Paul Kantner, an original member of the seminal 1960s rock band Jefferson Airplane and the eventual leader of successor group Jefferson Starship, has died at age 74.
Kantner, who had survived close brushes with death as a younger man and recovered from a heart attack last year, died at a San Francisco hospital on Thursday after falling ill earlier in the week, former girlfriend and publicist Cynthia Bowman told The Associated Press.
Few bands so embodied the idealism and hedonism of the late 60s music scene in San Francisco as Jefferson Airplane. Kantner drew upon his passion for politics and science fiction to help write favourites such as Wooden Ships.
The group was the first from the Bay Area to get a national record contract and achieve mainstream success, thanks to the classics Somebody to Love and White Rabbit.
Paul Kantner was no less than one of the very few spokesmen for the entire hippie generation. Smart and funny with a deep rebel streak. Huey— Huey Lewis (@Huey_Lewis_News) January 29, 2016
Paul Kantner was my friend,roommate, pal..we wrote Wooden Ships together with Stephen I'm going to miss him— David Crosby (@thedavidcrosby) January 29, 2016