Rock and Roll enjoyed a domination and popularity in the 60s through to the late 90s. At the forefront of the dominance were many iconic musicians, but one woman who stands out in the genre of rock and roll is Grace Slick. Over time, she came to be known for the brand of psychedelic style she brought onto the genre. Seeing as it has been a while, many may not remember exactly who she is and how she did what she became iconic for, so, here’s a reminder of how she lived and rocked.
Biography and Childhood of Grace Slick
Slick was born on October 30, 1939, to Ivan Wilford Wing and Virginia Wing, who were not married to each other. Slick’s growing up days was spread across different cities due to her father’s work as an investment banker but she finally found a home in San Francisco in the 50s. During her childhood, she also spent a lot of time with her younger brother, learning to play the piano and the guitar.
As the daughter of a rich man, she attended a private school, Castilleja High School in Palo Alto, although before she did, she attended Palo Alto High School. She left for New York City in 1957 to attend Finch College and after graduation, she attended the University of Miami in Coral Gables. Having completed her formal education, Grace Slick moved back to San Francisco where she married Jerry Slick.
She was inspired to give music a try after watching a band, Jefferson Airplane, which she later joined to perform live. Grace, a gifted singer and songwriter, trained in the musical instruments, piano and guitar, decided to form a band with her husband, Jerry Slick. The band was named The Great Society. They performed their first show in October 1965, to the delight of the San Francisco music audience. In a few months, their rising popularity gave them an opportunity to record an album in a music studio. The familiarity in the band, however, gave rise to unprofessionalism and it got disbanded in 1966.
After Jefferson Airplane lost its vocalist, Signe Toly Anderson, Grace Slick was approached by a member of Jefferson Airplane to join the band and she accepted, citing the more professional structure of the band as her reason for joining. Her time at Jefferson Airplane helped the group produce more music, delivering chart-topping records like White Rabbit and Somebody to Love. Within three years of pursuing a music career, Grace Slick had become a part of one of the most popular bands in the country and eventually one of the most prominent female rock artists in the 60s.
Her time at Jefferson Airplane is notable for a number of things but a few of them include ending one of her performances with a black panther fist, in solidarity with the Civil Rights movement at the time. In 1969, she became the first person to utter the word “motherfucker” on live television. Jefferson Airplane ran from 1967 to 1973 when a couple of its members left the band, forcing Slick and the remaining bandmates to regroup and form a new group which they named Jefferson Starship.
Proving to be the glue that held the band together regardless of who was in the band, she led the Starship to a string of chart-topping singles and albums. While at it, she also tried her hands at a couple of solo projects like Manhole, Dreams, and Software. After another set of Jefferson Airplane members left the band, leaving Slick alone as the remaining member, she formed a new band called Starship. The band ran from 1985 to 1989 and on their way, they left a few successful projects, such as We Built This City which became a rock classic.
Shortly before her retirement from music, Grace Slick and her former Jefferson Airplane band members regrouped for one last album. The reunion album was a success and the band went on a successful tour. She retired from active music in the early 90s.
A life of iconic music, successful albums, tours and a lifetime of royalties have helped the iconic rock musician build a net worth of $20 million. Although retired, she now lends her talents and time to various charity works.
Grace Slick has just one daughter, China Wing Kantner who she had with Paul Kantner during their relationship that lasted 6 years from 1969 to 1975. Her daughter, China Kantner is an actress who has worked in film, TV, and theatre.
Grace Slick’s Life Achievements
The iconic rock n roll queen has achieved quite a lot in her lifetime. In music, which she’s most famous for, she has released several charting songs. She was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996 and she’s ranked no 20 in VH1’s 100 Greatest Women of Rock N Roll.
Outside of music, Grace Slick has been able to overcome a battle with alcoholism. She’s also become a visual artist, with art gallery shows all over the country. Her art galleries currently host an average of 30 shows in a year.