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Stars in Jorma Kaukonen's Crown

Only a handful of artists are instantly recognizable by a single name. Madonna, Prince, Jay-Z, or Elvis (Presley, that is) might come to mind, but to a certain audience, the name "Jorma" defines a distinct musical integrity and genre.

In January 2008, Jorma Kaukonen had come to New York to serve as artist-in-residence for the New York Guitar Festival and perform a series of shows in the tri-state area. On a chilly afternoon, he and longtime collaborator Barry Mitterhoff paid us a visit at the WFUV studios; it was great to sit down with this artist I'd long respected, and to talk about music from Jefferson Airplane to Hot Tuna to today.

More About Jorma Kaukonen

In 1965, Jorma Kaukonen was a founding member of the San Francisco folk-rock band Jefferson Airplane. It was Kaukonen's acid-rock guitar playing, in particular, that helped define West Coast psychedelia. The band recorded seven studio albums — most notably Surrealistic Pillow — while transforming into other groups such as Jefferson Starship, Moby Grape, and Kaukonen's Hot Tuna, a blues- and folk-based project started with bassist Jack Casady.

In recent years, Kaukonen has turned his attention to traditional Americana, including last year's soulful Stars in My Crown.

Listen to the previous Favorite Session, or see our full archive.

Copyright 2008 WFUV


Dennis Elsas