Tropical Jam III tonight: ‘jammy’ trio, intimate setting

If you need to ask what type of music the trio booked for Tropical Jam III tonight in Moloa‘a Valley plays, you probably won’t like it.

That’s according to promoter Dove Liddle, of Bill Kreutzmann, Steve Kimock and Mike Gordon, three jam band greats set to take the stage together for this one-off show at 6 p.m.

“Deadheads” are more than familiar with the work of Bill Kreutzmann, drummer for the once disbanded and then revived Grateful Dead. Now they go by The Dead, and other incarnations, and rotate a cadre of musicians in and out of their ranks depending on the tour and which part of the world.

Kreutzmann lives in Kilauea when he is not touring.

Steve Kimock is an all-around guitar talent who just finished a stint filling in on guitar with Bob Weir and Ratdog while Mark Karan was out. When Kimock is not playing with his own band, he drops in onstage with the likes of the Allman Brothers, Derek Trucks Band and Zero. “Steve is a rehearsal freak … he plays and plays and plays,” Liddle said.

“Bill (Kreutzmann) lives here and I asked him who he would like to play with and he said Mike Gordon and Steve Kimock,” said Liddle, who has brought what he calls “thinking” music to the island for years with his company Dove Presents.

“Originally they were going to be here and only rehearse while on vacation,” he said. “It was Kimock’s idea to play a show.”

Liddle has organized two other Tropical Jams, the first was at the Taro Patch with Steve Kimock and Bill Kreutzmann in 2002, the second at Vidinha Stadium with Michael Franti and Spearhead in 2004.

The third member of tonight’s trio for 2007’s Tropical Jam, Mike Gordon, was not too excited about the prospect of performing, but warmed to the idea at Kreutzmann’s urging and Kimock’s enthusiasm, Liddle said. A request to Gordon’s management for an advance interview could not be arranged, they said, as the bassist was traveling.

Gordon holds court as the greatest bassist in existence to the legions of Phishheads who obsessively followed his work during the over 20 years he played with that band. Gordon has been breaking out with his own projects since Phish called it quits in 2004. He recorded and toured with acoustic guitarist/songwriter Leo Kotke. He has also performed a few times separately with his former bandmates.

Gordon is also an artist and writer.

“Mike Gordon will be the only one singing tonight,” Liddle said. “They will play some Grateful Dead tunes, probably some Phish tunes … it will be a loose jazzy, jammy kind of night.”

Their music can be all over the place, he said.

The show will be at One Love Gardens in the Moloa‘a Valley. It is set to start at 6 p.m. and will likely be three sets. Those going can bring chairs, freezer chests and blankets to the venue.

“It will be very low key … we’re being allowed to come and see an intimate jam session; it’s going to be very loose. It makes it special to be able to see them in this intimate setting,” Liddle said.

Ticket are on sale for $25 at Hanalei Music and Video, Kilauea Healthy Hut, Bounty Music in Kapa‘a and Progressive Expressions in Koloa.

Tickets are also available at the gate on the day of the show and cost $30. Call 635-5556 for more information or go online to

Sol Fire, a fire dance troupe, will also perform.


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