A new year that has already seen the loss of David Bowie and Glenn Frey now adds Paul Kantner, a founding member of the Jefferson Airplane and Starship and a mainstay of the Bay Area music scene to the list of musicians lost during the opening weeks of the new year. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the guitarist and singer died Thursday (1/28) of septic shock and multiple organ failure after suffering a heart attack earlier in the week. Kantner was in the Jefferson Airplane before Grace Slick joined the band at the end of 1966 and propelled the group to new heights. Some blamed his relationship with Slick for creating conflict within the band that led to its end in 1974, when he and Slick formed the Jefferson Starship. Throughout his career, Kantner was a staunch advocate of free choice on political and social matters and made a point of reflecting that in the music he wrote and performed. Kantner was 74.
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