A long-running offshoot of 60s psychedelic rock group Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna made a stop at the historic Keswick Theatre in Glenside Friday night. The blues-rock group put on an all-acoustic show featuring former Jefferson Airplane members Jack Casady and Jorma Kaukonen joined by multi-instrumentalist Barry Mitterhoff. Despite the group’s devoted following, similar to that of The Grateful Dead, the auditorium was far from full, leading to a pleasantly intimate experience, fortunately enough. Fans enjoyed a diverse setlist, including classics such as “I See the Light”, “Hesitation Blues” and “Good Shepherd” mixed in with songs from their most recent album, Steady as She Goes, like “Second Chances”, “Children of Zion” and “Goodbye to the Blues”. In fact, the very much laid back trio ditched the setlist not halfway through their set. While not the most talkative of musicians, banter was present, Kaukonen recounting his struggles to get Casady to say the word “barbeque” as a part of his effort to creatively introduce their song, “Barbeque King.”
Joining Hot Tuna as an opening act was Jill Sobule, whose forthright lyrical style had the audience engaged from the start, asking the crowd’s preference between a song about the apocalypse and a tune about her “sexy love for trains”.
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