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Archive for October, 2019

The Weeks That Were…

October 9th, 2019 Jorma 17 comments

So… last weekend, me and the guys headed out to San Francisco for a Saturday show on the Rooster Stage at Hardly, Strictly, Bluegrass. It had been a minute or two since we were there, so it was great to be back. I got in Friday morning, met Jack at the hotel and went to pick up Madame Cecilia Chiang for a lunch celebrating her 100th birthday. I first

Cecilia, Jack and jorma

Cecilia, Jack and jorma

met Madame Chiang in 1964 or ‘65. My ex wife, Margareta, and I wandered into her place on Polk Street… the Mandarin. Today, everything is just a fashion statement. How you wear your hair and how you choose your wardrobe in today’s climate really seems like a statement of, well, nothing. Now I know I’m an old guy and I don’t spend a lot of time looking back, but back in the mid 60’s for a man to let his hair grow long could be life threatening at worst… and at best, you could get refused service at restaurants. Madame Chiang welcomed us into her establishment and treated us with respect. I will never forget that and I will always honor her for warmth and acceptance. I any case, Jack and I had the opportunity to break bread with her at the Zuni on Market Street.
What an honor and a treat.

Saturday we had to load in at 1300 so it promised to be a long day for all. The weather was beautiful in Golden Gate Park, so all was good. There was quite a cast of characters to hang with.

My buddy... Buddy

My buddy... Buddy

Foto by Anthony Pidgeon

Jorma, Jack, Maria Muldaur and Buddy Miller

Jorma, Jack, Maria Muldaur and Buddy Miller

Foto by Anthony Pidgeon

Great to see my pal Trey Hensley

Great to see my pal Trey Hensley

... and then Rob Ickes showed up.

... and then Rob Ickes showed up.

Foto by Anthony Pidgeon

Back in 1994 or ‘95, I was on a songwriter’s panel at the Bottom Line in New York. The great Bobby Braddock was on that gig, so it was more then nice to reconnect with him a quarter of a century later.

Bobby and me

Bobby and me

Jack Casady, Steve Earle and me... note Robert Plant in between Jack and Steve's head

Jack Casady, Steve Earle and me... note Robert Plant in between Jack and Steve's head

Foto by Anthony Pidgeon

The hits just kept on coming…

I take a picure of Anthony Pidgeon... returning the favor

I take a picure of Anthony Pidgeon... returning the favor

Almost time for Tuna's set...

Almost time for Tuna's set...

Foto by Jorma Kaukonen

Hot Tuna 44, 2019
The Electric Trio
Jorma Kaukonen, Jack Casady
& Justin Guip
Hardly, Strictly Bluegrass
The Rooster Stage
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, California
Saturday, October 5, 2019

1. Been So Long
2. Hesitation Blues
3. Ode To Billy Dean
4. Baby What You Want Me To Do?
5. Roads and Roads &
6. Sea Child
7. Trial By Fire
8. Bowlegged Woman
9. Hit Single # 1
10. Come Back Baby

The boys... getting it!

The boys... getting it!

Nothing like a Les Paul

Nothing like a Les Paul

Then on Sunday, I had a real treat. Unbeknownst to me an old friend of mine, Catharine, bought 2400 Fulton St. thirty years ago. She and her husband Paul, restored and modernized it without losing any of the cool stuff. They graciously invited Myron and myself in and allowed me to take some pictures.

The Tiffany stained glass window on the landing

The Tiffany stained glass window on the landing

Photo by Jorma Kaukonen

Collage by Marty Balin

Collage by Marty Balin

Foto by Jorma Kaukonen

There was one of Marty’s collages… pretty much as it was four decades ago.

Freya... goddess of love

Freya... goddess of love

Foto by Jorma Kaukonen

This was the ceiling of the room where Margareta and I lived for a while when our apartment in Pacific Heights burned. There was Freya…; just like I remembered her. Many thanks to Cathy and Paul for opening that door into another time.

Then for me… red eye flight in time to pick up our daughter after high school let.

All that other stuff is good… but there’s no place like home!

I think it's time for a ride!

I think it's time for a ride!

Foto by Jorma Kaukonen

Damn Few Left…

October 6th, 2019 Jorma 27 comments

So Jack and Justin and I played Hardly Strictly Bluegrass yesterday and it was a glorious hang. This post is not about that. I’ll get to that later. This is to note and reflect on the passing of Ginger Baker. What Ginger, Jack and Eric did with Cream changed my life in a profound way. The musicianship was off the charts, of course, but it was more than that. In my opinion, no one transliterated the work of the acoustic blues masters into an electric format better than Cream, and I’m not even talking about their originals. They invented that stuff, so thanks guys… muchly appreciated.

My ex, Margareta and Ginger and I found ourselves staying at the Landmark hotel… yep, the same one where Janis checked out. 2001, A Space Odyssey was just opening on Hollywood Blvd. Margareta and I had just purchased Manley P. Hall’s massive book on the Rosicrucians at an antique book store up the street. We dropped that tome off a our room, snagged Ginger Baker and headed for the movies. No one had ever seen anything like 2001 before and we made sure we were properly chemically prepared for that visual adventure. Everything was a psychedelic melange of sensations but I have a vague and colorful memory that Randy California of Spirit was also in the audience and that he got out of his seat and walked into the screen. As Pete Seeger would say, ‘Wasn’t that a time?’

I’m not saying that Ginger and I were buds… I’m not sure he had buds in the traditional sense, but we did hang together for a couple of minutes back there in Hollywood in the late 60’s. I would see him again in 1989 at the Mondrian hotel as the Airplane was preparing for the 1989 Reunion Tour, but that too is a tale for another time.

He was one of a kind and undeniably a force of nature. I would probably never have run into him again, but the planet earth is a poorer place without him.

Rest in peace brother!

Here’s to us, and those like us. Damn few left!

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