Writers: Steve Miller and Paul Pena
Producer: Steve Miller
Recorded: Late 1976 and early 1977 at CBS Studios in San Francisco
Released: May 1977
|Players:||Steve Miller — guitar, vocals
Lonnie Turner — bass, vocals
Gary Mallaber — drums
Byron Allred — keyboards, vocals
Greg Douglass — guitar, vocals
David Denny — guitar
Norton Buffalo — vocals
|Album:||Book Of Dreams (Capitol, 1977)|
“Jet Airliner” was the Steve Miller Band's third consecutive top 10 hit in a seven-month stretch. It peaked at Number Eight on the Billboard Hot 100.
When writer Paul Pena showed Miller the song, its lyrics were about Pena's former manager, Albert Grossman, and described by Miller as “very bitter.” Miller re-tooled the lyrics into a song about traveling and leaving loved ones behind–a subject inspired by his heavy touring in the mid-'70s.
Pena's version of the song was recorded for his early '70s album New Train, but didn't make the album due to conflicts with his then-label, Bearsville.
For the Book Of Dreams album, Miller expanded his band from the trio that recorded 1976's Fly Like An Eagle to a sextet with three guitarists, which in concert allowed the group to replicate the layered guitar parts of the recording.
Book Of Dreams was even more successful than Fly Like An Eagle, hitting Number Two on the Billboard 200 and selling more than 3 million copies.
The success of the two albums allowed Miller to move his concerts from theaters to arenas, using lasers to create a more stunning visual effect.
In the summer of 1978, Miller and his band began playing stadium shows, often co-billed with other '70s favorites such as Peter Frampton and Fleetwood Mac.
After the Book Of Dreams tour, Miller decided it was time for a break and rested at a 500-acre spread he purchased in Grants Pass, Oregon.