Longtime Jefferson Airplane Manager Bill Thompson Dies at 70

Man who managed Airplane and Starship passes in Mill Valley

Bill Thompson, the longtime manager of the Jefferson Airplane — and further iterations Jefferson Starship and Hot Tuna — died Monday of a heart attack at 70 at his Mill Valley home.

No mere businessman, he was responsible for much of the band's identity, the Marin Independent Journal reported.

Thompson took over management of the band in 1968 from legendary concert promoter Bill Graham.

In addition to running the band's logistics, Thompson secured the legendary 20-room Victorian home near Golden Gate Park on Fulton Street that became the "Black Mansion," the newspaper reported.

Musicians and band members said that Thompson was a vital and reliable "anchor" during a "wild and woolly" era that, through the LSD-fueled surreality of the Haight-Ashbury, created what's still known as the "San Francisco sound."

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