Fillmore (film)

Last updated
Fillmore DVD cover
Directed by Richard T. Heffron
Eli F. Bleich
Produced byHerbert F. Decker [1]
Starring Bill Graham
Grateful Dead
Jefferson Airplane
Hot Tuna
Quicksilver Messenger Service
CinematographyAlan Capps
Albert Kihn
Paul Lohmann
Eric Saarinen
Edited byEli F. Bleich
Richard Clarke
Daniel Halas
Charles Tetoni
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date
  • June 14, 1972 (1972-06-14)
Running time
105 minutes
CountryUnited States

Fillmore — also known as Fillmore: The Last Days, and as Last Days of the Fillmore — is a music documentary film, primarily shot at the Fillmore West auditorium in San Francisco, California, from June 29 through July 4, 1971. [2] It was released on June 14, 1972. [3] [4]


Fillmore documents the final run of concerts at the Fillmore West, which closed after these shows. It features performances by a number of rock bands that emerged from the San Francisco music scene of the late 1960s and early 1970s, including Santana, the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna, and Quicksilver Messenger Service. The film also contains extensive footage of concert promoter Bill Graham, who organized the concerts and ran the Fillmore West. Additionally, the film includes documentary footage shot several years earlier in and around San Francisco, showing the emergence of the music scene there amid the counterculture of the 1960s and the hippie movement. [5]

Fillmore was shot on 16 mm film and was released in a widescreen format with a 2.35:1 aspect ratio. It makes frequent use of split screen images.


Fillmore was released on DVD by Rhino Records on June 2, 2009. [5] [6] [7] [8] At 94 minutes, the DVD version of the film differs from the original 105 minute theatrical release (released on VHS by All Star Video Corp.), omitting contentious scenes of Bill Graham's interactions with Boz Scaggs, Mike Wilhelm of The Charlatans [9] and a performance of "I'll Be Long Gone" by Boz Scaggs.


Fillmore: The Last Days , a live album of music selected from the same run of concerts, was released as a three-disc vinyl LP box set in 1972. [2] [10] It was released as a two-disc CD in 1991. The audio version differs from the film significantly. The original box featured an actual Fillmore ticket, a poster, and a booklet with liner notes, pictures of some concert posters, and a list of all the Fillmore and Fillmore West concerts. Also included in the box is a single with a Bill Graham interview.


The DVD version of Fillmore includes full or partial performances by these bands, in order of appearance: [11]

*Jefferson Airplane did not perform at the final series of concerts at the Fillmore West. The band's footage in the film is from another show.


The last concerts to take place at the Fillmore West, in 1971, were: [2]

See also

Related Research Articles

Jefferson Airplane American rock band

Jefferson Airplane was an American rock band based in San Francisco, California, that became one of the pioneering bands of psychedelic rock. Formed in 1965, the group defined the San Francisco Sound and was the first from the Bay Area to achieve international commercial success. They were headliners at the Monterey Pop Festival (1967), Woodstock (1969), Altamont Free Concert (1969), and the first Isle of Wight Festival (1968) in England. Their 1967 break-out album Surrealistic Pillow ranks on the short list of the most significant recordings of the Summer of Love. Two songs from that album, "Somebody to Love" and "White Rabbit", are among Rolling Stone's "500 Greatest Songs of All Time".

Quicksilver Messenger Service American psychedelic rock band formed in 1965

Quicksilver Messenger Service are an American psychedelic rock band formed in 1965 in San Francisco. The band achieved wide popularity in the San Francisco Bay Area and, through their recordings, with psychedelic rock enthusiasts around the globe, and several of their albums ranked in the Top 30 of the Billboard Pop charts. They were part of the new wave of album-oriented bands, achieving renown and popularity despite a lack of success with their singles. Though not as commercially successful as contemporaries Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead, Quicksilver was integral to the beginnings of their genre. With their jazz and classical influences and a strong folk background, the band attempted to create an individual, innovative sound. Music historian Colin Larkin wrote: "Of all the bands that came out of the San Francisco area during the late '60s, Quicksilver typified most of the style, attitude and sound of that era."

Papa John Creach Musical artist

John Henry Creach, better known as Papa John Creach, was an American blues violinist, who also played classical, jazz, R&B, pop and acid rock music. Early in his career, he performed as a journeyman musician with Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller, Stuff Smith, Charlie Christian, Big Joe Turner, T-Bone Walker, Nat King Cole and Roy Milton.

The Fillmore

The Fillmore is a historic music venue in San Francisco, California.

Wally Heider Studios

Wally Heider Studios was a recording studio in San Francisco, California between 1969 and 1980, started by recording engineer and studio owner Wally Heider. It is not to be confused with Wally Heider Recording, his predecessor studio that was located in Hollywood.

Bill Graham (promoter) German-American impresario and rock concert promoter

Bill Graham was a German-American impresario and rock concert promoter from the 1960s until his death in 1991 in a helicopter crash. On July 4, 1939, he was sent from Germany to France to escape the Nazis. At age 10, he settled into a foster home in the Bronx, New York. Graham graduated from DeWitt Clinton High School and subsequently from City College with a business degree.

Chester Leo "Chet" Helms, often called the father of San Francisco's 1967 "Summer of Love," was a music promoter and a counterculture figure in San Francisco during its hippie period in the mid- to-late 1960s.

Fillmore East Influential live music venue 1968–1971, Lower East Side, New York City, USA

The Fillmore East was rock promoter Bill Graham's rock venue on Second Avenue near East 6th Street in the Lower East Side neighborhood, now called the East Village neighborhood of the borough of Manhattan of New York City. It was open from March 8, 1968, to June 27, 1971, and featured some of the biggest acts in rock music at the time. The Fillmore East was a companion to Graham's Fillmore Auditorium, and its successor, the Fillmore West, in San Francisco, Graham's home base.

Winterland Ballroom Former ice skating rink and music venue in San Francisco, California

Winterland Ballroom was an ice skating rink and music venue in San Francisco, California. The arena was located at the corner of Post Street and Steiner Street. It was converted for exclusive use as a music venue in 1971 by concert promoter Bill Graham and became a common performance site for many famous rock artists. Graham later formed a merchandising company called Winterland which sold concert shirts, memorabilia, and official sports team merchandise.

Fillmore West Historic live music venue, 1968-1971, San Francisco, California

The Fillmore West was a historic rock and roll music venue in San Francisco, California, which became famous under the direction of concert promoter Bill Graham from 1968 to 1971. Named after The Fillmore at the intersection of Fillmore Street and Geary Boulevard, it stood at the southwest corner of Market Street and South Van Ness Avenue in the Civic Center district. In June 2018, the top two floors of the building reopened as SVN West, a new concert and corporate event venue managed by Non Plus Ultra.

Day on the Green was a recurring concert in Oakland, California, presented by promoter Bill Graham and his company Bill Graham Presents. Held at the Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum, these events began in 1973 and continued into the early 1990s. The last Day on the Green overseen by Graham took place the same month as his death in a helicopter crash in 1991. There was a series of Day on the Green shows the following year in the wake of Graham's death and there were other shows in 1994-97 at the Oakland Coliseum Stadium - namely U2, Pink Floyd, and the Rolling Stones.

Sons of Champlin American rock band

The Sons of Champlin are an American rock band, from Marin County in the San Francisco-Bay area, formed in 1965. They are fronted by vocalist/keyboardist/guitarist Bill Champlin, who later joined rock band Chicago, from 1981–2009, placing Sons of Champlin on hiatus from 1981–1996. They brought to the late 60's music scene in the Bay Area a soulful sound built around a horn section, sophisticated arrangements, philosophical themes, Bill Champlin's songwriting and blue-eyed soul singing, and Terry Haggerty's jazz-based guitar. They are one of the 1960s San Francisco bands, along with Jefferson Airplane, the Grateful Dead and Moby Grape.

The Matrix was a nightclub in San Francisco from 1965 to 1972 and was one of the keys to what eventually became known as the "San Francisco Sound" in rock music. Located at 3138 Fillmore Street, The Matrix opened August 13, 1965 showcasing Jefferson Airplane, which singer Marty Balin had put together as the club's "house band". Balin had persuaded three limited partners to put up $3,000 apiece to finance the club's opening, giving them 75 percent ownership, while he retained 25 percent for creating and managing it.

<i>Historic Live Tuna</i> 1985 live album by Hot Tuna

Historic Live Tuna is an album by the band Hot Tuna. It was released in 1985. Side A contains previously unreleased tracks from a live acoustic performance played on KSAN radio in 1971. Side B contains previously unreleased material from a live electric performance in 1971 recorded at the Fillmore West auditorium in San Francisco. The album was Hot Tuna's second release on Relix Records, and would be their last release until after the 1989 Jefferson Airplane reunion tour and reunion album, when they were signed to Epic Records for a short time before returning to Relix.

<i>Road Trips Volume 2 Number 2</i> 2009 live album by Grateful Dead

Road Trips Volume 2 Number 2 is two-CD live album by the American rock band the Grateful Dead. The sixth in their "Road Trips" series of albums, it was the first to contain a complete concert — the February 14, 1968 show at the Carousel Ballroom in San Francisco, California. Bonus material on Disc 1, as well as the bonus disc offered to early purchasers, comes from the Grateful Dead and Quicksilver Messenger Service "Tour of the Great Pacific Northwest", immediately preceding the Carousel Ballroom show. The album was released on March 21, 2009.

The Ace of Cups Rock band

Ace of Cups is an American rock band formed in San Francisco in 1967 during the Summer of Love era. It has been described as one of the first all-female rock bands.

Flying Other Brothers

The Flying Other Brothers were an American rock band active from 1997–2006 in San Francisco. The band played original tunes and covers.

<i>Fillmore: The Last Days</i> 1972 live album by various artists

Fillmore: The Last Days is a live album, recorded at the Fillmore West in San Francisco, California from June 29 to July 4, 1971. It contains performances by 14 different bands, mostly from the San Francisco Bay Area, including Santana, the Grateful Dead, Hot Tuna, Quicksilver Messenger Service, and the New Riders of the Purple Sage. It was released by Columbia Records in June 1972 as a three-disc LP. It was re-released by Epic Records in 1991 as a two-disc CD.

Wendy Haas-Mull is an American vocalist and keyboardist best known for her work with the bands Santana and Azteca.

Jo Baker (singer) American singer-songwriter

Jo Baker was a vocalist and songwriter, known primarily for her work with Elvin Bishop and Stoneground.


  1. "Biography: Bert Decker", Decker Communications. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
  2. 1 2 3 Fillmore: The Last Days album at the Grateful Dead Family Discography
  3. Fillmore at AllMovie
  4. Thompson, Howard. Fillmore movie review, The New York Times , June 15, 1972
  5. 1 2 Ferdman, Brian. Fillmore DVD review,, July 1, 2009
  6. Collette, Doug. Fillmore DVD review, All About Jazz, September 13, 2009
  7. Bacharach, Phil. Fillmore DVD review, DVDTalk, July 4, 2009
  8. Cost, Jud. "Thanks for the Memories: Bill Graham and the Fillmore West", Blurt, June 5, 2009
  9. Heuck, Mark Edward. Fillmore site demolition and film production history,, February 17, 2019. Retrieved August 30, 2021.
  10. Planer, Lindsay. Fillmore: The Last Days album review, Allmusic
  11. Ruhlmann, William. Fillmore DVD review, Allmusic