October 30, 2019

The old is always new and the new is always getting older. As soon as it appears,

the new takes its place in time, which blesses it with character. The new is no

longer what it was, but neither is the old. Both get older and, in that sense,

become something other than they were. Getting older, they become something

new. This is an old idea. I am not saying anything new. Or am I?

Photo of decaying graffiti on Gooseberry Island...

When Donald Trump recently tweeted a dark warning of a “Civil War like fracture in this Nation” were he to be impeached, it was further evidence of his Administration’s troubled relationship with that period in American history. The President has also suggested that the abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass was still alive; asked, “Why was there the Civil War?”; and described white supremacists rallying around a Robert E...

October 29, 2019

When moving to a foreign country (in this case Florida), adjustments must be made. First up — getting one’s papers in order. The local DMV was shockingly efficient. But even more shocking was looking at my new driver’s license and seeing my face under “FLORIDA.” It was suddenly official. I AM A CRACKER! Never before have I lived east of Austin, Texas.

Austin was/is a very liberal city. Same for Los Angeles, where Lynn and I liv...

October 23, 2019

THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY —– Missing the Point

The most important element of the 2020 election stood unnoticed in plain sight from start to finish in October’s Democratic presidential debate. The doubly centrist combine of CNN and The New York Times never faced head-on the party’s two linked zeitgeist-shakers: Race and Gender. This, even though the event was moderated by an out gay Euro-American man, an African-American man (gender...

October 9, 2019

Every tenderfoot city-bred person like myself would benefit by reading my friend Stanley Crawford’s new work, The Garlic Papers — A Small Garlic Farm In The Age Of Global Vampires,  if only to get the feel of how many skills and tools and thoughts are necessary to work even a two-acre garlic farm beside a small river in northern New Mexico. You think what you do is hard? Try farming! Honestly, I’ve known Stanley for a long tim...

October 9, 2019

Pieta Brown

Freeway

There aren’t any other singers like Pieta Brown. She has a sensuous way of blending the sound of air with music notes that result in magic. It’s as if the clock stops and life’s fascinating mysteries are frozen on the edge of a falling leaf. Her voice is evocative of a time when one had to sound only like themselves to be heard. Brown has been making music long enough to have gotten down to its essence, never...

September 4, 2019

Shane Alexander

A Life Like Ours

Is it possible to find an album that feels so right, so true, so, well, spiritual, that it feels like life has just turned the bend into the 1970s and the past fifty years of broken promises and dead ends hasn’t occurred? It’s not a retro experience either, as it is a shining moment of belief and beauty. Singer-songwriter-guitarist Shane Alexander has previously made six solo albums, and each of...

September 3, 2019

WITH ABBIE HOFFMAN — BECOMING PIRATES FOR WOODSTOCK

Woodstock was the buzz. At RAT we were getting calls from underground papers around the country about the “Aquarian Festival”. Abbie chugged into RAT, “What do you think of Woodstock?” 

“It will be huge.”

“Yeah, and it will be a disaster. They are not prepared for medical, food, or much else besides music. Let’s go meet with them and help out.”

We picked up a friend from Newsreel...

August 13, 2019

This beautiful world is a garden of flowers . . .

This beautiful world is a city of pain . . .

This beautiful evening it’s time to rock and roll

Mandy Mercier

Time flies, fun or no fun.

Deborah Milosevich

Here is Woodstock remembered in 1983, 1989, 2009, and a coda done now, 2019. As I read them over, wincing more than once, I find that as the years passed my memories have not dimmed, perhaps because even standing in its midst it w...

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