7 ways 1967 totally rocked

In conjunction with the GRAMMY Museum's Jim Marshall's 1967 exhibit launch, here are seven reasons 1967 was one of the most pivotal years in music
  • On the corner of Haight & Ashbury
March 10, 2017 -- 5:05 pm PST

Organized by the San Francisco Arts Commission in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of San Francisco's Summer of Love, the GRAMMY Museum's new Jim Marshall's 1967 exhibit features 60 curated images from thousands Marshall took while he documented history in the making. Displayed in chronological order, the exhibition collects a trove of Marshall's photographs that capture the essence of the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood, including artists such as Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix and the Grateful Dead.

The exhibition will be on display now through May 14. To celebrate the exhibit's opening, here's a look back at seven unforgettable ways 1967 was a year of musical high points.

The Beatles drop Sgt. Pepper's …

The year 1967 saw the release of some of the most iconic albums in modern music history. On June 1, 1967, the Beatles unveiled Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, a feat of masterful production and a quantum leap forward for the album format. That year also introduced the public to artists who would go on to have lasting legacies, with Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, the Doors, David Bowie, Velvet Underground, and Leonard Cohen all releasing debut albums that year.

Fleetwood Mac's green debut

Fleetwood Mac's original lineup, fronted by Peter Green, made their first live performance in 1967, laying the groundwork for the later successful incarnation featuring Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks. They would go on to release "Black Magic Woman" in early 1968, which would later become a massive hit for Santana, who played their first show in 1967. Although blues and rock were certainly at the forefront of the musical scene that year, 1967 also saw the formation of funk/soul powerhouse Sly And The Family Stone, as well as synth experimentalists Tangerine Dream. In August 1967, the power trio Cream, featuring Eric Clapton, made their U.S. live performance debut at the Fillmore in San Francisco.

The Queen of Soul wins big

Recognizing music released in 1967, at the 10th GRAMMY Awards Aretha Franklin took home her first two GRAMMYs, both for her now-classic "Respect." She has gone on to win another 16 awards over the course of her career, making her one of the top GRAMMY winners in history. Other notable wins for 1967 went to "Soul Man" by Sam & Dave, "Jackson" by Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, and the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, which netted three GRAMMYs, including Album Of The Year.

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The birth of the festival

From tiny bars, clubs and ballrooms to large theaters, stadiums and outdoor festivals, live music was everywhere in 1967. The Monterey Pop Festival in June 1967 became a watershed moment, and is considered by many to be the first true pop music festival. (Although some argue that title belongs to the KFRC Fantasy Fair and Mountain Music Festival held two weeks prior.) Regarded as the starting point for the Summer of Love, the festival featured performances by Big Brother And The Holding Company (featuring Janis Joplin), the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, and Ravi Shankar, among others.

Big TV moments with the Doors and the Who

The Doors frontman Jim Morrison made a splash on "The Ed Sullivan Show" by defying censors who'd instructed him to change the lyrics to the band's hit song "Light My Fire." On live television that same night, the Who punctuated a performance of "My Generation" by destroying their instruments and blowing up Keith Moon's drum set with gunpowder on "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour." Pete Townsend attributes the partial deafness he now suffers in one ear to that explosive incident.

Watch: The Doors' Lifetime Achievement Award acceptance speech

Hendrix's wah-wah

Speaking of Hendrix, the incendiary sound of his 1967 single "Burning Of The Midnight Lamp" featured his first recorded usage of the wah-wah pedal, which was first released to the public that same year. Hendrix helped popularize the effect at 1969's Woodstock festival, with his iconic instrumental performance of "A Star-Spangled Banner" considered to be a milestone wah-wah moment. The pedal went on to become synonymous with the sounds of '70s psychedelic rock and funk. Also that year: Kustom sold the first solid-state transistor amplifiers, which became popularized by early-adopters Creedence Clearwater Revival, and the first prototype 16-track recorder was tested out by Mirasound Studios in New York City.

The Summer of Love

The Summer of Love, the primary focus of the GRAMMY Museum's Jim Marshall's 1967 exhibit, drew its namesake from a magnetic cultural gathering of hippies and young people in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco. As many as 100,000 people relocated to the area, brought together by shared countercultural values, interest in emerging music and avant-garde art, and opposition to the Vietnam War.

Want to see Jim Marshall's 1967 as a VIP? Learn more about Museum membership!

Which of these 1967 albums best exemplifies the Summer of Love?


Which of these 1967 albums best exemplifies the Summer of Love?

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