Friday Weekly Round-Up – 102

[John Wieners – Hyannisport, MA – February 21, 2002, John Wieners’ Last Reading]

The Allen Ginsberg Project is a pretty hyper-rich hyper-link site (as I’m sure all those who’ve been following us would agree). So it’s in the nature of the beast that links occasionally go dead (we try to keep on top of this, but, please (an appeal to our community) report and send in notice of any particularly frustrating broken links that you find  – yes, we know about “Good Morning, Mr Orwell” and “Renaldo and Clara”!). That said, the most egregious (and frustrating) “downed link” … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics (Ballads) – Helen Adam 3 (Edward & The Wife of Usher”s Well)

[“Edward, Edward”, Child Ballad 13 – sung and performed by Raymond Crooke]

HA: Oh here it is [looking through Norton Anthology]. Uh-huh. This one is eerie too – “The Wife of Usher’s Well”.

AG: Before you get to it, what do you mean by “eerie”?

HA: “Eerie” is uncanny

AG: Uh-huh

HA: It’s always that Scots word, “eerie”.

AG: Why are ballads uncanny? Is that a characteristic of ballads?

HA: Not all of them. No, some of them are very practical but they move in and out of the supernatural world all the time, and this I … Read More

(Spontaneous Poetics (Ballads) – Helen Adam – 2 (Lyke-Wake Dirge))

[Lyke-wake Dirge – sung and performed by Pentangle (lead vocal: Jacqui McShee]HA: Unfortunately, I didn’t bring my own ballad anthology which has my favorite ballads in it and this anthology doesn’t include “Thomas the Rhymer” or “Young Tam Lin”

AG: So what’s a good anthology?
HA: Oh well, there’s The Oxford Book of Ballads. It has all of them.
AG: Oxford Book of Ballads. What else?
HA: Well, the Willa Muir Living With Ballads is the best book about ballads and it quotes a lot of them and it’s extremely good.
AG: Willa Muir – W-I-L-L-A
HA: Yes and … Read More

(Spontaneous Poetics (Ballads) – Helen Adam – 1 (Lord Randal)

AG (to Helen Adam): Do you want to sit up here with me? (No?)..okay let me get another (chair)..that’s too big of a… does that look good?
HA: Yes, yes, that’s fine. Could we get some water.
AG: Oh yes. Could we get some water. No, you stay there. Somebody (one of the students) will get it.
HA: I mean, there’s no hurry, but..
AG: Yeah
HA: Well, ballads, of course, are story poems..    Can you hear me?
Student (pointing to microphone):  That’s not a P.A.
HA: Oh
Student: That’s just a mike.
HA: Oh, I thought..
Student:  … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics (Ballads) – 6

AG: First off, remember Jack Elliott was talking about Okielanguage and he had that in common with (Jack) Kerouac? (So) the first texts I want to pick up on (for) this term are a couple (of) short texts from Mexico City Blues using that kind of Okie talk. The “146th Chorus” of Mexico City Blues – Is anybody familiar with that? Who has read some of Kerouac’s poetry? And who has not? Okay. We have, in the library, a tape of Kerouac reading his own poetry. It’s a cassette. If you have a cassette machine or can borrow … Read More

Ramblin’ Jack Elliott Interview Concluded

AG: What I’m trying to figure (out) now is that [Woody Guthrie’s “Tom Joad”] something you heard later? much later?
JE: I heard that at the same time, when I first started listening to..Woody’s music.
AG: Did you run into Guthrie (himself) at some point or other?
JE: I met Woody in Brooklyn. He was living in Coney Island.
AG: What year was that?
JE: Well, that was in ’51
AG: So right straight off you went..
JE: Yeah
AG: ..to look him up, or what?
JE: Well, Tom Paley knew him. Did you know Tom? I … Read More

Friday Weekly Round-Up – 101

Mexican heart-throb actor, producer, director Diego Luna brings, once again, his acclaimed rendition of Allen’s “Howl” to the stage, tomorrow night (Saturday the 24th) (along with musical accompaniment by Jaime Lopez) as part of the 2012 Festival Internacional de Teatro Puebla Héctor Azar (Héctor Azar International Theater Festival, in Puebla, Mexico).  Here‘s an audio taste of it.Tomorrow, in Hackney, London, at the Apiary Studios, is the UK launch of “the first ever bespoke Brion Gysin Dreamachine“. The night will include talk, films, music, and.. dreamachines! – Featured performers include Terry Wilson, Stewart Home, Ian MacFadyen, and others.. … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics (Ballads) – The Jack Elliott Interview – 3

The Allen Ginsberg-Ramblin’ Jack Elliott conversation continuesJE: Well, the big song that we were pushing  on the Rolling Thunder tour, our heaviest number probably, and what might have been one of the main purposes of the tour, it would seem, and gave us a lot of spirit, was the song about Hurricane Carter. I just saw in the paper today where Hurricane Carter beat up his lady manager..

AG: Just now?
JE: ..and she’s in a .. no, it happened a while back, but she didn’t want him to go to jail and she didn’t want to hurt … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics (Ballads) – The Jack Elliott Interview – 2

JE: “Red River Valley”…okay, “Red River Valley”, that was it. I had never even heard about Woody Guthrieuntil I got to hanging out with a bull-rider named Todd Fletcher (who also came from Brooklyn, but nobody knew about that). He started cowboying in Arizona and was riding in rodeos all around the country, and I travelled around with Todd for about six months, going to rodeos, and, any time we’d have any free time, just loafing around, why, Todd’d be singing and playing the guitar. He sang a lot of folk songs and a lot of cowboy … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics (Ballads) – The Jack Elliott Interview – 1

[My ex-girlfriend Helen Parker’s son Bruce, Ramblin’ Jack Eliot (sic) in cowboy hat, folk-singer student of Woody Guthrie  in New Jersey, &  a banjo friend.  Ramblin’ Jack had stole my girl back in 1950 — here Greenwich Village, 1953. Allen Ginsberg  c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]

AG: Jack (Elliott)here, well, where did you start?  What I was interested in getting was some kind of history of the development of American folk poem ballad song. Jack is one of the inheritors of the lineage of Woody Guthrie. [Allen turns to Mike Burton] – I guess you are too, Mike? As … Read More