Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 354

[Allen Ginsberg, Venice, Italy, 1995, Enzo Eric Toccaceli,  “Beat Generation, Travels in Italy” exhibition, Rome]

“Beat Generation, Ginsberg Corso, Ferlinghetti Viaggio in Italia”, (Beat Generation, Ginsberg, Corso, Ferlinghetti Travels in Italy), a show of over 200 black-and-white photos (accompanied by an apparatus of over 600 documents (books, first editions, printed ephemera, etc)  curated and presented by photographer Enzo Eric Toccaceli, opened at La Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Roma (The National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art in Rome) last week, and will be up until April 2nd.. For more images from the show see … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 349

Opening tonight in New York, at the New York Public Library, You Say You Want A Revolution – Remembering the Sixties – a comprehensive exhibition, drawn from the library’s holdings, “exploring the breadth and significance of this pivotal era—from communal living and forays into expanded consciousness to tensions around race, politics, sexuality, and the environment”.  Items on display, include manuscripts from Allen, (and from Burroughs and Kerouac), “Changing of the Guards”, (an original typescript by Bob Dylan),  and notations from Timothy Leary on his LSD research, (alongside much else).

It’s Edgar Allan Poe‘s birthday today! – … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 348

Reposting and restating last week’s big news – “Howl’,  a newly-assembled red vinyl  box-set will be available soon – next month – from Craft Recordings.  February 23 is slated as the release-date. Hold your breath!

A couple of weeks back,  Chris Agg uploaded a scattering of short Beat-related video-clips onto You Tube. See here (a few selected examples). We start off with Lawrence Ferlinghetti reading his prose-poem “Look Homeward, Jack – Two Correspondences”  from the book Wild Dreams of A New Beginning. (Ferlinghetti can also be seen here, reading “Constantly Rising Absurdity”, from A Coney Island of the Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 344

We promised we’d have word for you, and now it’s finally out! A definitive Chinese edition of the Collected Poems 1947-1997, from Chinese publishing house Shanghai 99  has just hit stores in China – a stunning three-volume set, with translations by Hui Ming.   More details on the publisher’s Chinese language web-site- here.  (and more details from us in the weeks ahead)

More news (Beat Generation news) :

[Two (undated) images by Jack Kerouac – “Untitled” and “Raven” – from the upcoming MA*GA Museum, “Beat Painting” show – courtesy ANSA]

Jack Kerouac’s Beat Painting show opens on Sunday at The Read More

Jack Kerouac to Allen Ginsberg November 1957

[Jack Kerouac reading at The Village Vanguard, December 1957. Photo via Dave Moore on Paul Maher Jr’s  Jack Kerouac-Writer ]

Another Ginsberg letter today – this one to Allen (dated November 30, 1957 – sixty years ago today) from Jack Kerouac in Orlando, Florida to Allen in Paris.  Jack confesses he’s drunk, and broke, but writing up a storm (writing Dharma Bums) and looking toward the future.

Dear Allen.  Your poem [“Kaddish’] very beautiful, especially “eyes of Ma Rainey dying in an ambulance” (why don’t you spell it “aumbulance” which would mean aum-vehicle…)…well, and Greg’s [Gregory Corso’s]  “sweetly in … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 331

[Allen Ginsberg, 1968.  Photo: Larry Keenan Jr.]

More Ginsberg memories (see last week) – Judy Goldhaft, director of The Planet Drum Foundation, recollects an unusual seder:

“For the first time since the crucifixion, there was a total lunar eclipse on the night of the seder in 1968. That apparently happened also on the night of the Last Supper and we were all aware of this. We had a seder near Duboce Park. [San Francisco] The Hells Angels were there and the Diggers were there. My son asked the Four Questions, and…asked  Allen Ginsberg [as tradition … Read More

Allen Ginsberg Reading at St Marks Poetry Project 1977

[Allen Ginsberg and Robert Lowell, St Mark’s Church, February 23, 1977. Photo: Martin Wechselblatt]

We featured one, from the extraordinary trove of recordings of Allen readings, last week, from PennSound (from the Robert Creeley collection – 1971 at Intersection, San Francisco). Here‘s another, six years later- from the St Mark’s Poetry Project in New York. The occasion was a now-legendary coupling of Allen Ginsberg and Robert Lowell (it was on this occasion that Lowell was memorably heckled by Gregory Corso). Allen reads a variety of works, referencing his recent visit to Australia, his Vajrayana Buddhist Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 327

[Allen Ginsberg, Lucien Carr, and William S Burroughs, New York City 1953. (c)The Allen Ginsberg Estate]

Ann Douglas‘  rapturous New York Times review of The Best Minds of My Generation – “Professor Ginsberg’s Notes on the Beats”  leads off this Friday’s Round-Up  – “In a marvelous feat of editing and reorganization, Bill Morgan, Ginsberg’s longtime bibliographer, biographer and friend, has condensed the 100 or so lectures Ginsberg gave in the five courses he taught on the Beat Generation between 1977 and 1994, totaling almost 2,000 pages of transcripts, into a compact and often spellbinding text, preserving intact the … Read More

1967- Ginsberg-Corso-Berryman at Spoleto

The recordings of Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso (and of an unlikely third-party, John Berryman, at the 1967 Festival of Two Worlds (“Festival dei Due Mondi”) at Spoleto in Italy, organized by Gian Carlo Menotti is the focus of this weekend’s post

[Allen Ginsberg, Spoleto, 1967]

Allen’s reading (which was also subsequently featured in the recording Ginsberg’s Thing (1969)), was the subject at the time of some controversy.   As his biographer Bill Morgan explains:

“The police in Spoleto seemed to be waiting for him and they picked up copies of the Italian translation of his poem “Who Be Kind Read More

Studs Terkel interviews Allen Ginsberg, 1976 – part two

Allen Ginsberg and Studs Terkel continuing from here

[At approximately half-way through their conversation, approximately thirty-two minutes in, Allen sings “Gospel Noble Truths” (“Born in this world, you’ve got to suffer..”) making several improvised additions –  (“no permanent soul!”,  “the dharma chakra”,  “Look what you’ve done – 1968” – “Let go, Studs!”)

AG: You looked like you didn’t want to “let go” of  “earth heaven and hell” there!.

ST: And as Ned Kelly, the bandit, said, before they hanged him, and they sprang the trap –  “That’s life! “. You said,  “Die when you die”. I was about to … Read More