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American psychedelic rock band from San Francisco, CA. During the late 1960s, the band (along with The Grateful Dead) epitomized San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury culture.
The band began in 1965 when singer Marty Balin met guitarist Paul Kantner. They began as a folk-rock group, added lead guitarist Jorma Kaukonen, drummer Alexander Spence, singer Signe Anderson, and bassist Bob Harvey (7), who was soon replaced by Jack Casady. The group was signed by RCA Victor, and their debut album charted (#128), selling 10,000 copies in the San Francisco area. Anderson left to have a baby and was replaced by Grace Slick, Spence left to form Moby Grape and was replaced by Spencer Dryden, which began the group's definitive lineup. They performed at the Woodstock and Altamont festivals but then had its second major shakeup when Dryden left in 1970 to join New Riders Of The Purple Sage (he was replaced by Joey Covington), and the band stopped touring when Slick became pregnant by Kantner. Kaukonen and Casady formed Hot Tuna In 1971, but remained members of the Airplane. The same year the group formed its own label, Grunt (3), distributed by RCA. In February 1974 Slick and Kantner officially formed the Jefferson Starship, which brought the original phase of the group to a close.
The band was inducted into Rock And Roll Hall of Fame in 1996 as a Performer.
Jefferson Airplane was an American rock band based in San Francisco, California, that became one of the pioneering bands of psychedelic rock. Formed in 1965, the group defined the San Francisco Sound and was the first from the Bay Area to achieve international commercial success. They were headliners at the Monterey Pop Festival (1967), Woodstock (1969), Altamont Free Concert (1969), and the first Isle of Wight Festival (1968) in England. Their 1967 break-out album Surrealistic Pillow was one of the most significant recordings of the Summer of Love. Two songs from that album, "Somebody to Love" and "White Rabbit", are among Rolling Stone's "500 Greatest Songs of All Time".The October 1966 to February 1970 lineup of Jefferson Airplane, consisting of Marty Balin (vocals), Paul Kantner (guitar, vocals), Grace Slick (vocals), Jorma Kaukonen (lead guitar, vocals), Jack Casady (bass), and Spencer Dryden (drums), was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996. Marty Balin left the band in 1971. After 1972, Jefferson Airplane effectively split into two groups. Kaukonen and Casady moved on full-time to their own band, Hot Tuna. Slick, Kantner, and the remaining members of Jefferson Airplane recruited new members and regrouped as Jefferson Starship in 1974, with Marty Balin eventually joining them. Jefferson Airplane was presented with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016.