Original Jefferson Airplane Singer Signe Anderson Dead at 74
Signe Anderson, the original singer for Jefferson Airplane, has died at the age of 74. Anderson passed on Thursday (Jan. 28), the same day as her former bandmate Paul Kantner.
Anderson was born in 1941. She teamed up with Kantner and Marty Balin as Jefferson Airplane in 1966. She appeared on the band’s debut effort Jefferson Airplane Takes Off that same year. However, soon thereafter, Anderson parted ways with Jefferson Airplane, finding it difficult to juggle the band with her new role as mother. She played her last show in October of 1966, which was recorded and released in 2010 as Signe’s Farewell. Anderson was replaced by singer Grace Slick.
Following Jefferson Airplane, Anderson performed with Carl Smith and the Natural Gas Company. She rejoined her former Jefferson Airplane bandmates Kantner and Jack Casady as Jefferson Starship in the ‘90s.
The cause of death is still undisclosed but Anderson battled several cancers since the mid-‘70s. In a Facebook post, Casady revealed she had recently entered hospice care:
I was just informed of the passing of Signe Anderson, the same day as we lost Paul. Signe was our, Jefferson Airplane's first female singer. I had been in touch with Signe this past week as she had moved from her home to hospice care. She was a real sweetheart with a terrific contralto voice coming from a solid folk background. Listen to how she made the three part harmonies of JA Takes Off (first album) sound so thick...her wonderful tone between Paul's and Marty's.
A sad day .....for those of us still here.
Balin paid tribute to his bandmate in another Facebook message:
One sweet Lady has passed on. I imagine that she and Paul woke up in heaven and said "Hey what are you doing here? Let's start a band" and no sooner then said Spencer [Dryden] was there joining in!" Heartfelt thoughts to all their family and loved ones.