For legendary Grateful Dead drummer Bill Kreutzmann, it's pretty simple: he loves to play. And he loves the freedom that comes with playing in his new trio with guitarist Scott Murawski and bassist Oteil Burbridge. They are about to embark on their first tour, and Bill sounds like he's having a ball with these guys.

Bill was first introduced to Scott at a gig in Costa Rica organized by bassist Mike Gordon. When Mike couldn't commit because of his own projects, he recommended Oteil. According to Bill, everything is better than he could imagine; the only hard part is figuring out a name to call themselves.

Hi‚ Bill‚ it's Mike from State of Mind.
State of Mind. Good‚ as long as it's not the government.
Bad joke‚ bad joke. Sorry.
Let's talk about the trio you have.
Have you heard any of it? There's stuff up on Scott's website.
Yes. I actually just saw Scott last weekend. He was here in Vermont.
Oh‚ right on‚ man. Good for you. Scott is just so imaginative. He's the most imaginative and wonderful player since Jerry for me.
He relives early Grateful Dead moments of freedom and space. It's not judgmental.
That's really great to hear.
Yeah‚ that's really how this band feels: like I felt with the early Grateful Dead.
So‚ you must be having a lot of fun.
[laughs] I am. I'm having a better time than you even know. There's no rules. You can play how you want to play. So‚ I really do love this band. The hardest thing with the band right now is that we can't come up with a name.
That's harder than making the music‚ huh?
Yeah‚ and the names that we have come up with are already taken.
Oh yeah? What are they?
Well‚ we got into calling it 3. Not "The Three‚" but just 3. But there's already a band called that and‚ you know‚ they're doing pretty well‚ so we can't do that. But I think that's a good sign‚ having a hard time coming up with a name. Because if that was an easy thing then the band would be … you know‚ I'm just superstitious.
What kind of things are you discovering about yourself playing with these guys?
Total freedom. Playing with Oteil and Scott is like playing with freedom. That's the best word to describe it. The thing is‚ with these guys‚ we all listen so closely and so well to each other that ideas just happen‚ and if I throw out an idea‚ they're on it. Oteil comes with an idea and Scott and I are on it. The interaction between Oteil and Scott is more than amazing‚ just tremendous.
So with every note there's new possibilities opening up?
Yeah‚ yeah‚ and every note could be a new key. I mean‚ I encourage them to never feel restricted by the key that we started in. I tell them to feel free to ad lib changes and….