Sunday, September 30, 2012

SPECIAL NOTICE: The Rolling Stones Box Set: Charlie is My Darling - Ireland 1965



The rarely seen Rolling Stones tour documentary Charlie is my Darling - Ireland 1965 is premiering Saturday at the New York Film Festival and new details have emerged about a "super deluxe" box set version of the movie that will be released in November.

The special box set will include versions of the director's cut and producer's cut of the movie as well as two audio CDs - a soundtrack CD and a separate CD of previously unreleased, live recordings of 13 songs.

In addition, the box will contain a 10-inch vinyl version of the live material, a replica poster for the Stones’ 1965 Belfast concert featured in the movie and a 42-page hardcover book containing 14 never-before-seen photos and replicas of contemporary newspaper articles. The set is due November 6 when standard Blu-ray and DVD editions of the movie also will be released.

Charlie is my Darling was produced by the Stones' ex-manager Andrew Loog Oldham and directed by Peter Whitehead. Oldham and Steven Van Zandt will also host a screening and Q&A at New York’s 92 Street Y on October 5.

Originally shot on a Stones weekend tour in Ireland in 1965, the revamped movie has been expanded from 35 to 65 minutes including the group’s first stage performances of “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction.”

According to a press release, "Charlie is my Darling is an intimate, behind-the-scenes diary of life on the road with the young Rolling Stones featuring the first professionally filmed concert performances of the band's long and storied touring career, documenting the early frenzy of their fans and the riots their live performances incited."

Broadcast premieres are being scheduled in November in America and Great Britain as well as worldwide theatrical screenings. Widgets

Friday, September 28, 2012

Songwriter Comments on the Bob Dylan Rolling Stone Interview

Bob Dylan at Massey Hall, Toronto, April 18, 1...
Bob Dylan at Massey Hall, Toronto, April 18, 1980 Photo by Jean-Luc Ourlin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
by Avi Colon and Christina Samuelson

If there's anyone who can comment on the recent Bob Dylan Rolling Stone interview, it's another songwriter.

The controversy over whether Bob Dylan clearly cited the sources of quotations used in his songs is just an attempt to distract listeners from the power of his new works.

Look, every artist has been borrowing from each other since the ancient times of the poets. You could even go as far as saying all ideas are borrowed from a higher source.

Thousands of artists from around the world are tuning into the same ideas, inspirations, and thoughts at the same time. It's what the artist then creates with that inspiration that gets our attention.

True artists understand that the process of creation is an organic one and that inspirations can come from many places, the key is to take that idea and do something unique with it. And if it's done right, it will be a future inspiration for all of us.

Appropriation in art is a well-known method practiced by many artists; it is the use of pre-existing images, words, materials and objects to create a new work. An artist may borrow from a variety of sources for example, advertising, mass media, Art History or everyday objects.

Appropriation questions the idea of originality in art and challenges the concepts of authorship and ownership. Imagine a recycling of ideas that continually rejuvenates our creative energies.

Bob Dylan is no different. If one is going to dissect his music and look at this scientifically, everything is inspired from some source. Keep the music machine rolling and let's focus on the heart of his creation and how well it was executed.

Let somebody else get it wrong. Bottom line: all artists borrow from each other. The critics who have quickly judged Bob Dylan's use of quotations from other artists in his recent album neglect to observe that great songwriters and bands like the Birds, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Crosby Stills and Nash, among many other musicians have used Bob Dylan's clever songwriting as inspiration for their own music.

How much can you squeeze out of a man and then negatively criticize him at the same time? It's no wonder he struck back harshly at the critics' attack of his creative process.

How many of these critics are songwriters themselves, let alone have been invited to the White House as one of the best songwriters of all time? The critics should take a chill pill and realize what's going on.

The Bob Dylan Rolling Stone interview shows us that critics are out of tune. As a singer-songwriter myself, I say, Bob, we're with you. May we all continue to inspire each other and make great music! Sparkling energy.

Speaking of awesome music: You can check out our hit new album from Boston, Love at First Sight.
Or click here for a free song download from the album, Love at First Sight!

Christina and Avi Colon signing off.

Article Source:

Enhanced by Zemanta

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Death of John Bonham 9-25-1980


On Sept. 25, 1980, at 32 years of age, Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham passed away, inadvertently bringing an end to one of rock’s greatest bands.

The group’s final studio effort ‘In Through The Out Door’ had been released in Sept. 1979 after many delays. In May 1980, the group performed what would be their last European tour. That September, the band was in rehearsals at guitarist Jimmy Page’s house in advance of an American tour.

Bonham reportedly began drinking early in the day, continuing to consume copious amounts of alcohol well into the evening. Not long after the group’s rehearsals had wrapped up for the night, Bonham passed out in a drunken state and would never wake up.

In the weeks following Bonham’s untimely death, London newspaper The Guardian reported that Bonham had consumed “about 40 measures of vodka in 12 hours.” At the inquest of Bonham’s death, his assistant Rex King told the authorities how he and Page’s assistant Albert Hobbs had put Bonham to bed that evening.

On the morning of Sept. 25, Led Zeppelin’s road manager Ben Lefevre attempted to stir Bonham but noticed that something was indeed wrong with the drummer. After unsuccessfully searching for a pulse, Lefevre called an ambulance.

A sample taken from Bonham’s bladder showed an alcohol level of 276 milligrams per hundred millilitres. Bonhams’s death was ruled accidental after it was determined that he died after inhaling his vomit.

Pathologist Dr. Edmund Hemstead reportedly said, ”This indicated he inhaled the vomit but didn’t die immediately as the result of that, and that he died some hours later due to the shocked state on inhaling vomit, during which time the alcohol in his blood would have broken down.”

Led Zeppelin issued a brief statement declaring they would not continue as a band without their departed drummer, and apart from a handful of charity shows they have kept their word. The most recent of these events, a full-length 2007 concert at London’s O2 arena, is headed for November 2012 release as the live album ‘Celebration Day.’

Friday, September 21, 2012

SPECIAL NOTICE: Save The Sandringham: "The Sando" Live Rock Venue

Hi readers,

Here is an important announcement from my friend RetroKimmer about the famous live rock venue, The Sando in Sydney, being closed down.

Dear RK readers ... The Sando in Sydney is in danger of being shut down. My friends Deniz Tek, Chris Klondike Masuak, and Niagara Detroit have all played there and this is a very cool venue!!

I have been asked to help raise the visibility of the horrible situation.. Plz take a minute to read this story and watch the videos (available here ... xK.

A bit of history on The Sando posted 2 days ago by blogger Shirley Pena ... The Sandringham hotel, located at the southern end of busy King Street, Newtown, Sydney, Australia, was built in the 1860′s and originally was a coach house-style hotel. In the early years the hotel played host to and accommodated traveling actors who were performing at local theaters, business men and travelers to Sydney.

It played a significant role in the community, and staged many local community events on its original balcony such as election and community speeches. On certain occasions it even acted as the local morgue! It was recognized this year by the Marrickville Council as the oldest existing business in its municipality.

Sandringham Hotel - Sunday August 26 2012 Members of ACDC, The Angels, Rose Tattoo, and The Choirboys playing on the back of a flatbed truck, supporting the 'Save Our Sando' fundraiser on King St Newtown,

The Commonwealth Bank is attempting to close The Sandringham Hotel even though the owners have never missed a payment. They need to wait until the Senate enquiry is complete before winding up the hotel.

Do not bank with The Commonwealth Bank if you support live music in Sydney.

Today, the Sandringham Hotel, or “The Sando” as it is affectionately known in the area, is a Sydney icon. The hotel is renowned for its venue which for many years has played host to a wide variety of artists and bands both known and unknown.

Within the music industry “The Sando” is recognised as a place where young bands can get a start and where established acts feel comfortable performing showcase and warm up gigs. The hotel has maintained this reputation which sets it apart from other hotels in the area.
"Save The Sando" Rally in Martin Place 18.09.12 With Doc Neeson from Colin Lucas on Vimeo.

Read more here
Story Broken by Four Corners:
Advocacy Group

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Living Open And Free: The Hippie Movement

English: Nepali sadhu performing a blessing. F...
Nepali sadhu (Wikipedia)

by Pat Kauba, Vivacity:

Pat Kauba is a hippie-anarchist-philosopher with a love for evolution. He can be contacted at

Hippie: noun colloquial person (esp. in 1960s) rejecting convention, typically with long hair, jeans, etc.    Oxford Dictionary

The baby boomers boomed and the 1960s generation desired more than careers, governments, marriage and religion.

They demanded, fun, freedom, unconditional love and rights, the freedom of speech and information, nudity, a joint and most importantly rock ‘n’ roll.

Disenchanted youth heard of fabled lands like Istanbul, Tehran, Kabul, Goa, Kathmandu and Shangri-la.

Promises of sweet paradises, heavenly experiences and learned philosophers fuelled the tribe; boats, buses and planes moved them. Paradise was around the corner if you just tuned in and dropped out - many took the chance.

They hit the road; money, no money, it meant little, they were filled with the belief that everything’s gonna be okay man.

“Pass me my hat and coat
Lock up the cabin
Slow night treat me right
Until' I go
Be nice to know

Katmandu, I'll soon be seein' you

And your strange bewilderin' time
Will keep me home"
Cat Stevens - Katmandu

The Hippie-Trail

There was nowhere that hippies didn’t go: North, Central, South America, Europe, war-torn Africa, The Middle East and Asia. Most popular was the trail from Europe to Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan, into India and up to ‘Naypaul’. Usually with just a few dollars and a will to live.

Infamously, most turned up at the beach in Goa, yet quite the number visited the newly opened Himalayan Kingdom of Nepal. Visas were unknown, time was unimportant and smiles became captivating; as well as Kathmandu’s hashish shops. Those were the years before American president Ronald Regan convinced the king to ban marijuana - as part of his war on drugs.

Thamel was not even an idea (until after 1980), so all the hippies congregated around Basantapur and the immigration office in Durbar Square. Their part of town quickly got the name Freakstreet.

The Doors Of Perception

The new-age had a soundtrack: rock ‘n’ roll. Fuelled by love, freedom, marijuana and LSD; airwaves buzzed with: Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Janis Joplin, Led Zepplin, The Grateful Dead and more. Woodstock and Glastonbury music festivals began swinging, clothes were burned and the free-love machine rolled.

Professor Timothy Leary was testing universal limits with mind-expanding drugs at Yale University. Laboratories in California and Geneva began mass-producing LSD; life’s possibilities became suddenly limitless. It was a finger in the face of the bloodshed and greed being backed by the Cold War.

The hippies were a fragmented lot says Debbie, who grew up outside San Francisco and was in high school when the movement grew. Some became back-to-landers, starting organic farms and lifestyles; the flower-children stayed home trying to change the world with flowers, nudity and rock ‘n’ roll; others became politicos, donning the suit to fight from inside.

Others went to learn from the world and play music elsewhere. “By the time I got out of high school the movement had changed, but parents were always afraid their children would run away with the hippies”.

The story goes that after ’69, the hippies sold out. Yet there is little doubt their legacy echoes-on, like their musical icons. Civil and human rights, freedom to live and love, saving the environment and banning the bomb, were all galvanized by the hippie era.

Unlike cultures and societies that scorn change, hippies are an easy-going lot allowing it to happen, even evolve; rolling with it, letting it be … the kids were alright.

Just By Being Open

Desmond from Ireland was doing lightshows for Jimi Hendrix and The Soft Machine in the early 60s; music and art was his way, but he had a serious travel-itch.

“I had made some money; a few hundred dollars at the start of the 60s, so I went to Africa, believing I would be okay I went from Alexandria to Capetown, through civil wars churned by the Cold War. People were kind, as long as you were open; I travelled with my guitar, they were happy to hear and see something different”.

When finally back in Alexandria Desmond got work on a freight boat. “I was soon to North, Central and South America, visiting places I’d never heard of”. After a few years he brought his maritime saga to an end for his next step - east.

In those days travel was easy. From England you took the boat to Germany, stuck out your thumb and within 36 hours you were in Greece and the boat to Istanbul; Asia’s gateway. In Istanbul Desmond read a message someone scrapped into a door: “what are you doing here, when Afghanistan is only a bus ride away”?

He fell in love with Afghanistan’s people, culture, music and hospitality. But then came the Russian army, ending the dream.

Next was India: Mumbai for the music and Goa for the beach, taking the two-day boat ride, a rite-of-passage for many hippies. “India was so welcoming, everyone was happy to see and have us around. They were good times, in those days no visa and no ways to show-off wealth; everybody was on the same level”.

“I finally made it to Kathmandu in 1970, what a place; the way the streets were laid, its red–bricked buildings and water fountains; the welcoming nature of people towards the pauna (guest). Nights would be filled with the sound of musical bajan from countless temples. All that happened when you fell asleep was someone would put a blanket over you".

The Nepalese were really interested to hear our music after isolation for so long. The Indians were more informed; Cliff Richard was born outside Lucknow and IBM had a printing press outside Delhi, so western-music was more available”.

Desmond reminisces when I ask about the 60s: “oh I remember it well, for me it lasted about 20 minutes, around 1962 in a room in London. I was not long back from travelling and was playing guitar with friends, when two Americans arrived wearing beautiful Afghan outfits.

They had just returned, bringing back some Afghan hashish, which they happily shared. The crowd grew and after a few hours a voice from the back asked: how much does that cost there and how difficult is it to bring back? I could see wheels turning, calculating the profit. I saw the 60s end, for me it lasted about 20 minutes”.

An International Dope Story of the 70s

Howard Marks’ Mr. Nice shares a story about hashish exports to America, with a combination of characters:

On Independence Day, July 4th, 1975, 500 Kilos of hand-pressed Nepalese temple balls, some of the best hashish in the world, was flown from Kathmandu via Bangkok and Tokyo to New York. It was being smoked in Greenwich Village the next day. I was very rich again, and I was in my twenties.

Ernie wanted to do another load right away, a bigger one. Old John wasn’t keen. The suitcase of dollars that Tom Sunde had taken to Nepal played havoc with the Kathmandu currency markets.
‘This is the American madness. More, more, all the time. Next year the Nepalese won’t plant rice, they’ll plant the thing and all starve. They don’t want money; they want medicine’.

I, however, agreed with Ernie and persuaded Old John to reluctantly commit himself to send a 750-kilo load. It worked. Other loads were sent from Nepal, but none were bigger. After one of the loads, Old John drove an ambulance to Kathmandu stuffed with antibiotics, bandages and other medical supplies and left it there. He refused to do any more loads. ‘Let Nepal be Nepal’.

Everything Grows

Attila from Germany reminisces how it all started for him: “I was 15 years old when I met an Italian man who said “I belonged in India” and he would pay my ticket. I went to mother and she gave her blessing”. It was the late 70s when Attila made it to Goa and calls himself the fourth generation.

“When I started, things were a little harder, the peace and love of the 60s was being replaced by the more anarchist movement of the 70s; not caring, wanting to do whatever they wanted. For the most part people were really amazing, open and kind, we still had places where we could live naked and free around Goa”. Music was the rhythm cemented by the now-famous full moon parties.

In 1980 Attila first made it to Nepal: “it was a fascinating place with really kind people, we used to enjoy full moon parties at Adeshwor Temple”. It was an established party since 1965. Nepal was on the map as a place where people could have their freedoms.

But in 1982 it all started to go down hill for the Goa-tribe. One night a hippie lost his mind with a bad combination of drugs, going on a killing spree around Aranbol’s lake during a party. “Three of my brothers died, I was the only witness, everybody ran into the jungle, but I hid in a bush not seeing anything, I kept hearing the sound of a blade cutting air: wooosh. When I came out, my brothers were dead”.

And with that Goa’s freedom began to end. The police came regularly. Ironically MTV started making it more commercial, leading to mafia-types. With that Attila left the beach, ending up at a temple outside Lucknow. There he found his guru and would stay with him for seven years, until Guru-ji told him to go back to the jungle.

Hare Krishna, Hare Ram

The influences of India and Nepal with its various religions attracted many searching for divine answers. The Hare Krishna movement exploded, attested by ISKON (movements name) being in 150 countries today. The messages of Osho spread worldwide.

The holy gathering of Kumbhamella, the world’s largest next to the Ganga River was being frequented by western Babas, resplendent with loincloths, camandals (pot) and gurus. Within this world the hippies began to connect and expand.

Desmond recounts about the 1971 Bollywood movie Hare Rama Hare Krishna, directed by Dev Anand. “It was mostly recorded in Swyambu, I warned my friends who had roles, not to do it. You would get a meal and 60 rupees a day, but what were you representing? 

We were to be portrayed as sex and drug addicts, who stole from temples”. Sure enough, the movie coincided with the decline in respect visitors received from hosts back in India. Visas became required, hospitality dropped and police became stringent.

However it didn’t wane much here in Nepal. It was 1983 before Debbie made it to Nepal. 

“Everybody was warm, open and happy to see us. I trekked alone that year from Everest out to the east; a route nobody took. People would help with meals and porches to sleep on, but I did learn to say in Nepalese that: “my friend is following”.

And So The Story Goes

By the mid 80s Pumpernickel CafĂ© in Thamel (the first in Kathmandu’s new tourist area) put up a sign saying “no chillums” - the writing was on the wall. Visas had become tighter and the hippie pauna and their ways were not as welcome.

As for Nepal, the Adeshwor full moon parties may be finished, but Freakstreet is still on every young hippie’s map. 

Today denim jeans are the norm amongst Nepalese, boys and girls are not (so) afraid to hold hands, the guitar is a common sight on street corners and the music in Thamel is the sounds of the 60s and 70s. 

Even though most hippies went home, some of their ways leaked into Kathmandu’s culturescape - forever.
Enhanced by Zemanta

Sunday, September 16, 2012

SPECIAL NOTICE: Iggy Pop and the Incredible Who Tribute Album Release October 2


An impressive cast of artists from a variety of genres, including members of such classic-rock legends as Cream, Yes, Def Leppard, The Kinks and Deep Purple, appears on a new album paying homage to The Who.

Who Are You: An All-Star Tribute to The Who will be released on CD on October 2, and features renditions of 16 of the beloved band's famous tunes, including "Baba O'Riley," "My Generation," "Won't Get Fooled Again," "Love Reign O'er Me" and "Behind Blue Eyes."

Among the well-known musicians contributing to the collection are Cream drummer Ginger Baker, longtime Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman, Def Leppard frontman Joe Elliott, Kinks guitarist Dave Davies and Deep Purple drummer Ian Paice.

A number of the tracks boast interesting combinations of artists. For example, the disc includes a version of "Who Are You" featuring country star Gretchen Wilson and founding Guess Who /Bachman-Turner Overdrive member Randy Bachman.

Some of the other well-known musicians on the collection include Todd Rundgren, Iggy Pop, 38 Special, Mountain frontman Leslie West, Sweet, and ex-Judas Priest guitarist K.K. Downing.

Here is the complete track list and artist roster for the Who Are You tribute album:

"Eminence Front" -- John Wetton (Asia), K.K. Downing (Judas Priest), Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater)
"Baba O'Riley" -- Nektar, Jerry Goodman (Mahavishnu Orchestra)
"I Can See for Miles" -- Mark Lindsay (Paul Revere & The Raiders), Wayne Kramer (MC5)
"Love Reign O'er Me" -- Joe Elliott (Def Leppard), Rick Wakeman (Yes), Huw Lloyd-Langton (Hawkwind), Carmine Appice (Vanilla Fudge)
"My Generation" -- Knox (The Vibrators), Dave Davies (The Kinks), Rat Scabies (The Damned)
"The Kids Are Alright" -- The Raveonettes
"Won't Get Fooled Again" -- Sweet
"Anyway Anyhow Anywhere" -- Todd Rundgren, Carmine Appice
"I Can't Explain" -- Iggy Pop
"Behind Blue Eyes" -- Pat Travers
"Magic Bus" -- Peter Noone (Herman's Hermits), Peter Banks (Yes), Ginger Baker (Cream)
"Who Are You" -- Gretchen Wilson, Randy Bachman (The Guess Who, Bachman-Turner Overdrive)
"Pinball Wizard" -- Terry Reid, Mike Pinera (Blues Image), Brad Gillis (Night Ranger)
"Squeeze Box" -- John Wesley (Porcupine Tree), David Cross (King Crimson)
"Bargain" -- 38 Special, Ted Turner (Wishbone Ash), Ian Paice (Deep Purple)
"The Seeker" -- Joe Lynn Turner (Rainbow), Leslie West (Mountain) Widgets

Friday, September 14, 2012

SPECIAL NOTICE: Jethro Tull 40th Anniversary Edition of "Thick as a Brick"


                                              EMI Music

This past April, Jethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson released a sequel to his band's 1972 concept album, Thick as a Brick, and now a deluxe 40th anniversary edition of the original record is set to arrive in stores on November 5.

The album, which became the group's first to top the Billboard 200 chart, consists of a three-part piece of music featuring lyrics that were credited to a fictional eight-year-old boy named Gerald Bostock, but were in fact penned by Anderson.

The deluxe Thick as a Brick will be a CD/DVD set that boasts several mixes of the album, including a new stereo mix and a 5.1 surround-sound mix, as well as a high-resolution digital version of the original 1972 mix.

The package also will include a hardcover book featuring rare photos and recent pics and recollections from Anderson and other Tull members. Also included will be a 12-by-12-inch newspaper similar to the one packaged with the original LP.

In addition, a two-LP set will be available featuring both Thick as a Brick and Thick as a Brick 2 on audiophile 180-gram vinyl and a 72-page 12-by-12-inch book gathered together in a hard slipcase package.

Anderson will kick off the North American leg of his Thick as a Brick Tour on September 18 in Miami Beach, Florida. The veteran rocker has been performing Thick as a Brick and its sequel in their entirety on the trek. Widgets

Thursday, September 13, 2012

SPECIAL NOTICE: Biba and Beyond - Barbara Hulanicki Exhibit

by Retro: Kimmer:

Barbara Hulanicki

In the film (commissioned by Visit Brighton) Barbara returns to Brighton, where she studied fashion illustration in the 1950s, to talk about those early days, the Biba years and fashion in 2012. We are absolutely thrilled to see Ms Hulanicki in the news once more. She is one of my many fabulous artist heroines ... she definitely kicked in doors for women business women/fashion designers for all time.

With its cutting edge yet affordable fashion, Barbara Hulanicki’s iconic Biba store and label transformed the High Street shopping experience in the 1960s and 70s. Young working women shopped alongside models and celebrities, including Sonny and Cher, Yoko Ono, Mick Jagger, Princess Anne, Mia Farrow, Twiggy and Brigitte Bardot. Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Victoriana and Hollywood glamour were all combined to create striking, romantic and sensual designs.

Following an early success with her fashion designs for mail order, Barbara Hulanicki and her husband Fitz created and established the Biba brand. From Biba’s Postal Boutique to the shops on Abingdon Road, Church Street and, Kensington High Street, to the final, glamorous, six storey Big Biba in the former Derry & Toms Art Deco department store, Biba’s phenomenal success changed the face of UK fashion.

What linked all the Biba stores was Hulanicki’s skill in creating environments that complemented the appeal of her clothing. The atmosphere was unique, with loud music, stylish staff, dimly lit period interiors and chaotic changing rooms.

Photograph © Ron Falloon

This major exhibition at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery celebrates the Biba lifestyle and also looks beyond Biba at Barbara Hulanicki’s other successful careers in fashion illustration and design, interior design, architecture and fashion which are flourishing under her creative genius today.

The story of Barbara Hulanicki and Biba forms two thirds of the exhibition. The final third focuses on her career from the late 1970s to the present day.

Photographs Tessa Hallmann © Royal Pavilion & Museums

Read More on RK

Biba Boutique/Barbara Hulanicki

London Fashion Photography
In a Barbie World
The Fool Design Collective
Mary Quant and The Mini Skirt

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

FLASHBACK: 27 August 1967 - Guru Takes Beatles to Higher Plane in Bangor: Hunter Davies Accompanies the Pop Group to a Yoga Retreat in Search of Enlightenment

English: Mahareshi Yogi in 1973, Poona Deutsch...
Mahareshi Yogi (Photo: Wikipedia)
from The Sunday Times, London, 27 August 1967, on Beatles in India:

The Beatles have given up drugs.

This is not just because they talked yesterday for two hours in a first-class compartment between Euston and Bangor to a small Indian gentleman, or even because this morning the same gentleman went on to initiate them into the techniques of transcendental meditation.

Giving up drugs was already happening to them. Now they are sure.

When Paul McCartney, George Harrison and John Lennon admitted they had taken drugs it received worldwide publicity.

It is hoped that their being off them will be equally publicised.

It will be interesting to see if the millions whom they are supposed to influence - that’s when they’re doing anything which the older generation considers bad - will be affected by their doing good.

It could be the end of the hippies. After all, from San Francisco to Tottenham Court Road, by their beads, bangles and acid, the Beatles have been the heroes of all hippies. Is the next teenage cult going to be a positive one for good living? Are the drop-out, freak-out negative days over?

It’s ironic that all the acres of heavy print, from leader writers, medics and lawyers, about the wrongs of drug taking didn’t do the slightest bit of good. The Beatles’ reasons for giving up drugs are simply spiritual. They are looking for spiritual fulfilment.

“It was an experience we went through,” says Paul, “and now it’s over we don’t need it any more. We think we’re finding other ways of getting there.”

The Indian gentleman is called the Maharishi. More than 300 of his British followers are gathered this weekend at the University College of North Wales for five days of meditation. Their meditations were rather shattered when out of the blue the four Beatles, plus Mick Jagger, arrived pursued by hundreds of fans, police and press.

The decision was sudden. It happened only yesterday morning. The Beatles had gone to a public lecture given by the Maharishi the night before. He invited them on his meditation course in Bangor. But their interest in Indian religion is not sudden. It’s been happening for the past year.

They already have some knowledge of yoga philosophy and have been reading and taking instruction for the past six months, looking for one good wise man to explain everything.

It was planned to be a secret private weekend when we got to Euston for the 3.05 yesterday. But it wasn’t. There was such chaos that Cynthia Lennon was left behind, caught in the crowds and held back by a policeman who thought she was a fan. It didn’t look as if Ringo would make it either. His wife Maureen was due out today with a new baby. “I rang her,” said Ringo. “But she said I had to go. I hadn’t to miss this.”

“Cyn and I were thinking of going to Libya,” said John, “till this came up. Libya or Bangor? Well there was no choice was there.” Pattie Boyd, Mrs George Harrison, was clutching a bag of apples and Marianne Faithfull, Jagger’s girlfriend, clutched a carrier bag.

George lit some joss sticks and John asked if the Maharishi would turn out to be another version of what they already knew: “You know, like some are on EMI and some Decca, but it’s really still records.”

George, who is the most knowledgeable, said he didn’t think so. He felt this was going to be it. He has been the leader in studying Indian religion since he took up the sitar. He’s been studying and searching for a long time.

He went to Haight-Ashbury in San Francisco to see the hippies, but was disappointed. Last week he went to Cornwall and climbed a mountain with a yogi but nothing happened.

They were ushered into the Maharishi’s compartment where he sat cross-legged on a white sheet laid out on a seat by one of his followers. This is his final world tour before he retires to India. Bangor was pandemonium. But amid all the thousands of shrieking teenagers there were huddles of genteel middle-aged ladies clutching flowers waiting to welcome the Maharishi.

At the college his 300 followers, members of his International Meditation Society, were of the same genteel officer-class background, all clutching flowers. It was surprising to realise that while teenage flower power had all the publicity there are many ordinary adults similarly looking for spiritual guidance.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi died in 2008. Hunter Davies, 74, is the author of an authorised biography of the Beatles. He still writes for The Sunday Times.
Enhanced by Zemanta

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Who Is Timothy Leary?

on Essortment:
Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out (Original Movie Sou...
Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out (Original Movie Soundtrack) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This article will discuss Timothy Leary's part in the psychedelic revolution of the 1960s.

They say that if you can remember the 1960s you weren't really there, but who can forget Timothy Leary's rallying call: "Tune in, turn on and drop out!"

This article will discuss Timothy Leary's part in the psychedelic revolution of the 1960.

As it's primary spokesmodel, Leary epitomized all the potential and perils of the drug culture and despite what you might feel about hallucinogens, no one can dispute the influence Leary had during the decade of the 1960s.

A Harvard professor, Leary had experimented with psychedelic mushrooms in Mexico in 1960 and returned to Massachusetts in order to set up controlled experiments using the drug to explore and develop his theories about personality. Leary used psilocybin, the active hallucinogenic ingredient of psychedelic mushrooms, in many experiments at Harvard in the early 1960s.

Leary believed that when set and setting were manipulated, psychotic behavior would disappear. He tested this theory out in the field with prisoners at the Concord State Prison, a Massachusetts correctional facility. A group of recidivist prisoners were given psilocybin by Leary and a small group of aides, at least one of who would be on the drug.

The prisoners were then guided through the experience, gently, which was followed by rudimentary counseling. The results were favorable, but some faulted Leary's method, which left too many variables in place to show conclusively that psychedelics could change long-term behavior.

In 1962 Leary established the International Foundation for Internal Freedom (IFIF) with the goal to create an outreach program of psychedelic guides. Those who had trained under Leary would act as guides, creating semi-autonomous clusters of psychedelic users.

Other guides would eventually emerge from those who had the training and they, in turn, would create their own clusters. Eventually, Leary believed, the Psychedelic Revolution would expand organically, like a cell multiplying within a body.

Leary's unorthodox methods troubled the administration at Harvard and news of his experiments was reported in the New York Times. Leary was dismissed by Harvard University in 1963.

Uprooted, Leary and his fellow psychedelic researchers tried unsuccessfully to relocate to Antigua when millionaire William Hitchcock donated the use of his Millbrook estate in New York. Leary established the Castalia Foundation to explore the psychological and spiritual complexities of LSD during his time at Millbrook.

Throughout the early and mid 1960s Leary gravitated towards Eastern philosophy, calling himself the High Priest of LSD. In 1965 Leary claimed not guilty for possessing marijuana citing his Hindu orientation. He also called in witnesses to attest to the fact that psychedelic drugs had a legitimate religious use.

Meanwhile Leary's celebrity was skyrocketing. Always a charming interview, Leary was fond of giving guided tours of Millbrook and even gave an interview to Playboy in 1966. He was one of the faces pictured in the Beatles' 1966 Sgt. Pepper album and in 1969 he became part of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's bed-in.

In 1966 Leary incorporated the League for Spiritual Discovery, but this psychedelic high was also a sign of its inevitable decline. Throughout the second half of the 1960s and into the 1970s Leary was hounded by law enforcement officers and he eventually became a fugitive from the law, hiding out in Mexico, evading drug charges in the US, and later being captured.

His legendary escape from Folsom Prison in 1972 - with the aid of the Weathermen - only led to further international intrigue as he fled Algiers and was eventually caught in Afghanistan and returned to prison.

Leary's persona as an acid guru would stay with the former Harvard professor until his death in 1996. Although he would never again win the hearts and minds of the young, he championed various causes through the 80s and 1990s, including the Internet and cryogenics, but he is best known as the man who couldn't quite turn on the world. 
Enhanced by Zemanta

Thursday, September 6, 2012

PERSONAL STORY: How the Beatles Changed My Life

The Beatles In 1969
The Beatles In 1969 (Photo credit: Stephen Dyrgas)
by Jim Liston

"Ladies and Gentlemen ... The Beatles!" Those words spoken by Ed Sullivan marked a beginning of a major change in the lives of thousands of kids, I know because I am one of them.

On a cold night in February in St. Louis, Missouri, watching the Beatles performance on TV was a major step for me in the realization that I wanted to be a musician. When my parents called me into the living room to "come and look at these guys," and said laughing, "don't they look ridiculous?" I could not believe that they didn't see and hear that something really important was happening right before our eyes.

I had the opportunity to see the Beatles perform at Busch Memorial Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri on Sunday, August 21, 1966. The pouring rain didn't dampen the spirits of the 23,143 screaming kids as the Beatles played.

Even though we couldn't hear the Beatles, everyone was overwhelmed by the feeling of being so close to four guys that occupied such a large part of our lives. All of us in the audience were around the same age and were there for the same reason, to be near the Beatles. I felt, for the first time, that I was a part of something bigger than my small world. Without knowing it then, I was in a gathering of baby-boomers, and the impact of our generation would reshape society, and it's rules.

When the Beatles came on to the scene they gave a voice to a generation. Up until then, music was something that our parents listened to. They danced to it, sang along to it, and bought recordings to play on their fancy stereo consoles.

I never considered spending my hard earned money on records before the Beatles, and the subsequent wave of British bands from the United Kingdom, came to the U.S. We couldn't use our parents stereos to listen to our records, instead, we had small portable record players with a terrible, tinny sound. But it didn't matter, this music was ours and the fact that our parents didn't like it made it even better!

Listening to the Beatles music gave me a driving desire to play their songs on the guitar and drums, something that I never felt while listening to my parent's music. I would stand in front of a mirror with my Dad's guitar and pretend that I was playing in front of a huge, screaming crowd.

Over the following years I followed my dream to be a musician and the experience of performing in front of people and traveling to different cities is something that I wouldn't trade for anything! Thanks John, George, Paul, and Ringo!

Visit to view the Beatles Carnival, updated the first Monday of every month, and sign up to win free Beatles memorabilia! Information about and pictures of everything related to the Beatles, and links to blogs and websites about the Beatles, their music, memorabilia, current news, and more.

Article Source:
Enhanced by Zemanta

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

How Ken Kesey's LSD-Fuelled Bus Trip Created the Psychedelic 60s

by in New York, The Guardian:

Long-lost footage of journey across America by the author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and his Merry Pranksters to spread the word about acid has been turned into a documentary.

Further, the Merry Pranksters' Bus
The bus, named Further, which Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters drove from California to New York. Photograph: Ted Streshinsky/Corbis

Flush with funds from the success of his debut novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Ken Kesey, then 29, drew up plans in 1963 to drive a bus across the US to the World's Fair in New York.

In June 1964, an exotically painted 1939 Harvester school bus rolled out of his ranch in La Honda, California. This was to be no ordinary journey. Kesey's Beat Generation associate Neal Cassady - the inspiration for Dean Moriarty in Jack Kerouac's On the Road - was driving the bus they called Further.

On board were half a dozen travellers who called themselves the Merry Pranksters and a jar of orange juice laced with LSD. The trip, immortalised in Tom Wolfe's book The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, would become the mythologised starting point of the psychedelic 60s.

"The trip had a dual purpose," said Wolfe. "One was to turn America on to this particular form of enlightenment, the other was to publicise [Kesey's] new book, Sometimes A Great Notion. Kesey was a great writer. It was too bad he abandoned writing but I think he meant it when he said, 'I'm tired of waiting for an echo, I want to be a lightning rod'."

The footage shot on the cross-country odyssey was considered unusable and duly forgotten. But in a new documentary, Magic Trip: Ken Kesey's Search for a Kool Place, released in America last Friday, film-makers Alison Ellwood and Alex Gibney have constructed a coherent film from it.

"It's like watching a fuse being lit," says Gibney, who won an Oscar for Taxi to the Dark Side, a 2007 documentary about America's use of torture during interrogation. "The be-ins hadn't happened yet, but you can see they're filled with idealism, playfulness and curiosity. You can see them making it up - or at least Ken Kesey is making it up. He's already myth-making."

The durability of that myth, of course, is rooted in American ideals of freedom. Carolyn Garcia, aka Mountain Girl, the prankster who would later marry Jerry Garcia of the rock band the Grateful Dead, says Kesey felt that a film of the bus trip would spread the gospel of freedom through LSD. "They didn't know they were starting the 60s, obviously, but they knew they had a big secret and they were going to exploit it to the full."

While the bus trip became the stuff of legend, the film record of it languished at Kesey's ranch, rotting and disordered, until Ellwood and Gibney discovered it existed from a New Yorker article by former prankster Robert Stone in 2004. The film-makers contacted Kesey's widow and son Zane and struck a deal.

After restoration at the University of California, funded in part by Martin Scorsese's Film Foundation, Ellwood and Gibney set to work. "Considering none of those guys knew how to use cameras, it was pretty amazing when it started to come together," Ellwood says.

Unlike most historical documentaries, Magic Trip does not cut away to the reminiscences of ageing participants. Instead, it uses interviews Kesey made a decade after the trip. "It was a way to get on the bus and stay on the bus," says Ellwood.

At the centre of the action is Kesey, a former wrestler and amateur puppeteer who had signed up for research into the effects of LSD. Whereas the LSD-advocating psychologist Timothy Leary (whom the pranksters visited, tripping) gave them a cool reception, believing that it should be restricted to an elite, Kesey wanted the drug - then still legal - to be widely available.

Under the effects of LSD, he had discovered the world was a hole filled with jewellery. It was a vision he wished everyone might share.

To read further, go to:

Sunday, September 2, 2012

James Douglas Morrison, Poet: Observations on the Work - Pt 1

Jim Morrison
Jim Morrison (Wikipedia)
by LacieFae, on Waiting For The Sun:

So much of Jim Morrison’s life is a mystery to us.

We know almost nothing of his youth, not much which is certain about his passing, and very little really, about the years between.

But in some respects, his poetry might be regarded as the biggest mystery of all.

James Douglas Morrison's poetic legacy sprang up in a timing which was not particularly conducive to finding popularity on its own merit.

Too late to be a part of the Beat Generation lexicon, Jim’s work was destined to find itself in a situation which can only be described as abominable billing.

Not only did it follow such a potent performer as the Beat poetic, It’s pointedly mental focus was completely at odds with the world of confusion and swirling emotion which was the experience of the majority of Americans during that time.

Add to that its ubiquitous arcane literary, mythological and metaphysical references, and one would have expected his poetry books to go out of print in about a week. Yet his work has prevailed in a startling fashion; one would have to say it has triumphed in light of the aforementioned factors. Chalk it up to one more mysterious cosmic joke perpetrated by the master of mystery himself!

Jim’s poetry can perhaps best be characterized as drawing thematically from the Symbolist tradition and stylistically from the Beat poetic. Much of the work’s power lies in its ability to provide glimpses into a surreal alternate reality, accomplished through a minimalist style.

While Jim’s alternate reality was not in alignment with any reality we knew of, either in the physical or literary world, it was cohesive within the context of his own work. Recurring themes thought to be benign, even blessed, in our physical reality, undergo disturbing transformations within the world of Jim’s work.

Not subtle - but then, Jim was not known for diplomacy - he pointed to the results of our actions as thoughtless, irresponsible human beings, unwilling to be present even in our own lives - this at a time when most of his contemporaries chose to ignore their personal responsibility in the slow degeneration of human values, destruction of the environment and the ever-increasing move toward slavery of the average human being to those whose avarice would devour us all - Jim’s “Lords”.

Over time, his stark and disturbing visions have come closer and closer to being the reality we DO know, until there is now little to distinguish the reality of his work from the reality we see on our television news programs every single day. Perhaps the way to describe his work is as a visionary poetic.

Despite the gravity of his message, and true to the poet’s integrity, his work is not didactic. His message was an attempt in part, to deliver his audience from acceptance and capitulation - to think for themselves, rather than accept the dictates of others, including his own.

I believe he felt the incredible weight of the chosen enslavement of those who would, and still do, follow him blindly. Rather his work simply tells the truth, providing a shining beacon for the discerning observer to (perhaps) take to heart. It “clicks off the possibilities” as he once said. It is up to us to make our own choices.

But there is another face to the work - one which hints at the potential in each human being to find enlightenment, providing another possibility from which we might choose to draw.

These are my favorites of his works, for I believe they give us the greatest, if not the clearest glimpses into the true nature of this most mysterious of men - an intensely personal and spiritual side of Jim which more often is hidden in deeply obscure references which make up his more apocalyptic themed work - an excellent example being his frequent use of the hotel/motel image - the perfect metaphor for the many cells of personal reality which co-exist within the greater, or consensus reality.

To read further, go to:
Enhanced by Zemanta

Saturday, September 1, 2012

SPECIAL NOTICE: New Rolling Stones Deluxe Box Set

by Retro: Kimmer:

The Rolling Stones are preparing special deluxe box sets focusing on The Brussels Affair. The 1973 concert album was first released last November exclusively as a digital download to kick off the band's official bootleg series.

Three versions of the Brussels Affair Box Set can now be preordered, and are slated to be shipped on or about November 16.

The Collector's Edition, priced at $750, will include a three-LP vinyl version of the album; a book about The Stones 1973 trek signed by Mick Jagger, author Nick Kent and photographer Michael Putland; a replica '73 tour lithograph; a photo book boasting images snapped by shutterbug Claude Gassian; and a Stones watch featuring the band's famous tongue-and-lips logo.

A "Platinum" version of the set, listed at $1,250, will include everything featured in the Collector's Edition, plus a tour lithograph autographed by Jagger.

Lastly, an "Art" Edition of the set will sell for $1,500 and will include the same items as the Collector's package with an additional piece of memorabilia - a silver gelatin print of a photo of Jagger and Keith Richards on stage that was taken by Putland and signed by the photographer.

The Brussels Affair features 15 performances culled from a pair of concerts that The Stones played in the Belgian city during a European tour in support of 1973's Goat's Head Soup album. Widgets