Occasionally, the men whispered and laughed conspiratorially between songs, but plenty of their humor made it into the show as well – especially from the always ribald and goofy Bromberg.
Kaukonen’s performances were marked by a feel so laid back it would have been sleepy if it hadn’t been so sweet. And mandolinist Barry Mitterhoff, who’s been at Kaukonen’s side for years now, was simply dazzling on Sunday, whether slipping greasy blues licks behind Bromberg or dressing up a Kaukonen run with a harmonized line.
Highlights included Bromberg’s always heartfelt solo take on Ian Tyson’s “Summer Wages,” Kaukonen’s randy Hot Tuna-by-way-of-Blind Boy Fuller chestnut “Keep On Truckin'” and a trio encore of “Death Don’t Have No Mercy.”
Both pickers have been to Nippertown plenty, but it was a treat to see them together, pushing each other’s buttons and pulling on the strings.
Review by Bokonon
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk
An excerpt from David Singer‘s review in the Daily Gazette: “The three of them, side by side in chairs, played nicely within each other, rarely over or under the others, but mostly between. The politeness was overdone at first, but they soon loosened and began stepping up when so moved. Kaukonen chose mostly traditional blues, picking through the chords and gently warping notes on his solo, always selecting surprises, like his quick riffs on the low strings at the end of the neck, a kind of melodic grumbling. His solo portion, though, was mostly his softer, thoughtful tunes, including his old instrumentals.”
Michael Eck’s review in the Times Union