Legendary rock band JEFFERSON STARSHIP (with David Freiberg, Donny Baldwin, Cathy Richardson, Chris Smith and Jude Gold) have announced the release of a new EP, titled “Mother of the Sun” — which will be the first collection of new songs from the vocally acrobatic soft-rock band in twelve years.
The San Francisco, California-based band grew out of Jefferson Airplane, one of the pioneering psychedelic rock bands and an integral part of the hippie counterculture, playing the Monterey Festival (1967), Woodstock (1969), Altamont (1969) and The first Isle of Wight Festival (in 1968). Their 1967 pop Surrealistic Pillow is still considered one of the most significant recordings to come out of the Summer of Love.
Grace Slick (vox, keys) beamed out of the Starship in early 1988, and Paul Kantner (vox, synthesizers and guitars), the founding Captain of the Airplane, left a little later. The remaining members renamed themselves Starship (without the Jefferson bit) but this project ended in bitterness.
Sadly, Kantner died in 2016, at the age of 74, and after his death, the band received approval from both Kantner’s family and Grace Slick to continue playing their songs. In 2018, a lawsuit regarding the continued use of the name Jefferson Starship was dismissed after members reached an undisclosed settlement.
“Mother of the Sun” will be released via Golden Robot Records and will be available from August 21st 2020.
The seven tracks will include two songs co-written by original Jefferson Starship/Jefferson Airplane members — including “It’s About Time” co-written with Grace Slick and another co-written with Marty Balin who joined in 1975 (vox, percussion, guitars). Balin died in 2018, at the age of 76. But the new disc features the return of original Jefferson Starship member Pete Sears (he played with the band in 1974) who performs bass on three tracks.
“Paul Kantner was our bandleader and the visionary who kept Jefferson Starship going through so many eras,” says singer, Cathy Richardson .
“He inspired so much about this record, from the messages in the lyrics to the title and album art to the collaborative process of creating music as a band with some of his original muses – Grace, Marty, and Pete. Mother of the Sun is dedicated to PK.”
The first track “Its About Time” (video shared below) is a barnstorming jaunt led admirably led by Cathy (whom Kantner recruited in 2008) with squidgy synthesizers (Chris Smith on keyboards) and an exuberant singalong chorus that’s driven by chugging guitar chords from lead guitarist Jude Gold and bass guitar slaps from guiding-light David Freiberg… along with drummer Donny Baldwin’s loud beats.