of went "what the hell" and managed to incorporate the sound into the song!
I know he's saving his voice, too, but Marty was clipped when he should have soared; still a bit uncomfortable, he fell more into place on the older songs like "3/5ths of a Mile in Ten Seconds"--"since we have time for only two more songs." His "Solidarity" went nowhere, though, and I guess deserves to be dropped; the group efforts were clearly the best tunes tonight, except for Grace having the best moment, as expected, with "White Rabbit," even to the point of adding a repeat verse. "Summer of Love" was an embarrassment, saved only by the gorgeous lights which must have the band singing, instead of "I believe in miracles," rather "I believe in chemicals." [heard from the audience, ahem, when squeaks disrupted this doomed little number: "equipment problems, how nostalgic" 8')]
Yeah, I think they pulled it off; even though the songs from SURREALISTIC PILLOW were not the highlights, there was, in the better moments, the same fresh glow that the album had which enveloped the whole evening. And it makes me look forward to the endurance test of the next five concerts here in the Bay, knowing that the band is actually _tooling around_ with old stand-bys--even with a same setlist (and they seemed to be feeling around for requests: wonder if I can get away with "Alexander the Medium" 8')), these should all be quite different shows.
Contributed by Hal Broome (email@example.com)
September 23, 1989 - Concord Pavilion, Concord CA
Much more of a rock-n-roll night. The pavilion, while soul-less, was well designed for comfort, and the overhead stage brought the amplification levels up: Marty's voice was better in this environment, and the sluggish "True Love" of the night before really shone here, bringing the crowd to its feet. Lots of folk came in late, including Doug and me, to a not very noteworthy "Good Shepherd": it was "Wooden Ships" before the band took off. The relatively low ceiling stunted the lights and gave more of a discotheque effect, which translated into the dance feel of the evening.
Grace was wearing a white mini-skirt with go-go boots, in contrast with the black outfit of the night before; her "Lather" was dedicated to Peter Kaukonen, who was conveniently celebrating his 30th birthday (the night of the Greek, Bill Graham had the dedication honor "because," Grace dead-panned, "he's the only one here older than I am"). Efforts from the audience to encourage her to doff the outfit failed after a short tease.
Jack and Jorma were in a goofy mood at the beginning of the Tuna set, with a mock opening line of "Sunshine of Your Love," but really got down to some serious picking; whereas the earlier night had the spacious quality of the open air, the closed stage was more in keeping with the boozy prohibition blues aura of the pair. "Third Week in Chelsea" was rather straightforwardly thrown off, and, I hate to admit this, the band did another excellent version of "Miracles" due to Marty's improved voice: more in the acid-dance tradition of the earlier days than in 70's schlock. I really hope I don't wind up liking the song after all these years. Making it a bit more palatable was the trick opening of the "Somebody to Love" riff, which stopped dead, whereupon the singers attacked "Miracles" with relish.
Paul it was who rocked out more this night, flailing chords with Jorma, and "Planes" sounded much better than the night before; it was something of a shock to realize that to some in the audience, it was the only recognizable single, and was eagerly greeted. Also stronger were "3/5ths of a Mile" and "Crown of Creation," again rocked out, yet less rushed than the previous evening. However, I somehow missed the spacy aura of the Greek night and the disjointed, seat-of-the-pants feel of its song versions.
Tomorrow the band is off to an LA date, and I'm off to bed at last, to dream of the three-night run at the Fillmore starting Tuesday. Hope they are brave enough to do at least one all-acoustic evening.
Contributed by Hal Broome (firstname.lastname@example.org)
September 26, 1989 - Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco CA
Pity the poor Stones and Who: they can't return in triumph to the Fillmore.
Bill Graham was waiting for his 'Plane, checking his watch, and proudly acting the prodigal band's father, having raided the attic for all the old lights and posters: the new optic fiber lights were truncated here, looking like mean Daleks with fanged beams, but more eye-catching was the right hand wall. On a third of either side of the sheet-draped wall, three-dimensional mandalas (like 3-d posters without the glasses, except that the red and blue flickered) framed alternating stills of old posters, with the occasional moving image of old Trips festivals and scenes from the Haight's heyday. The crowd was entirely psyched by the vision of the old days, and I restlessly waited on the left side of the stage. Grace was visible in the far balcony, smoking a cigarette with Paul, wearing her chrome nun outfit and peering demurely down.
Finally, the lights dimmed, and Bill stepped on the stage behind Marty: "When it's all said and done," he beamed, "there's only one way to fly . . . ."
And fly they did; no holding back on the voices tonight, and from the start they had complete control of the throttle. Grace was lavishly dispensing her trademark, the sustaining of a note until every vibrato rang through the soul, and Marty was reaching higher and higher, as if daring his voice to crack. But the real star of the night was Jack, whose bass rumbled up from the Nordic roots of Ygdrasil and shook the floor like an earthquake. Maybe a bit muddy compared to the Greek, but in a way evoking dear bootlegs of the old sound, a tidal wave pierced with lucid screams.
"Thank God for technology," Grace smiled, "after all these years I can finally hear myself in here!"
The band was in nostalgia mode, Marty reminiscing about how long it took to take the bus to the Fillmore, and with each song the light display on the wall grew more intense: their trademark oil lights splashed across the hall like some psychedelic Exxon spill, and during "Embryonic Journey" (which was absent during the Concord show) there were film clips of an underwater swim, sponges and seaweeds of some earth mother's uterus.
The band was jumping around so much that Jack (I think, I was on the way to the restroom) stumbled across a power cord on "America," knocking out the sound. "We were going to take a break anyway," Grace laughed.
So the break lasted longer while it was fixed, with old cartoons being flashed on the wall.
Whew! I could go on, but I think you get the picture. One nice addition: yelling to Marty as he went backstage after a stomping, bring down the rafters "Volunteers," I got my song request--"It's No Secret."
'bout time, too.
Contributed by Hal Broome (email@example.com)
September 27, 1989 - Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco CA
Was wondering when the old idiosyncratic 'Plane would emerge from the hangers, and tonight was the night.
Bill Graham had to push them onto the stage, but once there they started spot on, with a miraculously-close-to-the-album version of "Somebody to Love"; then, in the middle of a fun "Plastic Fantastic Lover," Marty yelled out "who's got the acid?" and things turned weird from there on . . . "What were you thinkin' about when you wrote this one, Paul?" Grace taunted Kantner at the start of "Won't You Try/Saturday Afternoon," a number they seem to be grooming for Saturday in the park, and whatever it was, it was on their minds the whole evening.
Obviously tired, they laid back and put in dreamy versions of the slower ballads, like "Lather" and "Today," slowing down more and more until you thought they would stop like a record turned off; however, Grace pepped up enough to put in a great "Freedom"--part of the magic was wondering if it was going to crash out like the previous songs. By the time of the Tuna set, Jorma and Jack were almost catatonic, playing the songs slooowwwlly. The more ironic of the lyrics dealing with being tired and cynical came across heartfelt.
The media were there with cameras (Grace making up rhymes like "I've almost forgot this song" with "begun"), and there was a surprise entrance by the acid clown Wavy Gravy, who announced a free concert in Washington DC for the homeless, featuring the Airplane. "Right in Bush's back yard," he boasted: somehow I don't expect that Bush'll drop in for a cup of tea with Grace 8').
One addition: when Grace came in and joined Tuna, she sang a short but vaudevillesque version of "Five foot two, eyes of blue," much like her mother must have done in her cocktail lounge days.
The band recovered from there, with an excellent "Wheel" for once; the highlight of the light show featured film clips from a black-n-white Alice in Wonderland movie at the appropriate moment of "White Rabbit." The scenes were well-timed to match the lyrics, with Alice eating the 'shroom and growing larger, then contracting with a drink from the bottle.
A strange night; Marty remarked that it was great to play before smaller audiences: not that the Fillmore wasn't packed: I expect they felt looser with the smaller venue.
Contributed by Hal Broome (firstname.lastname@example.org)
September 28, 1989 - Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco CA
Well, back in the hanger for the 'Plane as far as the Fillmore is concerned; the upcoming benefits have pre-empted the added Monday and Tuesday dates. "Pray for sunshine," Paul said (I would prefer for Grace to bare her breasts, actually--wonder if it still works? 8')) about Saturday's free concert: we have a 30% chance of rain, but given the draught the past few years, nobody seems really worried.
They put in a solid last set, no real highs or lows, and had a lot of physical fun, mugging with the microphones like they were periscopes, Marty tootling his fingers on his like a recorder in front of Grace, who had received a request "to play the flute" the night before. Again they seemed to really take the meanings of the older songs seriously, "you don't really need us anymore" and "what do you want from me?" Marty chuckled and pointed to his dye-job on the line from "3/5ths of a Mile" which went "people laugh at my hair," and changed the line in "Volunteers" of "one generation got old" to "my generation got old." Sort of sad in a way; seems as if they realize it might be the last tour.
"You know," Grace said at the end of "Today," "right before I sing a song I think, 'I've been doing this for 25 years,' but when we sing it I feel like it's now." The result of the touring: they do indeed seem the old band now, with Marty and Grace really playing off of each other's vocal posturings; will be a shame if they pack it all in after the October 7th free concert in Washington--but what a grand exit, singing "White Rabbit" on Bush's doorstep!
So they spent a little more time on the encore, three songs, which included the mysterious "blues number" that a former reviewer on the right coast mentioned: that was "Rock Me Baby," a real oldy which Jorma treated righteously; for once, he did better on electric than acoustic, including playing the opening organ line to "America" on his electric, smiling in a "I can do that" manner. He did, too. For the last bit of "Crown of Creation," where the guitars strum as the singers put in the last haunting refrains, Jack, Jorma, and Peter had their back to the audience, swaying in unison with each chord; the audience found it rather amusing.
[more _erratum_: e-mail from Sean which complained that I left out the Grace fashion report yesterday; how could I? Okay, the theme the whole tour has been short skirts and boots, with Wednesday night's outfit made in mock leopard skin--an ironic touch to her "Panda" song. Last night's was black with aircraft designs in circles: she wore large earrings with silver monkeys, had a neat watch which wrapped only partially around the wrist, and a large, chunky pottery bracelet on the other wrist. Eyes this time around: blue. Catch her with the green contacts sometime: yeow! And hey! China was there last night with her girlfriends--good-looking young lady, but too bad that when it comes to singing, she takes after her father.]
Contributed by Hal Broome (email@example.com)
September 30, 1989 - Polo Field, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco CA
My mate Markster, from the the wilds of Pennsylvania, arrived early to find me clutching the bedsheets with desperation; after whispering "Grace Slick" a few times and noting with alarm that there was no response, he nearly called an ambulance, but fortunately tried the old trick of brewing a nice hot pot of coffee first, which he proceeded to dump over my head.
Hey, it works for me.
I drove us into the city, noting with disappointment that it was turning into a gorgeous, warm, cloudless day; oh well, I don't suppose Grace does her rain-turning trick anymore, anyway.
Even at that early hour there was already assembled the
usual motley crew
of freeloaders that turn up at these events, some having camped the night
before; Markster honed into a chess board and promptly eliminated all
takers before my astonished eyes. Didn't know he played, heh, heh, so
like all amateurs who assume they're hot stuff, I protested that I hadn't
played in ages (generally true) and calmly sat down with the ulterior motive of beating the pants off of him.
Meanwhile, the Bobby guy had started with "Blackbird," a set that matches fairly closely the ones listed from the east coast, and the Robby guy was scratching a huge bass (which the sound system was muddying horribly; or maybe we were just too close). Twirlers, dancers, unsteady drunks, and non-conformist WASPS on various substances merged around the board as I filled with that particularly horrible alarm peculiar to chess players which results from having underestimated my opponent; a line from "Throwing Stones" about not winning came through the pandemonium, or maybe it was just the white knight talking backwards. The crowd grew more and more animated, and I wished for some ecstatic fool to come knock off the pieces, that is, until I finally pinned Markster into one of those awfully complicated positions which are my specialty (games imitate life, no?); having thrown him into a funk, he made a move which made my day. To add to the surrealism, just as I proclaimed "checkmate" a drunk came through and scattered the pieces to the four winds; they were recovered, only to be later stolen from the poor guy who was so proud of his set. Downer.
We then stood, leaning slightly backwards as the Bob and Rob guys made an exit to the cries of "see you tonight!" and the sound system blasted us askew with all sorts of shrieks and belches. Someone looking like Carlos Santana made a sound check, and, apparently throwing up his hands in disgust, was not to be seen the rest of the concert. Damn, really wanted to hear a "Pretty as You Feel" jam. When working, the donated sound system was great, but to paraphrase David Ossman's HOW TIME FLIES, it was "a little loud, though."
Bill Graham, whose people were mingling with those of KFOG (why oh why do radio stations have to go through the embarrassing trick of parading out DJ's, who are the negatives of silent screen stars, in that their looks dissolve any gain from their voices?), gushed more than I did earlier with some "what if" remarks: "What if," he shouted from his bully pulpit, "both the A's and the Giants meet in our fair city? What if we closed Angel Island down and filled it with this crowd and musicians?"
Yes, folks, there seems to be the possibility of the grand scion of all free rock concerts in San Francisco if this sporting possibility comes across; stay tuned!
Kantner, of course, was enjoying the hell out of the whole day, having started the tradition of free concerts "from the back of a $40 rented flat-bed truck." Explaining how the current concert came about, he mocked that mayor "Art Agnos came up and kissed me on the cheek and said 'Paul, when are you going to do that free concert that you promised?'" What had really transpired was that then-candidate Agnos had taken the stage at the Summer of Love Reunion free concert two years ago and promised more concerts; Kantner took him up on it, and various organizers had thrown in lots of money to make it possible.
By the time the Airplane was in flight, some 50,000 people had assembled; the concert itself was the same as always, only filled with a lot more energy and boosted by the huge speaker system; gee guys, if you think I'm gonna rehash everything, give me a day off (and believe me, it was a day, um, OFF). The crowd ate it up. Grace was thrown a panda for a change, and introduced "White Rabbit" as being about a species of which there were plenty; white rabbit hand-puppets filled the happy crowd, and a silly six-foot bunny jumped across the stage (oh, these radio promotions). On hand was a frail gentleman taking pictures; Grace pointed him out as father of two of the band members, the senior Mr. Kaukonen. Jorma did a very hot "Rock Me Baby" in tribute, and "It's No Secret" was included in the encore as being one of the first songs sung in the park. Wavy Gravy must have come across my comment last year that the 300 pound transvestite Sadie Sadie the Rabbi Lady had out-colored him; both were there, but Gravy had outdone even Tammy Bakker.
Afterwards, feeling in the spirit, Markster and I walked into the Haight and had a pint of the excellent Guinness at the Achilles Heel across from the Free Medical Clinic [hi Flash! met some of your people in the Szechuan Restaurant down the street]; playing on the sound system was the Jefferson Airplane's greatest hits. If, as Paul promised, the Airplane would be back soon (at another free concert), then we haven't seen the last of them.
We drank a toast to the thought.
Contributed by Hal Broome (firstname.lastname@example.org)