The first time I listened to Jorma Kaukonen's release, River of Time, I was not sure that I should make the statement I am about to make. So, I listened to it several more times and each time I had the same reaction… This is THE BEST collection Jorma Kaukonen has released in his long career. You can find a few previous individual songs that meet or exceed this quality but, in terms of an entire collection, this is, without a doubt, hands down, the best.
The CD opens with a wonderfully beautiful version of Been So Long. Jorma has released other versions of this song. Few artists can get away with releasing multiple versions of the same song but Jorma can! This is version suggests that Jorma is a little older than when he first released it. The youthful aggressive attack from the original has become more melodic and thoughtful. The fireworks are still there but now the colors more textured and subtle. A pure joy.
As perhaps the leading proponent of Rev. Gary Davis's music, expect that most Jorma releases will include at least one Davis tune. This time out it's There's A Bright Side Somewhere. The Gary Davis connection continues with the cover of Davis's protégé, Roy Book Binder's Another Man Done A Full Go Round.
There are too many treats on the CD to discuss them all. The Grateful Dead's, Operater. A tango titled, Cracks In The Finish. Merle Haggard and John Hurt covers. A total of six Jorma originals. A Delmore brothers tune. On and on…
The support musicians and production crew certainly deserve a lot of credit for the exceptional strength of the music Jorma has given us on this release. You can discover it all in the notes when you get your copy of Jorma Kaukonen's River of Time. And you need to get a copy because it's the best thing he's ever done!
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2009, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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