Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 312

Great news! – Omnivore Recordings, and Pat Thomas, (who gave us last year the extraordinary The Last Word on First Blues), are issuing, as a two-CD package, Allen Ginsberg’s The Complete Songs Of Innocence And Experience,  is both a reissue of Allen’s original Blake release from 1969 on MGM, with the unreleased 1971 recording sessions that were to be Blake Volume 2.  The release will include, along with the two CDs, a booklet featuring several unseen photos, alongside revealing new interviews, conducted by Thomas himself, with the original session musicians. Release-date is June 23.  

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Ben Schafer’s Allen Ginsberg Memories

[Ben Schafer]
[Otis Gibbs]

 

Episode 46 – Otis Gibbs interviews Ben Schafer about Allen and friends – halcyon days in New York’s East Village in the late ‘Eighties. We highly recommend this self-effacing loving and intimate recollection Some related content – We’ve already featured Bob Rosenthal (Allen’s secretary)’s memories in a four-part series here – and Steve Finbow has posted a working-for-Allen account (“What It Was Like Working For Allen Ginsberg; A Chat With His Assistant-Turned-Biographer”) here  –  More memories to come on the Allen Ginsberg Project.   … Read More

Herbert Huncke Centennial

[(“Old-timer & survivor, Herbert E Huncke, Beat Literary Pioneer, early decades thief, who introduced Burroughs, Kerouac & me to floating population hustling & drug scene Times Square 1945. From ’48 on, he penned remarkable musings, Collected as autobiographical vignettes, anecdotes & storyteller’s tales in the classic The Evening Sun Turned Crimson (Cherry Valley, 1970) and later Guilty of Everything. Here age 78 in basement back-yard, his apartment East 7th Street, near Avenue D, New York, May 18, 1993)” – (Photograph and Inscription by Allen Ginsberg)]

January 9 1915, the birthday of Herbert Huncke, original Beat – yes, today marks the … Read More

Herbert Huncke’s Birthday

[Herbert Huncke reading at Cafe Nico, New York, March 12, 1994 – video by Laki Vazakas]

Herbert Huncke“American hipster” – hustler and saint, poet and story-teller, central source for the Beats, “the man who turned on William Burroughs” –  Today would have been (he made it to his 81st) Huncke’s 98th birthday.

Our 2011 post with comprehensive Huncke links is here.

We’ve featured it before but here again is a link to Francois Bernardi’s film, Original Beats, from 1996 (featuring footage of two quintessential Beat scallywags – Herbert Huncke and Gregory Corso).

and … Read More

Zeitgeist Miscellanea

[Dustin Hoffman reading Ginsberg’s Spontaneous Mind Photo by Lawrence Schwartzwald via jacket2.org]

Is that Dustin Hoffman clutching a copy of Spontaneous Mind – Selected Interviews 1956-1998? Why, we do believe it is. There is, of course, a back story.

And is that Allen and that loveable psycho-killer, Dexter (otherwise known as our good friend, the talented actor, Michael C Hall)? – also in the snapshot is Ben Schafer, Michael’s friend (and, subsequently, Allen’s editor at Da Capo) and Ben’s father, Michael Schafer). Back in 1994 when Ben’s mother took this shot, we don’t think any of them could … Read More