February 28, 2010 – 3:59 am

On the good ship Lollipop.

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

The Volunteers Sessions [Deep Six-36 ,1CD]

Sessions at Wally Heider Recording Studios, San Francisco, CA, 1969. Ex- SBD stereo.

A high quality disc of session outtakes from the “Volunteers” album, released on audiophile 24kt. Gold CD by the “Deep Six” label. “Volunteers” was the last album to feature the “classic” Jefferson Airplane” line-up with Grace Slick (vocals, piano), Marty Balin (vocals), Jorma Kaukonen (lead guitar, vocals), Paul Kantner (rhythm guitar, vocals), Jack Casady (Bass) and Spencer Dryden (drums), with added piano by Nicky Hopkins. - Philip Cohen

Released in November 1969, Volunteers arrived to see the sunset of Hippiedom. This was just two months post-Woodstock the biggest “peace” festival of its time. You can see how groups like Santana and The Who plus the electrifying Jimi Hendrix had cast long shadows. Volunteers’ songs sound like folk songs given a sudden update with the buzzing and sometimes irritating soloing of Jorma Kaukonen.

The Volunteer Sessions bootleg furthers this argument. There are many lengthy solos that surround and circle the vocalists, in effect a siege on folk music. Paul Kantner, Grace Slick and Marty Balin sound pretty much like Peter, Paul and Mary to these ears.

The subversive element was the lyrics. We Can Be Together which opens the official album has the lyric “Up against the wall, motherfucker!” But sung by the trio like a church choir. Then there are a couple of ecology songs The Farm and Eskimo Blue Day. Both Volunteers and Wooden Ships evoke strong anti-war images of us and them.

The sessions appear to be heavier but the finished album seems a bit lightweight like a compromise. Just as the ’70s arrived, bands like the Airplane had to wonder if standing up for their counter-culture ideals was worth it. Change was coming fast but not in the way the hippies had imagined. The music was soon to have “business” added to it. Rock bands were soon to vie for fans’ attention. No longer were they to be the vanguard for social change to fight the “MAN”. Money, celebrity and the lifestyle were very seductive to these young adults.

Paul Kanter’s demo of We Can Be Together alone is worth the price of admission. Perhaps sensing the new generation of fans, he slips in a “MF” word. For street cred? Santana, The Who and Hendrix were not about political and social change. They just wanted to be famous.
- Professor Red

Thanks to Phil Cohen for sharing the tracks.

Note: A longtime music fan, Philip Cohen was a contributor to the now-defunct ICE Magazine and compiled the boxsets for The Yardbirds, The Small Faces, Humble Pie and Nice.

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (these are high quality MP3s - sample rate of 320 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Track 01. Volunteers (5.2MB)
Take 18
Track 02. We Can Be Together (14.6MB)
extended intro, lead guitar overdub
Track 03. We Can Be Together (14.3MB)
Paul Kantner acoustic demo
Track 04. We Can Be Together (14.2MB)
lead guitar overdub, master take 75
Track 05. Good Shepherd (10.3MB)
vocal overdubs on master take
Track 06. Good Shepherd (11.0MB)
different vocal overdubs on master take

Track 07. The Farm (7.1MB)
acoustic guitar overdubs on master take

Track 08. The Farm (7.4MB)
different acoustic guitar overdubs on master take

Track 09. Turn My LIfe Down (7.1MB)
demo take 33

Track 10. Wooden Ships [This 8:29m version seems to merge into another song] (20.5MB)
first vocal take

Track 11. J.P.P. McStep Blues (20.3MB)
instrumental version

Track 12. A Song For All Seasons (8.0MB)
take recorded Aug 28, 1969

Track 13. Hey Frederick [cuts at 6:40m] (15.9MB)
with lead guitar overdubs

Click here if you reside in North America
Click here if you reside outside North America
Track 14. Hey Frederick (17.4)
different take with lead guitar overdubs

Click on the link to buy Jefferson Airplane’s Volunteers album.


  2. “J.P.P. McStep B. Blues” was a composition by ex-Airplane member Skip Spence(drummer on “Jefferson Airplane Takes Off”, and later rhythm guitarist/vocalist for the group “Moby Grape”). The 1966 version of the song(recorded at sessions for “Surrealistic Pillow”) is available on the outtakes CD “Early Flight”, and in an alternate mix of the expanded CD of “Surrealistic Pillow”.

    By Philip Cohen on Feb 28, 2010

  3. J.P.P. McStep B. Blues appears to be the same as Wooden Ships the track before. Was there a mix up on this?

    By Tim Youngker on Feb 28, 2010

  4. Tim,

    The original Jefferson Airplane session tape for “Wooden Ships” was a medley of “Wooden Ships” & “J.P.P. McStep B.Blues”, but during the mixdown(for the officially released version), it was decided to omit “J.P.P. Mc Step B Blues” by fading out after the end of “Wooden Ships”. There is no mistake in the way the tracks are labeled.

    By Philip Cohen on Feb 28, 2010

  5. Great Thanks for this Download!!!!!

    By udo on Feb 28, 2010

  6. Hello Philip,
    Thanks for the info.

    By Tim Youngker on Feb 28, 2010

  7. Great Stuff for society… Groovy & Graceful.

    By Timmy on Mar 1, 2010

  8. Love the title song. Can’t wait to hear the rest. Thanks

    By Matt on Mar 5, 2010

  9. Phillip: Thank you very much for all the jewels you have posted. They are simply amazing.

    You really rock!

    By Boschini on Mar 6, 2010

  10. My fave J.A. LP.
    The sound quality is GREAT !
    Thanks BigO.

    By Daz on Mar 6, 2010

  11. Hi! The two tracks where it says “If you reside in the United States…” are not coming up on my screen after a very long time. Is there an alternate way of getting these two tracks?

    Thanks, dc

    By Dave Callan on Mar 7, 2010

  12. Ref:Tracks 10 and 11.
    It might be clearer to label these as:
    10 Wooden Ships / J.P.P. McStep Blues
    11 Wooden Ships / J.P.P. McStep Blues (instrumental version)

    Thanks for this album, much appreciated.

    By Anthony Harland on Mar 7, 2010

  13. Figured things out. Thanks very much for this. I don’t why but I love Jefferson Airplane a great deal.

    By Dave on Mar 8, 2010

  14. Thanks so much for these tracks!

    Peter, Paul & Mary? You’re kidding, right.

    The last two paragraphs of the commentary seem particularly silly (context ‘fess!).

    By Frank on Mar 9, 2010

  15. To Anthony Harland,
    You are correct. The tracks are labelled here as on the original CD package

    By Philip Cohen on Mar 11, 2010

  16. Bring on more JA!

    By Nick on Mar 13, 2010

  17. Nick,

    I gave Big O one more Jefferson Airplane title, which will appear here in the future; 1965-66 concert recordings by the Balin/Anderson/Kantner/Casady/Kaukonen/Spence line-up & the transitional Balin/Anderson/Kantner/Casady/Kaukonen/Dryden line-up. Stay tuned!

    By Philip Cohen on Mar 16, 2010

  18. Many thanks for the Airplane! One caveat though. In the comments you state that Hendrix was not about political and social change. I beg to differ. Take another listen to Machine Gun and other Band Of Gypsys era recordings. Subliminally political, but political nonetheless. He paid the ultimate price for speaking out against THE MAN. His buddy Jim Morrison, too.

    By eponymus on May 3, 2010

  19. Wow, what a treasure trove. Thank you. The extended version of Wooden Ships with J.P.P. McStep Blues inclusion is beautiful. Great stuff. Kathy

    By Kathy on Aug 14, 2010

  20. These sound great. Is there a way to download and save these cuts?

    By Brian Eno on Mar 30, 2011

  21. Mr. Brian Eno. A pleasure to speak to you sir. Love your music.

    If you left clicked on the titles to listen to them, try right clicking to download.

    By Sking on Mar 30, 2011

  22. Dear Bigo,

    So much good music, so little time to listen to it all. Keep posting the hard stuff for all us full time muso heads.

    By Creatist on Jan 20, 2012


    our resident downer news editor is slipping a little bit lately. he didn’t even bother to pass this news along. hopefully paul has a speedy recovery & darth keeps on slipping up like he invariably does.

    By downer darth on Mar 27, 2015

  24. he`s too busy trying to remember the name of his record stores.

    By sluggo on Mar 27, 2015

  25. a possible heart attack isnt important enough for me to announce. his death would be.
    i have no problem remembering the names of the stores. i chose not to post them. isnt that obvious?

    By darth on Mar 27, 2015

  26. darth , you weren`t partners with anyone owning and running two record stores . admit it and feel better.

    By dropkick sarge on Mar 27, 2015

  27. how would u know? how could u?? wouldnt i know my life better than u?? why are u telling me about my fucking life?? who says i dont feel fine now? why would i feel better?? whats wrong with u? is this your attempt at getting me to tell u more info about them?

    By darth on Mar 27, 2015

  28. a heart attack isn’t important enough? but a stroke is? u reported billy talbots stroke here last year u fucking loser! just because you’re the coroner & someone else heat u to it. ha!

    u didn’t own shit darth. obviously u don’t want to tell the names cause u would be giving yourself away then as the lying scumbag con man you really are shit for brains asshole!

    By downer darth on Mar 27, 2015

  29. ^beat

    By downer darth on Mar 27, 2015

  30. I’m glad ur not a physician. “oh it’s just a heart attack paul. nothing to worry about it’s unimportant. just go back to whatever youre were doing.” you’re amazing darth. what a complete downer u are.

    By downer darth on Mar 27, 2015

  31. because i announce when people in music die makes me the coroner?? paul kantner didnt necessarily have a heart attack. its mentioned as a possible heart attack on the page. u attack me in your posting here and im the fucking loser? i dont care if u post a comment here before i do it announcing that someone has a heart attack or dies before i do it. its not a race or competition. i never said that i needed to beat anyone else to the punch on putting the news on here about such things. i dont get why u feel like u had to get it there before me and thereby say u ”heat’ me to it. ha!’.
    u dont know what i owned. thats ridiculous. i have found that when i divulge personal private info about myself it doesnt turn out well. u saying.. ‘obviously..’ this or that.. has no bearings on reality. it couldnt. i mean.. seriously.. how could it? its not as if u know anything about me or my life in the 70s or 80s. u can call me all the names u can think of but that wont make them true. u think because u know a lot of foul words and u throw them at me that will provoke me towards giving u the details of my life? good job. could u be any more jealous?? how embarrassing for u. no wonder u hide on my id. coward!!

    By darth on Mar 27, 2015

  32. i didnt diagnose him. i read the article. did u?
    i didnt say it was nothing to worry about or unimportant.

    By darth on Mar 27, 2015

  33. the DICKHEAD DARTH HAS SPOKEN EVERYONE look at him once again needing attention.

    ur a LIAR.

    By downer darth on Mar 27, 2015

  34. Whilst the usual arseholes squabble, the wonderful John Renbourn has passed away. Another of the greats has left us!

    By Fabian McCorkle on Mar 27, 2015

  35. if im the one needing attention why are u the one in caps? why are u the one using my name and attacking me?? it sure seems far more evident from the pudding at hand that its u who is in serious need of that attn.
    calling someone a liar without any evidence to prove your case has no meaing or merit. why should or would anyone accept or believe u when u say that? what possible purpose could u have or outcome are u hoping to achieve when u sit there like an idiot calling me a liar? try to put yourself in someone elses position for a moment and imagine reading your comments. why would u believe or trust u if u werent u??

    and yes -
    Renbourn died on 26 March 2015 from a heart attack at his home in Hawick in the Scottish Borders, aged 70.

    By darth on Mar 27, 2015

  36. quit talking gibberish darth & get that drool & shit wiped off your chin. change your depends old man too.

    By downer darth on Mar 27, 2015

  37. @Fabian McCorkle +!

    @Darth Don’t feed the trolls!

    By Colonel Panic on Mar 27, 2015

  38. This would be nicer world if just for one day,

    Darth, could you just post what you want on posts that have something to do with the BIG O post at hand - nobody really cares about the other stuff you post

    Everyone else - just quit posting about Darth - nobody cares about that either

    Darth - quit responding to other people posts - it just feeds their own egos and they respond again.

    And all of the folks who were complaining about a whole week of the grateful dead - so now we have Fleetwood Mac and Morrisey and Joe walsh - I assume you see that as an improvement of some kind?

    There - at least I feel better now - back to your lives everyone

    By dwight on Apr 1, 2015

  39. BigO can you repost this Roio without the 4 shared links please. ..thanks

    By Sarah Novak on Apr 15, 2015

  40. Works for me Dwight!
    And on April Fools day too . . . . . gone gloriously quiet but that’s tempting fate . . . .

    By swappers on Apr 15, 2015

  41. THANKS MUCH for this! <3 jefferson airplane :) anyone out there know of any material from the in between airplane and starship days? I adore both the albums “Sunfighter” and “Baron Von Tollbooth and the Chrome Nun”…there were so many people collaborating on those albums there’s gotta be more out there HOPEFULLY :) if you know of any please comment or email me [email protected] thanks in advance!

    By tech65 on Apr 25, 2015


    By TUNAFAN on May 25, 2015

  43. I can’t seem to download track 12. Bought the album when it was released and as a liner note junkie an album that opened up was always met with great enthusiasm & expectations. What a let down to see the entire inside of the album jacket wasted with a PB & J sandwich - with butter too no less!! the music was great though.

    By Bernestalker on Jan 29, 2016

  44. Track 12 cant be downloaded for some reason,Any advise , thanks

    By COREY M on Feb 11, 2016

  45. Re: Track 12 - kindly refresh the page and try again.

    By bigozine2 on Feb 11, 2016

  46. track 5 won’t open, play or download

    By Marty on Oct 2, 2016

  47. The words of the song “We Can Be Together” were adapted from a document called “An Open Letter To The Hippies” penned by French revolutionary philosopher Guy Debord, who was a friend of the Jefferson Airplane.

    By Airplane Freak on Dec 9, 2016

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