Big Brother history, part six, 1969 to 1972

1969 to 1972

Animal Eyes

Big Brother is watching you.


December 1968   At a Stax/Volt party in Memphis with Janis Joplin, Carla Thomas, Rufus Thomas, Al Jackson, Jr., Steve Cropper, Duck Dunn and Booker T. Jones who is now a San Rafael resident.  



2-3 February 1969

Franklin Pierce College Carnival 9 Feb 69

9 February 1969    Franklin Pierce College

7 March 1969   Dale Burkhardt attends a Kozmic Blues Band show and snaps this one.

28 March 1969

UK flags mural


The Kozmic Blues Band played at The Royal Albert Hall, so to celebrate, I took a bath.

Queen Victoria baptised the Royal Albert Hall in 1871.

The acoustics in this Hall were originally so bad that people said it was the only place where a British composer could be sure of hearing his work twice.

Eric came to see us.

I thought about the people who had spoken and played in this space: Winston Churchill, Wagner, Verdi, Elgar, Rachmaninoff.

Suzy Creamcheese took me out to Hampton Court and gave me the royal tour.


placerville Tahoe


29 June 1969        Terrace Ballroom     Salt Lake City


20 July 1969   Snooky Flowers and I watched this event live on television at the Chelsea Hotel, NYC.



cast up by the sea



SF street scene

8 August 1969       660 Great Highway        with Tyrannosaurus Rex and Tongue and Groove.


The Palace Hotel still looks much like this.

Luisa Parrelli


Grace Jack Bill Woodstock

25 August 1969


27 Aug 1969

27 August 1969     Saratoga

17 October 1969       Austin


On the road again.

18 October 1969   Hemisphere Arena  San Antonio

I’m listed as playing on this recording, but I’ve never heard it.

24 Oct 1969 Kansas



With Janis and Richard Kermode.

Richard came out of that Hammond B3 jazz scene in Buffalo. He was a good musician.

woman at table

15 November 1969  This was a huge California demonstration against the war in Viet Nam.

liberty dance

19 November 1969   Fillmore West      Steve Miller had to cancel this show so Big Brother played it billed as Mumble, Fumble, Jumble and Dumble.

saint ignatius back

Saint Ignatius Church, Fulton & Parker (Stanyan), San Francisco


29 December 1969                  Geary Theatre               415 Geary Boulevard                 San Francisco

SF push the cable car

I’ve done this many times.  Turning the cable car around so it can head back up the hill.

Janis said, “I don’t look good in this photo, but I’m putting it on the album cover just for you.”



And now begin the 1970s, which Gary Trudeau called “a kidney stone of a decade.”

I used the 1970s to go back to school and learn some technique, but there is no denying that those years were an intermission between the high flying 60s and the conservative, athletic, jingoistic 1980s.   Photo:  Anthony Edman


7 February 1970     Encore Theatre    Burlingame  California



13 February 1970      Pepperland      San Rafael    California


20-21 February 1970   Great Highway   with the Rhythm Dukes       Jerry Miller          Bill Champlin



27 February 1970     Alaskaland Civic Center        Fairbanks   Alaska


a four little dude

5-7 March 1970        Keystone Korner    San Francisco

They had some wonderful shows at the Keystone, which was right across the alley from the North Beach police department.


13-14 March 1970   New Orleans House   Berkeley


20-22 March 1970    Family Dog at the Great Highway     Kaleidoscope       with the Devil’s Kitchen



28-29 March 1970      Lion’s Share        San Anselmo     California



Hey, there’s John McFee.


Alex Call was the singer in this band. Huey Lewis was the harmonica player. I always liked John McFee who is now a Doobie Brother.


The owner of the Lion’s Share, Mike Considine, didn’t like to advertise, so there are very few posters and handbills from this venue.


James Gurley

4 April 1970   Fillmore West     Janis joined us for this one.

My overheated imagination sees mistrust here, matters gone awry, loss of faith, paranoia, alienation, loneliness. Am I being carried away ? Probably. Was it a weird time ?  It certainly was.   Richard Kermode  Linda Gravenites  Janis  George Ostrow  Bobby Neuwirth


7-9 April 1970                       Matrix

12 April 1970  Winterland        Kathi McDonald   Mike Finnegan  David Shallock  Nick Gravenites   We had a GOOD band.


Greg ‘Cornholio’ Douglass

23-24 April 1970  Inn of the Beginning  Cotati California.

James Gurley.   He’s big, huge.

1 May 1970      Family Dog      Great Highway     San Francisco       I think this is a Randy Tuten poster.

Elise party

8 May 1970    Merced Fairgrounds    Merced  California


The 1970s were a time of molting, of lying in wait. There didn’t seem to be any guiding theme, so I kept my head down and studied.

Where in the world

15 May 1970     City Center    Kelowna    British Columbia   Kelowna is a vacation spot in British Columbia, on the east side of the Okanagan Valley.


airport sf

16-17 May 1970   Strawberry Mountain Fair   Mission    British Columbia


20 May 1970    Pauley Ballroom   University of California      Berkeley



21 May 1970  Pepperland  Bermuda Palms   San Rafael   California    Big Brother   Full Tilt     Grateful Dead     With the amazing Meyer sound system.


The event is memorable for many reasons.


This is a Hells Angels party to begin with, so the money will be straight and the sound system excellent. There will also be more drugs and alcohol than would seem to be prudent.

This will be the first time that Janis’ old band and her new band will be at the same venue, so everyone is a little on edge.

Not exactly a battle of the bands, but not exactly not one either.  Janis gets into a fight with an Angel and he punches her. She breaks a bottle over his head.

This is the peace and love crowd.





22, 23  May 1970    Keystone Korner    San Francisco


sfv CHS-44632


29 May 1970   Santa Monica Civic Auditorium

9 June 1970    Diamond Head Crater Festival                 Hawaii

8 June 1970    The Andrews Amphitheater   Hawaii   This place is used for commencement exercises for the University of Hawaii.


My wife Elise Wainani Piliwale is Hawaiian. Here she is with Grant Jacobs, Richard Hundgen, and a photographer who has a lovely smile.

Colin and Wayne, the equipment managers that we had at that time, forty years ago, decided to jump ship and become Hawaiian. They are there still and doing very well.


And of course our President was born in Honolulu in the same hospital, Queens Hospital, as my wife. Either there or in Kenya, I forget which. Depends on whom you ask, someone who actually knows something, or someone who is incredibly ignorant and backward… like Fox News.


President Obama went to Punahou High School.

Jonelle DeNike is Hawaiian and she went to a Catholic high school in Honolulu.


10 June 1970    Kahului Armory    Maui   Hawaii

Also called the Pu’unene Armory.

Steve Keyser

13-14 June 1970  Portland Music & Art Fair    Portland Oregon

Back Camera


17 June 1970    Convention Center    Las Vegas


19  June 1970   Terrace Ballroom    Salt Lake City   I have a cassette tape of this gig.  We played a lot of different songs. This was probably our most adventurous period for repertoire.


26 June 1970   Junction Night Club    Kelker   Colorado


3-5 July 1970     Euphoria    San Rafael      California     Another Randy Tuten poster.

11 July 1970  Sports Arena  San Diego with the Full Tilt Boogie Band

It was something else to have Big Brother and Full Tilt in that same small airplane coming back from San Diego.


The airlines used to lay off the flight attendants when they got married or reached a certain age. This was so they wouldn’t have to give them seniority and the pay that goes with it.


17 July 1970  Love Valley Festival   Love Valley  North Carolina


31 July 1970  Phoenix Veterans Coliseum  Arizona


BBHC 2 Aug 1970

2 August 1970      Lion’s Share      San Anselmo     California


6 August 1970  Peace Festival   Shea Stadium  Flushing Meadows    New York

fish eyes

I need you, darling, like the fish needs the sea.  Please don’t take your sweet, sweet love from me.

George Frayne, one of my favorite people.  Good artist too.

13-15 August 1970   Fillmore West    San Francisco   Commander Cody



18-19 August 1970    The Matrix      San Francisco


26 August 1970       Washoe County Fairgrounds

28 August 1970       Sing Auditorium    San Bernardino      Mary Swope took this photograph.


25 September 1970    Saginaw Auditorium      Michigan


3-5 October 1970               Euphoria            San Rafael           California

4 October 1970   The Landmark Hotel  Hollywood        A British writer, Howard Sounes,  just interviewed me from the very room.  He mentioned all of the scrawlings on the bedroom closet wall.

6-7 October 1970    The  Matrix           Blues for an old friend.


The 1970s began this way. The USA, up to this time a manufacturing giant, always expanding and growing, now became a service economy devoted to finance and collecting information, analyzing, digesting, contracting.  Self help books proliferated, the computer began to become important.


American society turned inward after the tumultuous events of the 1960s.

23 October 1970    Basin Street West

sarah quincy

We substituted for Sarah Vaughan ?    I wonder how that worked ?  I can’t remember, but I do know that Combination of the Two doesn’t sound a lot like Over The Rainbow.



Janis Invite 26 Oct 1970

26 October 1970   Lion’s Share     The Drinks Are On Pearl.  Janis left $ 2,500, a lot of money then, for us to have a party in her honor. We did it right.  Music and dancing all night.  Lots of stories of past glories.


Margaret Gurley



27-29 October 1970   The Matrix

With James Gurley, David Shallock, Nick Gravenites, Dave Getz and Peter Albin


30 October 1970   46th Street Rock Palace     Brooklyn


Photo:  Baron Wolman


2 November 1970   Harding Theatre     Divisadero Street     San Francisco


BBHC loft not that one


6 November 1970


20-21  November 1970   Winterland     San Francisco


5 December 1970  The Birmingham Palladium    Detroit


We looked everywhere for this white SG standard.

We all signed this one.  I was with Carol Cavallon when I bought this guitar on 48th Street across the street from Manny’s in New York. Photo: Anthony Edman

8-9 January 1971   Fillmore East    Buddy Miles    Sweetwater    I loved the way Buddy looked when he played the drums.


All right, we’re heading into the rough waters of the 1970s now.


Strange, hard, weird times.

rock rose ln

17 January 1971     Syria Mosque       University of Pittsburgh


18-19 January 1971      Ungano’s


20 January 1971    Capitol Theatre   Port Chester   New York

With Carol Cavallon in Putney  Vermont

29-30 January 1971      The names El Monte and El Segundo always make me think of Reuben and the Jets, Frank Zappa.


4 February 1971    Inn of the Beginning        Cotati            California



13 February 1971   Pepperland    737 East Francisco Boulevard   San Rafael   California


Whitey Litchfield, millionaire construction magnate, created Litchfield’s Bermuda Palms in the late 1940s. This was California’s Las Vegas.


I mentioned before that I had played tenor saxophone in numerous big band rehearsals here, little dreaming at the time that Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Lionel Hampton and many other stars of the 1940s had played in that very same room.

20-21 February 1971            Pepperland




23 February 1971    Broadcast of television series The Turned On Crisis including an episode with Big Brother: Why Can’t You Hear Through The Noise in Your Ear.

Winnie the Welder 1943

6 March 1971      Shasta College


12-13 March 1971  Friends and Relations Hall  Great Highway  San Francisco    with Kathi McDonald.

Also on this gig:   Clover       I see    Alex Call   Huey Lewis     John McFee      Sean Hopper


25 March 1971      The New Monk was in Berkeley where Shattuck and University make a T.   2119 University.  It was a funky place.  Freddie Herrera bought it in August of 1971, and it became the Keystone Berkeley in March 1972.

9-10 April 1971    Friends and Relations Hall     Kathi McDonald, one of the best singers ever… and the funniest.


15 April 1971     Inn of the Beginning   Cotati   California

19 April 1971      Friends and Relations Hall         Hubert Sumlin      Snooky Flowers    Rich Kirch   Freddie Roulette

22-23 April 1971    Bimbo’s    San Francisco

24 April 1971    Peace Rally   Golden Gate Park

woman samurai


Think about some of the things that had happened to usher in the 1970s. The Watts riots in 1965, the Republican triumph in the 1966 midterms, the Newark riots, the 1968 campaign, the assassinations, Chicago, Nixon winning by the largest landslide ever in 1972, the Manson family, Kent State, the construction workers’ riot, George Romney, George Wallace, George McGovern, Nelson Rockefeller. The nation was exhausted, afraid and began to retrench and turn to the right.

Anna Fisher


26 April 1971  Sonoma

Annie Lumpkins

7 May 1971   California Hall    San Francisco


17 May 1971       New Monk


caen car

21 May 1971   Keystone Korner     San Francisco

black widow

28 May 1971     Selland Arena   Fresno    California    with B.B. King and Elvin Bishop

10 June 1971  Fox Theatre   Long Beach

9 July 1971        Harlingen    Texas


August 1971       Release of How Hard It Is.   The title is significant.

We had a great B3 player on this album, Mike Finnegan, who can sing as well as he can play. He recorded Buried Alive In The Blues with us and we should release that someday. It’s definitely the best version of that song.

Mike went on to play with everyone, including Joe Cocker  performing here on American Idol, another of Rupert Murdoch’s panderings to the lowest common denominator. But, as Mike says, “A gig is a gig.”

Lisa Ames

BBHC ancient album


9 October 1971   Monterey Fairgrounds     with Clover who were lucky enough to have John McFee on the guitar.

7 November 1971    Trying to guard Kathi.   Can you hear me barking ?


HA 1944

12 November 1971       Winterland

Making a plane Burbank 1944

9-11 December 1971      Inn of the Beginning          Cotati            California



30 January 1972   Curtis Hall    Tampa     Florida       with  Lee Bittner   Kathi McDonald   Mike Pendergrass   Peter Albin

13 February 1972      Mama Einstein’s    What do you want ?  I was the only one left.



15 February 1972   Valentine’s party    The Boathouse      Harding Road      San Francisco      You know, out by Lake Merced.


19 February 1972   University of Iowa  Iowa City    with the Allman Brothers    Vivid memories of partying with these guys. They had a couple of revolvers from the Civil War. Confederate, of course.

Hawaiians 1941-1945


26 February 1972    American Legion Hall     Merced     California

Jimmy Swaggart - Ben Sakoguchi-13

19 March 1972    You have to watch these rock writers all the time.   Kathi was our new singer, not Elvin’s.


13 April 1972

Kathi and I went out partying in an old farmhouse, deserted, crackly, in the middle of a cornfield. It seemed as if we were there for days.

Tom Doyle and pals

25 April 1972      Iowa Wesleyan   Fayetteville     Iowa

no existo

Nancy Hongo

29 April 1972                  Upper Iowa             Mt. Pleasant

jesus opossums


1-2 May 1972   Ace Beer Garden  Iowa City



June 1972      Pioneer High School    Whittier   California


2 June 1972       Fort Homer Hesterly Armory     Tampa


June 1972    Schererville     Illinois          with Blue Oyster Cult.    These guys were fun to hang with. They were hysterically funny.

June 1972     Catholic High School          Niles           Illinois

Penis Dick


June 1972    Romeoville Roller Rink           Romeoville        Illinois

15 June 1972      Hersey High School       Arlington Heights     Illinois



June 1972     Grande Ballroom              Detroit

a rod

June/July 1972     Louisiana

Janis car early 60's

July 1972      Miami            Spirit

SF Chinese

22 July 1972   Marine World   Redwood City    California



4 September 1972




17 September 1972   A slice of life in the 70s.   If you read between the lines, this pretty much says it all.

Central Pacific Railroad Photographic History Museum


9 October 1972   Berkeley Folk Music Festival     with Big Mama Thornton     Earl Collins    Silver String Macedonian Band    Frontier


24 November 1972    Marin County Civic Center Auditorium   Quicksilver      Clover      Yogi Phlegm       A Cold Turkey Rock Party


Clover !     Johnny Ciambotti   John McFee is there.   Mitch Howe   Alex Call   Huey Lewis  Sean Hopper  Good band.   Alex has a beautiful voice and he writes great songs.

And, talking of Marin musicians, this is one who has been an inspiration to me for years:   Terry Haggerty.

Somewhere in my personal effects I have a Local # Six Musicians’ Union directory from the 1950s. Terry’s father is in there along with Paul Desmond and many other noteworthy players from that era. If I can ever find that directory, I’m going to give it to Terry.

Terry and David Shallock came to my house in Fairfax one day, and they did a smokin’ version of Frosty, the Snowman. It was so great to hear that. Especially in August.

It’s the whole person, though, you know ? Terry is a great guitar player, one of the best, but it’s as a human being that he shines brightest.



See you next week?

Sam Andrew


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