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River of Time

19 customer reviews

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Audio CD, February 10, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

While he is probably best known for his role as an electric guitarist in Jefferson Airplane during the late 60's/early 70's and as a founding member of the acoustic blues/rock group Hot Tuna, Kaukonen is also considered by many to be one of the preeminent practitioners of the Piedmont finger-picking style of acoustic blues. 'River of Time' finds the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee not only highlighting his renewed passion to write and perform new material, but we're also shown his continuing desire to pay tribute to his country/acoustic blues roots. Whether through his own words or through the songs of artists both past and present, on River of Time the waters of Jorma Kaukonen's music not only run true they run deep.


Front-porch folk music doesn't get much better -- Washington Post
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 10, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Red House
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #105,845 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Mike VINE VOICE on February 10, 2009
Format: Audio CD
"River of Time" features six Jorma, "Been So Long," which will be familiar to fans of Hot Tuna's second album First Pull Up, Then Pull Down, plus one written with Barry Mitterhoff (mandolin) and Larry Campbell (mandlin, guitar, fiddle, percussion), who play on most of the tracks. Campbell also produced the album, recorded at Levon Helm's Studio in Woodstock, NY. The Rev. Gary Davis track for this album...pretty much a prerequisite for Jorma's "There's A Bright Side Somewhere."

Levon Helm plays drums on "Cracks In The Finish," along with Lincoln Schleifer on bass plus Mitterhoff and Campbell. While it's primarily an acoustic piece, it easily could have been a Hot Tuna track. That's the strength in most of Jorma's music...his songs effortlessly due double-duty as electric stompers or living-room jams. Levon also plays on "Trouble In Mind" and Merle Haggard's "More Than My Old Guitar."

"Another Man Done A Full Go Round" is prime Jorma, reminiscent of so much of his solo and acoustic Hot Tuna work, the narrative songs like "Killing Time In The Crystal City."

"Izze's Lullaby" is a sweet, laid-back instrumental, the kind of composition that Windham Hill's musicians attempted many times during the label's heyday and only succeeded at delivering on rare occasions.

On "Nashville Blues" and Mississippi John Hurt's "Preachin' On The Old Camp Ground," Jorma shares vocals on the choruses with Teresa Williams. It adds nicely to the overall down-home feel of the album.

Grateful Dead fans will cheer "Operator," Jorma's tip of the hat to the late Ron "Pigpen" McKernan.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Art and Music on February 14, 2009
Format: Audio CD
Jorma Kaukonen is a top-notch musician who plays and sings with feeling, sincerity, and authority. This excellent recording is another example of his fine writing and interpretive skills. And of course his blues fingerpicking ranks with the best.

The songs cover a lot of ground on the American acoustic roots-music landscape, beginning with several originals by Jorma and reaching back through the early Jazz Age and even to the Civil War.

"Preaching on the Old Campground" is Jorma's take on Mississippi John Hurt's ballad of the same title, which is a lyrical rewrite of Walter Kittredge's 1863 Civil War classic, "Tenting Tonight."

The version played here shows how an independent-minded musician like Jorma Kaukonen selects and arranges material according to good taste, instinct, and imagination-and not by the specified formulas of the fad-a-week mandates of the dreadful electronic entertainment industry.

Every song deserves its own commentary and review, but space considerations prohibit doing that here. Congratulations are in order for everyone who invested time, talent, and financial backing for this project. It is a wonderful recording and will be enjoyed by anyone who likes good music.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By bluesfan55 on March 1, 2009
Format: Audio CD
First of all, let me say straight out, that I love Jorma's previous works.
I have enjoyed his music since he and Jack Casady formed Hot Tuna. I enjoyed them in their electric format, however, the beauty of their acoustic playing really caught my attention. Jorma has always been a musician's musician. The beauty of his style is that the notes are played with such distinction and clarity. Jorma and Jack's "Hot Tuna Live in Japan" is a great picture of what magic these two masters can weave together.

I purchased the "River of Time" after reading a positive review and taking note that Levon Helm was a guest on the album. I have to say, that
my money was well spent. I have listened to the album three times and enjoyed it more with every listen. The music on this CD is played beautifully by a master who has learned much over the "River of Time"

Jorma has grown much spiritually over the course of his career. In one of the songs on "River of Time" he talks about loving his guitar, and about how much God has loved the world. Jorma reworks some older material on this CD, presenting it with new energy and beauty. I would recommend this CD to both older fans and those thinking about exploring Jorma's work.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Todd and In Charge VINE VOICE on September 18, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I recently had the pleasure of seeing Hot Tuna in concert a few weeks ago in Fort Lauderdale, and let there be no doubt: At nearly age 70 Jorma is as vital, engaging, and as remarkable a musician as he ever was (if not better).

Although I personally preferred the swinging backporch sensibilities of 2005's Blue Country Heart over his more recent (and more laid-back) Stars in My Crown, I believe the new release takes the best of both and raises it up a notch.

River of Time is an exceedingly pleasing record to listen to, as Jorma takes a stroll through faves Rev. Gary Davis, Grateful Dead, stopping for a brief Merle Haggard detour before adding a few superior originals, including the very heartfelt "Simpler Than I Thought."

I had this record playing in my car for nearly a week, and found myself actively enjoying every second of it.
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