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Big Brother and the Holding Company

 

BBig Brother & The Holding Company was formed in 1965 by Peter Albin and Sam Andrew. Guitarist James Gurley joined the band and the trio soon began playing open jam sessions hosted by Chet Helms. Soon after, Chuck Jones joined the group as the drummer, but he played only through the Trips Festival in January 1966 and was replaced by David Getz.

Big Brother became the extremely popular house band at the Avalon Ballroom, but it was primarily an instrumental band. Chet Helms decided that the band needed a vocalist, and he contacted Janis Joplin about joining. Joplin made the trip from Austin, Texas and debuted with Big Brother on June 10, 1966. Joplin's strong vocals were a major turning point for Big Brother and they went on to achieve national success.

Big Brother's first major breakthrough was its performance at the Monterey Pop Festival in June 1967. Shortly thereafter, they signed a contract with Columbia Records. Columbia booked the band for engagements around the country and on March 8, 1968, Big Brother became the first band to play at the newly opened Fillmore East and the performance was lauded by the press, citing Janis as ranking in sexual pizzazz with Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix, and praising “her belting, groovy style,” mixing Bessie Smith, Aretha Franklin, and James Brown. Joplin continued with the band until December 1, 1968 when she left for a solo career, first assembling the Kosmic Blues Band, later followed by the Full-Tilt Boogie Band in 1970. Joplin was an immensely talented but troubled and insecure person, and in 1970 she died of a heroin overdose.

 

Posters and Handbills Featuring Big Brother and the Holding Company

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poster date cat. no. venue for sale
Jefferson Airplane at Fillmore Auditorium 2/19/66 by Wes Wilson & Chet Helms

2/19/1966

FD-1

Fillmore Auditorium 2/19/66

Products Available

 
Great Society at Fillmore Auditorium 2/26/66 by Wes Wilson & Chet Helms

2/26/1966

FD-2

Fillmore Auditorium 2/26/66

Products Available

 
Mystery Trend at Fillmore Auditorium 3/18-20/66 by Wes Wilson

3/18/1966

BG-2

Fillmore Auditorium 3/18-20/66

Products Available

 
Grateful Dead at Longshoreman's Hall 4/9/66 by Unknown

4/9/1966

AOR-2.193

Longshoreman's Hall 4/9/66
No current products  
Grass Roots at Avalon Ballroom 4/29-30/66 by Wes Wilson

4/29/1966

FD-6

Avalon Ballroom 4/29-30/66

Products Available

 
Daily Flash at Avalon Ballroom 5/6-7/66 by Wes Wilson

5/6/1966

FD-7

Avalon Ballroom 5/6-7/66

Products Available

 
Love at Avalon Ballroom 5/20-22/66 by Wes Wilson

5/20/1966

FD-9

Avalon Ballroom 5/20-22/66

Products Available

 
Jefferson Airplane at Winterland 5/30/66 by Rick Griffin & 
Stanley Mouse & 
Alton Kelley

5/30/1966

AOR-2.206

Winterland 5/30/66
No current products  
Grass Roots at Avalon Ballroom 6/3-4/66 by Victor Moscoso

6/3/1966

FD-11

Avalon Ballroom 6/3-4/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 6/24-25/66 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley

6/24/1966

FD-14

Avalon Ballroom 6/24-25/66
No current products  
Quicksilver Messenger Service at Fillmore Auditorium 7/1-3/66 by Wes Wilson

7/1/1966

BG-14

Fillmore Auditorium 7/1-3/66

Products Available

 
Love at Avalon Ballroom 7/15-16/66 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley & Franz Stuck

7/15/1966

FD-17A

Avalon Ballroom 7/15-16/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at California Hall 7/28/66 by Passalaqu

7/28/1966

AOR-2.156

California Hall 7/28/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 8/5-6/66 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley

8/5/1966

FD-19

Avalon Ballroom 8/5-6/66

Products Available

 
Quicksilver Messenger Service at Fillmore Auditorium 8/7/66 by Mary Kay Brown

8/7/1966

AOR-2.68

Fillmore Auditorium 8/7/66

Products Available

 
Bo Diddley at Avalon Ballroom 8/12-13/66 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley

8/12/1966

FD-21

Avalon Ballroom 8/12-13/66

Products Available

 
Howlin' Wolf at Avalon Ballroom 9/23-24/66 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley

9/23/1966

FD-27

Avalon Ballroom 9/23-24/66

Products Available

 
Jim Kweskin Jug Band at Avalon Ballroom 10/7-8/66 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley

10/7/1966

FD-29

Avalon Ballroom 10/7-8/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 10/15-16/66 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley

10/15/1966

FD-30

Avalon Ballroom 10/15-16/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Matrix 11/1-6/66 by Stanley Mouse

11/1/1966

AOR-2.111

Matrix 11/1-6/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Sokol Hall 11/12/66 by Gut

11/12/1966

AOR-2.247

Sokol Hall 11/12/66
No current products  
Quicksilver Messenger Service at Avalon Ballroom 11/25-26/66 by Victor Moscoso

11/25/1966

FD-36

Avalon Ballroom 11/25-26/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 12/9-10/66 by Victor Moscoso

12/9/1966

FD-38

Avalon Ballroom 12/9-10/66

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Record Release Handbill 1967 by Stanley Mouse

1/1/1967

MSO-MSR.1967.01.01

Record Release Handbill 1967
No current products  
Timothy Leary at Polo Grounds - Golden Gate Park 1/14/67 by Rick Griffin

1/14/1967

AOR-2.215

Polo Grounds - Golden Gate Park 1/14/67

Products Available

 
Timothy Leary at Polo Grounds - Golden Gate Park 1/14/67 by Michael Bowen

1/14/1967

AOR-2.216

Polo Grounds - Golden Gate Park 1/14/67

Products Available

 
Grateful Dead at Golden Gate Park 1/14/67 by Stanley Mouse & 
Alton Kelley & 
Michael Bowen - Photographer

1/14/1967

AOR-2.217

Golden Gate Park 1/14/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Matrix 1/17-22/67 by Victor Moscoso

1/17/1967

NR-3

Matrix 1/17-22/67

Products Available

 
Grateful Dead at Avalon Ballroom 1/29/67 by Unknown

1/29/1967

AOR-2.18

Avalon Ballroom 1/29/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Matrix 1/31-2/5/67 by Victor Moscoso

1/31/1967

NR-4

Matrix 1/31-2/5/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 2/17-18/67 by Stanley Mouse & Alton Kelley & Bob Seidemann

2/17/1967

FD-48

Avalon Ballroom 2/17-18/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at California Hall 2/21/67 by Unknown

2/21/1967

MSC-CAH.1967.02.21

California Hall 2/21/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Steninger Auditorium U.C.S.F. 3/4/67 by Krefting

3/4/1967

MSC-SNG.1967.03.04

Steninger Auditorium U.C.S.F. 3/4/67

Products Available

 
Moby Grape at Avalon Ballroom 3/5/67 by B. Kliban

3/5/1967

MSC-ABR.1967.03.05

Avalon Ballroom 3/5/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Fillmore Auditorium 3/12/67 by Michael Hubbard

3/12/1967

AOR-2.47

Fillmore Auditorium 3/12/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 3/17-18/67 by Rick Griffin

3/17/1967

FD-52

Avalon Ballroom 3/17-18/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 3/31 & 4/1/67 by Victor Moscoso

3/31/1967

FD-55

Avalon Ballroom 3/31 & 4/1/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Stockton CIvic Auditorium 4/16/67 by Stanley Mouse

4/16/1967

AOR-3.22

Stockton CIvic Auditorium 4/16/67

Products Available

 
Howlin' Wolf at Fillmore Auditorium 4/21-23/67 by Wes Wilson

4/21/1967

BG-60

Fillmore Auditorium 4/21-23/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at California Hall 4/23/67 by Michael Wood & 
Pyxis Studios

4/23/1967

AOR-2.151

California Hall 4/23/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at California Hall 4/28-29/67 by Michael Wood & 
Pyxis Studios

4/28/1967

AOR-2.152

California Hall 4/28-29/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 5/5-7/67 by Rick Griffin & Bob Seidemann

5/5/1967

FD-60

Avalon Ballroom 5/5-7/67

Products Available

 
Country Joe and the Fish at California Hall 5/12/67 by Pyxis Studios

5/12/1967

MSC-CAH.1967.05.12

California Hall 5/12/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Fillmore Auditorium 5/26-27/67 by Bonnie MacLean

5/26/1967

BG-65

Fillmore Auditorium 5/26-27/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at California Hall 6/2-3/67 by Michael Wood

6/2/1967

AOR-2.158

California Hall 6/2-3/67

Products Available

 
Big Brother and the Holding Company at Avalon Ballroom 6/8-11/67 by Rick Griffin

6/8/1967

FD-65

Avalon Ballroom 6/8-11/67

Products Available

 
Quicksilver Messenger Service at Avalon Ballroom 6/27/67 by P. Kibhall

6/27/1967

AOR-2.17

Avalon Ballroom 6/27/67
No current products  
Quicksilver Messenger Service at Avalon Ballroom 6/29-7/2/67 by Victor Moscoso

6/29/1967

FD-68

Avalon Ballroom 6/29-7/2/67

Products Available

 
Quicksilver Messenger Service at Mount Tamalpais Amphitheater 7/1/67 by Gut

7/1/1967

MSC-MTA.1967.07.01

Mount Tamalpais Amphitheater 7/1/67

Products Available

 
Bo Diddley at Fillmore Auditorium 7/4-9/67 by Bonnie MacLean

7/4/1967

BG-71

Fillmore Auditorium 7/4-9/67

Products Available

 

 

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