The Jefferson Airplane and Butterfield Blues Band helped draw the first-night crowd for blues-legend 'Big Mama' Mae Thornton. By the third and final night of her gig, however, word had spread, and fans needed no inducement to hear the original singer of "Hound Dog" and "Ball and Chain" belt out her music.
The 1st printing (see BG031) has "October 16" across the photograph of Mama Mae and a black background behind the "14" and "15". The lettering is platinum. This printing pre-dates the concert and measures 13 9/16" x 23 9/16".
The 2nd printing (see BG031) also bears the "October 16" information, but the color behind the "14" and "15" is medium brown. The lettering is platinum. The poster was printed after the concert and measures 13 5/8" x 23 5/8".
The post-concert 3rd printing omits the "October 16" information. The color behind the "14" and "15" is a rich brown. The lettering is in gold ink. This printing measures 13 7/8" x 23 9/16".
When the Avalon Ballroom and Bill Graham's Fillmore Auditorium began to hold weekly dance concerts, Wilson was called upon to design the posters. He created psychedelic posters from February 1966 to May 1967, when disputes over money severed his connection with Graham. Wilson pioneered the psychedelic rock poster. Intended for a particular audience, "one that was tuned in to the psychedelic experience," his art, and especially the exaggerated freehand lettering, emerged from Wilson's own involvement with that experience and the psychedelic art of light shows.