Text and Drugs and Rock 'n' Roll
Simon Warner
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Buy *Text and Drugs and Rock 'n' Roll: The Beats and Rock Culture* by Simon Warner online

Text and Drugs and Rock 'n' Roll: The Beats and Rock Culture
Simon Warner
Bloomsbury Academic
544 pages
March 2013
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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This is a very deep read on the symbiosis between the giants of Beat literature and rock music. The major literary players were Jack Kerouac (10,000 Maniacs even dedicated a song to the great one titled "Hey, Jack Kerouac"), Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs. Meeting them on common ground were rocker/poets like Bob Dylan, The Beatles, David Bowie, The Clash, Kurt Cobain and others.

Warner poses some intriguing questions: Was rock music the natural background music for the Beats? Were hippies actually the Beats during the golden 1960s? Did the Beats even dig electric rock music? These questions are answered by looking through the lenses of the influence of drugs, the political arena, the pursuit of all things spiritual and religious, the validity of the counter-culture, and other areas.

There are chapters about Allen Ginsberg's odyssey to Liverpool in 1965; Pete Brown, poet/lyricist for Cream; Bob Dylan; and many more. Simon Warner's scholarly approach will take fierce concentration to get through it, but it is a finely-tuned book aimed at the reader interested in both the Beats and The Beatles and is well worth the hours spent here.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at www.curledup.com. Steven Rosen, 2013

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