Not a disc meant to challenge but rather to charm, Jorma sounds better on Stars in My Crown than I suspected he ever would again.
And I say that with a pronounced sigh, after having sworn off the guy a few years back following an impossibly boring and tedious Acoutsic Tuna show. I mean, even my brother, long a Tuna head from the Papa Creach days said 'Hey, let's get the hell out of here!"
So here I am with a lively and most welcome Jorma pickin' the roots as deft and dexterous as ever, instilling each of these fourteen tracks with a restive playfulness and a calm intent that touches sincerely on those places in the consciousness that only true music can touch.
There are many a quiet highlight here, as gospel, blues, and folk entwine. The humorous swing of Late Breaking News ("I'm the CEO of all the business in my head", "There's a conference room above my neck") Johnny Cash's resonant The Man Comes Around gets a masterful read here. There's A Table Sitting in Heaven written by Kaukonen's lifelong influence, Rev. Gary Davis, takes on a whole new life. No Demon and Mighty Hard Pleasure resound with perseverance.
Riding along on this breathing study of America's many native musics are Tuna mate/mandolinist Barry Mitterhoff, Rob Ickes, Reese Wynans, Tim Stafford and host of like minded souls. A fine disc to enjoy as winter moves into spring.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Website design by David N. Pyles