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Badass bikers, drugs, and hot chicks: The outlaw biker art of David Mann
08.19.2016
11:41 am

Topics:
Art
Crime
Drugs

Tags:
1960s
David Mann
biker culture


‘Tijuana Jail Break’ commissioned by Ed Roth for ‘Choppers Magazine’ by David Mann, 1966.
 
Artist David Mann loved motorcycle culture and his paintings bring his own personal experiences as a member of the El Forastero Motorcycle Club to life. El Forastero members were notorious for large-scale drug running operations and theft rings whose number one target were motorcycles back in the mid-60s—and many of Mann’s paintings document club events like biker weddings and debaucherous parties fueled by booze and drugs. Mann’s father was an illustrator and a member of the prestigious Society of Scribes & Illuminators in London—one of the most highly regarded calligraphy organizations in the world, and it is clear that Mann inherited some of his father’s artistic genes.
 

‘Hollywood Run.’
 
Mann started sketching images of fast cars during high school in which would lead him to his first gig as a car pinstriper. After high school Mann set out for California where he fell in love with motorcycles—specifically Harleys and began what would become a lifelong love-affair with biker culture in which Mann would express himself in every way possible. Eventually Mann would land back in his native Kansas City and upon his return would purchase his first bike—a 1948 Harley-Davidson “Panhead” and painted his first biker-centric painting dubbed “Hollywood Run.”  The painting would be among the entrants to an art show held at the Kansas City Custom Car Show in 1963 where it caught the eye of El Forastero founders Tom Fugle and Harlan “Tiny” Brower who in turn hipped the publisher of Choppers Magazine, Ed “Big Daddy” Roth—the fast car enthusiast and artist responsible for the revolting hot rod-loving vermin Rat Fink.

Roth immediately commissioned Mann to create a large number of posters for Choppers and the works would launch Mann’s career, which included a long relationship with another magazine that is synonymous with biker culture, Easyrider. That alliance would last nearly until the moment which Mann would sadly draw his last breath at the young age of 63 in 2004. If you dig what you see in this post you can purchase reproductions of Mann’s art here. Prints signed by Mann sell for hundreds and even thousands of dollars. Many of the badass posters that Mann created for Choppers Magazine included Roth’s name on the panel. Roth put his own copyright on the prints as they were commissioned works, but they were all done by Dave Mann.
 

‘The Blackboard Cafe,’ 1966.
 

‘Tecote Run,’ 1966.
 
More Mann after the jump…

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FREAK POWER: Hunter S. Thompson’s wildly entertaining 1970 run for sheriff
08.17.2016
10:16 am

Topics:
Drugs
Politics
Television

Tags:
Hunter S. Thompson


 
In 1970 a British news show called This Week sent a crew to Colorado to document Hunter S. Thompson‘s unusual campaign to become sheriff of Aspen. It should come as no surprise that the documentary they ended up making is just dynamite, a marvelous, evocative document of the culture clash soon after the Woodstock/Altamont moment.

The program, titled “Show Down at Aspen,” states that in the prior contest for the same position in 1966, the longhairs came quite close to stealing away the election by sheer stealth but that this year, all sides were very much on the alert. Carrol D. Whitmire, the incumbent, was looking to garner enough support to stave off the rumblings of the upstart potheads and their chosen maverick candidate Dr. Gonzo.

Let’s start with the resonant, unmistakably British voiceover, which early on describes HST,  not uncharitably, as “a hippie, a freak, an acid-head who openly smokes grass.” The show sets up the electoral contest as a battle between the older, more established residents of the ski resort and the long-haired newcomers who show no respect for the town’s status as a tourist attraction for the well-heeled—and then has the wit to undercut that very framing by cannily showing a smattering of “established” voters leaning for Thompson and younger ones not quite able to swallow Thompson’s schtick.

The first half has some truly fantastic footage of some hippies skinny-dipping (NSFW) and then passing around a few joints on the shore. A young Aspen police officer ambles down the slope to meet them—“a ‘pig,’ as the hippies normally call the police”—and quite astonishingly is shown enjoying one of the blunts and cheerfully admitting on camera that he smokes marijuana. (That guy should’ve been the poster child for a new generation of police officers that never came to pass.)

A few minutes later, a trio of elderly male Republicans describe their feared vision of an Aspen with HST in control. Those two sections, the pot use by the stream and the nattering of the out-of-touch old guard, make this show an absolute must-see.
 

Image from the Gonzo Gallery in Aspen, CO
 
The documentary explains that the result of the vote will hinge on turnout. The “freaks” are motivated, to be sure, but if enough of the regular solid citizens make their way to the polls, then HST’s chances will commensurately plummet. In the event, it emerges that turnout was indeed quite high—Whitmire was able to beat Thompson by a tally of roughly 1,500 to 1,000. Based on the evidence we see, Whitmire wasn’t hassling the drug users very much, and (let’s face it) in political terms (at least) Thompson is two steps away from a total nut. In the final analysis, it was Whitmire’s essential amiability that probably secured his victory.

The British documentary—and more—after the jump…..
 

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
The king of rolling joints and his smokable artwork

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Tony Greenland is the king of rolling joints. Not just your standard doobie but a whole array of incredible joint artworks—from comic book superheroes and cartoon characters to dinosaurs, guns and Jesus.

Tony has made a career out of his joint rolling skills. He resides in Oregon where recreational marijuana was legalized in 2015. He spends his time dreaming up and then creating weird and wonderful designs which can be smoked. Check out his other designs at Smokeable Art.
 
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More stunning joint works, after the jump….

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Teenage Wasteland: Texas teens getting stoned, 1973

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Teenagers getting out of their tree.
 
The great photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson said taking a good photograph is all about luck. The luck of the moment. The luck of the chance encounter. The luck of just being in the right place at the right time.

Marc St. Gil (1924-92) was in the right place at the right time when he met a bunch of teenagers on a day-out to the Frio Canyon River near Leakey, in Texas 1973. Marc was one of seventy freelance photographers hired by the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) to photograph America.

The EPA had been set up by President Nixon in 1970. One of its first assignments was Documerica a six-year project (1971-77) to document environmental issues, EPA activities and rural life in America during the seventies.

The youngsters Marc met were hanging out—chilling along the riverbank and smoking weed. With their permission, Marc photographed the youths. Two teenage girls sharing a joint. One older male lighting up a pipe. Marc was supposed to be photographing the effects of pollution on the river and landscape. Instead he photographed these carefree youngsters toking up and having fun.

One can’t help but wonder—what happened next? What happened to these carefree youngsters? Where are they now?
 
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‘Teenage Girls Wading the Frio Canyon River near Leakey Texas, While on an Outing with Friends near San Antonio 05/1973.’
 
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More of Marc St. Gil ‘s photographs of dope-smoking teens, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Peyote Pomade: When your hair wants to get high
08.08.2016
10:25 am

Topics:
Drugs
Fashion

Tags:
Peyote
Pomade


 
According to the label, Peyote Pomade is good for hair styling as well as relief from cramps, rheumatism and “softening of the nerve fibers” (I hate it when that happens). It is suggested you use it before going to bed so it can work its magic while you sleep. Imagine the dreams.
 

 
As a hair gel, this could give new meaning to head trip. I’m visualizing rockabilly dudes with day-glow quiffs that melt and reform before your eyes as flaming desert ravens. Good for punks too: I saw Mescalito in your mohawk. 

Carlos Castaneda loved the stuff:
 

 
In addition to peyote, some gels contains camphor, arnica, eucalyptus and petroleum jelly among other things, depending on brand and suggested usage. Some claim to contain marijuana. Spliff meets quiff?

Historically, people have used peyote for treating fractures, wounds, and snakebite. So this stuff just may work. Various Peyote pomades are available online from multiple Mexican-based resources. You can get yours here. Tell them Don Juan sent you.
 

 

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
King of Gonzo: Portraits of Hunter S. Thompson by Ralph Steadman
07.25.2016
03:16 pm

Topics:
Art
Drugs
Heroes

Tags:
Hunter S. Thompson
Ralph Steadman


A portrait of Hunter S. Thompson by Ralph Steadman.
 
Artist Ralph Steadman remained tight with his friend and muse Hunter S. Thompson until the later’s death in 2005—despite the fact that when Steadman first met the gonzo journalist in 1970 he was convinced that Thompson didn’t like him. And he wasn’t wrong.
 

 
When Steadman was given the assignment to create illustrations for a story Thompson was penning on the Kentucky Derby for the short-lived publication Scanlan’s Monthly  (The Kentucky Derby is Decadent and Depraved June 1970, Volume one, Number four), true to form, the notoriously cantankerous Thompson took an “instant dislike” to him. Steadman recalls that Hunter thought he was “pompous” and during several occasions when he was attempting to create some of the illustrations for the Derby story he could hear Thompson muttering the words “For God’s sake, stop your filthy scribbling.”

Although they got off to a rough start (like the majority of Thompson’s relationships with most human beings) the two would go on to collaborate for decades. I’ve been a fan of Steadman’s art since I was a kid thanks to my father and the confrontational artist was the focus of a great documentary back in 2012 For No Good Reason which I highly recommend you check out. Many of Steadman’s portraits of the great Dr. Gonzo, Hunter S. Thompson follow.
 

1996.
 

1997.
 
More pure, unadulterated GONZO after the jump…

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‘The Wall’: Stunning behind-the-scenes images from Pink Floyd’s harrowing cinematic acid trip


A behind-the-scenes images of Bob Geldof as ‘Pink’ and actual skinheads from the 1982 film ‘Pink Floyd - The Wall.’
 
I don’t know how many nights I spent in my youth tripping balls on acid in a dark movie theater with 100 or so of my stoned out peers watching 1982’s WTF film Pink Floyd - The Wall for the 20th time (I guess I answered my own question there: 20). It was truly a rite of passage where I grew up back in Boston and I know that wasn’t the only place where young minds were getting blown apart by visions of marching hammers or a bloody, soon to be eyebrowless Bob Geldof screaming “TAKE THAT FUCKERS!” as he tosses a television out of a window.

Before I continue, I’ll give you a minute to recover from that mini-flashback you just had.
 

Bob Geldof being transformed into your worst drug-induced nightmare.
 
If you are following the news at all these days (and I wouldn’t blame you if you and the “news” are on “a break” right now as most of it makes me want to hide under my bed) you’ve likely seen some of the comparisons from last week’s GOP Convention to scenes from director Alan Parker’s brilliant adaptation of Pink Floyd’s 1979 conceptual masterpiece, The Wall. As I am about as nostalgic as they come I decided to watch the film once again (sans acid this go ‘round) and it should be of no surprise that despite a lack of chemicals cavorting around in my head the film is still quite impossible to look away from. It is also quite possibly even more terrifying to watch now when you allow yourself to consider the parallels some scenes seem to run with the ugly rhetoric spewing from the mouths of elected officials and a man who is currently vying to occupy the highest political office in the United States.

But as I often do, I’ve once again digressed away from the point of this post which is to share with you some remarkable behind-the-scenes photos from The Wall that I had never seen before as well as an interesting tidbit about the film’s star Bob Geldof. Apparently Geldof (who’s allegedly the leader of a new liberal political “party” in England called the “Sneerers” in case you were wondering what he’s currently up to) couldn’t swim and was also massively phobic when it came to blood. So when it came time to film the scene where Pink is bleeding out in a swimming pool, the reluctant Geldof was placed on top of a see-through plastic body mold so he could appear to be floating in the pool among a cloud of his blood for the sequence. Yikes. Many of the images in this post can be found in a must-own book for any Floyd fan by David Appleby, Pink Floyd - Behind The Wall.
 

 

Director Alan Parker on the set of ‘The Wall’ with ‘Little Pink’ played by actor David Bingham.
 

Alan Parker and an eyebrowless Bob Geldof.
 
More glimpses behind ‘The Wall’ after the jump…

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There’s a 50-minute version of the Beatles’ ‘Tomorrow Never Knows’ for the song’s 50th anniversary
07.14.2016
09:29 am

Topics:
Drugs
Music

Tags:
psychedelia
the Beatles


 
If you think the Beatles’ “Tomorrow Never Knows” is a nice place to visit, why not live there?

Andrew Liles, described on his Mixcloud page as “a prolific solo artist, producer, remixer and sometime member of Nurse With Wound and Current 93,” has radically remixed and enlarged the Fabs’ psychedelic studio creation for the 50th anniversary of its release. Over sixteen times longer than the original—nearly one and a half times as long as the entire Revolver album, for that matter—Liles’ “50 Minutes of Tomorrow Never Knows by the Beatles for 50 Years” is roomy enough to accommodate you and the whole family.

Liles has ventured into this territory before, improving rock history with his creations “45 Minutes of Black Sabbath by Black Sabbath for 45 Years” and the 70-minute Motörhead tribute “Overkill Overkilled by Overkill,” but the treatment is particularly well-suited to the song John Lennon originally called “The Void.” (According to Revolution in the Head, Lennon said “he changed the title in order to avoid being charged with writing a drug song.”) It sounds like you’re sitting inside the tambura for about the first fifteen minutes, and once your brain’s adjusted to that, the appearance of every familiar element—Ringo’s drum pattern, John’s Leslie-treated vocals—is a momentous occasion.
 

At Abbey Road recording Revolver, 1966
 
Liles writes:

On the 5th of August 2016 ‘Revolver’ will be 50 years old. ‘Revolver’ is arguably the first mainstream pop album to explore esoteric themes, ‘exotic’ instrumentation and use the studio as a tool to create otherworldly unimagined sounds. It’s an album that rewrote the rules and laid the foundations for audioscopic cosmonauts like myself to venture deeper into uncharted universes of sound. We have the fab five (how can we forget George Martin) to thank for opening new possibilities and new dimensions. Without their innovation the world of sound would be a lot less colourful.

Surrender to the void, turn off your mind, relax and float down stream with my impossibly elongated, psychedelic, smokeathonic adaptation of Tomorrow Never Knows.

Don’t forget to push “repeat” before your senses recede into a dimensionless point of perfect mental vacuity. Oh, and the book that inspired the original song is still in print.
 

Posted by Oliver Hall | Leave a comment
‘Let Me Hang You’: William S. Burroughs reads the dirtiest parts of ‘Naked Lunch’


 
In the mid-90s, at the request of his longtime collaborator producer Hal Willner and his manager James Grauerholz, William S. Burroughs recorded selected readings from his notorious novel Naked Lunch—some of the raunchiest and dirtiest parts of what was (and still is) a notably raunchy and dirty book—that were to be set to musical accompaniment.

Wilner brought in guitarist Bill Frisell, pianist Wayne Horvitz and violist Eyvind Kang, but the project was eventually scrapped

The project was revived when Wilner was introduced to prolific weirdo garage rocker King Khan through Lou Reed, and he realized that Khan was well suited to put music behind Burroughs’ dry narration. Khan brought on Australian psych rockers band Frowning Clouds and M Lamar (who happens to be the identical twin brother of Orange Is The New Black‘s Laverne Cox) to help.

The resulting album Let Me Hang You will be the first full-length release on Khan’s new record label Khannibalism with the Ernest Jenning Record Co. It comes out this Friday and you can preorder it now. Listen to the full album below. Extremely NSFW.
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
‘I feel good!’: Jordan Peele reenacts James Brown’s crazy drug-fueled CNN interview word for word
06.30.2016
04:25 pm

Topics:
Drugs
Music
Television

Tags:
James Brown
Jordan Peele


 
Here’s a priceless bit of business from the irreplaceable Jordan Peele.

In May of 1988 James Brown was arrested in Aiken County, South Carolina, on charges of drug possession and fleeing from the police after his wife Adrienne called 911 because he was threatening her safety. Brown was released after paying $24,000 in bail, after which he headed for Atlanta to do an interview on CNN’s Sonya Live! in LA wth Sonya Friedman.

Brown, clearly on something (my money is on PCP), seemed scarcely aware that he was in any legal difficulty and insisted on answering most of Friedman’s queries with lyrics from his songs (“I FEEL GOOD!”) or other similar non sequiturs.
 

 
You know who Jordan Peele is—he and Keegan-Michael Key have been killing it for years with their Comedy Central sketch show Key and Peele, their 2016 movie Keanu, and various appearances elsewhere, including Fargo.

I desperately want the two of them to interview Donald Trump, but before that happens, this delirious recreation of James Brown’s 1988 CNN interview will have to do.

I wrote about this great event back in 2013, and it still remains one of the most remarkable interviews I’ve ever seen.
 
Watch Peele’s glorious impersonation after the jump…....
 

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
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