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Thread: Jefferson Starship Live

  1. #1
    Pikachupacabra spellbound's Avatar
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    Jefferson Starship Live

    Wed. July 11, 2018, Brewery Arts Center, Nevada

    Outdoor benefit concert for The Greenhouse Project

    Times approximate

    6:30 – 7:30, Opening band: Midnight North
    Grahame Lesh (Phil’s son), Elliott Peck, Alex Jordan, Connor Sullivan, Eric Saar, Alex Koford.

    Played a Grateful Dead-like set of what I assume were their own songs with good vocal harmonies, in daylight, plus one cover I recognized: “Keep Your Lamps Trimmed and Burning” with female lead vocals.

    7:30 – 8:00 Benefit auction

    8:00 - 10:00, Jefferson Starship
    Cathy Richardson, David Freiberg (will be 80 in August), Jude Gold, Donny Baldwin, Chris Smith.
    Played a professional set of some of their best loved songs, with good lighting. Freiberg’s ability to sing Marty Balin’s parts is nothing short of amazing. He was in good voice throughout.

    Setlist:

    sunrise
    3/5 of a mile in 10 seconds
    find your way back
    count on me
    today
    fresh air
    what are we waiting for? (new song?; for paul kantner)
    get together (introduced as ‘the hippie national anthem’)
    stranger
    miracles
    embryonic journey (jude gold guitar)
    white rabbit
    we built this city
    jane
    band intros/solos
    special guest china kantner intro; she sings along on remaining songs
    somebody to love
    encore:
    ride the tiger
    volunteers
    star spangled banner (jude gold guitar)

    I was across the street from the fenced concert grounds. I could see the people on stage by standing in the street and looking over the fence, or by looking through a gap in the fencing, and I could hear just fine all the time. I would gladly have paid admission, if I could afford it. I wasn’t the only one outside looking in. Northern Nevada has no jobs. I also saw Jefferson Starship in 2014, and 1975 (with Commander Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen opening). My daughter and I enjoyed the show.
    Can this be the swan song? The final elbow?

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by spellbound View Post
    Freiberg’s ability to sing Marty Balin’s parts is nothing short of amazing.
    That was his original job when he joined Jefferson Airplane, toward the end of it's original existence, as a replacement for Marty. Of course, he had been a bassist in Quicksilver Messenger Service, and in Jefferson Starship (the original Jefferson Starship, circa 1975-1985) he played both bass and keyboards (I believe he also plays the viola).

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarGeek View Post
    That was his original job when he joined Jefferson Airplane, toward the end of it's original existence, as a replacement for Marty. Of course, he had been a bassist in Quicksilver Messenger Service, and in Jefferson Starship (the original Jefferson Starship, circa 1975-1985) he played both bass and keyboards (I believe he also plays the viola).
    Freiberg started off playing fiddle in a jugband while still early in his teens, if I'm not entirely mistaken. He was considered too poor at the piano, though - prompting the recruitment of Nicky Hopkins to the fold. But he turned into a highly effective bass player with QMS, and his vocal inputs there were often underrated (IMO) - for instance, it's hard to imagine a track like "Pride of Man" sung by anybody else than him. Although his voice was rawer and less technically 'controlled' than Balin's, he was a nice replacement. Freiberg's "Harp Tree Lament" (from Tollbooth) attests to his skills as both songwriter, lyricist, arranger and singer. I love that one.
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    Freiberg started off playing fiddle in a jugband while still early in his teens, if I'm not entirely mistaken. He was considered too poor at the piano, though - prompting the recruitment of Nicky Hopkins to the fold. But he turned into a highly effective bass player with QMS, and his vocal inputs there were often underrated (IMO) - for instance, it's hard to imagine a track like "Pride of Man" sung by anybody else than him. Although his voice was rawer and less technically 'controlled' than Balin's, he was a nice replacement. Freiberg's "Harp Tree Lament" (from Tollbooth) attests to his skills as both songwriter, lyricist, arranger and singer. I love that one.
    I guess just about all the San Francisco musicians started off in jug bands, or playing some form of "folk music", didn't they? Seems that way, anyway.

    I dunno what Freiberg's skills a pianist, as such are like (of course, you're talking about the late 60's, he may have improved after that), but by the dawn of the 80's (if not sooner), he and Pete Sears were swapping back between bass and keyboards. I read an interview where Craig Chaquico said it depended on who wrote the song, I think he said each of them wanted to play bass on the songs he wrote (or maybe it was keyboards, I forget which now). And Sears occasionally played guitar too (he and Chaquico would do the guitar harmonies together on Stranger, for instance).

    I remember when Paul Kantner quit Jefferson Starship, then when the next album came out, when they had shortened the name to Starship, I also noticed that I didn't see Freiberg in the videos. I always wondered about that, until I read on Wikipedia that Freiberg quit because their producer, former Zappa sideman Peter Wolf, insisted on playing keyboards in the studio, while they were recording Knee Deep In The Hoopla, so he figured there was no point in him staying in the band. So when they went on tour they had to recruit an auxiliary guy to play keyboards.

    Then, if I remember correctly, the next album after that, Sears had quit too (and then after that album, Grace quit too). I wonder if Pete didn't go through a similar trip as David, feeling like there was no point in being in the band if he wasn't gonna play on the records (besides producers insisting on playing keyboards, you also had a lot of synth bass on those records, as I recall).

  5. #5
    I didn't know there was still a band around playing live calling itself "Jefferson Starship". At this point, might as well call themselves "Jefferson Airplane".

  6. #6
    No Gracie, no Jorma, no Jefferson anything.
    Maka ki ecela tehani yanke lo!

  7. #7
    Member Lopez's Avatar
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    I saw the Jefferson Starship in 1975 and, if my old-man brain remembers correctly, Marty was in the band, at least for that summer night in Providence, maybe for the whole tour. I was very impressed by Pete Sears (who played with a leg in a cast) and Craig Chaquico. Though good, I found David Freiberg to be a fifth wheel. He was underutilized with Marty there.
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  8. #8
    Pikachupacabra spellbound's Avatar
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    Best I can recall, the 1975 tour was Kantner, Slick, Balin, Creach, Freiberg, Sears, Barbata, Chaquico. Quite the crowd up there on stage. I hope David Freiberg writes a book. Imagine his stories now that he nears 80 years of age. Cathy Richardson said last night that there is an upcoming article/interview with Freiberg soon to appear in Rolling Stone. I'd appreciate a heads up from anyone who follows that rag, so I can read it when it appears. I saw electric Hot Tuna in 1976 and 1977 in a small club, and so kept up with other ex-Airplanes as the '70s rolled on. Recall Casady raising a single eyebrow in time with his stupendous bass picking.
    Can this be the swan song? The final elbow?

  9. #9
    Jazzbo manqué Mister Triscuits's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DocProgger View Post
    I didn't know there was still a band around playing live calling itself "Jefferson Starship". At this point, might as well call themselves "Jefferson Airplane".
    Eleven years ago I saw Jefferson Starship and Quicksilver Messenger Service at the same festival. Freiberg played in both bands. (Starship also had Kantner and Balin; I'm not sure who was in QMS that day.)

  10. #10
    Pikachupacabra spellbound's Avatar
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    I just found this, with photos, of a Hot Tuna show I attended many years ago:

    http://www.tunabase.com/setlists/1977/19770409.html

    And this article has photos of last night's Jefferson Starship concert:

    Jefferson Starship launches Concert Under the Stars fundraiser
    Last edited by spellbound; 07-12-2018 at 01:16 PM.
    Can this be the swan song? The final elbow?

  11. #11
    I saw them with Paul, Marty, Slick Aguilar and a couple musicians I did not know at the amphitheater in Bridgeton, NJ
    "Alienated-so alien I go!"

  12. #12
    Proud Member since 2/2002 UnderAGlassMoon's Avatar
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    They're playing a free concert in a few weeks where I live. I think I may check it out.
    Eric: "What the hell Hutch, it's all Rush, what if we wanted a little variety?"

    Hutch: "Rush is variety, Bitch! Rule number one: in my van, its Rush! All Rush, all the time...no exceptions."

    From "Fanboys" 2009.

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    Some nice (if b&w) live footage of the band in its heyday available on Youtube. It's sad just how little video material of 70s Jefferson Starship appears to exist:


  14. #14
    Pikachupacabra spellbound's Avatar
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    ^thanks for posting that video. A 5 minute song on the Dragon Fly record doubled in length by some tight and smoking jamming. Reminds me of why I went to see so many bands in concert that decade.
    Can this be the swan song? The final elbow?

  15. #15
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    No Gracie, no Jorma, no Casady no Jefferson anything.
    and no Kantner, not even Jefferson Starship.

    I saw Paul & Co twice around 2004/6 (twice with Freiberg, Balin having to cancel) and I'm happy to have seen them, but I wouldn't nowadays
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

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