Legendary concert promoter Bill Graham would have turned 87 years old today. Bil…
Written by megarock on January 8, 2018
Legendary concert promoter Bill Graham would have turned 87 years old today. Bill’s life started out in Germany and fled from Germany to escape the Holocaust. At age ten he settled in a foster home in the Bronx, New York.
In the early 1960s, he moved to San Francisco, and, in 1965, began to manage a theater troupe. He organized a benefit concert, then promoted several free concerts. This eventually turned into a profitable full-time career and he assembled a talented staff. Graham had a profound influence around the world, sponsoring the musical renaissance of the ’60s from the epicenter, San Francisco. Graham made famous the Fillmore and Winterland Arena; these turned out to be a proving grounds for rock bands and acts of the San Francisco Bay area including the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane and Big Brother and the Holding Company with Janis Joplin.
He was killed in a helicopter crash on Oct.25, 1991. He was 60 years old. There are those who thought he was a ruthless business man and there are those who knew him as a “sweetheart”. Either way, there is no denying he was one of the most influential people in the history of Rock and Roll.
Happy Birthday Bill. There must be some great concerts in Rock and Roll heaven. We know they got a hell of a band.