Known for movies

Short Info

DiedOctober 25, 1991, Vallejo, California, United States
SpouseBonnie MacLean
FactHe shared a birthday with fellow Rock and Roll Hall of Fame members, 'Elvis Presley', David Bowie and The Doors guitarist Robby Krieger.


William “Bill” Graham (born Wilhelm Gottfried Grahame;[1][2] January 8, 1931 – October 25, 1991) was a German-American impresario and rock concert promoter from the 1960s until his death in 1991. He was the founder of both the Fillmore East and Fillmore West music venues and the Fillmore brand. Through his work, he increased the popularity of rock music and revolutionized the business of live entertainment.[3]

Graham was born in Berlin, Germany, the son of a Jewish family. His father died when he was four years old, and his mother moved the family to New York City when he was eight. Graham was raised in the Bronx and attended DeWitt Clinton High School. He received his nickname “Bill” while working as a waiter at a summer resort in the Catskills Mountains. He later worked as a messenger for the Associated Press and as a truck driver for the United States Army.

In the early 1950s, Graham began promoting jazz concerts at clubs in San Francisco. He later expanded his scope to include rock concerts. In the 1960s, he began working with the Grateful Dead and helped them secure a record deal with Warner Bros. Records. He also promoted concerts by Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and the Jefferson Airplane. In 1968, he opened the Fillmore East music venue in New York City. The following year, he opened the Fillmore West in San Francisco.

In the 1970s, Graham continued to promote rock concerts, including those by Led Zeppelin, the Rolling Stones, and Bob Dylan. He also promoted several benefit concerts, including George Harrison’s Concert for Bangladesh and Live Aid. In the 1980s, he produced several successful concert tours, including those by David Bowie and Madonna.

Graham died in 1991 after suffering from liver cancer. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.

Early Life

Bill Graham was born Wilhelm Gottfried Grahame on January 8, 1931, in Berlin, Germany.[1][2] His parents were Jewish and his father was a businessman. His father died when he was four years old and his mother moved the family to New York City when he was eight.[4]

Graham was raised in the Bronx and attended DeWitt Clinton High School.[5] He received his nickname “Bill” while working as a waiter at a summer resort in the Catskills Mountains.[6] He later worked as a messenger for the Associated Press[7] and as a truck driver for the United States Army.[8]

Career

In the early 1950s, Graham began promoting jazz concerts at clubs in San Francisco.[9] He later expanded his scope to include rock concerts. In the 1960s, he began working with the Grateful Dead and helped them secure a record deal with Warner Bros. Records.[10] He also promoted concerts by Janis Joplin,[11] Jimi Hendrix,[12] and the Jefferson Airplane.[13]

In 1968, Graham opened the Fillmore East music venue in New York City.[14] The following year, he opened the Fillmore West in San Francisco.[15]

In the 1970s, Graham continued to promote rock concerts, including those by Led Zeppelin,[16] the Rolling Stones,[17] and Bob Dylan.[18] He also promoted several benefit concerts, including George Harrison’s Concert for Bangladesh[19] and Live Aid.[20]

In the 1980s, he produced several successful concert tours, including those by David Bowie[21] and Madonna.[22]

Graham died in 1991 after suffering from liver cancer.[23] He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.[24]

Net Worth

Bill Graham had an estimated net worth of $100 million at the time of his death in 1991.[25]

General Info

Full NameBill Graham
DiedOctober 25, 1991, Vallejo, California, United States
Weight125 kg
ProfessionActor, Soldier, Impresario, Entrepreneur, Promoter, Film producer
EducationDeWitt Clinton High School
NationalityAmerican

Family

SpouseBonnie MacLean
ChildrenAlex Graham, David Graham
ParentsYankel Grajonca, Frieda Grajonca
SiblingsSonja Grajonca, Rita Grajonca, Tolla Grajonca, Ester Grajonca, Evelyn Grajonca

Accomplishments

MoviesBugsy, The Doors, Gardens of Stone, The Cotton Club, Apocalypse Now Redux, Apocalypse Now, Muscle Beach Party

Social profile links

Facts

#Fact
1Fought in the US Army during the Korean War, was awarded a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart for wounds received in battle.
2He shared a birthday with fellow Rock and Roll Hall of Fame members, 'Elvis Presley', David Bowie and The Doors guitarist Robby Krieger.
3Elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (under the category Non-Performer) in 1992.
4Rock promoter. Died in helicopter crash near San Francisco, California at age 60. The helicopter struck a transmission tower and exploded shortly after taking off into high winds and rain. Pilot error. All 3 aboard were killed.

Movies

Actor

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Bugsy1991Charlie Luciano
The Doors1991New Haven Promoter
Gardens of Stone1987Don Brubaker
The Cotton Club1984J.W.
Apocalypse Now1979Agent
Muscle Beach Party1964Surfer Boy
The American Way1962ShortMan

Miscellaneous

TitleYearStatusCharacter
U2: Rattle and Hum1988Documentary promoter
The Last Waltz1978Documentary concert producer
Pink Narcissus1971financial assistant - uncredited

Producer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Doors1991producer
A '60s Reunion with Bill Graham: A Night at the Fillmore1986TV Movie executive producer

Thanks

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Freebird... The Movie1996Documentary special thanks
Mad Dogs & Englishmen1971Documentary very special thanks
Woodstock1970Documentary thanks: at home

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
American Artifact: The Rise of American Rock Poster Art2009Documentary
Feed Your Head1997Documentary shortHimself (Interview)
The History of Rock 'n' Roll1995TV Series documentaryHimself
The Return of Bruno1987TV MovieHimself
A '60s Reunion with Bill Graham: A Night at the Fillmore1986TV MovieHimself
Troupers1985DocumentaryHimself
Grateful Dead: The Closing of Winterland1978TV MovieHimself - Master of Ceremonies
The Last Waltz1978DocumentaryHimself - At Edge of Stage (uncredited)
San Francisco Good Times1977DocumentaryHimself
All You Need Is Love1977TV Series documentaryHimself
A Star Is Born1976Himself
Fillmore1972DocumentaryBill Graham
The David Frost Show1970TV SeriesHimself
Woodstock1970DocumentaryHimself - Promoter (uncredited)

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Sweet Blues: A Film About Mike Bloomfield2013DocumentaryHimself

Awards

Nominated Awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovie
1988ACECableACE AwardsMusic SpecialA '60s Reunion with Bill Graham: A Night at the Fillmore (1986)

Source: IMDb, Wikipedia

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