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Archive for December, 2016

Slice Of Life At Home

December 28th, 2016 Jorma 15 comments
A dank tarn

A dank tarn

First day of Hannukah… also Christmas this year… time for a nice walk in the woods by Stroud’s Run.

Mega wind chimes in the woods

Mega wind chimes in the woods

The trail head is right behind my sister-in-law Ginger’s place… Even took the little dog.

Let's climb

Let's climb

Southeast Ohio is filled with magnificent rock outcroppings.

Chain saw put to good use

Chain saw put to good use

Lovely day for a hike… all the dogs dug it too!

The girls in the valley

The girls in the valley

I am my father's son!

I am my father's son!

I look so much like my dad did at my age… it’s… well, I am indeed my father’s son!

Another bridge to cross...

Another bridge to cross...

May all her bridges be this easy to cross!

Then, the first night of Hannukah.

Mother and Daughter

Mother and Daughter

Izze sings

Izze sings

Then it was time to fly my new drone.

Big Brother is watching

Big Brother is watching

A couple of aerial at the Ranch

How cool is this?

How cool is this?

Smiles and I reflect on the state of the world.

Smiles and I reflect on the state of the world.

Sure am digging being home…

More anon…

Categories: Diary, Fur Peace Ranch Tags:

“Tis The Season… For So Many Things…

December 24th, 2016 Jorma 21 comments
A fiery dawn greets my birthday...

A fiery dawn greets my birthday...

Red sky in the morning… sailors take warning.

Well, Dec. 23, 2016 was indeed a red sky and it did start to rain later, but what a beautiful way to start the day. Seventy six… the eighty side of seventy. Time is indeed slipping away at a faster pace and since there’s nothing we can do about it, it just has to be all right. Left to my own devices, I would have just let it be another day… but my girls made it special for me. I got so many calls, texts and emails wishing me a happy birthday, it really touched me. Thanks to all of you who did that. The girls gave me a drone and no matter what they intimate, it’s not plug and play. I’m updating firmware and I’m going to take my time with this baby. I don’t want to crash it on the first flight.

Later in the day Izze and I braved Krogers in Athens.

Krogers on the 23rd

Krogers on the 23rd

Indeed, only the strong survive. Last night a delicious dinner with family and friends at Salaam and then a quiet evening at home. Today we went to ny sister in law’s joint for our traditional Hannukah/Christmas dinner.

Yeah... I know there's ham... but it's spiral cut!

Yeah... I know there's ham... but it's spiral cut!

Dinner, family, lighting the menorah… people dogs and cats socialize… Peace on earth!

The Ohio River off Main St. in Pomeroy on Christmas Eve

The Ohio River off Main St. in Pomeroy on Christmas Eve

Home for the holidays with family… good for anyone at any age.

May you all be as blessed as I am today.

Categories: Diary, Thoughts Tags:

The Measure Of A Man

December 20th, 2016 Jorma 32 comments

This week was bittersweet on many levels, but it has been a blessing too! I was able to honor two good friends… one living and one gone. My dear friend Walt passed unexpectedly last week, but I’ll get to that fine gentleman in a moment. On Sunday evening Vanessa and Izze and I joined the Hurlbut family and friends to celebrate the 95th birthday of their Dad… Ray.

Ray Hurlbut 95, Jorma Kaukonen 75

Ray Hurlbut 95, Jorma Kaukonen 75

Ray is my buddy John’s Dad. One of the oldest living WWII Vets in the state of Ohio, Ray served in the Navy as a radio operator on a bomber in the Pacific and other venues. The Hurlbut family and the Kaukonen family have become very close over the years. Our daughter Izze carries the name Lucy on her passport. Lucy was Ray’s wife… John’s mom.

Liam, Ray, Nessa and Izze show team effort with candle duty

Liam, Ray, Nessa and Izze show team effort with candle duty

‘How are you doing?’ I might ask… and Ray is just as likely to answer, ‘Still cheating Death, Jorma. Still cheating Death’ That’s a dark witticism… but Ray is not dark at all. To have a friend such as him is such a blessing.

Ray at 24 in 1944

Ray at 24 in 1944

And a hearty thanks to Kevin Morgan for his great poster!

That was Sunday with Ray and the Hurlbuts.

Today Vanessa and I drove to Cincinnati for our dear friend Walt Sample’s funeral. Walt was called Home suddenly for reasons that may elude those of us left behind. Was his work done? Was it simply the way it was? This is not for me to say. I do know that Walt touched many lives from many worlds… different sorts of people with humanity in common. Today at the funeral home Walt bound us together with his spirit and I shall hold this feeling close to my heart as long as I live.

You made a difference Walt… and you continue to do so!

We love you brother!

We love you brother!

Honor, love, respect… These are the measure of a man! Ray has them… and Walt will always have them. I can only aspire to follow in the footsteps of such truly good men!

Categories: Diary, Thoughts Tags:

I’ll Be Seeing You Walt…

December 15th, 2016 Jorma 32 comments
Walt Sample & Toby

Walt Sample & Toby

It is ten degrees this frosty morning (Thursday, December 15, 2016) here at the Fur Peace Ranch in Southeast Ohio. Maverick and I just came in from a chilly but necessary walk across the parking lot and down the old road to the A Frame. The remains of the Super Moon were falling slowly into the tree line. From our vantage point on the road we could see the lights twinkling from Donnie’s farm over there by SR 681. My heart was heavy with the loss of our dear friend Walt Sample late last night. December 14th, 2016, was just shy of becoming December 15th when Walt’s son called to give us the news.

There is never a good time for bad news and I realize that on this planet we call home, millions die each day. That said, each of us humans navigates the world with our own universe and the circles of these universes may or may not intersect. There may be magic in these meetings. I have been fortunate in my life to have had a number of these meetings but one of the most memorable was with Walt Sample. He came to us at the Fur Peace Ranch a number of years ago… I can’t really remember when. It was immediately apparent to me that we were born to be friends and I wasn’t the only one who felt that way.

He was a man of infinite spirit with a love of all things good in this world and the rare ability to find good in most things. He had talents in many fields. In his art whether it be music or painting, the purist of truths always shone through utterly free of artifice. One must check out Big Mule Music and you will get some small idea of what I’m talking about.

Walt & Jorma at the Source Of The Sacred Soil

Walt & Jorma at the Source Of The Sacred Soil

In late August, one of our dear friends, Rob McNurlin, was down on The Crossroads in Mississippi and brought some dirt back from said crossroads. We called it Devil Dirt… and there was something dangerous about it. Walt thought we should strike back on the good vibe and came up with the idea of Sacred Soil from the Fur Peace Ranch. We had been doing some excavating so we had a huge pile of dirt. Walt loaded up the sifter, we made labels and le voila, Fur Peace Ranch Sacred Soil! I say ‘we,’ but it was all Walt, sitting in garage next to the Harleys giving substance to yet another dream. The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well here in Southeast Ohio and every little bit counts.

Walt and another kind of mule

Walt and another kind of mule

A renaissance man…father… husband… brother to all who were authentic. He didn’t suffer fools handily… he disdained poseurs… but he treated all with respect.

He passed suddenly, without warning and he although it is not for me to say how any man perceives his own passing, I would imagine that Walt would have wanted it this way. His great heart, having done its duty, retired the field. He had many different relationships with all he knew. I did not write with him. We thought about it… talked about it… but never got around to it. We were, however, friends!

All of us who knew Walt will miss him in our own way, but none of us will ever forget him. For me that ever-present smile, hearty handshake and the sly look that said he had something really cool to show me will live in my heart always.

At this point in my life, unexpected phone calls as often as not do not bring good news. Simply put, as the book of life is opened some of us do not make the next page and that’s just the way it is.

So in closing this sad but yet celebratory little note as I looked at the Super Moon last night and early this morning I was immediately reminded that by some strange coincidence yesterday morning I was listening to Jimmy Durante singing I’ll Be Seeing You by Sammy Fain and Irving Kahal.

I’ll be seeing you
In all the old familiar places
That this heart of mine embraces
All day and through
In that small cafe
The park across the way
The children’s carousel
The chestnut trees
The wishing well
I’ll be seeing you
In every lovely summer’s day
In everything that’s night and day
I’ll always think of you that way
I’ll find you in the morning sun
And when the night is new
I’ll be looking at the moon
But I’ll be seeing you
I’ll be seeing you

I’ll be seeing you my friend… in my heart always… In the meantime

Fair wind and following seas brother. My the spirit wind always be at your back!

Big indeed!

Big indeed!

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

One And Done… Back In The Buck

December 13th, 2016 Jorma 10 comments
The Stacks at night...

The Stacks at night...

Foto by Phil Jacobs

Winter was upon us as we pulled into Bethlehem. I was going to say I was looking for the other two wise men, but the Trio won’t be back until next year. This has been a long run but an extremely good one. I felt good about all the performances and I am blessed that I still have the capacity to do this. Life is good!

Stacks, behind the stage at sound check

Stacks, behind the stage at sound check

Jack and I played the Musikfest Café a couple of years ago when it was new. It was fun then, but the folks have really dialed the sound in now, and I had a fine solo time!

Boy, you can't make this stuff up!

Boy, you can't make this stuff up!

Foto by Suzy Perler

It’s been a while since steel came out of these stacks… but look what they’re doing with them today? Awesome!

Jorma Kaukonen 39, 2016
Jorma Solo
Musikfest Café
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

Sunday, December 11, 2016

First Set:
1. True Religion
2. Ain’t In No Hurry
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Been So Long
5. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down & Out
6. Barbeque King
7. Sleep Song
8. Watch The North Wind Rise
9. Death Don’t Have No Mercy
10. Living In The Moment
11. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
12. How Long Blues
13. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
Second Set:
1. Dime For Beer
2. San Francisco Bay Blues
3. Things That Might Have Been
4. I See The Light
5. Brother Can You Spare A Dime
6. The Terrible Operation
7. I’ll Be All Right Someday
8. Candy Man
9. Come Back Baby
10. Sea Child
11. Trial By Fire
12. Good Shepherd
13. Bar Room Crystal Ball
14. Water Song
15. I Know You Rider
16. Encore: Trouble In Mind

A man and his guitar

A man and his guitar

Foto by Diane Richter

On the road, every moment of each day is geared to maintaining my level of performance an translating that into the reality I enjoy on show nights. Here at home… it’s quite a different story. The guitar now fits in around family time and that is indeed as it should be.

It’s great to be home!

Good night Mrs. Calabash, wherever you are!

Good night Mrs. Calabash, wherever you are!

Foto by Suzy Perler

Categories: Diary, Set Lists, Venues Tags:

Two More… One To Go…

December 10th, 2016 Jorma 11 comments
The ferry to Orient Point

The ferry to Orient Point

We hit the ferry to Riverhead… next stop, the Suffolk Theater.

The place for breakfast in Riverhead

The place for breakfast in Riverhead

The Star Confectionery Rocks!

Old School

Old School

Love this place

Love this place

Then it was time for the gig.

Come one, come all!

Come one, come all!

Foto by Phil Jacobs

Jorma Kaukonen 37, 2016
Jorma Solo
Suffolk Theater
Riverhead, New York
Friday, December 9, 2016

First Set:
1. Ain’t In No Hurry
2. Genesis
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Come Back Baby
5. San Francisco Bay Blues
6. Too Many Years
7. Sea Child
8. Watch The North Wind Rise
9. Been So Long
10. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
11. Death Don’t Have No Mercy
12. The Terrible Operation
13. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
Second Set:
1. Dime For Beer
2. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down & Out
3. Trouble In Mind
4. Brother Can You Spare A Dime
5. I See The Light
6. Barbeque King
7. Candy Man
8. That’ll Never Happen No More
9. Trial By Fire
10. Sleep Song
11. Good Shepherd
12. Bar Room Crystal Ball
13. Water Song
14. I Know You Rider
15. Encore: Wining Boy Blues

A great night indeed… then off to Northampton and the Iron Horse.

My name in chalk

My name in chalk

Have a seat.

Backstage luxury...

Backstage luxury...

The dressing room is spartan… but the gig is great!

Jorma Kaukonen 38, 2016
Jorma Solo
The Iron Horse
Northampton, Mass.
Saturday, December 10, 2016

First Set:
1. Ain’t In No Hurry
2. Second Chances
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Been So Long
5. Barbeque King
6. Watch The North Wind Rise
7. Sleep Song
8. Trouble In Mind
9. San Francisco Bay Blues
10. River Of Time
11. Come Back Baby
12. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
13. Brother Can You Spare A Dime?
14. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down & Out
15. Death Don’t have No Mercy
16. Sea Child
17. Good Shepherd
18. I See The Light
19. Water Song
20. Keep our Lamps Trimmed & Burning
21. Encore: How Long Blues

I get to play for another great audience

I get to play for another great audience

Foto by Phil Jacob

Another great gig… Thanks to all the folks who keep coming out to listen to me. Bless you!

Now tomorrow I’m off to Bethlehem, PA and the Musikfest Café at the Steel Stacks.

What a wonderful run this has been…

Categories: Diary, Set Lists, Venues Tags:

An Anniversary On The Road Of LIfe

December 8th, 2016 Jorma 51 comments

Yesterday Vanessa and I celebrated our twenty eighth anniversary. This woman is a saint, and I am truly blessed! Perseus The Dog was our joint present to each other… Woof. Since I’m out here on the road, we’ll have to wait until next week to see each other. Fortunately, next week will come.

Izze at the 88's under Perseus' watchful eye

Izze at the 88's under Perseus' watchful eye

Foto by Vanessa Kaukonen

In the meantime, I played the Wolk Center in Rochester a couple of nights ago.

This place is amazing!

This place is amazing!

Foto by Phil Jacobs

I got my first earache around 1949 or 50 at the JCC swimming pool in Cincinnati, Ohio while visiting my grandparents. Good times!

Words to live by...

Words to live by...

Jorma Kaukonen 35, 2016
Jorma Solo
Wolk Jewish Community Center
Rochester, New York
Monday, December 5, 2016

First Set:
1. Ain’t In No Hurry
2. Second Chances
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Been So Long
5. Barbeque King
6. Sea Child
7. Sleep Song
8. Candy Man
9. Death Don’t Have No Mercy
10. How Long Blues
11. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
12. San Francisco bay Blues
Second Set:
1. I See The Light
2. Dime For Beer
3. I’ll Be All Right Some Day
4. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down & Out
5. Things That Might Have Been
6. Keep On Trucking Mama
7. Come Back Baby
8. Watch The North Wind Rise
9. Living In The Moment
10. Good Shepherd
11. Bar Room Crystal Ball
12. Water Song
13. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
14. Encore: Embryonic Journey

Holding forth...

Holding forth...

Foto by Phil Jacob

Then it was to Infinity in Norfolk, Connecticut.

Love this place!

Love this place!

Foto by Phil Jacobs

Jorma Kaukonen 36, 2016
Jorma Solo
Infinity
Norfolk, Connecticut
Wednesday, December 7, 2016

First Set:
1. Ain’t In No Hurry
2. Genesis (for Miles Dunn)
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Been So Long
5. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
6. Death Don’t Have No Mercy
7. Sea Child
8. Watch The North Wind Rise
9. I Am The Light Of This World
10. River Of Time
11. In My Dreams
12. River Of Time
13. Barbeque King
14. San Francisco Bay Blues
Second Set:
1. What Are They Doing In Heaven Today?
2. Waiting For A Train
3. Trouble In Mind
4. I See The Light
5. Things That Might Have Been
6. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down & Out
7. Come Back Baby
8. That’ll Never Happen No More
9. Sleep Song
10. Good Shepherd
11. Bar Room Crystal Ball
12. Water Song
13. Whining Boy Blues
14. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
15. Encore: Candy Man

Goodnight Moon!

Goodnight Moon!

We just got off the ferry from New London and tomorrow I’ll be at the Suffolk Theater in Riverhead.

This is fun… but I’m sure looking forward to getting home. Still and all, tomorrow’s another day and another showl

Onward!

Categories: Diary, Set Lists, Venues Tags:

The Road May Not Go On Forever… But It Goes On…

December 4th, 2016 Jorma 18 comments
Bigger than life...

Bigger than life...

Some wintry mix falling and outside the window of the bus we see the Tootsie Roll eighteen wheeler. I’m not much of a candy eater but Trick Or Treating always brings out the Tootsie Roll in me.

The facade of the Orpheum

The facade of the Orpheum

Foto by Phil Jacobs

I had been looking forward to this gig with Susan and Derek for some time and as always, it was a treat!

Good times

Good times

Foto by Phil Jacobs

What a beautiful theater the Orpheum is!

Gotta love a ceiling like this!

Gotta love a ceiling like this!

Jorma Kaukonen 32, 2016
Jorma Solo
Opening For Tedeschi/Trucks
The Orpheum Theater
Boston, Mass.
Thursday, December 1, 2016

1. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
2. Come back Baby
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Watch The North Wind Rise
5. Sea Child
6. Death Don’t Have No Mercy
7. San Francisco Bay Blues
8. How Long Blues
9. River Of Time
10. I Am The Light Of This World
11. Good Shepherd
12. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
13. Water Song

Like a night at the opera

Like a night at the opera

Susan had a beautiful new Alessandro Amp!

Amp bling!

Amp bling!

Then I got to strap on the Bird and play Keys To The Highway with Susan, Derek an the gang!

How good does it have to get?

How good does it have to get?

Foto by Joe FitzPatrick

What a joy and an honor to hang with folks where everyone is a superstar!

Then from Boston to Woodstock, N.Y. and a Midnight Ramble at Levon’s place.

May his memory be a blessing!

May his memory be a blessing!

Foto by Phil Jacobs

I haven’t been to Lee’s place since he passed. I worked on two projects there, River Of Time and Steady As She Goes. Lee played on two songs for me on River and he and Muddy and I just hung out during Tuna’s Steady As She Goes.

Lee and his bud Muddy

Lee and his bud Muddy

Time flies… really flies. It seems like Levon Helm should still be here but he’s been gone for almost half a decade… and that’s just the way it is. I missed him at his Woodstock manse, but I could feel him looking over my shoulder.

Jorma Kaukonen 33, 2016
Jorma Solo
Midnight Ramble
Levon Helm’s Barn
Woodstock, New York
Friday, December 2, 2016

First Set:
1. Ain’t In No Hurry
2. Second Chances
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Been So Long
5. How Long Blues
6. Sleep Song
7. Watch The North Wind Rise
8. Living In The Moment
9. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
10. Barbeque King
11. Candy Man
12. Whining Boy Blues
13. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
Second Set:
1. Too Many Years
2. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down & Out
3. Brother Can You Spare A Dime?
4. Serpent Of Dreams
5. Come Back Baby
6. I’ll Be All Right Some Day
7. The Terrible Operation
8. Death Don’t Have No Mercy
9. River Of Time
10. Sea Child
11. Good Shepherd
12. Bar Room Crystal Ball
13. Water Song
14. I Know You Rider
15. Encore: Genesis

Me on stage and Levon... somewhere in the rafters!

Me on stage and Levon... somewhere in the rafters!

Foto by Phil Jacobs

Then we breezed up to Cazenovia where I played for the first time at the Catherine Cummings Theater.

This is one great room!

This is one great room!

Jorma Kaukonen 34, 2016
Jorma Solo
Catherine Cummings Theater
Cazenovia, New York
Saturday, December 3, 2016

First Set:
1. Ain’t In No Hurry
2. Too Many Years
3. Hesitation Blues
4. Been So Long
5. Come Back Baby
6. Sleep Song
7. Flying clouds
8. Let Us Get Together Right Down Here
9. Candy Man
10. In My Dreams
11. Nobody Knows You When Your Down & Out
12. Keep Your Lamps Trimmed & Burning
Second Set:
1. I See The Light
2. Brother Can You Spare A Dime?
3. The Terrible Operation
4. Barbeque King
5. San Francisco Bay Blues
6. Sleep Song
7. In The Kingdom
8. Good Shepherd
9. Death Don’t Have No Mercy
10. Bar Room Crystal ball
11. Water Song
12. In My Dreams
13. I Know You Rider
14. Embryonic Journey

Then today a quick drive to Rochester where tomorrow I will be at the Wolk Community Jewish Center.

I’m not slowing down yet… that’s for sure! It’s dark and winter up here in Upstate New York. There’s something peace about the early darkness in the northern latitudes. Time for a nice night’s sleep.

Bon nuit…

Categories: Diary, Set Lists, Venues, trips and journeys Tags: