Category Archives: musicians

Jerry Garcia Family Launches Online Visual Art Collection

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Jerry Garcia Family Launches Online Visual Art Collection

March 02, 2017

Jerry Garcia’s family has announced the launch of a new online collection of visual art from the legendary Grateful Dead guitarist, offering up creations from throughout Garcia’s life alongside commentary from his daughter Trixie Garcia.

The Jerry Garcia Collection features both known work and some previously unseen art from the guitarist, who was an prolific visual artist along with his music career.

“I think it was just a way he was able to communicate with the world,” Trixie says in the introduction video, which can be seen below. “I always considered him kind of multilingual. He was fluent in all these different languages, and when words failed in one point, he had other options to express himself.”

Visit the gallery here and view some of the pieces below.

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Read more: https://www.relix.com/news/detail/jerry_garcia_family_launches_online_visual_art_collection#ixzz4af3ds8PG

Recognizing a counterculture icon Dylan wins Nobel Prize for Literature

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 counterculture icon

Nobel prize for Literature

  • Bob Dylan performing at a civil rights rally in Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963. Photo: Getty Images

     
  • Bob Dylan and singer Joan Baez in Embankment Gardens, London in 1963. Photo: Getty Images
    Photo: Getty Images

    Bob Dylan and singer Joan Baez in Embankment Gardens, London in 1963. Photo: Getty Images

     
Armed with a harmonica and a guitar, Bob Dylan confronted social injustice, war and racism

Bob Dylan, the surprise winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature on Thursday, became an icon of the 1960s counterculture, but his voice has reached widely and evocatively into the American past.

The author of some of rock’s early anthems such as “The Times They Are A-Changin’,” the poet of pop tapped classic folk and gospel songs to rejuvenate defining US forms of story-telling.

Since early in his career, the 75-year-old singer has experimented with the intersection of the literary and the musical.

In the words of a reviewer in The New York Times, who saw the then 21-year-old perform solo at Town Hall theater in 1963, “Mr. Dylan’s words and melodies sparkle with the light of an inspired poet.”

One of his most celebrated songs, “Mr. Tambourine Man,” features a literary character based on a drummer Dylan knew from the clubs of New York’s Greenwich Village.

“Like a Rolling Stone” tore apart pop convention by going on for more than six minutes, with Dylan’s steady narration and a touch of R&B interrupted by the refrain, “How does it feel?”

“After writing that, I wasn’t interested in writing a novel or a play or anything, like I knew like I had too much. I wanted to write songs,” Dylan said later of the song.

“Desolation Row,” which closed his 1965 album “Highway 61 Revisited,” stretched on for more than 11 minutes and reached into biblical allusions, while referencing the growing tumult in urban America.

“Highway 61 Revisited” itself reflected an American journey, referencing the highway that stretches from Dylan’s home of Minnesota to New Orleans and the homes of the blues in the American South.

The album was part of a massive burst of creativity when in a two-year period Dylan put out three legendary albums, with the other two being “Bringing It All Back Home” and “Blonde on Blonde.”

Rise to stardom

The stardom is all a long way from his humble beginnings as Robert Allen Zimmerman, born in 1941 in Duluth, Minnesota.

He taught himself to play the harmonica, guitar and piano. Captivated by the music of folk singer Woody Guthrie, Zimmerman changed his name to Bob Dylan — reportedly after the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas — and began performing in local nightclubs.

After dropping out of college, he moved to New York in 1960. His first album contained only two original songs, but the 1963 breakthrough “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan” featured a slew of his own work, including the classic “Blowin’ in the Wind.”

Armed with a harmonica and an acoustic guitar, Dylan confronted social injustice, war and racism, quickly becoming a prominent civil rights campaigner — and recording an astonishing 300 songs in his first three years.

His interest in civil rights has persisted and in 1991 he released “Blind Willie McTell,” one of the best-known songs of his late career in which Dylan reflects on slavery through the story of the blues singer of the same name.

In 1965, Dylan also was behind a symbolic turning point in music when he went electric at the Newport Folk Festival, turning on the amplifiers for a stunned audience.

As Dylan toured Europe afterward, he was met with hostility with an audience member in England even denouncing him as “Judas” over the betrayal of his folk roots.

When Dylan afterward played in France, the tensions had become so raw that he even held a news conference with a puppet, to which he would sarcastically put his ear as if seeking counsel to reporters’ questions.

Sound like a frog’

Despite his massive cultural influence, Dylan has remained an enigmatic presence. With his gravelly tone, he has long won acclaim in spite of rather than because of his voice.

“Critics have been giving me a hard time since Day One. Critics say I can’t sing. I croak. Sound like a frog,” Dylan said last year in an unexpected career-spanning speech as he accepted a lifetime award at the Grammys.

His relationship with crowds is borders on indifference to hostile, with Dylan steadfastly refusing to please audiences by rolling out his hits.

Performing Friday at the inaugural Desert Trip festival of rock elders in California, Dylan did not say a word to the crowd and kept his back turned, not allowing overhead footage of him for the majority of the audience that could not see. In one turn that surprised fans, Dylan — raised a secular Jew — became a born-again Christian in the late 1970s after taking up Bible study following his divorce from his first wife, Sara. Dylan soon played down the Christianity, saying his conversion had been hyped by the media that he was agnostic at heart. He raised controversy again when he played in 1985 at the Live Aid concerts for Ethiopian famine relief and told the crowd that he wished “a little bit” of the money could go to American farmers struggling to pay their mortgages. His quip quickly created momentum as Willie Nelson and other artists set up Farm Aid, a still-running US festival to raise money for farmers.

Dylan has remained active and toured regularly. In 2012, he released an album full of dark tales of the American past called “Tempest,” raising speculation it would be his finale, in an echo of Shakespeare’s last play of the same name.

But Dylan has kept up his prolific output. Earlier this year he released his 37th studio album, his second in a row devoted to pop standards popularized by Frank Sinatra.

#beatnikhiway.com#bob_dylan#dylan#nobel_prize#literature#counterculture#icon#musician#folk

HIWAY AMERICA -NEVERLAND RANCH, LOS OLIVOS CA

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Inside Neverland Ranch

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By Jonathan H

Editor’s Note: The post below was originally published in March of 2008. Since the tragic events last week, I felt compelled to write a follow-up. View the farewell post and the entire set of Neverland photos here.

Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch is up for auction next week. Bearings has gained access to the ranch, and has posted the images below.

As an aside, I personally believe Jackson is innocent of all charges. I speak as someone who has been on Jackson’s Neverland Ranch. It’s a bit disconcerting to think that I stand in solidarity with Geraldo Rivera, but what can ya do?

Many images I am not posting, out of respect for Jackson’s privacy. What I do post are places that were largely seen by the public (or at least by hordes of kids who count it a privilege to have been on “the Ranch.”) Whether or not you believe he’s innocent, one can still appreciate the beauty of Jackson’s vision in creating such a place. None of us should ever lose our sense of wonder and amazement at the world, and I think Jackson truly wanted children to have this, largely because he never had it as a child himself.

Without further ado, here are the photos.

The Train Station on Neverland Ranch
The train station at Neverland Ranch, taken on Kodak T-Max 100 speed film. Taken using a Tachihara large format field camera.


Neverland Ferris Wheel
The ferris wheel – What I would give to have a ride on this puppy.

Neverland Carousel
The classic, 50-foot carousel. Each horse and character seemed to be unique.
Neverland Bumper Cars
The bumper car tent.
Neverland Statues - Bronze
Statues near the front gate with aspen behind.
Neverland Station Clock
The Neverland clock at the main train station. I believe the time was accurate.
Bumper Car Controls
Ride designed exclusively for Michael Jackson. These were the controls for the bumper cars.
Neverland Front Gate
The front gate of Neverland Ranch.
Lithograph of the Michael Jackson
A lithograph of Michael Jackson with children at the front gate.

More pictures at: http://www.terrastories.com/bearings/albums/album/72157603558879859/Neverland.html

Saying Goodbye to Neverland and Michael Jackson

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By Jonathan H

neverland-ranch-train-station-lf

I wanted to make this post, not simply to jump on the bandwagon of the media outpouring for Michael Jackson. I’m not here to judge his life or talk about his finances, or his troubled past, or the allegations, or even Bubbles. I’m writing this simply to tell a story. It’s a story that I didn’t really have the inclination to say before. Now that Michael’s “Ranch” no longer exists, and — rides dismantled — it simply stands as a bank-owned shadow of its former self, I wanted say a few things about my experience at Neverland, and the truth behind how I was able to get in.

In many ways, I feel this is sort of a confession. I never saw Neverland as an interesting place. At first, I didn’t understood its potential to tell a photographic story. As someone who finds significance in historic architecture, I neither saw Neverland as significant, nor historic. All of that changed.

In December of 2007, I was on my way down to Ventura for the Holidays. I had taken multiple trips down the 101 before. Each trip, I made it a point tostop at a roadside abandonment to photograph at night. As it invariably is every December, just prior to Christmas, the radios are filled with the repetitious yuletide jingles of yore. Usually, the six-hour drive is bearable if I switch from one station to the next – between commercials. This particular drive down, I grew weary of the music. I’m not exactly sure why Michael came to mind. Part of it probably had to do with the silence and the habit of mine to imagine music in my head in such moments. It’s also possible that I passed the off-ramp for Los Olivos and thought of the place, only to think of it more and more. Whatever it was, the idea of then-abandoned Neverland began to roll around in my mind. The radio was off, and I began mentally turning over rocks in the process. What did Neverland mean about Michael? Then the big one loomed: Why couldn’t Neverland be “historic” in my mind?

I must admit, I suffer from the myopic view, like most historians — amateur or otherwise — that history must always be equated with old. That’s why Graceland was “history” to me, but Neverland never would be — at least not until it was gone. Hours passed, and the desire to see the inside of Neverland grew stronger. I had essentially exhausted all other photographic possibilities down the 101, and I knew this opportunity wouldn’t last long. Then, a day before I began the drive back up to San Francisco, I exited a theater to find what seemed like snow falling on me. I immediately realized they were large flakes of ash from a fire nearby. The sky was dark and orange. It was an eerie, foreboding signal, or at least that’s what I made it out to be. I needed to photograph Neverland, or else — and I had a strong feeling — it would all go to ashes without proper documentation.

Neverland EntranceOnce it was decided, there was no convincing me otherwise. Still, I thought more than once of giving it up altogether and to continue driving North. I tried to convince myself that I had trespassed many times before at other locations — but the implications had never really bothered me until I considered walking into Michael’s private park. As I write this, I still try to justify my actions by thinking how much Michael truly wanted to share his world. It was a genuine wish of his for everyone to understand things the way he did. And the world largely didn’t understand what he was trying to communicate with Neverland, so he abandoned it.

People have asked me over the past year what it felt like to be in Neverland at night, alone. I didn’t want to say anything except that it was the most surreal and incredible experience of my life. Others asked me how I felt about Michael, after seeing Neverland, but I couldn’t completely answer that. I was withholding judgement. Maybe, like all battle-bruised humans, I had the sneaking suspicion that all of my best feelings about the man would be shattered when another allegation would arise. But it never happened, just as I suspected, because everything I saw at the Ranch indicated to me that he was an innocent man.

The night I drove up to the front gates, the security guard was there, sitting in a well-lit pillbox on the side of the road. Neverland itself is up the road about 400 yards from the front gate. It happened to be a dark night. In fact, there was a new moon, and the sky was clear of any clouds. Out in Los Olivos, the stars shone brightly, and there was little light pollution in the atmosphere. I was sure to maintain my speed as I passed the guard, and I drove up the road to small parking area east of the park. The walk to Neverland was about a half-mile through rolling hills in pitch black conditions. I carried a GPS, set to its dimmest level, and continued on a straight click, towards the North end of the park.

neverland-fairgrounds

I came upon a back road that seemed to have been a utility road for the animal caretakers. By then, all of the animals were gone, save a few dogs in the old aviary. Bursting out from the branches of valley oak, I found myself in a miniature city. I had emerged right at the petting zoo. From there, my adventure began.

neverland-at-nightStrangely enough, the moment I entered, a howling wind spread across the valley. Trees cracked their massive arms and fell; I could hear the Ferris Wheel creaking; the rope drawbridge waved wild and unpredictable. When I walked up to the deserted bumper car tent, the wind had become so strong, that it was tearing the red, canvas roof. It’s fortunate that the wind also allowed me to roam freely around the park without a single bark from the nearby dogs.

In the midst of all of this wind, the only static elements of Neverland were the frozen, bronze faces of the myriad statues that dotted the grounds. The children’s smiles almost seemed sad, in the context; and other than the occasional jolt of fear that hit me when I encountered a new frozen figure (thinking it was a real person), these statues were the subjects that I found my camera most drawn to. The rides themselves could have been found on any county fair in any state in the country. But it was the psyche of Michael Jackson that drew my curiosity. The statues were a conduit; they were my artifacts to catalog before the time of their eventual liquidation arrived.

I took two more trips to Neverland, each time with close friends. In all, I captured hundreds of photographs of the park. Many of these photographs, I will never publish. Each trip became progressively more bittersweet. I don’t really have any regrets about doing what I did, but if there is one thing I wish I had done at Neverland, it would have been to ride down the Super Slide; I think MJ would have liked that, and I’m sure the friends with me on my final trip would have turned it into a photo shoot.

family-portrait

Despite how kitschy it all seemed; despite the controversy; and the fact that I could only see Neverland from one perspective (that of night),  the times I spent at Neverland are among the most memorable moments of my life. Neverland allowed me to escape the cynical, xenophobic world of a country mired in war, terrorism, and daily reports of suicide bombers.  They may have been only a few nights of escapism, at best, but they allowed me to put myself in the shoes of Michael — moon walking my own way among the soon-to-end dreamscape of a truly magnanimous soul. May you rest in peace, Michael; your dream will live on.

Additional Neverland Sets

The Beatles And Ed Sullivan Combined To Make History

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The Beatles And Ed Sullivan Combined To Make History

beatles1beatles2

#beatles#ana_christy

by Amy Gold

The Beatles
The Beatles arrive at John F. Kennedy International Airport, Feb. 7, 1964.

1963 TV Concert: ‘It’s The Beatles’ Live

https://youtu.be/brwmLjD-3Hw

Uploaded on Jul 4, 2011

Live, television: It’s The Beatles
3.45pm, Saturday 7 December 1963

Following their appearance on the BBC television show Juke Box Jury, The Beatles recorded a special concert appearance for the corporation at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre.

The performance took place in front of 2,500 members of The Beatles’ Northern Area Fan Club, between 3.45 and 4.30pm. It was filmed in its entirety by the BBC, and 30 minutes were broadcast that evening from 8.10pm to 8.40pm during a special programme entitled It’s The Beatles.

The group played a short version of From Me To You, followed by I Saw Her Standing There, All My Loving, Roll Over Beethoven, Boys, Till There Was You, She Loves You, This Boy, I Want To Hold Your Hand, Money (That’s What I Want), Twist And Shout, and another version of From Me To You.

Technical problems and lack of rehearsal times meant the sound balance for the concert recording was sub-standard. Both The Beatles and senior figures at the BBC later expressed concern at the often embarrassing nature of the footage, which included the absence of Ringo vocals during Boys and the director focusing on the wrong members of the group during key moments.

After the concert the BBC also recorded a two-minute interview with the group to use on the Christmas Day edition of Top Of The Pops.

The Beatles then made the short journey to the nearby Odeon Cinema on London Road where they gave two evening concerts. The police closed Pudsey Street to the public to allow the group to reach the venue unhindered.

The Beatles first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show remains one of the watershed moments in television history. At the time, nobody could have predicted the impact the four lads from Liverpool would have on American audiences and American television, and certainly few people would have imagined that former newsman Ed Sullivan would become indelibly linked to the history of rock and roll. But together, the two combined to create a moment no one could ever forget.

The Beatles historic first appearance on American television took place live on Sunday, February 9, 1964. It was a pivotal time in America. Just a few months earlier, the country had looked on in horror as President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. A mood of gloom and depression had taken hold and Americans were in desperate need of something to lift that black cloud.

Ever a shrewd businessman, Ed Sullivan found the perfect solution in the young group from Liverpool who were enjoying tremendous success in their native England. Eager to bring that buzz both to the country and to his show, Sullivan struck a deal with their manager, Brian Epstein, and soon Beatlemania was touching down on American soil.

It landed with a fury that few had ever witnessed before. Throngs of screaming teenage girls crowded Kennedy Airport and hovered outside the Plaza Hotel in downtown New York where the band was staying. CBS’ Studio 50, where the Ed Sullivan Show was filmed, was quickly sold out as the Beatles-Ed Sullivan first appearance became the hottest gig in town.

… Ladies and gentlemen, the Beatles! Let’s bring them on.

beatles3

By the time Ed Sullivan was introducing the band to the deafening shrieks of the live audience, a record setting 73,000,000 Americans (and I was one of them) were tuned in to watch the show. The group played two sets, with other entertainers appearing between them – but, of course, all eyes stayed focused on the main guests of honor. (To say that they were a tough act to follow, especially on that particular night, would truly be an understatement.) They opened their first set with “All My Loving,” followed by “Till There Was You” and “She Loves You.” For their second set, they performed  and “I Want To Hold Your Hand.”

After that historic night, everyone felt it would be nearly impossible to top that moment. The Beatles returned the following week, this time live from the Deauville Hotel in Miami Beach on February 16. The crowd was so rabid that the band had a difficult time just reaching the stage in the hotel’s ballroom where they were scheduled to perform. They eventually performed two sets amid screams so deafening you could barely hear them sing.

The Beatles performed again the next week, that performance having been taped before the actual Ed Sullivan-Beatles first appearance and held back for broadcast until then. They would come back one last time on September 12, 1965. This show was taped on August 14, a day before they kicked off their American tour. All told, their four appearances on the show attracted an audience of a quarter of a billion people. Their first two shows set a record and remain, by percentage of the population, the highest viewed regularly scheduled television programs of all time.

And, as they say, the rest is history. The Beatles would go on to rock superstardom, leaving a lasting impact on generations to come. But it was their collaboration with the staid Ed Sullivan that forever put them on the map. Together, this odd TV marriage made a historical impact that will likely never be matched. It was a once in a lifetime moment, with vibrations that can still be felt today.

COOL PEOPLE – Dave Van Ronk

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Dave Van Ronk – Hang Me, Oh Hang Me

http://youtu.be/RjPmMgbJgUo

Meet the Folk Singer Who Inspired ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’

Dave Van Ronk’s memoir ‘Mayor of MacDougal Street’ inspired the Coen Brothers’ latest film

BY December 2, 2013

Dave Van Ronk performs in New York City.
Dave Van Ronk performs in New York City. Kai Shuman/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

People who were close to Dave Van Ronk, the Greenwich Village folk-blues-jazz institution, had a feeling someone might be making a movie inspired by his life. A few years ago, Elijah Wald, who co-wrote Van Ronk’s posthumous memoir, The Mayor of MacDougal Street, heard that an unnamed filmmaker had optioned the rights to the book — but wasn’t told who. Van Ronk’s widow, Andrea Vuocolo Van Ronk, heard of the interest too, and finally had it confirmed when she came home from work one day: “There was a message on my machine from Joel Coen saying, ‘We’re going to start shooting and want to talk to you.'”

The Coen Brothers’ Classic Folk Tale: Behind ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’

The movie was Inside Llewyn Davis, Joel and his brother Ethan’s film about a turbulent period in the life of its title character, a fictional Village folkie, during 1961. (After months of industry buzz, the movie opens this week.) Technically speaking, Davis isn’t Van Ronk, a New York institution who died of colon cancer in 2002. Start with the way he looks. “I remember I got the audition and came in to the casting director,” says compact-sized Oscar Isaac, who plays Davis, “and I knew it was loosely based on Dave Van Ronk, who was a 6’5″ 250-pound Swede.” Davis is also a much different singer than Van Ronk, who had a gruff, commanding style that was 180 degrees removed from Isaac’s sonorous balladeering.

Yet the film has more than its share of nods to Van Ronk. In it and on the accompanying soundtrack album, Isaac sings three Van Ronk-associated songs, which he learned from one of the late singer’s Village folk buddies. The faux-cover of Davis’ “album” is a direct nod to Van Ronk’s 1963 LP Inside Dave Van Ronk. “Hopefully people will see this movie and make that connection,” says Jeff Place, head archivist at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Smithsonian/Folkways just released the three-disc retrospective Down in Washington Square, which includes Van Ronk recordings from the Fifties through some of his last sessions, cut shortly before his death. (One highlight of the latter is a bluesy cover of Bob Dylan‘s “Buckets of Rain.”)

Dave Van Ronk – Buckets Of Rain

http://youtu.be/babfyiMj5Bk

Born in Brooklyn in 1936, Van Ronk moved to the Village as a teenager and never left. Over five decades, he recorded scores of albums that blended blues, jazz, jug-band stomping, and sea chanteys. He was an early champion of Dylan and other up-and-coming songwriters like Joni Mitchell. When Joan Baez was beginning her own career in the Boston and Cambridge areas, she would hear reports of Van Ronk, who was a few years older than her. “He was already a myth,” Baez says. “He had terrible teeth, but he had the most astonishing pitch, sweet little notes amidst the growly ones. I knew thousands of people who sang the blues, but there weren’t many who did it well. He was the closest living offshoot of Leadbelly that I could get to see.”

Although Van Ronk never sold anywhere near the amount of records his protégés did, he accumulated many boldface-name fans. In Chronicles Volume One, Dylan wrote that he’d first heard Van Ronk’s records while growing up in the Midwest. “He was passionate and stinging,” wrote Dylan, “sang like a solder of fortune and sounded like he paid the price. . . I loved his style.” Tom Waits (whose voice recalls Van Ronk’s) has long been an admirer, and Stephen King dropped Van Ronk’s name in his novella Riding the Bullet.

PLEASE MR. KENNEDY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lSwO-k-RqNA

Vuocolo Van Ronk, who met Van Ronk in the Seventies but didn’t hook up with him until the early Eighties (Van Ronk was married before, to Terri Thal), recalls the time she and Van Ronk had just returned home to their Village apartment after a trip. There was a knock on the door, and expecting it to be Van Ronk, who’d run out for an errand, she opened it — and found Dylan standing there. “Dave around?” he asked. She invited him in and offered him coffee, and the two waited for Van Ronk to show up, after which the two men talked for hours. “I thought, ‘Bob Dylan is sitting in my living room,'” says Vuocolo Van Ronk. “He seemed a little nervous, but he wanted to be alone with Dave, and Dave was very happy to see him.”

Inside Llewyn Davis slips in more than a few details from Van Ronk’s memoir. Like Van Ronk, Davis spends time in the merchant marines, schleps to Chicago to unsuccessfully audition for the famed Gate of Horn club, rejects the idea of joining a Peter, Paul and Mary-style folk group, and complains to the head of his record company that he’s so broke he can’t afford a winter coat.

‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ Soundtrack: The RS Review

Those close to Van Ronk insist that the troubled, largely solipsistic Davis, who spends the film dealing with a traumatic personal event, couldn’t be further from Van Ronk. “That character is simply not Dave,” says Wald. “People slept on his couch — he didn’t sleep on theirs. And the reason Dave became who he was in the Village was the way he welcomed anyone who cared about the music. Llewyn is clearly not that guy.”

Yet both Wald and Vuocolo Van Ronk think Van Ronk would have approved of the movie, since a part of Van Ronk always wanted to be more popular. (According to Wald, Van Ronk had the idea to record “The Gambler” before Kenny Rogers did but wasn’t able to convince a record company to let him cut it.) And even if Inside Llewyn Davisisn’t technically about her late, revered husband, Vuocolo Van Ronk says there’s a small, tangible part of him in the film. During scenes set in the Upper West Side home of some of Davis’ academic friends, she donated some of Van Ronk’s collection of primitive art from New Guinea and the Pacific Northwest. “That was my way of sneaking Dave in,” she says. “It’s funny to see the movie and see pieces of our living room in there.”

BEST SONGS FROM – Inside Llewyn Davis SOUNDTRACK

http://youtu.be/0XlRokV6M3w

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/meet-the-folk-singer-who-inspired-inside-llewyn-davis-20131202#ixzz3TAoHzow3
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HIWAY AMERICA-GREENWICH VILLAGE WHAT REMAINS OF N.Y. BEAT GENERATION?

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Greenwich Village Sunday (1960 Documentary On The Counterculture / Beat

Culture In 1960’s New York)

popopoimages

http://youtu.be/nBfJyGjtxRg

Greenwich Village: what remains of New York’s beat generation haunts?

Inside Llewyn Davis

http://youtu.be/R3v9pcQJZRU

A new Coen brothers film celebrates Greenwich Village in its 60s heyday, but what’s left of Dylan and Kerouac’s New York? Karen McVeigh takes a cycle tour of the area
Inside Llewyn Davis still
A still from the Coen Brothers new film, Inside Llewyn Davis. Photograph: Alison Rosa/Studio Canal
Karen McVeigh
@karenmcveigh1
Sunday 22 December 2013 01.00 EST Last modified on Thursday 22 May 2014 06.51 EDT

Five decades have passed since America’s troubadours and beat poets flocked to Greenwich Village, filling its smoky late-night basement bars and coffee houses with folk songs and influencing some of the most recognisable musicians of the era.

A few landmarks of those bygone bohemian days – most recently portrayed in the Coen brothers’ film Inside Llewyn Davis, out on 24 January – still exist. The inspiration for the movie’s fictional anti-hero, Davis, was Brooklyn-born Dave Van Ronk, a real- life blues and folk singer with no small talent, who worked with performers such as Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan, but remained rooted in the village until he died in 2002, declining to leave it for any length of time and refusing to fly for many years. Van Ronk’s posthumously published memoir, the Mayor of MacDougal Street, takes its name from the street that was home to the Gaslight Cafe, and other early 60s folk clubs.

The Village stretches from the Hudson River Park east as far as Broadway, and from West Houston Street in the south up to West 14th Street. Its small scale makes it easy to explore on foot and perfect for a musical pilgrimage, but the arrival last summer of New York’s bike-sharing scheme, Citibike, makes for a more adventurous experience.

CitiBikers in Greenwich Village
CitiBikers in Greenwich Village. Photograph: Alamy
I picked up a bike outside Franklin Street subway station, south of the Village in Tribeca, and headed out to the river, at Pier 45. Looking south you can see One World Trade Center: at 541m, it’s now the tallest building in the western hemisphere. Cycle or walk to the end of the boardwalk that juts out into the Hudson, facing Hoboken, New Jersey, and look to your left and you can see the Statue of Liberty. From there, it’s a short cycle along Christopher Street, up Hudson and along West 10th, to Bleecker Street, where designer boutiques such as Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors and Lulu Guinness mark the area’s steep gentrification.

On MacDougal Street, a jumble of comedy cellars, theatres and cheap eateries have mostly replaced the old, liquorless cafes and basement bars of the folk scene. It is the hub of New York University’s campus and many of the bars, falafel joints and pizza houses are priced for students, with $2 beers thrown in.

But several older venues still exist, including the Bitter End, which staged folk “hootenannies” every Tuesday and now calls itself New York’s oldest rock club”. The White Horse Tavern, built in 1880, still stands on the corner of Hudson Street and 11th. It was used by New York’s literary community in the 1950s – most notably Welsh bard Dylan Thomas. It was here, myth has it, that the writer had been drinking in November 1953, before he was rushed to hospital from his room at the Chelsea Hotel, and died a few days later.

Dave Van Ronk
Folk singer Dave Van Ronk, the inspiration for the Llewyn Davis character. Photograph: Kai Shuman/Getty Images
The original Cafe Wha? remains at 115 MacDougal Street, on the corner of Minetta Lane. In the bitter winter of 1961, when the Coen brothers movie is set, cash-strapped artists similar to Davis would take their chances at the open mic. It was here that Bob Dylan made his New York debut, and Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac performed. Cafe Wha? continued to attract artists and musicians long after the Village folk scene gave way to rock’n’roll. A notice on the door catalogues a few of the famous names who played here: Jimi Hendrix, Ritchie Havens, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard and the Velvet Underground. It is still a popular music venue, with a house band playing five nights a week.

The real centre of the folk scene back then, however, was Washington Square, where musicians would gather on Sundays to swap ideas, learn new material and play. According to folk singer and historian Elijah Wald, the ballad and blues singers who sat around the fountain in the park created sounds that would influence artists from Joni Mitchell and Joan Baez to folk-rock groups the Lovin’ Spoonful, the Byrds and the Mamas and the Papas. The hero of the Coens’ film is not Van Ronk, according to Wald, but he does sing some Van Ronk songs and shares his working-class background.

When I visited on a sunny but cold December day, there was only one musician, a saxophonist, playing under Washington Square’s stone arch, but at weekends the park fills with rap and jazz musicians playing to tourists and students. Bikes are not officially allowed inside the square, but there are Citibike stations around it, so it’s easy to park and walk around.

A block north of the park, on West 8th Street, is a historic 107-room property once known as Marlton House and home to many writers and poets, who were attracted by relatively cheap rates and the bohemian neighbourhood. Jack Kerouac wrote The Subterraneans and Tristessa while living here and, in a darker episode, Valerie Solanas was staying in room 214 in 1968, when she became infamous for stalking and then shooting Andy Warhol.

The Marlton Hotel
The new Marlton Hotel
Sean MacPherson, who owns the stylish Bowery and Jane hotels nearby, has just reopened the building as the Parisian-inspired Marlton Hotel (marltonhotel.com). I popped in to its very comfortable lobby for coffee and a flick through its copy of John Strausbaugh’s The Village: 400 years of Beats and Bohemians, Radicals and Rogues. And I caught up with Strausbaugh later, to ask him about the village in the early 1960s, when young idealists were living hand to mouth and sleeping on friends’ couches.

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“In 1961, if you were in any way an artistic person in America, in that vast American landscape, you were a lonely figure,” said Strausbaugh. “You heard about San Francisco, you heard about Greenwich Village, and you went there. You didn’t play there to make money; you went there to be heard. Like Dylan, who played at the Cafe Wha?, then got another entry-level gig, then began playing at the biggest places.”

There were others, Strausbaugh said, like Van Ronk, who were talented, but whose ambitions were more modest than those of Dylan and Baez. The unique thing about the Village, he added, is that it survived so long as a bohemian enclave, from the early 1850s, when it attracted poets such as Walt Whitman, to the beatniks and folk revivalists of the 1950s and later.

“The left bank [in Paris] did not last 100 years, but the Village did,” he said.

Many of the buildings and sometimes entire streets in the Village have been preserved and are now home to some of the most expensive real estate in Manhattan and sought-after for their distinctive, old Greenwich Village look. A struggling folk artist might find a cheap meal in one of the student cafes around MacDougal Street, but they would never be able to afford to live in the area – or anywhere in Manhattan, realistically.

“It has not been completely finished off,” said Strausbaugh. “There are still a lot of theatres. But the people who make the music have not been able to live there for 20 or 30 years.”

Greenwich Village: Music That Defined a Generation Q&A at DOC NYC 2012

http://youtu.be/28cc8qaI748

Bleecker Street: Greenwich Village in the ’60s traces and tributes the bohemian Mecca’s part in the emergence of singer/songwriters and the folk revival during the ’60s. The initial passion and sense of discovery in this music remains undimmed, as politically and emotionally conscious songs by Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton, Tim Buckley, Judy Collins, and Paul Simon are reinterpreted by contemporary artists like Chrissie Hynde, Ron Sexsmith, Beth Nielsen Chapman, and many others.

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LEGENDS OF FOLK: THE VILLAGE SCENE | Clip | PBS

http://youtu.be/VQjVXeUz7uI

THE VILLAGE MOVEMENT

http://www.nytimes.com/video/movies/100000003523696/this-weeks-movies-feb-20-2015.html?playlistId=1248069018693

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COOL PEOPLE – THE GRATEFUL DEAD CELEBRATING 50 YEARS

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http://youtu.be/RR3LaG4vcBk

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Grateful Dead, Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, Phil Lesh, and Bob Weir will reunite at Chicago’s Soldier Field, nearly 20 years to the day from the last Grateful Dead concert, which took place at the same venue. “Fare Thee Well: Celebrating 50 Years of Grateful Dead” will occur over three nights on July 3, 4, and 5, 2015, marking the original members’ last-ever performance together. The band will be joined by Trey Anastasio (guitar), Jeff Chimenti (keyboards), and Bruce Hornsby (piano). The group will perform two sets of music each night. In the tradition of the original Grateful Dead Ticketing Mail Order, tickets will first be made available via a first-come, first-served mail order system. All additional ticketing information is available at http://www.Dead50.net.

COOL PEOPLE – Watch Willie Nelson Tell the Story of His Legendary Guitar, Trigger

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Watch Willie Nelson Tell the Story of His Legendary Guitar, Trigger

An exclusive documentary on how the country icon changed music history with his beat-up Martin acoustic

 BY | February 11, 2015

Trigger, a beat-up, autograph-covered Martin N-20 acoustic, is just as recognizable as Nelson himself. And in the debut documentary in our “Mastering the Craft” series by Rolling Stone Films presented by Patrón, MaggieVision Productions and director David Chamberlin interview Nelson, his band and crew — plus friends including Jerry Jeff Walker and biographer Joe Nick Patoski, and fans like Woody Harrelson, who provides the documentary’s voiceover — to tell the story of how this instrument helped change music history.

Nelson discovered Trigger at a crossroads in his career. By 1969, he had spent nearly a decade trying to become a clean-cut solo success in Nashville. After a drunk destroyed his Guild acoustic, he decided to look for a new guitar with a sound similar to his gypsy-jazz hero Django Reinhardt (“I think he was the best guitar player ever,” Nelson says). His buddy Shot Jackson suggested the Martin classical “gut-string” guitar; Nelson bought it sight-unseen and gave it a name. “I named my guitar Trigger because it’s kind of my horse,” he explains. “Roy Rogers had a horse called Trigger.”

Later that year, Nelson’s house caught fire, and he raced inside to rescue Trigger and a pound of weed. He took the blaze as a sign it was time to relocate, returning to Texas to play the honky-tonk clubs he grew up around. The scene in Texas was more eclectic and wild, and Nelson began to thrive, pushing the boundaries of what everyone expected from an acoustic player. “No acoustic guitar at that time had been successfully amplified with a pickup,” Patoski says. Willie had a sound literally nobody else was getting.

Trigger has stayed by his side ever since, through the famous Fourth of July Picnics he started hosting in Texas in 1972, his experimental Number One breakthrough Red Headed Stranger, and all the rough times; when the IRS seized his possessions in the early Nineties, Willie sent his daughter, Lana, to hide the guitar in Hawaii. He’s had Trigger for so long and played it so hard and so much that his pick wore a sizable hole through its front. “My God! How do they keep that thing together?!” Patoski exclaims in the film. “I mean, it shouldn’t be playable.” Willie’s response? “I don’t want to put a guard over it,” he smiles. “I need a place to put my fingers.”

After five decades with his trusty companion, Nelson is still going strong. “I figure we’ll give out about the same time,” he says of the well-worn acoustic. “We’re both pretty old, got a few scars here and there, but we still manage to make a sound every now and then.”

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/videos/willie-nelson-rs-films-mastering-the-craft-trigger-20150211#ixzz3RUFskTXz
Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

KEROUAC’S BOOZY BEATITUDES ON ITALIAN TV, 1966

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KEROUAC’S BOOZY BEATITUDES ON ITALIAN TV, 1966
KEROUAC’S BOOZY BEATITUDES ON ITALIAN TV, 1966
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10.18.2010
10:54 pm

Pivanoimage

Writer, critic and translator Pivano ,interviews Jack Kerouac on BEATITUDES 1966. Kerouac is more than a wee bit shitfaced.

Fabulous live portrait of a freewheeling Kerouac.

Pivano was known for her insightful and freewheeling interviews of American beat writers, including Ginsberg, Corso, Bukowski and Burroughs. She had a knack for getting on the wavelength of writers being one herself. And she enjoyed drinking with them. Her published interviews with Bukowski are worth seeking out. Her longstanding friendship with Hemingway certainly prepared her for dealing with a bunch of drunk poets.

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