1979. “Freedom at Point Zero”. Jefferson Starship’s first album with Mickey Thomas as lead vocalist & Ron Nevison as Producer. R.C.A.
Grace Slick sat this album out due to her work in rehab. Aynsley Dunbar replaced John Barbata on drums. John had experienced a serious car accident. Paul Kantner hired Rock producer Ron Nevison, who drastically changed the sound and direction of the band’s music.
I had arranged for the band to fly Jess Rodin out from New York City to audition as our new vocalist. He sounded fantastic, but the band decided they wanted a high voice to cover harmonies so they went for Mickey. Jess had a lower bluesy soul style voice; I’d first seen him with the “Alan Bown Set” when my band the “Sons Of Fred” played with them in the mid sixties in England. After Aynsley left, I again had the band fly out a friend of mine, this time from England to try out on drums…John Lingwood from Manfred Mann. But the band wanted a double kick drum power drummer and went with Mickey’s friend Donny Baldwin…also a great player. So I suppose I didn’t get off to a very good start with Mickey or Donny really…although Donny and I are good friends now. Mickey is an amazing vocalist, no doubt about that.
I had been writing with Grace Slick through the 1970’s, so I began collaborating with longtime lyricist Jeannette Sears on this album. Our contribution to “Freedom at Point Zero” was “Awakening” and “Fading Lady Light”.
The album cover for Freedom at Point Zero was shot on location in the San Francisco Bay on board the USCGC Midgett (WHEC-726).