We'll start with this... but that's not where it started...

We'll start with this... but that's not where it started...

It is Fall again… It is early Fall here in Meigs County, Ohio… for some of us in our lives, it is already late Fall. I was talking to my friend Jerry’s Mom, Shirley. Shirley is almost 89 and she said to me, ‘Jorma, I wouldn’t mind a second go round but I guess that’s not the way it is.’ Yeah, you start thinking about how time just slips through your fingers… Like water… like a will ‘o’ the wisp…You see it, you feel it, you live it… and then it is gone. It is so hard to realize how precious life is when you’re young, and yeah, I get it… it’s just one of those things you take for granted. I sure did. Now, it’s every gosh darned day. If not now… never…

This was our Pick And Putt (motorcycles, not golf) weekend at the Fur Peace Ranch. Our fifteenth year. At 75 I’m still able to ride with a modicum of vigor, and yes, sanity. I rode my first motorcycle at 13 and it has been a part of my life ever since. Thursday before the camp at the FPR, some friends on two wheels met up here at the Ranch and we set out for a 200 mile ride.

The eagles gather at the Ranch...

The eagles gather at the Ranch...

We headed up north through McConnelsville and would up at Seneca Lake east of Zanesville.

Time for a burger at the boathouse

Time for a burger at the boathouse

One of the guys had a minor mechanical problem, but we were almost home, so it was all good.

Camp started on Friday with David Wolff, Steve Kimock, Bobby Vega, Myself and Tom Feldmann ably and creatively assisting me. Good times indeed!

Saturday night after the Pick And Putt Ride (another 148 miles) Steve Kimock’s band gathered like eagles. There was Steve and Bobby of course, but also John Morgan Kimock on drums, and Leslie Mendelson on vocals, piano and guitar.

Leslie on the old Chickering

Leslie on the old Chickering

When my cousin Dan Birman’s dad Joe passed away recently, Dan graciously allowed the 1913 Chickering to come live with us on stage here at the Fur Peace Station. So far, Jonathan Edwards and Leslie Mendelson who played it exclusively all night. She never touched the electronic keyboard once… except to move it out of the way.

John, Leslie and Bobby get ready to rock while Steve tunes onstage...

John, Leslie and Bobby get ready to rock while Steve tunes onstage...

The show was awesome… of course! I joined Leslie and Steve for two acoustic numbers, Nobody Knows You When You’re Down & Out, Mama Ain’t No Lie and then later on, I picked up the Firebird to join the band for two electric rockers.

Let it rock!

Let it rock!

This was a musical night that was surrounded by spiritual energy. Start to Finish!

Thanks for playing the old piano, Leslie!

Thanks for playing the old piano, Leslie!

Sunday, Leslie dropped by for lunch and Wally and I took here for a ride in the woods on the Kawasaki Mile… Lovely.

Then before we knew it, Monday came and time for a wrap up!

What a class... missing are John and Mike... they had to get home.

What a class... missing are John and Mike... they had to get home.

Like I said these moments in life… with the kids, with family… being a member of the human race…

I cherish every day!

Sunset at the homestead

Sunset at the homestead

Life is good! I’ll take all I can get…


  1. Comment made on October 5, 2016 by Barbara Jacobs

    lol! The I-phones have grown so large that it’s hard to handle them. I dropped a few and then switched to a Samsung. So far, no smoke. @carey georgas

  2. Comment made on October 5, 2016 by Barbara Jacobs

    Shake it up. That may be your perception of this time. I don’t know anybody who “serves” 1%ers. I know many people who work for 1%ers.

    I don’t know any 1%ers who “screw(ed) (them) as a reward. If you go into an opportunity, thinking that it will force you to “serve”, you will miss the opportunities to learn and succeed. (Not you personally,Brian).

    Settle for whatever you want to settle for.
    Life moves forward, not back, in time. (unless you have a bad case of
    “Benjamin Button”.)@Brian Doyle

  3. Comment made on October 4, 2016 by johno

    Welcome back.

    @carey georgas

  4. Comment made on October 4, 2016 by carey georgas

    Buy a Samsung.@Brian Doyle

  5. Comment made on October 3, 2016 by Brian Doyle

    Yeah all that is true Barbara, but we’re also at a time that needs a good 60’s revolution shake-up more than anything. If you’re a good boy scout now a days you get to serve corporate 1%ers who screw you as a reward. Or even better you’re given the only option to become one of them. F*ck, I’d settle for the old music back…Why don’t we just take over the planet instead?

    Hey, how do you get incense smoke to come out of the laptop?

  6. Comment made on October 3, 2016 by Barbara Jacobs

    Yes, teach what you have learned.

    Most important:
    Stay in school and get an education. Even if you don’t think that you need it.
    If you quit, you will always be at a disadvantage in life. At least graduate from High School.

    Education isn’t just for learning “reading, writing, ‘rithmatic”. It teaches you how to co-exist with others (that would be “tolerance”). You will have, what is known as “emotional intelligence”(that would be “understanding”). As for love:
    Learn to love yourself, as well as others.

    Which brings me to what is the most important of all wisdom:
    Don’t do drugs, don’t drink to blot out reality. If you are laid-out on the floor, it’s not cool or glamorous. If you are “so f*cked-up”, it’s not something to be proud of. Don’t romanticize those days, because there might be young impressionable people reading/hearing your words. These days, they don’t need that sort of message.

    Happy New Year to those who do and Happy Days to those who don’t. Celebrate whatever holiday/Holy Day(s) you want.

  7. Comment made on October 3, 2016 by carey georgas

    Jorma, your post here has really had me thinkin’ the last few days. We have become/are becoming the elders of our society. Elders possess wisdom. What is the wisdom we wish to pass on to our successors? To me, it would be a message of tolerance. Our generation came of age as architects of tolerance, but as youth we had no real foundation on which to set our dreams. Then life happened, and now we’re old. We still have value, and I intend on using mine to teach tolerance, understanding, and their underpinning, love wherever I get the chance. Thank you for sharing your insights on life. Keep on makin’ us think…

  8. Comment made on October 3, 2016 by Ham n Eggs

    Happy New Year
    Love All Ways

  9. Comment made on October 3, 2016 by John B

    Bringin tears to my eyes man……@Jorma

  10. Comment made on October 3, 2016 by Doug Mlyn

    Happy New Year! I wasn’t able to make it up to the bay area this weekend, but caught the web cast of the HSB show. You guys were looking and sounding marvelous!

  11. Comment made on October 3, 2016 by eaglesteve

    L’Shanah Tova to all the Kaukonens and the extended Tuna Family

  12. Comment made on October 2, 2016 by jim hitchcock

    @Joey Hudoklin
    Alright Joey! I’m saying goodbye to Vin Scully at AT&T as I speak.

  13. Comment made on October 1, 2016 by HOGAN

    Hey Jorma,

    Have a great time on the west coast…
    Safe travels

  14. Comment made on September 30, 2016 by Kevin

    Heads Up fellow Tuna fans!!!


  15. Comment made on September 30, 2016 by Mark K

    Got in the mood for some good Pho tonight- there is a very good place here in Staten Island- wont get no nickle worth of beefstake and no dime worth of lard there but I will listen to some good Hot Tuna

  16. Comment made on September 30, 2016 by Joey Hudoklin

    Can’t wait to see you & Jack tonight Jorma.
    Request…Follow the Drinking Gourd?

  17. Comment made on September 29, 2016 by johno

    my mothers story is also amazing – she is 97 1/2 and going. She’s got knee problems but is as sharp as a tack. it’s just her knees. She’s just waiting to check out. She tells me how much she misses her love = Henry. it’s uncanny the love she has for him – one that is eternal. She even have her name on the gravestone already.

  18. Comment made on September 29, 2016 by johno

    ps – with a bass solo by Jack = that would be so amazing!

  19. Comment made on September 29, 2016 by johno

    I was wondering who Mark was. Jorma can you play “Feels So Good” at the Beacon – please. That would be a treat.

  20. Comment made on September 29, 2016 by DennisK

    Ironically, my 78 year old father (who raised four Tuna-fan-sons) emailed me this morning saying he is,… “Taking some time to review the Bucket list. The lightning strikes are getting more frequent, & closer.”

    I still go to Tuna shows around the corner from his house in Mt. Tabor, and he is a fan by proxy. Yeah, you know I’m proud of him and we hang as often as I can, while I can. Thanks for putting it out there Vince! I will check on him more often.

  21. Comment made on September 29, 2016 by George Henn

    Hat’s off to David Wolff for dusting off Police Dog Blues, when I requested it, at his gig in Edgartown, Massachusetts a few weeks ago. He said it had been a while, but it sounded great!

  22. Comment made on September 28, 2016 by Brian Doyle

    I helped my father out of this life with bone cancer in January 2014 as his nurse in home hospice care (vastly better if you can swing it than in-patient). It wasn’t the horrible process I thought it might be and death landed on my father like a butterfly in his sleep at 2:30am. It was probably a sweet kiss compared to what he had endured for the prior months. It was cool listening to stories from the 1930’s and 40’s as his mind released its contents. It becomes a Zen process if you do it right. Still miss him, he was my friend. 2 months before he died the Hendrix PBS documentary came on TV and we watched it together with him propped up in his home hospital bed. All my life my father’s reaction to Hendrix music was pounding on my door yelling “turn that down!” lol. So it was a kind gift from karma for my father to have said to me after the 2013 PBS documentary “You know that man really was a musical genius” and he enjoyed his playing. Maybe it was the morphine, lol, but it was a nice thing…

  23. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by Chappy

    Wow….Saturday’s show was just plain incredible! Words can’t really describe that experience! Steve was masterful and magical on guitar all night, Bobby on bass and John on drums really set down a great foundation and Leslie Mendelson’s singing was so perfect…voice/phrasing/delivery…all there! Embarrassed to admit I was not familiar with her until I saw her sit in with Anders Osborne on live feed from Brooklyn Bowl this past December. When I heard her sing her verses on “…Watchtower” that night I said to myself “wow..what a voice..who is this lady?!” When I learned that she has been working with Steve Kimock and was going to be at FPR I was ecstatic. So glad I got to see her in full show at the best musical venue in the world with such super bandmates. And, the smokin’ version of “Waiting for a Miracle” with the interplay between Steve and Jorma was awesome. Would love to have that show on tape. As always, special thanks to John H. and the FPR staff for the great hospitality.

  24. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by johno

    I agree willy – I will keep to Jorma – his beautiful personality is golden and I love his feelings for his mother. Jubilee is incredible. Thx Jorma

  25. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by rich l

    good point, but I would like to point out Mark Twain’s assessment of the situation; “Politicians and diapers must be changed often, and for the same reason.”

    Now go out, throw another shrimp on the Barbie, and crank some Tuna.

    Beautiful sunset picture by the way. I can’t help but stop and let such beauty sink in when were treated to it. @Michael Langley

  26. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by Michael Langley

    Yeah…regarding politics and the political season, I liked Jorma’s take on the subject which he mentioned at the beginning of the primary process. That take was that we all have our opinions and just like another part of everybody’s anatomy, it can get quite stinky. So, let’s refrain from politics here. Trying to voice your opinion and convince others is a lot like trying to teach a pig to dance, it frustrates the hell out of you and pisses off the pig! ‘Nuff said.

  27. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by willy

    Hmmmm, @Johno, I think Jorma’s comment forum is best left to discussions of music and goings-on in the creative world on which he opens a window and allows us to voice our two cents. I saw the debate and I know what I think about each candidate, but I’d rather we keep our opinions separate and apart from discussions revolving around the thoughts Jorma shares with us. There are other venues for discussing our political preferences. Just my opinion of course.

  28. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by johno

    Did anybody see the debate last nite – it was supposedly seen by 100 million people – holy moly. There’s only 1 choice. The same old politics are out – we need new blood in Washington. They are both flawed but which one do you trust more. I for one has had enough of the same old thing.

  29. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by Joey Hudoklin

    Vince, your story brought me to tears.
    I had the same experience of my Mother Mitzi, may she rest in peace, asking…Hot Tuna again?
    Your being able to play for her a beautiful song as you did, and receiving that knowing acknowledgement, is touching.
    My, ahem…disease… prevented me from being entirely present during my Mom’s last couple of days, which makes me sad.
    I make a living amends daily.
    Cherish your days
    God Bless

  30. Comment made on September 27, 2016 by Vince

    Time sure flies by Jorma… 40 yrs watching you play live continues to be quite an adventure! Back in 1976 when I told my mom I was going to a concert, she asked the band’s name, and when I told her Hot Tuna she just shook her head and laughed. Every year, whenever I was going to a show she’d ask who was playing and the answer was usually the same. She caught on after a few years and would say “really? Hot Tuna again?” with a smile. Many years have passed and during visits home my mom would sometimes mention how she loved my passion for live music and my loyalty to the band. So tonight please keep my mom Mary in your prayers. At 91, and under hospice care at home, she told me she has lived a good life and she was ready. As we sat and remembered some good times I put on A Life Well Lived and I asked her who she thought was playing and she gave me that same smile from so long ago. Thanks for the music Jorma

    • Comment made on September 27, 2016 by Jorma

      Dear Vince… my Mom has been gone for almost 19 years and I miss her every day. I am very fond of a singer/songwriter named Gretchen Peters… listen and watch her tune, Jubilee.


      In the last months of my Mother’s life, I had this conversation with her almost verbatim. In the last week before she flew, she opened her eyes, briefly recognized me and as she gently squeezed my hand, she said, ‘My dear one!’

      It was an honor beyond words to be there in that moment.

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