By Aidin Vaziri
Updated 7:04 am, Friday, January 29, 2016
Photo: Clem Albers, The Chronicle
Paul Kantner, one of the giants of the San Francisco music scene, died Thursday. Mr. Kantner, a founding member of the Jefferson Airplane, was 74 and had suffered a heart attack this week.
His death was confirmed by longtime publicist and friend, Cynthia Bowman, who said he died of multiple organ failure and septic shock.
Mr. Kantner had a string of health problems in recent years, including a heart attack in March.
With Jefferson Airplane, Mr. Kantner pioneered what became known as the San Francisco sound in the mid-1960s, with such hits as “Somebody to Love” and “White Rabbit.”
The Airplane was renowned for thrilling vocal gymnastics by singers Marty Balin, Grace Slick and Mr. Kantner, the psychedelic blues-rock sound developed by guitarist Jorma Kaukonen and bass player Jack Casady and the LSD-spiked, ’60s-era revolutionary fervor of its lyrics.
The band was formed in 1965 in a Union Street bar called the Drinking Gourd, when Balin met Mr. Kantner and expressed his interest in creating a “folk-rock” band. It didn’t take long for the Airplane to attract a sizable local following, enough so that when fledgling promoter Bill Graham opened his legendary Fillmore Auditorium, the Jefferson Airplane served as the first headliner.
Last edited by PurpleSkyz on Fri Jan 29, 2016 8:43 pm; edited 1 time in total