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Bill Graham exhibit opening in NY, features Bowie, Blondie, Neil Young, Grateful Dead, more

Bill Graham

The late, legendary concert promoter Bill Graham — who, among other things, owned and booked San Francisco’s Fillmore West and Winterland and New York’s Fillmore East, and was a key figure in the Haight-Ashbury scene that birthed the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin, and more — is being celebrated with an exhibition at The New-York Historical Society, which runs from this Friday (2/14) through August 23. The exhibition initially debuted in LA in 2015. Here’s more:

The New-York Historical Society presents the rock & roll world of Bill Graham (1931–1991), one of the most influential concert promoters of all time. Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution explores the life and work of the legendary music impresario who worked with the biggest names in rock music—including the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, Santana, Led Zeppelin, and the Rolling Stones—and launched the careers of countless music luminaries at his famed Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco and the Fillmore East in New York City.

Organized by the Skirball Cultural Center, which debuted the exhibition in Los Angeles, this comprehensive retrospective of Graham’s life and career explores some of the 20th century’s momentous cultural transformations through the lens of rock & roll. Showcasing more than 300 objects—including rock memorabilia, photographs, and concert posters—the New-York Historical presentation highlights Graham’s personal connections to New York, beginning with a site-specific installation of “The Joshua Light Show,” the trailblazing liquid light show conceived in 1967 by multimedia artist Joshua White that served as a psychedelic backdrop to Graham’s concert productions in New York.

Unique to New-York Historical is a special, immersive audio experience, providing a musical tour through the exhibition with songs by rock superstars Aerosmith, Blondie, David Bowie, Cream, the Doors, Janis Joplin, Tom Petty, and Neil Young, among others.

You can get tickets and read more about the exhibition here.

Watch a 1977 interview recorded at Winterland below:

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