PAUL KANTNER founded JEFFERSON AIRPLANE in 1965. THE AIRPLANE were the biggest rock group in America during the 1960s and the first San Francisco band to sign a major record deal, paving the way for other legends like GRATEFUL DEAD & JANIS JOPLIN. They headlined the original WOODSTOCK FESTIVAL in 1969 and like THE BEATLES with whom they are critically compared, lasted a mere 7 years ... though their influence and impact on rock music continues well into the 21st century. In 1974 Mr. KANTNER created JEFFERSON STARSHIP and again enjoyed chart-topping success. PAUL, & JEFFERSON AIRPLANE were inducted into The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1996, the same year as PINK FLOYD.
In 1974 JEFFERSON STARSHIP, the name created by PAUL for his 1971 solo debut “Blows Against The Empire” recording, has endured 40 years as one of rock's most legendary bands. That recording was the first and only to ever be nominated for literary science fiction’s Hugo Award … a stellar achievement.
Co-founder DAVID FREIBERG also started the legendary QUICKSILVER MESSENGER SERVICE, the Fillmore era San Francisco band who often shared the bill with THE DEAD & THE AIRPLANE). DAVID is a world famous singer, producer, composer and multi-instrumentalist. He was also a member of JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, and co-wrote one of JEFFERSON STARSHIP's all-time biggest hits, “Jane” – which he performs.
DONNY BALDWIN became part of the San Francisco music scene in the early 70s growing, up there. From 1973 to 1978 Donny was with the "Elvin Bishop" Band. During this time he toured and recorded six albums which included the #1 hit single, "Fooled Around and Fell In Love". From 1981 to 1989, Donny was a member of the group JEFFERSON STARSHIP. In January 1994, he joined the JERRY GARCIA BAND. He has toured, recorded and played with artist such as KENNY LOGGINS, PABLO CRUISE, CHUCK BERRY, VAN MORRISON, RUSSELL HITCHCOCK, RONNIE MONTROSE, GREGG ALLMAN, HEART, LYDIA PENSE & COLD BLOOD, 38 SPECIAL and EDDIE MONEY.
CHRIS SMITH joined JEFFERSON STARSHIP in 1998, instantly winning the job of keyboardist. Having toured with THE SUPREMES and LOU BEGA.
CHRIS has gone on to place music in film and television including the #1 rated series “CSI.”
In 2000, following the departure of bassist JACK CASADY, CHRIS assumed the seeming impossible task of playing piano AND (synth) bass simultaneously … a feat only duplicated by the legendary RAY MANZAREK of THE DOORS. CHRIS has been keyboardist longer than any in the band’s fabled history.
CATHY RICHARDSON joined JEFFERSON STARSHIP in 2008, and anchors the historic ‘role’ made famous by GRACE SLICK. She is an award winning music artist, graphic artist, and clothing designer. Her professional credits include fronting her successful rock band, producing and releasing seven albums on her various indie record labels. She was nominated for a GRAMMY Award for Art Direction of her band's 2003 release, “The Road to Bliss.” “The Road to Bliss” also received two DIY Awards (Do It Yourself in Film, Books and Music) for Album Art of the Year and Producer of the Year. Her latest release, “Delusions of Grandeur,” topped the 2007 DIYs when she won both Album and Producer of the Year.
She portrayed Janis Joplin in the original Off Broadway cast of the hit show “Love, Janis” and also in Chicago, Sag Harbor, NY, San Francisco, Phoenix and Tucson, and sings with Janis' original band members, Big Brother and the Holding Co. Also, Cathy is set to launch her new line of hand dyed, organic cotton yoga pants, Shining Shakti
As a top session singer, Richardson has recorded dozens of national commercials for companies like Kraft, McDonald's, Budweiser, Applebee's, Glade and State Farm Insurance. Her voice can be heard in the films Savage, HBO's the Vagina Monologues and Talledega Nights: the Ballad of Ricky Bobby.
On-camera tv credits include a regular spot on Jack's Big Music Show, a rocking music education show for kids on the Noggin Network, produced by Spiffy Pictures. Richardson also narrates and sings on the popular Spiffy-produced DVD series for kids, the Curious Buddies.
JUDE GOLD is an acclaimed lead guitarist, joining JEFFERSON STARSHIP in 2012, starting with a ten-country international tour. He took over for longtime lead player SLICK AGUILAR, who is recovering from a liver transplant. Hailing from San Francisco, JUDE has also toured with contemporary stars MIGUEL MIGS, BILLY SHEEHAN, KRISTIN CHENOWETH, and JGB (Jerry Garcia's band).
The former Director of GIT (the Guitar Program at MUSICIANS INSTITUTE in Hollywood, California, where he still teaches), JUDE is also a guitar journalist — the Los Angeles editor of GUITAR PLAYER MAGAZINE. Check out JUDE’s debut music video by clicking here: