Saturday December 24 (Christmas Weekend)

A little vintage ditty (from 1971 – New York City and New York City tenement woes), included in First Blues – Rags, Ballads & Harmonium Songs (1975) – and on First Blues, the 1981 Folkways album), followed by “MacDougal Street Blues” (another cut from the same source)


Christmas  Come Back New York City Died Last Year New Year Come Back Big City Died Last Year Dead On Her Big Stone Feet No Lightbulb Shed One Tear

O Mister Santa Claus How Come Ya Still Coming Round Historic Reindeer Flying The Same Old Ground Anyway You Northpole … Read More

Stay Away From The White House

“Stay Away From The White House”, a new (videotaped) version (with Dutch sub-titles) has emerged, from 1980, taken off Dutch television. The original is from the San Francisco State University Poetry Archives, and was recorded in 1974. The song was composed on Christmas Day (December 25) 1973  It might be interesting to compare this with the official recorded version on First Blues    (and, indeed, with another version, recorded later that summer at Naropa – see here)


“Stay away from the White House/ Stay away I wish you well/Stay away from the White House/Or you’ll go to Vajra Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 110



A selection of videos are now up from Jan 16th’s NYC Housing Works Ginsberg Recordings First Blues launch. Hettie Jones (filmed here by Norman Savitt), after a little autobiographical reflection, reads “Broken Bone Blues”Ambrose Bye (accompanied by Devon Waldman – and Aliah Rosenthal on cello) performs Allen’s immortal “Gospel Noble Truths”Andy Clausen gives a rousing (as ever) reading of the “Capitol Air” lyrics, David Amram (recalls Allen and Bob Dylan and Allen’s first forays into music – he also performs his own “My Buddha Angel of Cheng Du”, accompanying himself on guitar, pennywhistles, and
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Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 108

Next Wednesday, January 16 in New York – Join Allen Ginsberg’s friends, collaborators, relatives and co-conspirators – Lou Reed, Steven Taylor, Anne Waldman, Ambrose Bye, CA Conrad, Andy Clausen, David Amram, the Arthur Russell tribute band, Arthur’s Landing, & others for “a night of poetry and song” in one of the quintessential downtown New York Spaces, the Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, to breathe new life into “First Blues”, Ginsberg Recordings new special edition/limited vinyl reissue.

A tad overly tongue-in-cheek, but ultimately “won over” – (“sharp insight and analysis of one … Read More

Harry Smith

[Allen Ginsberg – Harry Smith’s Birthday Party, 1996-7. 2 color lithograph and screenprint, 32 1/4 x 24 1/2]
Harry Everett Smith (1923-1991), Harry Smith was born on this day.
Here‘s the footage of Harry accepting his Grammy, it’s a touching moment. Here‘s more typical Harry – “Boy, Am I In Trouble! “. Here are some of the masterpieces he’s justly famous for – Mirror Animations 1957 (from Early Abstractions 1946-57) and this excerpt from his Heaven and Earth Magic. Heck, why not watch the whole thing (and his remarkable Late Superimpositions too) over here on the Read More