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Archive for May, 2014

Honor Memorial Day

May 25th, 2014 Jorma 10 comments

Here it is Memorial Day again…This is a hallowed day and we might take this time to enjoy our freedom… we might also invite our fellow Americans to ‘Honor Memorial Day.’ Let me start today’s entry with a very short film I am very fond of. Please take the time to watch this… and then move on if you will.

Reveille: Watch it full screen.

This is a day when we honor those who have served and paid the ultimate price for that service. Now, when I was of that age, I did not hear that call to service, and that’s just how it was in my story. Those who serve, (whether it be in the Armed Forces, or as a first responder, or a Doctor… or a teacher… well… this could be a long list) deserve our respect and our love. Those who have paid the ultimate price, deserve to be honored, and most importantly… remembered!

‘We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.’ (There are many sources for this quote. This one is attributed to Winston Churchill.) In any case, I sleep peacefully on most nights and would like to share some of the blessings that my family and I enjoy thanks to to these men and women.

The first camp out

The first camp out

My daughter Izze and I enjoyed our first camp out together…

By dawn's early light...

By dawn's early light...

When we woke, our world was intact and breakfast awaited us in the kitchen.

Before the David Lindley show

Before the David Lindley show

Getting ready for a show at the Fur Peace Ranch is done with the knowledge that were are going to be safe, and a wonderful evening will be had by all.

John and Vanessa introduce David

John and Vanessa introduce David

We take these moments for granted. We are safe and loved… this is not Nazi Germany, this is not Bosnia in the 90’s… this is not a lot of things. This is American where we expect one day to follow the other with a minimum of afflictions!

Jerry looks for a fuse

Jerry looks for a fuse

My friend Jerry and I decided to hit the road for a Memorial Day Run. He put on his big flags and off we went. We left Millie’s in Rutland, Ohio about noon after a delicious breakfast and pointed our bikes south down Rt. 7 towards Gallipolis. Past Gallipolis, down river till we crossed the Ohio into Huntington, West Virginia. In Huntington, we sought out Ritter Park where our old friend Butch Frazier placed his final sculpture, Earth Portal. Butch has been gone now fifteen years… he passed two days after dedicating the sculpture.

Jerry looks through Butch's Portal

Jerry looks through Butch's Portal

I sit on Butch's Portal

I sit on Butch's Portal

Foto by Jerry Bayha

Children playing in the Park were climbing on The Portal… just the way Butch would have wanted it. We our respects, talked about the good times we shared and got back on our bikes, heading up the Ohio River on the West Virginia side… and of course, stopping at Hillbilly Hotdogs in LeSage, West Virginia. Too crowded with bikes to wait for a dog… Good for Sonny and Shari… bad for me and Jerry.

Hillbilly Hot Dogs

Hillbilly Hot Dogs

You can’t make this stuff up.

At the end of the run back home, I just had to take a picture of the gloves Vanessa bought me in 1992… that I’m still wearing when I ride.

Twenty two years old!

Twenty two years old!

What does all this have to do with Memorial Day? Lots!

None of the trivial things I wrote about would have been possible without Those brave souls who put service before self. In my own small way, I take this opportunity to thank those men and women. We can never repay you, but we can remember.

Love, honor and respect to those who have made these simple little life journeys possible!

Spiritual Moments… Across The World

May 18th, 2014 Jorma 30 comments
Time to wash the Harley

Time to wash the Harley

So yesterday started with Izze and me washing my Ultra Classic. In honor of the beautiful moment, I’m wearing a T-shirt Nessa’s nephew Nick Curran gave me some years ago. I met Nick up in Maine back in the mid 90’s when he was a young teenager. He was a great guitar player then and he just got better. He was a great guy. Sad to say, he passed from cancer in 2012 in Austin, Texas where he had lived and worked for a number of years. He loved music… he loved motorcycles, he loved life and he is gone too soon. On this day, to work on my bike… I wore his shirt. I hope you’re riffing brother, up on some cloud or wherever you are. We love you.

Izze washes the degreaser off the rear wheel... nasty.

Izze washes the degreaser off the rear wheel... nasty.

I spent most of the day working on the bike and Izze hung in there with me for a number of hours. Thanks big girl… thanks!

I put the bike away and hopped in the truck with my new Purple Peace Les Paul. Glass Harp was playing to a sold out house at the Fur Peace Station. Phil Keaggy, John Sferra, and Dan Pecchio were back in town, and I knew it was going to be fun.

Glass Harp in sound check

Glass Harp in sound check

Jerry Myron and Jorma... watching the sound check

Jerry Myron and Jorma... watching rh check

Well, of course it was a stellar show. Phil invited me up for a tune in the first set… and out came Purple Peace… ready to sound divine. Second set they called me up again. That was a surprise and an honor. Trust me… a great time was had by all!

Today, Sunday… was working around the house for the most part. Got a little motorcycle ride in this morning. Got to hang with the family. With these blessings foremost in my mind, I thought of an email I got a couple of days. A friend of mine’s daughter is in Israel on a birthright trip. On the way to Tel Aviv, she stopped in Poland where here family was from. The first one to go back since they emigrated.

This picture is so powerful!

This picture is so powerful!

We all know that if this were in the 40’s, this would a gate she would most likely not be returning through. This is not summer camp. What an amazing world we live in that this young girl and her friends could make this trip.

Indeed...

Indeed...

This is something we all need to remember.

I count my blessings and kiss my family goodnight, believing that when tomorrow’s light comes, we will have breakfast together.

Onward…

Categories: Diary, Fur Peace Ranch, Thoughts Tags:

A Broadblasting Of Great Importance!

May 17th, 2014 Jorma 11 comments

We were thinking about posting this on Treats And Treasure, and I may still… but here it is. Indeed a broadblasting of great importance that will help benefit the well that helps to nurture the Psylodelic Gallery.

It concerns the jacket worn by me (Jorma Kaukonen) on the cover of the 1980 LP, Barbeque King. Here’s the blurb from the Fur Peace Ranch Site:

Ever wondered what this jacket would like on you or better yet, framed among your collectables? This iconic jacket (still in pristine condition) that Jorma wore on the cover of the BBQ King album (1980) can be yours. The jacket was a highschool graduation present to Jorma from his mother, Beatrice. Beatrice had this jacket and a white, shark skin suit (now lost in antiquity) handmade by a custom taylor in Hong Kong in 1959 while the Kaukonen’s were stationed in the Philippines. You will notice that the plaids not only line up from the pocket to the jacket, but when your arms are at your side, the plaids line up there too. When Jorma wrote the title song for the album, Barbeque King…it starts out with a description of eccentric, sartorial magnificence. When looking for clothes for a cover shot, Jorma rediscovered this jewel. Perfect……All proceeds will benefit special projects at the Psylodelic Gallery. The raffle will end on July 27th, 2014. Jorma will pick the winner on stage at The Fur Peace Ranch during the Arts & MInds Fest.

Yeah, I remember that summer of 1959 when I was back in the Philippine Islands (now the Republic Of The Philippines) before I headed out to Yellow Springs, Ohio for my first year at Antioch College.
This was before my finger picking odyssey began, mentored by the great Ian Buchanan In addition to my valuable trunk full of possessions, I had my Fender Musicmaster guitar and my Silvertone amp with the single fifteen inch speaker. I had my plaid coat too… which I would wear when I really felt like styling. Now, Antioch College was never a dress up sort of place, jeans and work shirts being sort of de rigeur, so when I would suit up for a little rock show…the coat would get the call.

The jacket is in mint… yes I said mint condition. It is just as sharp today as the day I got it in 1959… and it can be yours!

Here is the link which will show you what’s going on, what to do, where and how to do it and when to do it.

http://furpeaceranch.com/store/product_info.php?cPath=83&products_id=1202

Good luck…

Jorma

At Home With Friends

May 13th, 2014 Jorma 21 comments
The Three Jerrys

The Three Jerrys

So yeah, my nickname for many years was Jerry. My Dad picked up the sobriquet in the service in WWII. The boys in the service had a problem with a man’s name ending in a vowel. When we were stationed in Ann Arbor in 1945 at the Navy Language School where Dad was learning Japanese, Mom came home from shopping to find some of the kids on base trying to hang me with a coat hanger as a suspected Nazi spy. Weird name… too much for them.

Anyway, I used Jerry until I got out of college in 1965 and joined the Airplane. So… I am an honorary ‘Jerry.’ On the left, my dear friend Jerry S. Attached to David Hackworth’s unit, this Jerry is one heck of a guy! Read, Steel The Hearts Of My Men. This is the shit!

In the middle is Jerry B., my motorcycle pal and brother in recovery. We’ll be heading out to Akron for the 79th Founders Day the first weekend in June… and the last Jerry, yours truly… right on schedule and right where I need to be in Southeast Ohio.

Twilight at Hillside Farm tonight

Twilight at Hillside Farm tonight

Now, I just need to say… I do understand why people get excited about tangible memories like 2400 Fulton Street. It was fun while it lasted and I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything… the good and the bad. Believe me, there were both… just like real life.

Now, when I’m done traveling around, I come home to this tiny county and it embraces me in a profound way that no other place I have ever lived has done. Of course, I have lived here for 23 years… longer than I’ve lived anywhere continuously.

Well, the dog got out… rolled in deer poop and wouldn’t come back until he was exhausted and filthy. Back in the house, Nessa washed him, he’s resting… Izze’s reading the first book of Divergent, I don’t know what Nessa is doing right now, but I’m going to watch NCIS.

Life is good friends… life is good!

Categories: Diary, Thoughts Tags:

Moving Right Along…

May 12th, 2014 Jorma 12 comments
Izze goes to the polls with me...

Izze goes to the polls with me...

So, last Tuesday was a primary and issue election here in the Buckeye State, and as always, I took Izze with me when I went to vote. She needs to know how important voting is.

Then days passed, as days do, and another weekend at the Fur Peace Ranch was upon us. Woody Mann, and Chris Smither and I were the teachers and we looked forward to… and got, an amazing weekend.

The onstage poster from Saturday night...

The onstage poster from Saturday night...

Woody Mann opened the show and a profoundly moving and artful set. Woody is always great, but for some reason his performance this night really touched my heart. Thanks Woody!

After a short break, Brian Auger and the Oblivion Express took the stage for what was to be a simply amazing concert.

Good to see you too, Brian!

Good to see you too, Brian!

Brian was joined by Karma Auger on Drums, Alex Ligertwood on vocals, Les King on Bass and Yarone Levy on guitar.

Les and Yarone at sound check

Les and Yarone at sound check

Portent of things to come

Portent of things to come

What a great bunch of guys and what a great bunch of players. Brian asked me to sit in on Season Of The Witch…
Hell yeah!

Getting ready for the Witch with my new Etune Les Paul

Getting ready for the Witch with my new eTune Les Paul

Foto by Rusty Smith

So I’ve been playing my new 120th Anniversary 60’s Peace Les Paul with the Etune gadget... and I love everything about this fine instrument… and the onboard tuning system rocks. Look it up!

Season Of The Witch rocked too… Thanks guys! After the set I got to play my arrangement of Brother Can You Spare A Dime for Brian and Yarone.

This song is going to be a winner

This song is going to be a winner

Foto by Wally Himelstein

Great show, and then they were gone… back to LA. The weekend at the Ranch concluded and Chris and I did a little show on Sunday night joined by Woody. How good does it have to get?

Chris me an Woody

Chris me and Woody

Foto by Rusty Smith

Woody, Chris and Me

Woody, Chris and Me

Foto by Vanessa Kaukonen

And that was it. Just as I was about to leave the Ranch to come home for a bit, Jack Casady sent me this foto he just took passing through San Francisco. 2400 Fulton St. indeed!

Where do those half centuries go?

Where do those half centuries go?

That’s all folks… (think Looney Tunes)

Categories: Diary, Fur Peace Ranch, Thoughts, Venues Tags:

Sidebar From Hillside Farm

May 8th, 2014 Jorma 35 comments

Life is so interesting. When commenting on life in general, as I often do here in my blog, I try to confine myself to my own story, since I have no first hand knowledge of the experience of anyone else. Of course, being human, I am not always successful in this. But I digress…

Anyway, when I first starting blogging well over a decade ago, the word ‘blog’ didn’t even exist yet, or if it did, I didn’t know about it. My early blogging sites didn’t allow for comments because at the time I wasn’t really interested in what anyone else had to say. The site was for my expression alone. When we inaugurated this site I decided to get off my high horse and let you all in, and I’m glad I did for a number of reasons. I guess the main reason was that I wanted to engender a community of like minded spirits in the same way that we have done at the Fur Peace Ranch. I rarely block the accessibility of the site to anyone. Well, the usual spam ads… that goes without saying… and every now and then (extremely infrequently) some insufferable dickhead pops up and of course, they’re outta here.

When our daughter was going to public school, I made a lot of ’sidewalk’ friends and we would talk while waiting for the kids to get out of school. One of the conversations that I would frequently have would go something like this. ‘I can’t believe you have to travel so much. It must be so hard for you… getting on and off planes, waiting in stations, getting on and off buses, driving cars, checking in and out of hotels… etc.’ I would start my reply like this. ‘I can’t believe you go to the same office every day, sit in the same chair surrounded by the same people doing the same thing… every day, day in and day out.’

Then I would thus explain further. That’s my job. I get paid for it. I have been doing it for a very long time and I love what I do. For me, the work is the travel, but it could be worse, because I have always loved to travel. My Father was in the Service and we traveled all the time. I grew up with it as do my children. Would it be nice to spend more time at home with the family. Sure. Do I enjoy being able to pay for the things we all need. You bet!

I don’t like flying, so whether I’m headed halfway around the world to the Far East or taking a 90 minute flight to New York… they are both equally repulsive. It is called ‘work’ for a reason. There is nothing special about being a musician or an artist of any sort other than it is a job that is more enjoyable than many things I could think of. Like I tell promoters at a gig where there is a delay, ‘We’re not leaving until we play.’ The playing is the frosting on the cake, and without you, the audience, there would be no cake… so thanks friends!

We do not deserve deification for what we do. It would be unnatural for us not to do it. Nobody deserves anything, be we appreciate the collective appreciation of those who care about what we have to give.

There are no superstars, there are no ’special people,’ there are just people, and those of us who care about such things, try to give our very best at all times, in all things.

It is great to be home… to be doing home things… to be alive and lively in this uncertain world.

Onward…

Categories: Diary, Fur Peace Ranch, Thoughts Tags:

Home, Home, Home

May 6th, 2014 Jorma 28 comments
The boys getting ready to go to Narita

The boys getting ready to go to Narita

Here we have Myron, Doug, Jack & Jorma

Foto by Doug Allsopp

Hey, thank goodness I get a set list from Thumbs Up:

orma here’s the corrected set list courtesy Uesaka Toshiro. Safe flight home.

Set 1:
Too Many Years
Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out
Uncle Sam Blues
Serpent Of Dreams
Children Of Zion
What Are They Doing In Heaven Today?
Hesitation Blues
I’ll Let You Know Before I Leave
Trial By Fire
Good Bye To The Blues
I Know You Rider

Set 2:
Been So Long
True Religion
San Francisco Bay Blues
Barbecue King
Death Don’t Have No Mercy
River Of Time
I Am The light Of This World
How Long Blues
Good Shepherd
Keep On Truckin’
Nine Pound Hammer
Encore: Embryonic Journey

There you have it.

We had such a wonderful time in Japan on this trip. Of course it is great to come home as well. Home schooling our daughter today. Vocal coaching later and then piano.

Hit the ground running.

In the next day or so I’ll do a more complete wrap up. Gotta join Izze on the Ohio Virtual Academy site.

More anon…

Sayonara to our Japanese friends!

Sayonara to our Japanese friends!

Foto by Doug Allsopp

We love you all…

Onward!

It Was Thumbs Up At Thumbs Up

May 4th, 2014 Jorma 18 comments
Where's Myron?

Where's Myron?

Poor Myron wasn’t feeling well as we got ready to leave Shibuya for Yokohama. Being sick is always a drag. Being sick abroad is compound misery.

Jack noshes in the lobby

Jack noshes in the lobby

We finally got in a cab and got over to Yokohama… Nice hotel… but petite.

The Tipoff

The Tipoff

The reality

The reality

Here’s the set list… sort of… I made lots an lots of changes and didn’t keep track. Myron usually does this for me but he was sick at the hotel… Consider this list a launching pad.

Hot Tuna 43, 2014
The Acoustic Duo
Jorma Kaukonen & Jack Casady
Thumbs Up
Yokohama, Japan
Sunday, May 4, 2014

First Set:
1. Too Many Years
2. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out
3. Serpent Of Dreams
4. Barbeque King
5. Hesitation blues
6. I’ll Be All Right Some Day
7. I’ll Let You Know Before I Leave
8. Trial By Fire
9. Goodbye To The Blues
10. I Know You Rider
Second Set:
1. Been So Longa
2. What Are They Doing In Heaven Today?
3. San Francisco Bay Blues
4. Uncle Sam Blues
5. Children Of Zion
6. I Am The Light Of This World
7. River Of Time
8. Good Shepherd
9. Nine Pound Hammer

That’s about it… gotta get some eats and think about getting to the airport.

Many thanks to Doug Allsopp who brought us over and all the the great gigs and friends we met along the way.

Sayonara

Tokyo Women’s Plaza

May 3rd, 2014 Jorma 9 comments

Just a very short entry about yesterday’s most interesting gig.

What the????????

What the????????

So we’re lost in the building trying to find the lecture hall. I turned the corner and saw this. This is a human sized statue by the way. Just sayin’………..

We finally found out where we were supposed to be and here is our set list:

Hot Tuna 42, 2014
The Acoustic Duo
Jorma Kaukonen & Jack Casady
Lecture/Concert Gig
Tokyo Women’s Plaza Hall
Shibuya, Japan
Saturday, May 3, 2014

1. How Long Blues
2. I See The Light
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Come Back Baby
5. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
6. Heart Temporary
7. Candy Man
8. Good Shepherd
9. Embryonic Journey
10. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
11. Encore: Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out

Back in the hotel neighborhood in time for dinner. If you can’t end a day in Japan with noodles… well.

Jack leaving Samurai

Jack leaving Samurai

OK. Embarrassingly short entry but I’ve got to pack.

Onward to Yokohama.

Great Day In Shibuya

May 2nd, 2014 Jorma 13 comments

Well, we had a rare day off here in Shibuya. It was not a travel day. What a concept!

Rest area on the way from Nagoya

Rest area on the way from Nagoya

Yesterday was a travel day… but we got to Shibuya in time for some ramen at Samurai.

Lets's eat!

Lets's eat!

Ditto!

Ditto!

And here it is!

And here it is!

And here it was...

And here it was...

Samurai was the real deal. Delicious and cheap. After dining Jack and Myron and I went for a walk.

Shibuya by night

Shibuya by night

A great town to walk in, day or night.

An American in Shibuya

An American in Shibuya

A good dinner, a good walk and a good night’s sleep. Today, Jack and I had lunch at a rib joint of all things… and again, delicious.

Ribs, Japanese style

Ribs, Japanese style

This evening, the folks from Thumbs Up hosted us at a fabulous seafood restaurant called Kaikaya.

Spearheading the assault

Spearheading the assault

The lovely Arisa Safu

The lovely Arisa Safu

We met Arisa when we played McCabe’s some months back. Her Dad owns Thumbs Up and she and her Mom took us all out to dinner. Now Arisa is a formidable musical talent in her own right. You need to check out her work! She is a dandy for sure!

words to live by

words to live by

Delicious

Delicious

And this...

And this...

The quality of the food was matched and surpassed by our hostesses.

What a dinner

What a dinner

Special chicken...

Special chicken...

There’s a story behind the rubber chicken, but I’ll save that for another time.

Good times

Good times

Now we're done

Now we're done

Foto by Doug Allsopp

Drop in anytime

Drop in anytime

Well, that was our day today. Hard work, but somebody’s got to do it. Tomorrow is our lecture/show at Tokyo Women’s Plaza Hall.

I’m exhausted… time for bed!

Categories: Diary, Hot Tuna, Venues, trips and journeys Tags: