Herbert Huncke’s Birthday

Celebrating Herbert Huncke‘s birthday today. “Godfather of the Beats”, he would have been one-hundred-and-two! – See here for our posting on the occasion of his Centennial. Today, courtesy of our friend Laki Vazakas , footage of the great story-teller, raconteur, recorded in New York, at the Chelsea Hotel,  February 7, 1994. Evoking the notion of “the invisible body”, Huncke recounts and recalls his time in India, witnessing the burning ghats.

HH: Well, it’s sort of strange, you know, one is always I think intrigued by the idea of the invisible body at a funeral (I’ve always felt that … Read More

The Unknown Kerouac

Just out from Library of America – The Unknown Kerouac – edited by Todd Tietchen (with several texts newly translated from the French by Jean-Christophe Cloutier

The publishers write:    “Edited and published with unprecedented access to the  (Jack) Kerouac archives, The Unknown Kerouac presents two lost novels, The Night Is My Woman and Old Bull in the Bowery, which Kerouac wrote in French during the esoecially fruitful years of 1951 and 1952. Discovered among his papers in the mid-nineties, they have been translated into English for the first time  by Jean-Christophe Cloutier, who incorporates Kerouac’s own partial

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Friday’ s Weekly Round-Up – 284

[Allen Ruppersberg – from The Singing Posters – Allen Ginsberg’s Howl (Part 1 & 2) (2003) (detail) — from the work included in the exhibition Beat Generation – New York, San Francisco, Paris at the Centre Pompidou, Paris, France, June 22-October 3, 2016]

Jeremy Harding in the London Review of Books:

“In the Beat constellation, Allen Ginsberg’s star now shines more brightly than the rest…There would have been no Beat phenomenon without Ginsberg, logorrhoeic poet and protester, illustrious, predatory queer, inventor and supporter of colleagues and hangers-on, impresario and self-appointed hero of a tradition that he put together from all kinds … Read More

Robert Crumb’s Birthday

It’s Robert Crumb‘s Birthday. He turns 73 today. Happy Birthday, Robert!

[Robert Crumb – Self-Portrait (1982)]

R. Crumb on Allen Ginsberg:

Allen Ginsberg kissed me once. It was in 1989, before I knew what was going on and I couldn’t stop him, he kissed me on the mouth. [laughs] I like Howl. Howl’s great. It’s like the beatnik manifesto of the ’50s, y’ know, it really says it all. It’s got that beatnik attitude of that time in America. It’s quite eloquent. But after that, he didn’t really do anything that struck me as particularly interesting. … Read More

Christmas!

Scribbled Christmas comics from Allen Ginsberg from twenty-three years ago. Remember “Put on my tie in a taxi, short of breath, rushing to meditate”   (from American Sentences)? It’s ok, Allen. You can rest now. Our 2013 posting of Jack Kerouac’s Christmas memories of Lowell can be accessed here Not forgetting William Burroughs’  The Junky’s Christmas  (Christmas 2014 posting)

and, keeping up the theme of Beat Kitsch we’ve been looking at recently, Here’s Patsy Raye & The Beatniks  

– Merry Christmas everyone!

back next week … Read More

Eliot Katz – The Poetry and Politics of Allen Ginsberg

Eliot Katz‘s new book, The Poetry and Politics of Allen Ginsberg is now out from David Wills’ Beatdom books.  For more details, see here  Read his earlier response – (an unpublished letter to the New York Times)  “Ginsberg Apolitical?  I don’t think so” hereMore of Eliot-on-Allen here and hereKurt Hemmer writes:

The Poetry and Politics of Allen Ginsberg is the most engaging and rigorous analysis of Ginsberg’s political poetry yet attempted. We find in these psges the astuteness of a literary critic, the contextualization of a social historian, the knowledge of a veteran political activist, … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 223

                           

[Rosebud Feliu-Pettet (1946-2015) and Allen Ginsberg]

Rose “Rosebud” Feliu-Pettet a long-time friend of Allen’s, author of the definitive account of Allen’s passing,  passed away herself this week. She’d been suffering from a particularly virulent form of cancer, bile duct cancer. She was 69  For more of Rosebud on Allen – see here:  “Well, I met Allen a long time ago, about 1964,  I was living in this crazy dinky kind of collective called Kerista, a sort of benign Manson family [sic] . There were about eighteen people living in a store front on Ludlow Street … Read More

The 1996 National Security Archive Interview – part 2

 

                 

[Allen Ginsberg, reading at The Knitting Factory, New York City, 1995]

Allen’s 1996 Interview for the National Security Archive at George Washington University continues from here

AG: So I found I was kicked out by the Prague police and the Havana police. Then, when I got back, I took part in various anti-war demonstrations. But I found that the day I arrived in Prague, I had been put on the dangerous security list of J.Edgar Hoover as a crazed, violent, or.. I don’t know what he thought I was! – And that he should talk, I must say! … Read More

Allen Ginsberg’s “Beat” Correspondence with Paul Bertram

[Allen Ginsberg to Paul Bertram (1928-2013) , in 1947, from the Ginsberg-Bertram letters]

Readers+Writers Journal, this week, announced the discovery (in a trove of newly-found letters and postcards from Allen to his life-long friend, Rutgers professor and Shakespearean scholar, Paul Bertram), of, arguably, the first known reference in the writings of the Beat Generation to the seminal term “Beat”.

Paul Bertram’s 1965 volume – Shakespeare and The Two Noble Kinsmen (Rutgers University Press)

Writing as early as July 14, 1947, (these are “among the earliest, if not the earliest collection of Ginsberg correspondence ever” appearing on the market), Ginsberg … Read More

Colin Still – Optic Nerve

 

 [Colin Still]

Colin Still and Optic Nerve‘s poetic documentation and extraordinary achievement needs to be sung. So we’re singing it today here.

By now, perhaps, many of you will have already seen, and be familiar with, this footage (Colin’s footage) – the legendary pairing – Allen Ginsberg accompanied by Paul McCartney, at the Royal Albert Hall in London, in October of 1995 – “The Ballad of The Skeletons” From the same occasion – “After Lalon” but that event and that footage, extraordinary though it is, is only the very tip of the iceberg. Colin has shot full-length
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