Friday, 24 August 2012

JEFFERSON STARSHIP: Paul Kantner interview

A Conversation With Jefferson Starship's Paul Kantner

Mike Ragogna: Paul, you played a concert at Roswell, and your new album is called Tales From The Mothership. Of course, "Roswell" has a certain connotation, it being the at the heart of many "aliens among us" stories and the ultimate conspiracy theory. Is there any particular thing about Roswell that resonates with you?

Paul Kantner: No, Roswell is just that spirit of the unknown, and it's become quite a thing in itself because of the situation around it. We decided to play there because of that science fiction connection. "Crown Of Creation" was probably my first science fiction song that I can think of off the top of my head. At the time, I was at our house on Fulton Street and the Democratic convention of 1968 called us, the way they do--famous musicians, when they're having their conventions. They wanted us to write a song for them and I was reading a book called Rebirth by John Wyndham and I was playing a little blues lick that I had stolen from Jorma [Kaukonen]. Sort of a shuffle. There was just a good collection of song lyrics that popped out of that book that became most the lyrics of "Crown Of Creation." I just put it all together as a joke, knowing that if they read the lyrics, they'd never use it. I've never been very political in terms of dealing face-to-face with political people and we've never done a benefit except for Barry Milton from Country Joe & The Fish when he ran for judge or something in San Francisco; another sort of joke. I sent "Crown Of Creation" to them and, to their credit, somebody read the lyrics and knew that it was not what they wanted to say for their convention. So they turned it down, but it became one of our most popular songs in the aftermath.

MR: Since we're talking about sci-fi, there's your solo album Blows Against The Empire that had a pretty large musicians roster. You use the term "Jefferson Starship," a creative choice, maybe inferring it had a bigger vision than the Airplane's?

...and check out the Gonzo Artist Page for Jefferson Starship you know it makes sense.

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