Bill Graham’s Concert Vault: From Miles Davis to Bob Marley

Wolf­gang Gra­jon­ca had a hard child­hood. Young and orphaned dur­ing World War II, Gra­jon­ca moved from Ger­many to Paris, Mar­seille and Lis­bon, and even­tu­al­ly the Unit­ed States by sea, each time stay­ing one step ahead of the west­ward-mov­ing Nazis. The 10 year old set­tled in New York, changed his name to Bill Gra­ham, lat­er fought in Korea, and head­ed to San Fran­cis­co, where he became a leg­endary con­cert pro­mot­er. Jef­fer­son Air­plane, The Grate­ful Dead, Coun­try Joe and The Fish, The Rolling Stones — Gra­ham put them all on the West coast stage.

The pro­mot­er of the Coun­ter­cul­ture was killed in a heli­copter crash in Octo­ber 1991 and left behind a huge trove of record­ings and mem­o­ra­bil­ia. Out of the ash­es arose Wolf­gang’s Vault, a web­site that ped­dles many Bill Gra­ham goods, but also fea­tures a good num­ber of free con­certs from the hey­day: The Who and Miles Davis (Tan­gle­wood, 1970), The All­man Broth­ers Band (New York, 1970), Mud­dy Waters (Los Ange­les, 1971), Bob Mar­ley and the Wail­ers and Tom Pet­ty & the Heart­break­ers (1978).  They’re all avail­able online, along with oth­er acts includ­ing Van Mor­ri­son, AC/DC, San­tana, The Band, and Cros­by, Stills & Nash. Jump into the col­lec­tion here.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Free Grate­ful Dead Con­cert Archive

Fred­die Mer­cury, Live Aid (1985)

David Bowie and Bing Cros­by Sing Christ­mas Duet

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