Saturday, July 25, 2009

May-August 1967 Jefferson Airplane Performance List (Airplane VI)

As a result of my research into other areas of Rock Prosopography, I have ended up with a fairly detailed list of Jefferson Airplane performances from 1965-69. Since I have no other plans for it, I am posting it here. This list leans heavily on the posted Jefferson Airpane set lists document by Scott Abbott, as well as information from Jeff Tamarkin’s fine book Got A Revolution, but it includes considerably more shows. Please forward any changes, updates, advice or criticism.

The previous installments listed known shows from Jefferson Airplane’s formation through 1965 and 1966. The first post in the sequence is here. This post covers known shows from May through August 1967.

May 5, 1967 Gym, Contra Costa College, San Pablo, CA 
Jefferson Airplane
This rather obscure Junior College (near Richmond) was presenting regular rock concerts in the Spring of 1967.

May 6, 1967 Greek Theatre, UC Berkeley
Jefferson Airplane/Dick Gregory

May 7, 1967 [Frost Amphitheatre], Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA 
Jefferson Airplane
Ralph J. Gleason reported that the Airplane played Stanford this afternoon, so I have assumed they played Frost. They may have played this date instead of March 5.

May 7, 1967 Freeborn Hall, UC Davis, Davis, CA (evening)

Jefferson Airplane/Steve Miller Blues Band

May 11, 1967 [venue], Cowell/Stevenson Dining Commons, UC Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA “Spring Thing”,
Jefferson Airplane

I have somewhat clarified the facts surrounding the UCSC "Spring Thing." The campus-wide event was held from Thursday May 11 thru Sunday May 14. The capstone was a Jefferson Airplane concert at the Coconut Grove in Santa Cruz, open to the public and advertised in the San Francisco Chronicle. The memory of the commenter below (of the Airplane playing "Under My Thumb" in the Dining Commons) suggests that the Airplane played the Campus proper on the night of Thursday May 11. Since the band had an upcoming Fillmore date, the campus show would not have been formally advertised.

May 12-13-14, 1967 Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco (14th afternoon)
Jefferson Airplane/Paupers

May 14, 1967 Panhandle, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco (afternoon)
Jefferson Airplane/others

Ralph J Gleason, in his Ad Lib column on Friday, May 12, says that the Airplane and others will play the Panhandle (just on the edge of Golden Gate Park). If the Airplane did indeed play, it would mean they played the Panhandle for lunch, headlined the Fillmore for dinner and played Santa Cruz (below) at night.

May 14, 1967 Coconut Grove, Santa Cruz, CA
Jefferson Airplane/Flowers Of Evil/American Tragedy

The University of California at Santa Cruz was the system's newest campus, and lacking a football team, they had to find other forms of amusement ("Mescaline Tuesday" was a tradition well into the 1970s, for example). The culmination of their 4-day "Spring Thing"was a Jefferson Airplane concert at the hall on the beachside boardwalk, supported by two student bands.

An ad from the San Jose State newspaper, The Spartan Daily from May 12, 1967
May 18, 1967 Civic Auditorium, San Jose
Jefferson Airplane/Rainy Daze/Chocolate Watchband/Lewis and Clark Expedition

May 19, 1967 Men’s Gym, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo
Jefferson Airplane/Circus

May 20, 1967 Birmingham Stadium, Van Nuys
Jefferson Airplane/The Doors/Merry Go Round/Peanut Butter Conspiracy/Nitty Gritty Dirt Band/Standells “Pepsi Boss Battle of the Bands”

The Doors open the show (they have a gig at the Whisky), and a third of the 10,000 people leave after their 6:00 pm set.

May 21, 1967 Mission Garden, University of Santa Clara, Santa Clara (1:00 pm)
Jefferson Airplane/Cal Tjader/Vince Guaraldi

May 26,1967 Carver Gym, Western Washington State College, Bellingham, WA
Jefferson Airplane/Safety Patrol

Safety Patrol would soon become Fat Jack. At this time, Kathi McDonald, recently of Bellingham band The Unusuals, was their lead vocalist. Possibly this show was on the 25th.

May 27, 1967 Richmond Arena, Richmond, BC "Vancouver Trips Festival"
Jefferson Airplane/Collectors/Painted Ship/Magic Fern

May 28, 1967 Memorial Coliseum, Portland, OR
Jefferson Airplane/The Byrds/PH Phactor Jug Band/Magic Fern

May 29, 1967 Seattle Center Arena, Seattle, WA
Jefferson Airplane/The Byrds/Don and The Good Times/Magic Fern/Crome Syrcus

May 30, 1967 Winterland, San Francisco HALO Benefit
Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead/Big Brother and The Holding Company/Quicksilver Messenger Service/Charlatans

HALO (Haight-Ashbury Legal Organization) was basically just Brian Rohan and Michael Stepanian, and it was based at 715 (or possibly 710) Ashbury.

Parts of this show were broadcast on KMPX-fm, probably after the fact. The Dead and the Charlatans probably did not play. In Tom Donahue’s introduction to Quicksilver, he says “all three bands will play twice.” He also refers to a “mystery guest from a far-off land.” The Quicksilver and Airplane sets circulate.

>June, 1967 RCA Records releases “White Rabbit”/”Plastic Fantastic Lover” (RCA Victor 47-9248). It will reach #8 on the Billboard charts.

June 4, 1967 Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, TX
Jefferson Airplane

June 5, 1967 Municipal Auditorium, San Antonio, TX
Jefferson Airplane/Jim Jones and The Chanteys/Zachery Thaks
June 9, 1967 Wonderland Skating Rink, Fresno, CA
Jefferson Airplane
This show is known from an article in the June 1, 1967 Fresno Bee (above). The paper notes that the show will be on the last day of school.

June 10, 1967 Earl Warren Showgrounds, Santa Barbara, CA
Jefferson Airplane/Heads and Tails/Captain Speed

June 11, 1967 Mt. Tamalpais Theater, San Rafael
Fantasy Fair and Magic Music Festival-Benefit for Hunter’s Point Child Care Center
Lamp of Childhood/Sons of Champlin/Captain Beefheart/New Salvation Army Banned/Hugh Masakela/PF Sloan/Marvin Gaye/Jefferson Airplane/The Grass Roots/Steve Miller Band/Tim Buckley

This show lays claim to being the first outdoor mult-day pop festival, preceding the Monterey Pop festival by a week. Originally it was scheduled for the weekend of June 3-4, but it was rescheduled for the next weekend (June 10-11) due to rain.

The Mt. Tam Theater is a beautiful natural amphitheatre on top of a hill. Fans were bused to the top of the hill, since there is almost no parking. The large crowd (probably small by today’s standards) overwhelmed the facility, and rock shows stopped being held at this beautiful site (although at least one previously scheduled event on July 1-2, 1967 took place).

June 17, 1967 Horse Show Arena, Monterey County Fairgrounds, Monterey (evening show) Monterey Pop Festival
Otis Redding/Booker T and The MGs (with the Mar-Keys)/Jefferson Airplane/Laura Nyro/Butterfield Blues Band/The Byrds/Hugh Masakela/Moby Grape

Besides the band’s scheduled Saturday night performance, members of the Airplane almost certainly joined the impromptu jamming on the small stage at the impromptu campgrounds across the road at Cypress Community College athletic field.

June 20-25, 1967 Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco
Jefferson Airplane/Gabor Szabo/Jimi Hendrix Experience
At least some of the nights (possibly all but the first night), Jefferson Airplane did not play because someone in the Airplane was sick. Big Brother replaced the Airplane on the bill. The apocryphal, if unlikely story (told to me by someone who went) was that Jorma was intimidated by Hendrix.

June 21, 1967 Speedway Meadows, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco
"Summer Solstice Festival
Jefferson Airplane/Big Brother and The Holding Company/Grateful Dead/Quicksilver Messenger Service/Mad River

The Diggers styled this a “Do-In” as opposed to a Be-In. There were multiple stages. Peter Vincent identifies the Airplane as as playing in his 1967 diary .

June 30, 1967 Ford Auditorium, Detroit, MI
Jefferson Airplane/The Rationals/The Apostles/MC5/Ourselves

July 1, 1967 Civic Opera House, Chicago, IL
Jefferson Airplane

July 2, 1967 Field House, Beloit College, Beloit, WI
Jefferson Airplane

July ?, 1967 South Florida 4H Youth Club Convention, Miami, FL Jefferson Airplane
Amazingly, a Commenter recalls
Every summer the 4H kids would have a cow and pig contest at the South Florida 4H youth fair held 10 miles south of Miami way out in the sticks on Kendall Drive. So I go out there to eat some corn dogs and smell the odors of the farm just for kicks and who is playing to about 50 people in the "youth tent."
I have assumed the date--it could have been anytime in the Summer.

July 15, 1967 Anaheim Convention Center, Anaheim
The Doors/Jefferson Airplane/Merry Go-Round

There were 2 shows at 3:00 and 8:30. I had not been certain that the Airplane played the afternoon show, but a Commenter recalls them for certain.

July 16, 1967 Devonshire Meadows Raceway, Northridge, CA
Fantasy Fayre and Magic Music Festival
Solid State/Humane Society/Sunshine Company/Butterfield Blues Band/Country Joe and The Fish/Heather Stones/New Delhi River Band/Jefferson Airplane/Sunshine Company/Thornshield/Merry-Go-Round/Canned Heat

This was the second day of a two day festival (Saturday July 15 and Sunday July 16). The bands are listed above as part of Sunday’s running order from 10:00am-7:00pm, known from a photo of the show’s schedule (the site of the race track is now the North Campus of Cal State Northridge).

July 17, 1967 Swing Auditorium, San Bernardino, CA 
Jefferson Airplane

July 19, 20, 21, 1967 Convention Hall, Minneapolis, MN ‘Happening 67’
Jefferson Airplane/Buffalo Springfield/Electric Prunes/Shadows of Knight

Its not clear if the Airplane played one of the shows or all of them.

July 22, 1967 Convention Center, Asbury Park, NJ
Jefferson Airplane

July 23, 1967 Nathan Phillips Square, Toronto, Ontario (free concert)
Jefferson Airplane/Luke and The Apostles/Spring Garden Road

Bill Graham shrewdly had the Airplane play for free in anticipation of the upcoming week of shows. Since there were no FM radio stations in Toronto, it was his best chance for publicity.

July 27-28-29, 1967 Broadmoor International Center, Colorado Springs, CO
Jefferson Airplane
Two shows on Saturday July 29. A Commenter recalled one of the shows.

July 31-August 5, 1967 O’Keefe Center, Toronto, Ontario
Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead/Luke and The Apostles
“Bill Graham Presents the San Francsico Scene in Toronto”

August 4, 1967 Nathan Phillips Square, Toronto, Ontario (afternoon show)
Jefferson Airplane

August 6, 1967 Place Ville Marie, Montreal, Quebec (free afternoon show)
Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead

Graham publicized this evening’s Montreal show with a free concert in the afternoon. The idea of popular performers “giving it away for free” was unheard of at the time.

August 6, 1967 Expo 67, Montreal, Quebec
Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead

August 7, 1967 Eastman Theater, Rochester, NY
Jefferson Airplane

August 8, 1967 Civic Center, Springfield, MA
Jefferson Airplane/CC And The Chasers

>August, 1967. RCA Records releases “Ballad of You And Me and Pooneil”/”Two Heads” (RCA Victor 47-9297). The song does not chart. Single releases are not noted hereafter.

For the next installment see here.


  1. Regarding the May 11, 1967 show at UCSC, this was an indoor evening show. As I recall JA was hired to perform at the Spring (Fling) Thing and it took place in cafeteria/auditorium shared by cowell/stevenson at the time (The auditorium was the site of most of the "Evening Social Dinners" at the time). I had never before (or since) heard the JA play "Under My Thumb" by the Rolling Stones. It sounded great! Also, I don't remember the date but somewhere between 1967 - 1968 the Airplane also played at the Coconut Grove on the Beach in Santa Cruz. Perhaps it was in 1968 which isn't on this list. Highlight of that show was when the lighting person shined overly bright lights directly in Grace Slick's eyes during "Somebody to Love". After unsuccessfully trying to wave off the lighting, she stood there, mid-lyric, legs apart, and defiantly gave the finger to the lighting guy. I'll not forget that image.

  2. The Airplane did play Coconut Grove in 1966, but of course Grace wasn't even in the band. I have to figure that they played there in late 1967, as they simply would have been too big afterwards. Thanks so much for the details--I wish they'd done "Under My Thumb" more often, its a perfect song for them.


  3. Sometime in 1967, probably in the Summer the Airplane played Springfield, MA. Opening act was CC and The Chasers.

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  6. Regarding a Springfield date, I have it listed as being August 8 or 9 and Rochester show the other day. The order would be dependent on how the band returned back to California (out of Toronto, or much more likely out of Boston or NYC). If they went back via Toronto (less likely) the Rochester show would be last. After the run at the O'Keefe and a couple of shows with the Grateful Dead in Montreal on the 6th, the Dead made their way to NYC. I don't know of any other performances by the Dead until the 10th (the rumored roof of the Chelsea Hotel performance) and then they flew to Detroit on the 11th for the Grande Ballroom shows. As a side issue, I never figured out if the Dead played or went to the Cheetah whilst they were in New York. There is an odd radio spot for it that used to circulate.

    Another little issuette is that in the Spring of 1967 the Jefferson Airplane were apparently booked to play the Unicorn coffee house (as confirmed by The Fitchburg Sentinel - 19670328) in Boston. I had assumed these shows never happened - using the rationale that there were not other East Coast shows around that time. So it is another, albeit in my view less likely, possibility for a date – but it would mean that an entire, although perhaps brief, East Coast tour had been mislaid over the years.

    My best shot has the JA going from Montreal to Rochester on August 8, playing one night, going on to play Springfield on August 9, and then heading back to the West Coast. Maybe they even headed to NYC with the Dead? Maybe the Dead accompanied them to Rochester and Springfield en route to New York?

    I appreciate that this does not really help much. Ross

  7. I like the Montreal>Reochester>Springfield formulation. I'm not as inclined to think the Dead were along for the ride if they didn't play--people go to New York City to hang out, not Rochester.

  8. Regarding the 5/29/67 Seattle Center gig, I have just emailed an ad from the Seattle Helix (great paper, BTW!) showing the date to be 5/30/67. If JA did play Seattle on 5/30/67, this might also explain the "missing band" from the HALO Benefit, discussed at

  9. Joe, this is a fantastic find, but the Helix ad says "Memorial Day May 30," and Memorial Day was the 29th. Some band has to be a no-show at the HALO show, however, and whatever hippie mistakes may be in the ad, its an important clue.

  10. Dangit, I realize now I should have looked through the Seattle Times (archives now available electronically at University of Washington) for a listing, ad, show review, etc. I'd bet with how big the JA were at the time that there was a review.

    Anyone reading have access to the UW collections?

  11. Additional gigs......

    1) June 4, 1967 Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, TX

    2) July 6, 1967 Blaises Club, London, UK (this is the only confirmed gig from the scheduled UK Tour that finally never happened that year)

  12. Thanks Bruno. Did the Blaises Club show (July 6 67) actually happen or not?

  13. no no Corry.....the UK Tour scheduled for summer '67 not happened....the tour was re-scheduled for 1968 as you know.

  14. What a Mitzvah you provide. I was there at Western on May 26 for the Airplane and a few days later at Richmond. Thank you for the details, for a story I am writing. Do you have any more background material about Bellingham or Vancouver?
    Thank you
    Noel V. Bourasaw, editor

  15. Noel, thanks for the compliment. I don't know much else about either of those two concerts, and I look forward to whatever you may be writing about them.

    There is some general information about the show on the Emergency Patrol/Fat Jack page on Northwest Bands site,

  16. The Airplane definitely played the 3:00 show at the Anaheim Convention Center, 7/15/67. I was there, and I'll never forget it. Order: Merry Go-Round, Doors, Airplane.

  17. Thanks for the information about the Anaheim show. I updated the post accordingly.

  18. Just a tidbit regarding the July 16, 1967 Devonshire (Downs) Meadows Raceway show; Cal State Northridge did not exist in name or in concept. At the time it was called 'San Fernando Valley State College'. Other notable bands (including Cream) also played at 'SFVSC'.

  19. Thanks for the point about Devonshire Downs. Of course, I didn't think--why would a harness racing track be part of a campus. My understanding is that the north campus of Cal State Northridge (the former SFVSC) is on the former grounds of the track.

  20. About the Bellingham May 26th Gig, it was the 26th, I was there and have a poster. On this same visit to the Pacific NW, they were at a Spokane Trips Festival with the Byrds, I was there also.

  21. Missed gig: June 10, 1967: Earl Warren Showgrounds, Santa Barbara, CA

  22. This list oddly seems to miss an important trip through Texas in 1967. I have a poster for an appearance of The Jefferson Airplane with Jim Jones and the Chanteys, the Zachery Thaks, and the Electric Kiss Light Show at a dance concert at the San Antonio Municipal Auditorium dated June 5, 1967, sponsored by KTSA. My wife was with the light show team. I expect there were other shows in Texas, probably Houston and Austin around the same time.

    1. Does anyone know if they did any other shows in Texas at this time?

    2. My sister swears they played a small town 40 miles of San Antonio between 1965-1969 called Hondo. Anyone know about this?

    3. My sister swears they played a small town 40 miles of San Antonio between 1965-1969 called Hondo. Anyone know about this?

    4. Boy, I really hope the Airplane played Hondo, TX in 1967, that would be such a great discovery. I looked up Hondo, it is West of San Antonio, on US90

  23. Daniel,

    If you see one of my comments above I've already posted the date of the Houston show: June 4, 1967 at the Sam Houston Coliseum.

  24. Bruno, Daniel

    I added the two Texas dates. Thanks.

  25. June 10, 1967: Earl Warren Showgrounds, Santa Barbara, CA.....also on the bill: Heads & Tails, Captain Speed

  26. July 17, 1967: Swing Auditorium, National Orange Show Grounds, San Bernardino, CA. Unknown support acts.

    1. My very first rock concert ever.

    2. Thomas, do you recall any of the other acts

  27. July 17, 1967: Swing Auditorium, San Bernardino, CA.....the support act was The Caretakers

  28. Does anyone know of any existing recording of the May 7, 1967 UC Davis show?

  29. I have an old purple sweatshirt with the Battle of the Bands San Francisco 1967 logo on it. A little worn, but still in one piece.

  30. The July 2, 1967 Beloit College Fieldhouse remains unforgettable to me. The stage was covered with persian carpets, several large hookahs adorned the stage and were used during the performance, Grace played both piano and recorder. It was very hippie/folk rock, a surprisngly intimate family gathering with alot of dancing. The next time JA came to the Chicago area they were a changed band, much louder and much more fierce.

  31. I was at the concert in Rochester New York. The PA system broke so they jammed for the entire evening. It was probably the best concert I ever attended in my life. The Eastman Theater is a beautiful facility where you might go to see an opera. There is the a huge chandelier hanging in the middle of the theater. It's very elegant, and not at all what you would think of for a rock concert. Fantastic.

  32. btspouse, that's quite an amazing story. With few or any vocals and all jamming, it's like you got to attend the first Hot Tuna concert ever.

  33. The May 26th show with safety patrol, should be on the 26th unless my original concert flyer is wrong! By-the-way, have pictures on Ebay right now, Item number: 300687205265

  34. I, too, was at the May 26, 1967, concert at Western. I still have the poster signed by the Jeff Airplane. I picked them up at Sea-Tac in our baby blue '66 Cad Sedan D'Eville. They spent the night at the old Bellingham Hotel. We all had late night food at the old
    Horseshoe Cafe on Holly St. We took some movies as
    they got off the plane (didn't know the copyright laws). It was quite the event. I also partied with Country Joe and the Fish, etc., etc. I am very familiar with the band
    listed on the poster as "Safety Patrol". What an era!
    Glad I drank as much of it in as I did.

  35. The 6/3/67 issue of the Los Angeles pop-newspaper KRLA Beat has an article on the Airplane, focusing on their Smothers Brothers taping. This aired on May 7; from what I can find it was taped at CBS Studios in Hollywood on May 5. (I see you have a show listed on May 5; the article just mentions that after the TV taping, the band were "whisked off to a photo session for a national magazine." Busy day!)

    The article goes into particular detail about the light show the band brought for TV, which apparently upset the camera crew: "A CBS cameraman rubs his weary eyes, resting his globes from the flashing lights, and says, 'I made the mistake of having a martini for lunch, now I need a dramamine.'"

    The article goes on to discuss the Airplane's commercial for Levi's, and their upcoming appearance in the film Petulia - which they later pulled out of. (p.10)

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  37. On what planet were there "no FM radio stations in Toronto?"

    1. Very interesting to hear that Toronto was ahead of the curve. Canada had a very different rock history than the States. How early were Toronto FM stations playing rock? Did they play album cuts chosen by the dj, like in San Francisco?

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  39. I distinctly remember seeing the Jefferson Airplane in February or March of 1967 at the Frost Ampitheater at Stanford with Dick Gregory opening.
    I remember it so clearly because the band said that they has just released Surrealistic Pillow two weeks before the concert (Wikipedia has them releasing it on Feb. 1 , '67) and they played the entire album.
    They had 10 or 12 identical Fender Twin Reverb amplifiers that were all in brightly colored Tolex covers and the grill cloth of each amp had been tie dyed, individually.......there were no 'bass amps' at all on stage and the amps were very striking visually as they brightly formed a uniform curve in back of the musicians.

    Other sites have them playing with Gregory in May of that year at the Greek Theater in Berkley, but I was NOT at that concert. I never went to see a show at the Greek Theater until the early to mid 70's (I saw Miles' VSOP quintet there which was also a milestone).
    After the concert, I immediately went out and bought 'Surrealistic Pillow' which, still , is one of the favorite albums of my very long life as a professional musician (though I was 10 years from becoming one at the time).
    Rick Walker in Santa Cruz, Ca.