Jefferson Airplane Takes Off

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Jefferson Airplane Takes Off
Jefferson airplane takes off.JPG
Studio album by
ReleasedAugust 15, 1966[1]
RecordedDecember 18, 1965 – March 31, 1966
StudioRCA Victor's Music Center of the World, Hollywood, CA, US
GenreFolk rock, psychedelic rock, psychedelic folk[2]
LabelRCA Victor
ProducerMatthew Katz and Tommy Oliver[3]
Jefferson Airplane chronology
Jefferson Airplane Takes Off
Surrealistic Pillow
Singles from Jefferson Airplane Takes Off
  1. "It's No Secret" b/w "Runnin' Round This World"
    Released: February 1966
  2. "Come Up the Years" / "Blues from an Airplane"
    Released: May 1966
  3. "Bringing Me Down" / "Let Me In"
    Released: August 1966

Jefferson Airplane Takes Off is the debut studio album by the American rock band Jefferson Airplane, released in August 1966 as RCA Victor LSP-3584 (stereo) and LPM-3584 (mono). The personnel differs from the later "classic" lineup: Signe Toly Anderson was the female vocalist and Skip Spence played drums. Both soon left the group—Spence in May 1966,[4] Anderson in October[5]—and were replaced by Spencer Dryden and Grace Slick, respectively.


RCA executives found some of the lyrics too sexually suggestive. They had the band change the lyrics in "Let Me In" from "I gotta get in, you know where" to "You shut your door, now it ain't fair", and "Don't tell me you want money" to "Don't tell me it's so funny". In "Run Around" they had the end of the line "Blinded by colors come flashing from flowers that sway as you lay under me" altered to "...that sway as you stay here by me". With "Runnin' 'Round This World" the executives insisted that "trips" in the line "The nights I've spent with you have been fantastic trips" referred to taking LSD, though the band insisted it was merely common slang. Even replacing the word "trips" with a guitar arpeggio did not placate RCA's concerns with the line's sexual connotations and refused its inclusion on the album, and the recording remained unreleased for the next eight years.[6]

Release and reception[edit]

The album's release drew little press attention at a time when mainstream newspapers did not normally cover rock releases and the rock press was yet in its infancy. Crawdaddy! highlighted the album on the cover of its January 1967 issue, which included a three-page review by the magazine's assistant editor, Tim Jurgens, who called the album "faulted" yet "the most important album of American rock" of 1966.[7]

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3.5/5 stars [8]
The Daily VaultB+[9]

Track listing[edit]

All lead vocals on the 1966 release by Balin except where noted.

Side one
1."Blues from an Airplane"Marty Balin, Skip Spence2:10
2."Let Me In" (lead vocals: Kantner)Balin, Paul Kantner2:55
3."Bringing Me Down"Balin, Kantner2:22
4."It's No Secret"Balin2:37
5."Tobacco Road"Clay Warnick[n 1]3:26
Side two
1."Come Up the Years"Balin, Kantner2:30
2."Run Around" (lead vocals: Kantner)Balin, Kantner2:35
3."Let's Get Together" (lead vocals: Kantner, Anderson, Balin)Chester Powers3:32
4."Don't Slip Away"Balin, Spence2:31
5."Chauffeur Blues" (lead vocals: Anderson)Lester Melrose2:25
6."And I Like It"Balin, Jorma Kaukonen3:16
2003 CD reissue bonus tracks
12."Runnin' Round This World" (from Early Flight)Balin, Kantner2:25
13."High Flying Bird" (from Early Flight)Billy Edd Wheeler2:17
14."It's Alright" (from Early Flight)Balin, Spence2:17
15."Go to Her" (from Jefferson Airplane Loves You)Kantner, Irving Estes4:09
16."Let Me In" (uncensored version from Jefferson Airplane Loves You)Balin, Kantner3:31
17."Run Around" (uncensored version)Balin, Kantner2:35
18."Chauffeur Blues" (alternate version)Melrose2:49
19."And I Like It" (alternate version)Balin, Kaukonen8:16
20."Blues from an Airplane" (instrumental; hidden track)Balin, Spence2:10


  1. ^ "Tobacco Road" is credited to Clay Warnick on the LP, although it was written by John D. Loudermilk



  • Tommy Oliver – producer
  • Matthew Katz – manager, producer
  • Dave Hassinger – engineer
  • Recorded in RCA Victor's Music Center of the World, Hollywood, California


Chart (1966) Peak
US Billboard 200[10] 128


  1. ^ Tamarkin 2003, p. [page needed].
  2. ^ Nathan Brackett; Christian David Hoard (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon and Schuster. p. 426. ISBN 978-0-7432-0169-8.
  3. ^ "Jefferson Airplane: Recording Studio (Takes Off)". 2010. Archived from the original on May 6, 2017. Retrieved January 2, 2014.
  4. ^ Tamarkin 2003, p. 72.
  5. ^ Tamarkin 2003, p. 106.
  6. ^ Tamarkin 2003, p. 84.
  7. ^ Tamarkin 2003, p. 87.
  8. ^ Ruhlmann, William. "Jefferson Airplane: Jefferson Airplane Takes Off [Original] at AllMusic. Retrieved September 1, 2011.
  9. ^ Bowling, David (2019). "The Daily Vault Music Reviews : Jefferson Airplane Takes Off". Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  10. ^ "Jefferson Airplane Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard.

Works cited