Warren Smith, Jack Casady and Jerry (aka Jorma) Kaukonen 1958 more or less

Photo probably by Charlotte, but who knows after all these years?

Around 1958 Jack and I played our first gig in Charlotte Harbour’s basement in Washington, DC. I was the singer and played rhythm guitar and Jack played lead. I was 17 and Jack was 14…always ahead of his time. I cannot tell you exactly what songs we played, but for sure there were Buddy Holly songs, Conway Twitty songs, Jimmy Clanton songs; Just a dream, just a dream, All our plans and all our schemes. Who knew at that time what our musical dreams would become. Beyond our wildest dreams, I can tell you that. Sixty-five (count ‘em …65!) years of making music with my best friend.

To say that everything has changed would be an understatement. Throwing your instrument in the back of your ride and piling in with your bandmates is legend for every traveling musician. Since then, collectively we’ve probably played around 15,000 gigs. We’re not done counting yet. That said, it’s time to stop thinking of living as it was… indeed, into the future we must cross.

It has been said that the music Jack and I play was transformative and that we injected an energy into our sound full of constant improvisation taking the compass on a joyride. It is still our plan to continue in our original duo format. We are not retiring from touring, but the Electric lineup of this long-lived incarnation is going fishing for a while.  The road may not go on forever, but the destination is still beyond the horizon.  Friends, this is the year to catch us as ‘Electric Tuna.’ We will be inviting companions old and new from time to time to join us and we hope that you will too.

Our big tour is set for September 2023 with a special show at the end of July. Get your tickets for this historic run at selective venues in cities on the east coast. Stay tuned to the Tuna website for updates!

More will be revealed!

BTW Don’t forget to check out From Ohio With Love and buy a ticket to the John Hurlbut/Jorma Kaukonen live stream May 6, 2023 at 4:00 PM. The stream will be active for one week.


  1. Comment made on May 8, 2023 by Paul Wasserman

    Hey old friend. Great photo. Who you are, who Jack is and what Hot Tuna has done defy superlatives. Best luck on the Electric tour and beyond❣️

  2. Comment made on May 8, 2023 by Robert Burke

    Gone fishing tour brings a tear to my eye.

  3. Comment made on May 8, 2023 by Ed

    I love New Jersey, but death don’t have no mercy here either.

    Meanwhile, a big thank you to Jorma and Hurl for the show on Saturday. Beautiful music and helping some desperate people. Good combination.

  4. Comment made on May 7, 2023 by eaglesteve

    Thanks john o. I did not know that.

  5. Comment made on May 5, 2023 by Reverend Gary Davis

    Reverend Gary Davis

  6. Comment made on May 5, 2023 by john o

    The Reverend died on the road in New Jersey still playing those blues.
    He was still preaching up until the very end…

  7. Comment made on May 5, 2023 by eaglesteve

    Reverend Gary Davis, AKA Blind Gary Davis
    April 30, 1896 – May 5, 1972
    RIP Bro

  8. Comment made on May 5, 2023 by Tom in St. Louis

    The second time I saw Hot Tuna was at the American Theater in St. Louis back in 1976. We were more or less expecting the Burgers lineup with Sammy and Papa John, but when the curtain rose there were no drums. The duo show that followed was amazing, never could have imagined so much flow and interaction between two musicians. Every incarnation of the band has had that special magic!

  9. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by gregg

    Tuna in a jukebox im there g

  10. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by Richard

    We’ll be in Portland, OR for your solo show July 30, and we’ll hop a plane to fly east to catch the Electric show in New Haven. I first heard the acoustic band when you covered for an Airplane equipment failure at the beginning of a show in SF, maybe spring ’68? I think my first taste of electric was at the Chateau Liberte in the Santa Cruz mountains, not very long after. Thanks for everything, done and still to come!

  11. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by David Evertson

    i hope you can make it to Austin in the near future. miss seeing you guys.

  12. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by carey georgas

    Playin’me some Tuna right now on a jukebox in a dive bar in Beaumont, Tx. Wish You Would, Bowlegged Woman, Hit Single #1. Music to shoot pool by. Don’t know if the necks in here appreciate it, but you know, fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke.

  13. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by BrendanC

    I didn’t even know there was an fb icon that would bring me to FPR. All this time I could have been dispensing unsolicited business advice, or until I was blocked.

  14. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by carey georgas

    I got hooked on Tuna with the Burgers release in 1972. I was off the beaten path and never found the chance to see them live in those so-called halcyon days. The band helped lead me to the blues, and for that I’m forever grateful. I count myself among the fortunate that I did catch up in time to see Electric Tuna on the live stage three times. I can only hope a show or two on this “gone fishing” run will wind up recorded and available for purchase by those of us in the hinterland who appreciate. And when your boat gets to the banks, I hope a tackle bustin’ bluefin gives you a good fight, and a big grin on that last jump before he strips your reel, busts your rod, and heads gleefully back to the deep. Peace.

  15. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by Greg Martelli

    We’ve got Mcguinn Friday in Frankfort Ky with his Rickenbacker on Derby eve
    Looking forward to Fur Peace on 7/1 with Dave Alvin and “SMOKEY”, we’ll try not to be over the line
    Willy et Al in august
    Then to Live Oak in October for the Grand Finale of Electric Hot Tuna ,Mushroom or Main Stage ?
    Time will tell

  16. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by Bob Kelly

    Thanks Jorma and Jack for a lifetime of great music…truly a soundtrack to my life,Good times,sad times there was always a so g or two that I could wrap around..We will be out there in the sea of humanity at Great Southbay,a d we were lucky enough to score some nice seats for the big Beacon show .I know it’s not the end,and I really enjoy acoustic Tuna in those more I timate settings,or Jorma just about anywere.So as you guys start to rehearse a bit,there’s one or two Electric masterpieces, that would satisfy the masses…Feel so Good,t and Invitation..
    We don’t have to have the 20 plus minute versions anymore,but a nice taste would be sweet. Whatever songs are played we will e joy the heck out of…See you soon,,,stay well

  17. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by sweetbac jr.

    We assume there will be a San Francisco blowout before the amps are unplugged?
    The Fillmore with Steeler and assorted Airplane family parts?
    Ya gotta end it where it started, no?

  18. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by John Pelz

    Jorma :
    North To Alaska!


    Reveal more!
    (Respectfully requested, and at your discretion, of course.) 😀

    Just curious – I lived up there for a while, and got hip to Hot Tuna in the late 1980s, thanks to the wonderful LP library at KUAC-FM, the public radio station in Fairbanks…

  19. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by Rob DeGeorge

    Scored a ticket for the Beacon! Hopefully the MSG Guest Services rep i spoke with yesterday is right that i won’t have any hassles at the box office with a printout of the order confirmation and a photo ID but no Smartphone.

  20. Comment made on May 4, 2023 by John R.

    Beacon Theater. Here we come!

  21. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Chappy

    Will be looking to get tix for Blacksburg show…it lists Kathy Matea as host…hope you guys will play a full set or two that night 🙂

    Also, hoping you’ll be home at FPR for the Dave Alvin & GO’s show on 7/1/23. DA had a nice FB post today about Al Kooper’s induction into the R-N-R HOF & Museum. Also, nice to see that Link Wray was finally inducted as well.

  22. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Todd Ellenberg

    Thank you, Jorma! You and Jack (and friends) have been part of my musical soundtrack since the late ’60s and got on the live Tuna wagon in 1972. See you this fall…

  23. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by BrendanC

    Say, Jorma:
    There’s a fair chance I’ll be around area to catch Keswick Theater show. Would you be able to provide presale password? Thanking you in advance, Brendan

    • Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Jorma

      All pre-sale we have are posted on the Hot Tuna Facebook page.

      Hope to ‘see’ ya!

  24. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by BrendanC

    Wonderful prose with revealing thoughts and feelings, Jorma.

    As I now much favor original duo, had decided to forego Final Elec, but with the captain indicating this is the year – yeah? I mean crazy, baby – like, with such positive vibes maybe we can’t go wrong. Kit Carson theater at the Eggy-weg, with Larry and Theresa, and possibly Cashdollar?

  25. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Steven Levenson

    See you in Albany and I think Kingston as well. (I think my first electric show was in that neck of the woods as well, 1975 at New Paltz).

  26. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Gary Dion

    Looking forward to September at The Egg.

    My friend John and I went to our first electric HT show at the NYC Academy of Music in I think 1972. So many fabulous shows (including the Carnegie Hall concerts), so much great music, so many wonderful memories!

    Thank you Jorma and Jack for your awesome talent, all the hard work, and your love of playing the music.

    If it’s in the stars, I hope I also get to see you again in Minneapolis where I live.

  27. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Jim Tulgan

    Hey Jorma,
    See you in Albany in September!! Tickets secured thanks to Vanessa posting pre sale codes!!

  28. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by John

    My only Tuna show was Electric Tuna, Jorma, Jack, Joey, and Papa John opening for Airplane at Curtis Hixon early seventies,

    I think Tuna was louder than Airplane that night!

  29. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Ben

    Electric Tuna has been around as long as I have been going to rock shows. So a world without it will be a different one. Nothing lasts forever, and that’s life. I’m gonna miss seeing you rip up a Firebird, though!

    • Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Jorma

      The Bird will be with me on that run Big Dog… in the meantime:

      North To Alaska!

  30. Comment made on May 3, 2023 by Jim Bacon

    Awesome photo Jorma, we love you guys no matter what you’re playin’ – Hot Summer Tuna ahead

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *