Walk of Fame Star for Jefferson Airplane Unveiled

HOLLYWOOD (CNS) – The pioneering psychedelic rock band Jefferson Airplane Thursday added a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame to its list of honors, which also includes enshrinement in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Band members Grace Slick, Jack Casady and Jorma Kaukonen accepted the star during a late-morning ceremony at 6752 Hollywood Blvd., near Highland Avenue. Doors’ drummer John Densmore was among those taking part in the ceremony. Jefferson Airplane and the Doors co-headlined a tour of Europe in 1968.

The Hollywood Walk of Fame’s selection committee approved the application for a star from the band’s management company, Jampol Artist Management, in 2020. It had not been previously nominated, according to Ana Martinez, producer of the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

The star is being unveiled in 2022 to coincide with the 55th anniversary of the release of the band’s two top 10 singles, “White Rabbit” and “Somebody to Love.” “White Rabbit” was selected for the Grammy Hall of Fame, which honors recordings of lasting qualitative or historical significance.

The star is the 2,737th since the completion of the Walk of Fame in 1961 with the first 1,558 stars.

Jefferson Airplane was formed in 1965 in the San Francisco Bay Area and its debut show was on Aug. 13, 1965, at the Matrix nightclub in San Francisco, with a lineup of vocalists Marty Balin, Paul Kantner and Signe Toly Anderson; Kaukonen, a guitarist; Casady, a bass guitar player; and drummer Skip Spence.

Jefferson Airplane released its first album, “Jefferson Airplane Takes Off” on Aug. 15, 1966. It reached the Billboard Top 200 on Sept. 17, 1966, spending 11 weeks on the chart, topping at 128th.

Slick replaced Anderson in 1966 and performed on all but the group’s first album. Spencer Dryden replaced Spence as the drummer in 1966.

The band received its only Grammy nomination in 1967 for best new artist, losing to Bobbie Gentry in a year she recorded “Ode to Billie Joe.”

Jefferson Airplane performed at Woodstock, the Monterey International Pop Festival, the Altamont Free Concert and at Expo 67. Its television appearances included “The Ed Sullivan Show,” “The Tonight Show” and “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.”

Following the 1972 release of its seventh album “Long John Silver,” 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.

All but Dryden from the band’s classic 1966-70 lineup which also consisted of Casady, Kaukonen, Slick, Balin and Kantner reunited in 1989 for a tour and album.

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