Hmmm… interesting little dialogue that hunting morels started. I’ve got a couple of comments and they are my own and strictly from my heart. I am going to write this blog once and I am not going to engage in any on line discussions with anyone about any of this. What follows is essentially my experience, strength and hope. If we were at a meeting together it would be a different story but we are not. In any case, to begin.

I find it incredibly interesting and on some levels mystifying that grown adults, many of whom are my age or close to it, look back on their partying years with euphoric recall. There is no question that I am the man I am today because of the choices that I have made over the course of my life. Obviously, if there were do-overs in life I might or might not have done things differently. Probably not… The totality of my experience has shaped me as a person every step of the day.

Back in the late fifties and early sixties, my first forays into the world of mind altering substance had heavy shamanistic overtones. In the spirit of Aldous Huxley, they were doors to perception. I must that I went from seeking a view of the other side, to just looking at the person next to me and saying, ‘I’m fuuuuucked up!’ while everyone nodded appreciatively. And so it progressed. Have a nice day.

From my point of view, there is no possible way to discuss alcoholism, addiction and recovery with earth people. If you’re not one of us, there’s no way you could possibly understand. In my opinion, that’s why a twelve step program like AA works. It’s a drunk, helping a drunk. The doctors sitting on the couch don’t know shit. Someone who doesn’t understand why a recovering alcoholic would be grateful to be an alcoholic is not an alcoholic. Why should they understand? It doesn’t concern them.

I hear babbling about religious cults. Give me a friggin’ break. Religion is for people that are afraid of Hell. Spirituality is for those of us who have been there and don’t want to go back. Our sobriety is based on the meticulous maintenance of our spiritual condition. You want to know more? Read the Big Book Of Alcoholics Anonymous and don’t be put off by the dated language. It was written in the late 30’s.

The thought that just because someone has financial resources makes it easier to become a junky or a drunk is absurd. When I was out there, I had street friends who had thousand dollar a day habits and they were homeless. The disease of addiction is no respecter of sex or status.

It is important to me to always try to keep myself ‘right sized.’ There is nothing whatsoever special about me, my life, my problems, or my blessings. My job is certainly more interesting and rewarding than the one I had in 1959 when on an Antioch co-op job I worked at the Department Of Health, Education and Welfare in the Division of Air Pollution as in Informations Specialist, Junior Grade. I passed the Civil Service Exam and everything. I could type over a hundred correct words a minute. If I’d stayed in the government, I could have been retired a long time ago. Good times.

That wasn’t my path though. Being a writer and a musician as well as an entertainer is a great gig. It’s part of who I am, but it’s not everything that I am. Being a recovering drunk has been no easier or harder for me than if I had been a truck driver, which had music not called to me was what I really wanted to do. Early on I was told, ‘Jorma, you’re going to have to change everything but your name.’ I didn’t know what it meant at the time, but I do now. It’s a simple program, but it’s not easy. It’s a program of action… it takes work and the work is never done. Our goal is to be happy, joyous and free. What more could you want. If you can’t be happy, who cares whether you’re sober or not. Sad to say, even though the statistics are vague, it looks as if barely 15% make it. Remember, the disease of alcoholism is cunning, baffling, powerful and though it’s not in the book… patient. Remember one ‘Aw shit, wipes out twenty attaboys.’

Why did I feel called upon to write today’s blog. I guess I’m just casting my bread upon the waters. I truly mean no disrespect to my friends who have spent time with their thoughtful comments on my blog. That said, as always there is opinion… that’s OK. But there is also misinformation and that is not.

I thought the discussion about Mick Taylor was interesting in its pointlessness. How could one know what he did or thought. Does one think he cleaned up when he left the Stones? Does it matter? Is it your business? Who cares what Keith Richards thought.

There is nothing glamorous about alcoholism or drug addiction. It destroys all in its path. It shatters lives and destroys families. It is progressive and relentless. If left untreated it leads to death, institutions or jail.

A final note. I don’t care if people drink or do drugs. It’s not my business. I don’t like dealing with people when they are high because I believe that nothing they say means anything. That’s how it was for me… but that’s OK. As for pot. Legalize it, tax it make some money and a zero tolerance for driving high. It’s not an issue for me. I probably wouldn’t vote one way or the other on it. Some years ago at the Fur Peace Ranch, some guy engaged me in a discussion on substance abuse. “Hey man, no one in the State of Ohio has had more DUI’s than I and still drives.’ ‘What’s your point?’ I said. He went on. ‘I think smoking pot and getting high makes me more creative.’ ‘Look,’ I said. ‘It hasn’t always been this way for me, obviously, but here’s how it is today’ I went on. ‘Aside from the fact that getting high on anything today will kill me, think about this. Wrap a belt around your arm like a tourniquet. When your hand gets numb, jerk off. It’ll feel like someone else is doing it. That’s what getting high means to me.’

Nuff said!


  1. Comment made on July 11, 2016 by Mark Weber

    Alcohol is not your friend

  2. Comment made on October 31, 2014 by Steve C

    Excuse me… that would be NOvember 30, not December. Either way… looking forward to it!

  3. Comment made on October 31, 2014 by Steve C

    Beautiful to read your words and to know how things have turned out for you. Very inspiring.

    I remember the first time I saw you and Jack perform, at Tufts University in the 1980s. I’d listened to the New Orleans House album so obsessively that I could sing every note you guys played… sat there note-for-note copying Jack on my bass. Seeing the two of you play, I thought you were baddest sum-b I’d ever seen, but partly for reasons that were irrelevant. I was in a particular place at the time, and some of what I admired in musicians was irrelevant. If a guy drank whiskey onstage and could play great, he was probably my hero.

    Sitting here today, sober, thinking about going to see you once again (hopefully) on December 30… I wanted to see how you were doing. I knew that had to be unsustainable for you, just like it eventually wasn’t going to work for me. Usually, if a guy is still alive and making music past a certain point, I figure he must’ve found some kind of higher power. There’s always a lot of talk about jails, institutions and death… but there’s a fourth possibility few even dare to talk about: stumbling onward, year after year, like the living dead. Some musicians can do that, and I hoped that wasn’t the case for you.

    I don’t know how to put this. I hope that every drunk finds recovery, because there’s no one who doesn’t deserve the blessings that come with it… but there a little special hope in my heart for those I love and admire. The thrills that Mann’s Fate and Water Song (among many others) have given me are real joy, the kind that fills you with the spirit where no alcohol, no drug, no fear… nothing can enter. [Unless, of course, one forgets to practice the first step!] Just thinking of you and Jack always makes me smile.

    I know a couple of other wonderful artists in the program, and it’s always so good to hear their stories… to see them WELL… see them sharing them share their God-given artistic gifts (as well as the gifts freely given to them by other men in the program). Reading what you wrote here is even more inspiring than your music, which is already plenty inspiring. I liked what you said about the numbness. As much as your music (and mine) meant to me back then, it touches me much more today… and I would never have thought that possible.

    Another miracle. It’s really true that if you can find a God of your own understanding that you can have a beautiful life, huh?

    Looking forward to seeing you soon.

    • Comment made on November 3, 2014 by Jorma

      Amen brother… As for a Higher Power… I know there is one… and it isn’t me. One day at a time my friend.

  4. Comment made on September 23, 2014 by Mike G (UK)

    “There is nothing whatsoever special about me, my life, my problems, or my blessings.”

    Your words and your music, Jorma. Not all of us can reach inside and create, no matter how hard we try. That makes you special, imo. Your time and place in that world and what you’ve given is special and for me and so many others, everlasting. Thank you for that.

  5. Comment made on May 23, 2013 by Jim P.


    I’ve been the whole route. you know the story… more or less the same as yours. sad to even have to admit to being one of you enablers at one time.

    I lived I D.C. during the worst of times the ’80’s. saw you through the whole solo period. you know what I mean.

    so here’s the deal… I’ve had all kinda time together. two 5 year stretches with a mere slip between. moved exponentially forward in my Spiritural growth. at least I think so anyway.

    for whatever reason I started smoking weed again in the early 2000’s. it seemed ok at the time. I know it doesn’t do a thing as far as creativity. however, it ‘feels’ like it does. I play guitar and bass. neither here or there. it keeps me from God.

    in like ’05 i had back surgery. I was on heavy duty pain meds. got off the meds for a good long period of time. now my doctors have given me like 20 perks a month. these narcotics are really getting their claws into me again.

    I am severely depressed. I am having suicidal thoughts. the only reason I don’t off myself is because of my guitar playing. the only thing I get pleasure from. who knows if you even read this… what does it matter really.

    I am suffering man. lost…

  6. Comment made on May 15, 2013 by Andy C

    Jorma – my first (pre FPR) lessons from you were when I’d belly up to the bar at the Lone Star in NYC and watch carefully what you played. As soon as I got home I’d have to play the songs right away so as not to forget. In those days, you were most certainly drinking heavily (and whatever else) at those shows. We as “kids” in the late 70’s may have even glamorized that behavior, it was a sign of the times. Some never figured out how to stop. I’m really glad that you did.

  7. Comment made on May 13, 2013 by Brett

    Thanks for your comments and honesty Jorma. Like many of us who grew up with a sex, drugs and rock n roll mentality, I had my fun but also paid the price. My addiction made me hit rock bottom but thankfully I’ve been clean for over 15 years. I know for a fact that the two biggest factors in my recovery were admitting I had a problem and then asking God for help. Jorma, you’ve been a big influence on my life as a musician and guitar player and you’re playing better than ever! Looking forward to seeing you, Jack and Barry soon! God Bless!

  8. Comment made on May 12, 2013 by Joe in DC

    Bob K
    I kinda grew out of the Narn Anon.
    It was helpful to me at the time knowing there were other parents going thru similar issues with there kids as me, but after awhile it somehow stopped helping me… after a bit it just felt like it turned into a whining session. but it is cool just the same.
    I also agree on the MD’s and meds..seems like they dish em out all the time.
    My son ended up finding an excellent doctor though who prescribed Sub oxen to him to get off the smack and oxy. At first I thought what BS; go from one drug to another; but the Doc carefully monitored him and it helped…has ur son tried that?

  9. Comment made on May 12, 2013 by mutt

    let the healing begin . . .


    Peace & Love Fur All


  10. Comment made on May 11, 2013 by Bob Kozyak

    I agree with Jorma that most doctors don’t know shit about alcholism/addiction. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say that a doctor subscribed pain pills for everything from a back ache to a hang nail. Doctors hand out highly addictive painkillers like it’s candy. I’m sure they’re are some doctors that understand the risk of subscibing pain killers, but damn, I see abuse all the time.

  11. Comment made on May 11, 2013 by Mark Ennis

    I get it Jorma. I thank GOD everyday for my freedom from active addiction. I work at it daily. One Day at a Time My Friends.

  12. Comment made on May 11, 2013 by Jim

    The fact is if you don’t clean it up, alcohol will kill you eventually! Considering Hot Tunas’ origins references to “shrooms” is not surprising at all but I think most of us have grown & have learned what not to do anymore and what, if any we can do in moderation. Jorma’s a prime example! Hope to have you around a long time Jorma!

  13. Comment made on May 11, 2013 by Bob Kozyak

    Yes Joe, I’ve also attended Nar Anon, but they’re are far more Al Anon meetings available in my area. I like you have had to make some difficult choices, but pretty sure I’m doing the right things. I once had a counselor tell me that when your dealing with an addict you do the opposite of what you would normaqlly want to do. This advise has turned out to be sad but true. My paternal instincts tell me to reach out and keep helping my son fight this horrible disease. My wife an I just can’t take the dysfunction and chaos that comes with addiction anymore. We have sent him to a couple of rehabs in the past, so the seed for recovery has been planted. He has found recovery before so we know he can do it, we just pray he doesn’t run out of chances. Bob K.

  14. Comment made on May 11, 2013 by Joe in DC

    Bob K…thanks
    I also know how it felt to kick him out of the house with nothing..but I did it. Looking back I think it was the hardest thing I had to do, but like you, I could not be part of his world at that point. Have you tried the Nar Anon…when I was going, like 2 years ago it was filled w/ mostly parents who had lost their kids to addiction. ….

  15. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by Bob Kozyak

    Thanks for the kind words Joe in DC. I’m so happy your son is doing well. I’m hoping my son can find recovery again. I know relapses can be part of recovery, so I pray he gets another chance.

    Bob K.

  16. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by jim hitchcock

    My take is that Barbara Jacobs is kind of the soul madre of the blog 🙂

  17. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by John B

    You are probably right Joe in DC @Joe in DC

  18. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by John B

    Can’t wait to hear Jack live again…….

  19. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by John B

    Remember back in the day how everyone would always holler out for Jack to say something ? There was one Academy of Music show that i was at where Jack responded ; i don’t remember if he sang (he might have) or just spoke to the audience. Was that the same night that either Jack or Jormas mom came out on stage . Was it her birthday? @johno

  20. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by Joe in DC

    i think jorma was referring to mD shrink type of folks…but thats just me John B

  21. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by John B

    God bless you Bake. Thanks for sharing. @Bake

  22. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by John B

    When Jorma and others say “Docs dont know shit” i understand the context that they refer to. Lets not forget about Doctor Bob though.

  23. Comment made on May 10, 2013 by Joe in DC

    Bob Kozyak………………
    I share the helplessness you feel about your son
    My son was in the same place not long ago…addict, on the street, in jail, in rehabs, in court, in with the doc..on and on for years
    He is now clean for nearly 2 years….25 years old now…. and he is doing very well..the best I have seen him in fact ever…so there is hope…but I know he really needs to focus on being sober each day.
    As Jorma said..the docs dont know shit..thats what I found, but my son found a way out, I do not know who influenced him (it was not me), but I think it was jail. Now he has moved back in with me and is really blooming; in school, in a band, doing an internship at a recording studio in DC, has a girlfriend..I am so very very grateful about it.
    I went to the Narn Anon and AL Anon..I think it helped me get over the hump cause I realized I was not the only one…hang in there

  24. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Bob Kozyak

    Thanks Jorma, I have a son battling an addiction after several relapses. Hearing you and others that have found recovery continues to give me hope. I love my son so much, but I cannot be a part of his life when he is using. My wife and I think of him daily, but try to live our lives the best we can without him in our lives.I cannot express as a parent how incredibly painful this is. We have both had extensive counseling and attented alon meetings which are very helpful. Just as you said that only addicts understand addict , the same is true for parents and loved ones of addicts. Thanks again for your comments,they help.

  25. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by chuck newman

    The blog normally has a very serene and peaceful vibe. I think we can all tell about our own foibles and dear ones we lost but we are dwelling on it. I can only walk in my shoes and you in yours. Along the way we can help when we can and cry when we can’t. I am a traveler through life just like anyone. Nobody is above me, nobody is below me. Just say you knew me and I wasn’t all bad and I’ll say the same about you. Peace.

  26. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    It appears that you don’t care and that’s O.K. with me.
    I don’t consider it a “diatribe”. It’s a story about a person who OD’d on drugs and drank to excess.


  27. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by johno

    @Barbara Jacobs
    who cares about your long winded diatribe?

  28. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by John R.

    Have a nice day indeed.

  29. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by johno

    Does anyone know anythin about Jack. How he’s doing, after all he’s been through alot lately. If any knows about him, please pass it on.

    hBlessings to all

  30. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    Since Johno is confused by my comments, I’m going to post another:
    Although having good financials doesn’t make it easier to become a junky or a drunk, it does make the process of obtaining it much easier.

    A friend who lives by the beach in Long Island had a next door neighbor (a very wealthy, nice, widowed, friendly lady.) Her daughter used to visit her mom there,only once in a while. We once saw her daughter, as she went into her mom’s house for a visit.
    She had a guy waiting in the car for her. Her daughter looked unkempt and seemed to be high on something. She only stayed for less than 10 minutes and then she went back out and into the waiting car.

    A couple of years ago, the mom passed away. She must have bequeathed her home to her only child, the daughter. The daughter then moved into the house.
    The daughter was seen outside only a few times. She never went anywhere, never drove her mom’s car (it never left the driveway).

    Sometimes she had groceries delivered to the house. The liquor store would deliver big cardboard cartons of booze to the house on a regular basis. She never had any parties that we could hear, nor visitors that we could see.
    A drug-dealer would deliver her drugs to her, go inside and back out within minutes. (he wasn’t the grocery store delivery man, and not from the liquor store.)

    Since she had access to money, she didn’t have to go out to steal or commit crimes in order to pay for her drugs and liquor. Her life was spent inside that house, just a couple of blocks from a beautiful beach. I don’t know if her habit amounted to $1,000 a day but she could have easily afforded to pay that much money.

    Last August, she was found O.D.’d in that house, by the lawn-care guy.
    She was taken out to the morgue and that was the end of her life.(If you could call that lifestyle “living”.)

    My friend’s mother is a yenta, so she was always looking, watching and speculating
    about how long it would be before that 30-something woman overdosed to death.
    She had easy access to lots of money and had easy access to drugs and alcohol, delivered right to her front door.

  31. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Chris Bruning

    Thanks Jorma, you hit the nail on the head.

  32. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    No, it’s Jorma’s blog.
    This is the comments section, where we respond to Jorma and chat with each other.

  33. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    I could probably find something to Swiffer in your house.
    I could Swiffer your guitar. As long as your adjusting things on it doesn’t take time away from the other things you need to get done — I say go for it!

    I just sent an e-mail to Carlo and told him a joke in Italian. I already Swiffered today, so I had a few minutes to spare.
    At least my Lysol habit is good for cleaning hotel rooms. I used to only do the hotel room bathroom but I saw a report on Eyewitness News about how the hotel cleaning staff never clean the t.v. remotes, or the telephones. After that, I started to do the entire room: the t.v. remote, phone, bedside table, lamp, light-switches,doorknobs and the thingy that opens the drapes.

    It takes 15 minutes and even if I just got in from a long flight, I still can’t go to sleep if I don’t do all of that first.
    So, it’s time consuming and not really needed since I wash my hands(but not too frequently, Lady Macbeth-style.)@Richard Cowles

  34. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Richard Cowles

    If she can help me with truss rods,than I guess it’s hers. Have a good night all.


  35. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by johno

    @Richard Cowles
    I’m confused as well! Whose blog is this?

  36. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by HOGAN

    Dear Jorma,
    Amen to that…I feel that life gives us choice’s it’s up to you whick one you want to take. I have lost good friends and family to drugs. Don’t get me wrong I used to party like a “Rock Star” back in the day in Brooklyn. The only thing we would think about is how we were getting high and where was the next Tuna show. I was one of the lucky ones and was able to walk away from it and choose a family and a career some of my friends didn’t but it was not up to me to judge them. They will be judged someday by someone with alot more power then me, and you are right about those life experience’s molding you in to the person you have becaome and I wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world, those life experiences have helped me to teach my children how to become young adults and to try and survive in this crazy world of ours and I thank G-d for my blessings that they all grew up drug free. Addidtion can be a constant struggle. One of my best friends has been clean and sober now for 12 years and he stil needs his meetings. Now when we go to Tuna shows we go sober and still have a great time. I still miss my sidekick from the shows alot (The Byrd) he turned my whole neighborhood on to Hot Tuna and to that I will always remember. By the time we got back in touch his addition had won the fight. I know he’s smiling and looking down on me and saying “Rock On Hogan”..
    See you in the City


  37. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Richard Cowles

    Barb..Im in the northeast and Im a poor laborer.I heat my home/studio with wood heat generated from my cellar.I have filters in place in a couple different spots
    to catch most everything but heat.Would this be the type of bldg that would need a lot of attention as for dusting.I sometimes find myself maybe in excess adjusting truss rods on my guitars,even when they don,t really need it.Can you help Barb? Thanks Dickie..

    @Barbara Jacobs

  38. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    Will e-mail you later, Carlo.@carlo pagliano

  39. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    Alcoholics Anonymous is a great program. When I travel with friends who are in AA,they can find the nearest meeting and go there. They always have that support group.

    I don’t drink around my AA friends. I think it’s impolite. I’m not a big drinker, anyway. Sometimes I have a drink with dinner, it’s usually a small glass of red wine or something frozen with a little umbrella in it.
    Just one and I’m done. My drink of choice is fresh-brewed iced tea with a nice slice of lemon. No sugar.

    I can’t smoke a whole joint either. A couple of tokes before bedtime and I’m good. Not every night and never during the day. I can’t understand how people can smoke weed during the day. It certainly doesn’t make me feel more creative.
    I can’t do anything other than listen to music. I can’t write, can’t read and would never drive while high. I can’t smoke before going to see a movie because then I can’t follow the plot. I’m distracted and I don’t know how people can concentrate on anything they’re doing.

  40. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by jim

    thank you

  41. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Bake

    People ask me how does that program of Alcoholics Anonymous work?? I ALWAYS REPLY, “IT WORKS JUST FINE”. As a result of working the program and with fellowship I have received many gifts, most importantly a moral compass in which I follow one day at a time. THANKS Jorma!

  42. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Adina C.

    Thank you Jorma! A Friend brought my attention to your Blog and I am so Grateful! I am celebrating 6 years of Sobriety today and I needed to read this. It is truly Good Stuff and I do Identify!
    Peace and Blessings, 🙂

  43. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Bob

    Well said

  44. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Joe

    Thank you Jorma ! So very true !

  45. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Joe in DC

    Good stuff Jorma
    Like you say that is your opinion
    I appreciate hearing your views
    We all go down different paths

  46. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by carlo pagliano

    Ah, this is something Barbara|
    Have to scoot at work now, but with a consistent smile in my spine.
    That Jorma forgive me, write me on my mail, it’ll be nice.
    Thanks Jorma for the opportunity.

  47. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    @carlo pagliano
    I lived in Milan for 3 years in the mid-1970’s. I worked as a hand and foot model.
    I would speak to you more in Italian but it would not be fair to other people here , who do not speak/read/write Italian.

    In casa sua ciascuno e re.
    Ad ogni uccello il suo nido e bello.
    Meglio essere il primo a casa propria che il secondo a casa di altri.

  48. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by carlo pagliano

    Milano is my home town Barbara! And I’m still living here with the risk of becoming fossilized, but I always think to keep my hands hitching, it’s a good sedative whilst life burns in our time. It’s a beautiful surprise your transport of love for Italy, Jorma depicts our spirit just perfectly when writing abt our Country. And I always add new enlightening feelings notwithstanding I’m from here, ‘cause Americans are always a cut above, go figure Jorma!
    Ciao, sei grande.

  49. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    I know you are addressing your comment to Jorma but I’m going to “turn” 55 in a few months.
    So, Happy Birthday to You, and soon to me.

    @Bob Kelly

  50. Comment made on May 9, 2013 by Bob Kelly

    Wow.. good stuff, for sure.. i was just getting ready to call it a day.. hit the hay,, and something led me to check in on Jormas blog..Amen.. again.. right words to read at the right time.. thanks.. interesting follow up posts to boot..having just turned 55,, I look back and wonder sometimes how I made it this far ,, in spite of myself… But life is full of choices,, by a quirk of fate i made a few good ones…
    Im not sure why you chose to write what you did and why, but thanks for sharing,, and helping.. hope the message gets across,,

  51. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    Italy is my second Country.
    (Italian is my second language and I’m trying each day to be a better speaker/writer of Italian.)
    I try to keep my H’s in their place, so thanks for your Thanks to me!
    I’m always working at it!

    If I may ask: Where in Italy do you live?

  52. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by carlo pagliano

    Moderator can you help me, help me if you please…
    ‘American Beauty’ what an album, and Jorma’s version? I had the lucky chance to hear it live in Rome in 2007, ‘Hot Tuna Acoustic’ doing that Jerry Garcia-Grateful Dead’s real beauty, I was still young AA wise after 25 some years of shilly-shallying, I’m a senior member of the thing now and can operate freely in the miraculous project ‘Life’, if I may so say.
    Oh Barbara, am I pleased to read those words without an H out of place, my sweet childhood rushes in adding fresh strength and hope, so it works when you work it. Thank you Barbara!
    Thanks Jorma for the opportunity.

  53. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    You are very welcome, Richard.
    I am not a better person than any other person posting comments here.

    I was very lucky to be in the right place at the right time: (NYC,1968-69; Manhattan’s lower East side: Second Ave. at the corner of what became The Fillmore East.)
    Although very young (just 10-years-old) Bill Graham took me under his wing.
    Everything that I accomplished and became, professionally; I owe to Bill Graham and Ahmet Ertegun,(Bill’s best friend),who also helped me along my life’s path.

    I’ve been very lucky and was taught to respect myself by those two men.
    There was no option, for me to get sloppy. They would never have allowed it.
    I had to rise to their expectations of me, each and every day, for years.

    That factor may have been my saving grace.

  54. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Ed K.

    Thanks Jorma.
    A Friend of Bill’s,
    Ed K.

  55. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Richard Cowles

    Thanks for that barb..your reply.People…

    Thanks for that@Barbara Jacobs

  56. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    @Richard Cowles
    Richard: I’m not the Jorma blog comments section moderator.
    I’m not even an “official”.
    We moderate ourselves here.
    It seems to work very well.

  57. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    That’s good that you aren’t chasing Jorma around anymore, with a bottle of wine (however good the vintage.)@Stuart Feldman

  58. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Richard Cowles

    Hi Barb…just wondered are you the official moderator for jorma and his blog? Im confused? Amused yet confused. Thanks..


  59. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Stuart Feldman

    Thanks Jorma,
    Been sober for 3 years. I am a doctor in Las Vegas. You are 100% correct, most doctors don’t know a thing about addiction. They just think it is a lack of will power, or some other human weakness. Used to chase you around with a bottle of Bordeaux: not anymore!

  60. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    I don’t know what that means but I’m amused!@eaglesteve

  61. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by eaglesteve

    My Scoutmaster, The Broom, used to say:
    You have to cast some bread on the water if you want to get back a Lorna Dunne.
    Nuf said.

  62. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    P.S.: I must say : We rockin’ this topic, with our thoughts and opinions!

  63. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    Dusty: I agree with John B.
    No need for you to feel horrified and guilty. You aren’t a stupid person.
    Sometimes we trust friends and give them access to parts of our lives that we, perhaps, should not allow them.

    You are still all good with us, Dusty.
    Maybe your friend can learn a good lesson from you, today.

    Jorma wrote his own thoughts and opinions on his blog entry, today.
    He leaves it up to us to post our own comments and to discuss.
    Food for thought.

    We all learn, and should be open to learning something new, every day.
    Exchanging thoughts and opinions here on Jorma’s comments section is the very best example of freedom of speech and consideration of our own experiences and
    thoughts and opinions.

  64. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by John B

    Don’t be so hard on yourself Dusty. @Dusty

  65. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Dusty

    He is no longer my friend. I left the room leaving him unattended. I am beside myself with horror and guilt. A stupid lesson learned.

  66. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    Good to know that in the future,you will not allow your friend to display comments on Jorma’s website comments section, in your box.
    I have several university degrees and I can’t even figure out what your friend posted up there.

  67. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Richard Cowles

    Hi Jorma..just checking in for the soul.Loved your post and how you took so much time to speak from your heart,and offer your insight.I will retain all as future reference as always.I understand your frustration about musicians beating habits or glam type stuff at this point in life.Im just happy to see you working at your place and enjoying quality time at home.All this superstar garb gets old.Back to the garden for me.Peace BRO….

  68. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Dusty

    My complete apologies, Jorma. I had asked a friend to observe. These were his hideous comments that he took upon himself to display in my box. It will not happen again.

  69. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by John B

    @Barbara Jacobs : > ))

  70. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Dusty

    ck it dumb ass its all about observing,first urself

  71. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    I admit I have been “caught” a couple of times.
    Because I’m not engaging in any perceived harmful habit, my friends have given me “a pass”.
    Those who know about my habit probably don’t even bother to dust much, because they know I will Swiffer when I get to their house.

    I have habits, they are generally perceived to be not harmful; to myself or to others.
    I have asked several doctors and shrinks: Why do I do this?
    Their answer is invariably:
    Every habit is formed from a repetition of an act/behavior pattern that makes the person engaged in that behavior “feel better”. (although the habit is unnecessary.) Many are done secretively.

    So, you see that I, as with all other human-beings, could have gone one way or the other way (with my unharmful habits), into the realm of habits that are addictions to harmful substances.

    @John B

  72. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    @carlo pagliano
    Trenta giorni ha novembre,
    con aprile, giugno e settembre,
    di ventotto ce n’e uno,
    tutti gli altri ne hanno trentuno

  73. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by John B

    I’m not big on Swiffer; though i do have many friends that are Swiffer devotees. As of this writing i cannot quite put my finger on the reason for my aversion to Swiffer products but have thought perhaps it was because of the name ‘swifffer” though i cannot be sure. As for carrying around secreted packages of swiffer on my person to be used in the home of another ? Well i just don’t know about that. Good heavens, what if,just at the moment i was swifting away the offending particles of dust from my hosts coffee table they should catch me? What would i say ? What could i say?

  74. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Kathy

    “Opposition is true friendship”. It is a quote, I read once. Different perspectives
    are part of what makes the history of the united states interesting. The whole focus of my sons Socials Studies class this year has been the Civil War. A large part of. Today the disscussion of his homeowrk was General Winfield scotts “Anaconda Plan”. The concepts behind it are interesting in that it was a long term stategy that was sucessful. I plan on spending the rest of my life learning about history and I have studied geneology all my life and became interested in it when since in the fourth grade. Both sides of my family knew so much about it and i soaked it all up like a sponge. I did a geneology project for a teacher. My grandfather handed me a document to use and it was never disscussed only on this document was proof that we were descendant from chief Powhatan. Among other things I have learned that I have had many relatives that fought in the Revoultionary War. Some were minutemen. I appreciate you sharing about your service to the government and I found that very interesting. I believe everyone has their own version of an anaconda and it can take on many different forms such as addictions. It can be predudice as well. I never understood what manifest destiny was untill this year. Two of my anscestors from that side of the family were in the Alabama Buisiness Hall of Fame. One of the was a 32 degree master level Mason. One was Govenor of Alabama. Thier are pictures of him and stories on the internet. The other one founded schools and the university Of alabama at
    Troy State. He also started the banking system in the state of Alabama. Next year when they have that festival I wonder If i will be there. I may go because I do drink. I am no Charles Bukowski by any means. I understand your post. If their were somthing I could do about the anaconda of predudice the silently plays a role in my life I would. It’s there. I have no way of fighting that battle. I have already lost it. Being sober for long periods of time I feel the presence of it. Trying to push me farther into the downward spiral. I don’t see it as an addiction. I see it as U.s. anaconda tactics to take people that vary only slightly form the norm out out of the picture. I see the final destination will eilimate me if i drink or not. As eagles fly and look down I supposes each one of their perspectives is different as well. Thank you for you view point.

  75. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Bennett Harris

    Jorma, it’s very generous of you to share your thoughts about your personal experiences with your great public-at-large…who love you at various distances. Thanks for your openness.

  76. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    Right. It’s good to see and nice to know that people can be in recovery (although it’s an ongoing process and lifetime of working at it, as Mary Ann Kabatt points out, above).

    I’m grateful that I never got addicted to any harmful substances.
    I have worked with many brilliant, talented musicians who were in recovery,and one who was an addict when I worked for him.
    He was the exception and I didn’t know he was an addict, at the time I started working with him. I tried my very best to get him into rehab but he refused, so I quit.

    (The reason why I’m an independent publicist is because I’ve never wanted to work for addicts. So,I get to choose who I work for. For more of my opinions on that experience, Google my name and Billy Preston. My comments (after his death) in The New York Post, say it all.)

    I have a couple of habits but they aren’t related to harmful substance-ingestion:
    My need to be neat-and-tidy extends to a Lysol habit. It takes me around 15 minutes to Lysol any hotel room upon check-in.
    I carry cans of “Lysol-To-Go” and “Lysol Wipes”.(I’m not making light of addiction, just pointing out that I have habits that are a bit excessive.
    I’m not a germaphobe: I shake hands upon introduction of new people, hug and kiss friends.)

    I also have a Swiffer habit. I have a cabinet at home devoted to Swiffer products: Swiffer Sweeper, Swiffer Duster, Swiffer Wet-Jet and so on.
    I carry baggies of Swiffers with me (along with my Lysol-To-Go).
    When I’m in somebody’s home and see some dust near me, I wait until they leave the room and then whip out a Swiffer sheet and Swiffer the dust — real quick.
    I’m not allergic to dust, it’s just a compulsion.

    Again, I’m not making light of drug, drink or any substance addiction.
    Other than liking my surroundings to be clean, I don’t know what drives me to such obsessive compulsions.

    @John B

  77. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by John B

    Amen Barb! onward to Hot Tuna in the northeast very very soon! I cannot wait. @Barbara Jacobs

  78. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Mary Ann Kabatt

    I’m Mary Ann, a grateful recovering alcoholic & have been sober for 22 years now. Thanks for sharing. It works if you work it.

  79. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by carlo pagliano

    Monday to Friday on the airwaves last week here in Italy, Radio RAI 3 ‘Fahrenheit’ which is a very followed cultural program broadcasted by the National Broadcasting Company here, beamed Jorma’s ‘QUAH’! “Genesis” on Monday the 29th at 15.47, “I’ll Be All Right” on Tuesday the 30th at 15.50 (thirty days hath November along sweet April, June and September, of twenty-eight is but one, all the others have thirty-one), “Flying Clouds” at 15.49 on the first of May (our National Labour Day), “Another Man Done Gone” went on air on Thursday at 15.47 and “I Am The Light Of This World” closed Jorma’s week at the National Italian Radio still at 15.47. It was like winning every day, more actually, and there was a standing army of us all scattered along the booth to live this what soon became the ‘Real Thrill’ the rite of the 15.47 to gather around to.
    Really Thanks Jorma from all of us here in Italy for this super special week, cell still rings.
    Steady As She Goes.

  80. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by john gruber

    Very insightful Jorma. Thank you. I am not an addict, but I did my share of substances through the years. I consider myself very lucky. It’s nice to hear your perspective.

  81. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Barbara Jacobs

    It’s interesting to see somebody just make a decision to leave the party and go home.
    I only know what Mick Taylor thought and did because that’s his explanation for how and why he left The Stones. He didn’t clean up because he left but at least he went home to try to get away. He talks about it in the documentary “Crossfire Hurricane”, so he’s not keeping it a secret.

    It matters to me that he’s still here and it’s good to see him back onstage.
    He had some very hard times and I saw him in England during those years.
    I didn’t ask him about his personal life but he told me anyway (even though it wasn’t my business.) He sure didn’t look back at being hooked on heroin as good times. He wasn’t fond of his drinking problems.
    I don’t know what Keith Richards thought and I don’t care, either.

    It may seem pointless but I’m just happy that he’s alive and well. I’ve seen so many people that didn’t make it. Some died, others went to jail. Some people just go in and out of rehab.
    I’m always happy to see people who are getting well, even after they’ve just been sick, not even being addicts.

    When Ronnie Lane was dying he told me that although he spent many years of his life drinking, he was relieved that he was able to quit and when he found out he had M.S., he had to spend years of his life trying to overcome the effects of his treatments and learn to live with his illness.
    He had a memorable quote: ” Well, I’m dying but at least I’m not an addict, not in jail and not in the looney bin.”.

  82. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Steve Levnson

    Your distinction between religion and spirituality has an amazing clarity to it. That thought will stay will me for a long while.
    I want to mention to the blog readers also that peer support (AA, NA, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance, etc) does wonders for a very underserved section of our communities. Even if you are not an attendee, you can support these groups. Anything from helping to find a meeting room, supplies, or even helping with advertising or providing transportation will help.

  83. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Cyndy Consentino

    Dear Jorma,


    Love and blessings to you and yours,

  84. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by Joanne

    Thanks for the great blog Jorma…Right on!!

  85. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by doug mlyn

    as always. Thanks for speaking from the heart.

  86. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by John R.


  87. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by John B

    Autobiography of Bill W is a good read. My son will be returning from Alaska on the 21st day of May. He is a school teacher in Alaska and has just completed his first year. I miss him so…. Can’t wait to see and hug him once again. I have been struggling with the “empty nest syndrome” for some time now . He has an older brother and sister…

  88. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by mutt

    nuff said – INDEED!

    Love and Peace Fur All


  89. Comment made on May 8, 2013 by John B

    Good stuff Jorma . Thanks for sharing.

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