Saturday, August 10, 2013

Great Guitars: Paul Kantner

The Jefferson Airplane/Starship was always staffed with top-flight, glamorous musicians; even when they were singing hippie anthems about revolution. Then there was Paul Kantner, the nerdy looking rhythm guitarist who looked perpetually peevish, as if sharing stage time (and a bed) with Grace Slick was a chore. Actually, Kantner was the musical engine of the group, cranking out album after album for years, even as members came, left and returned. His early Seventies albums, especially Blows Against the Empire and Baron Von Tollbooth and the Chrome Nun are communal, hippie music at its best. It's tough to find clips featuring just Kantner, but here's a duet with Grace Slick from 1988. 10 seconds in you understand how the unprepossessing Kantner has managed to work with so many heavyweights.


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