Hunter S. Thompson hawks Apple’s Macintosh computer in 90s commercial
06:15 am


Hunter S. Thompson

Ah yes, this is more what I’m used to
Apple products have always branded themselves as counterculture and cutting edge—the technology of “creative types.” But it’s still a little surprising to see Hunter S. Thompson on a commercial for computers. Don’t get me wrong—I’ve never been too judgmental when it comes to artists schilling this doo-dad or that widget to make some extra scratch. It’s not like he’s tap-dancing for Exxon or Halliburton, and there are no clean hands in a dirty world—getting pissy at an anti-capitalist for making money under capitalism is like getting pissed at an environmentalist for breathing smog. And Hunter had notorious bouts of writer’s block; it’s very possible he just needed the money.

Or maybe Thompson just wanted a free computer. Supposedly, he received a Mac in the 80’s from an editor. Since his assignments were perpetually late, everyone hoped the new technology would speed him along. That might have worked, had he not became irritated and blown the poor machine away with a shotgun… supposedly. Say what you will about PCs, I could shoot three before they cost as much as one Apple.

He’s still a pretty fucking hilarious choice for a spokesperson—did that famously speedy mumble (accompanied here by butt-rock guitar) really entice the Gen X-ers to rush our and buy Macs?

Via Open Culture

Written by Amber Frost | Discussion
Hunter S. Thompson: Louisville, Kentucky finally gets around to honoring Dr. Gonzo
12:28 pm


Hunter S. Thompson

Next spring Hunter S. Thompson’s hometown of Louisville, Kentucky will unveil a public mural banner on a downtown building honoring him as one of their Hometown Heroes, nine years after his death. The banner will feature a portrait of HST by his friend and collaborator, Ralph Steadman, the British artist whose drawings appropriately illustrated Thompson’s work: wild, flowing, surreal, sometimes elegant, other times grotesque, and wildly funny.

Why has it taken so long? The Greater Louisville Pride Foundation’s president admitted that Thompson had “some issues with his life that didn’t really qualify for the banners.” Even so, fans, family, and friends, including Louisville poet Ron Whitehead, have been lobbying for some kind of major memorial for eight years.

Louisville’s list of native heroes is thick with athletes and seriously short on people from the arts. Come on, Louisville, don’t be like those po-dunk small towns who can only be bothered to honor natives who went on to professional sports or marriage to William Shatner. 

Here is a list of all the people, institutions, and entities already declared heroes: boxing legend Muhammad Ali, Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, jockey Pat Day, broadcaster Bob Edwards, NBA star Darrell Griffith, sculptor Ed Hamilton, Louisville Slugger inventor Bud Hillerich, Heisman Trophy winner Paul Hornung, musician Patrick Henry Hughes, The Kentucky Derby, surgeons Dr. Harold E. Kleinert and Joseph E. Kutz, New York City Ballet principal dancer Wendy Whelan, whiskey distiller George Garvin Brown, University of Louisville men’s basketball coach Denny Crum, explorer Tori Murden McClure, Olympic swimmer Mary T. Meagher, Hall of Fame baseball player “Pee Wee” Reese, KFC founder Colonel Harland Sanders (I am not kidding), TV journalist Diane Sawyer, New York Giants quarterback and sports commentator Phil Simms, and welterweight boxer Rudell Stitch. It would be nice to see a banner for The Gits’ Mia Zapata someday too.

Steadman wrote to Roger Riddell of Louisville Magazine in 2012:

Who in all of Louisville is blameless that they should throw the first stone? Is there such a person in all the world who can claim such an awesome distinction? C’mon, good folks! Own up and celebrate the life of a man who wasn’t afraid to call a spade a spade… I believe that the citizens of Louisville should feel real proud to call ‘HST,’ one of their favorite sons, a true Kentucky pioneer!

Ron Whitehead produced The Hunter S. Thompson Tribute in Louisville in December 1996, where Mayor Harvey Sloane presented Thompson with the key to the city, and Governor Paul E. Patton bestowed the title of Kentucky Colonel on Thompson, as well as his pals Whitehead, Johnny Depp, and Warren Zevon. The Hometown Hero banner proves that all the upstanding people who held a grudge against him for writing “The Kentucky Derby is Decadent and Depraved” are probably long gone. Res ipsa loquitur.

Below, Hunter S. Thompson is confronted by an angry Hells Angel on Canadian television in the late 1960s:

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Double Gonzo: Hunter S. Thompson Interviews Keith Richards

Written by Kimberly J. Bright | Discussion
Young Hunter S. Thompson slams ‘empty head’ Jack Kerouac in 1958 letter
10:11 am


Hunter S. Thompson
Jack Kerouac

Via Letter of Note’s Shaun Usher on Twitter:


Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
Minute-long ‘Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas’ is a 60-second drug binge

Dear lord, my brain was just scrambled, then fried, and then scrambled again with cheese, onions and a side order of LSD while watching this 60-second Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas homage by 1A4STUDIO.

One of the YouTube commenters is asking for a minute-long version of The Big Lebowski. That would be good, too.

Via Das Kraftfuttermischwerk

Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
1960s Narcotics & Dangerous Drugs Identification Kit
05:43 am


Hunter S. Thompson
Joseph Cornell

drug id kit
I doubt these displays ever convinced any kids to abstain from drugs (come on, who just walks around with a poppy?), but they’re sort of beautiful in a Joseph Cornell meets Hunter S. Thomspon kind of way. I’d put one on my wall, anyways.
drug kit 2
More photos after the jump…

Written by Amber Frost | Discussion
Double Gonzo: Hunter S. Thompson interviews Keith Richards
08:40 am


Keith Richards
Hunter S. Thompson

Keith Richards and Hunter S. Thompson muse on The Beatles, the afterlife, getting a full blood transfusion and using the Hells Angels for concert security.

Wayne Ewing, who shot this video, writes of the behind the scenes goings on at the Hunter Thomson Films website:

The interview itself was, like most of Hunter’s interviews, quite disappointing. You can begin to see why it took me so many years to shoot and piece together enough material with Hunter to make intelligible films – Breakfast with Hunter & the work-in-progress Breakfast with Hunter: Vol. Two. Old television interviews with Hunter like these abound on the internet, except this one has Keith.

At 4am we stopped shooting, and I urged the crew from Denver to wrap as quickly as possible. Rather than splitting asap as you expect, Keith hung around while we wrapped, sitting on the couch in the kitchen, not wanting to leave the inner sanctum of Gonzo quite yet. Hunter clearly wanted to get the Denver crew out so he could have more private time with Keith, who by now had fallen asleep on the couch, looking exactly like the famous 1972 Annie Leibovitz shot of him splayed out in a chair. As the crew endlessly wrapped cables, an unconscious Keith began to slide off the couch onto the floor.

Good luck understanding much of what the good Doctor says. Keith speaks the Queen’s English compared to mush-mouthed Thompson.

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Fear and Loathing in Hunter S. Thompson’s FBI file
12:04 pm


Hunter S. Thompson

Although he doubts that what he got via an FOIA filing is anywhere near complete, MuckRock user Cody Winchester still found plenty of interesting items in the file the FBI kept on gonzo journalist Dr. Hunter S. Thompson:

In 1967, the FBI was keeping close tabs on The People’s Weekly, the communist party’s west-coast newspaper affiliate. They had an informant who knew his way around the circulation department and was feeding them names of subscribers.

Among them, according to newly released records, was Hunter S. Thompson, a high-flying, drug-addled journalist who had just written a book about riding with the Hell’s Angels.

The FBI began gathering string on Thompson, who moved from San Francisco to Woody Creek, Colo. (where, decades later, he would commit suicide).

The agency followed Thompson’s unsuccessful bid for sheriff of Pitkin County, in which the Freak Power candidate memorably shaved his head bald and began referring to the crew-cut sheriff he was running against as “my long-haired opponent.” (Thompson campaigned on promises to rename Aspen “Fat City USA”; to jackhammer the streets and lay down sod; and to legalize drugs for personal use. Profit-seeking traffickers would be put in stocks on the courthouse lawn.)

FBI agents interviewed Thompson’s mailman and other Woody Creek locals. They collected copies of the Aspen Wallposter, a bimonthly newspaper that Thompson edited with the artist Tom Benton; illustrations of a bloody-mouthed Nixon (spelled with a swastika) and “comments regarding law enforcement and the Director” caught the agency’s eye. The Secret Service was alerted.

All this and more is detailed in Thompson’s FBI file, which I got a copy of last week.

But it’s only 58 pages long. Cody is probably right about this not being the entire file. I have Timothy Leary’s FBI file and it’s a foot tall stack of photocopies. Hunter S. Thompson’s life would surely have called for the same level of “documentation” during the Nixon administration and beyond, as Leary’s did.

Read Hunter S. Thompson’s FBI file (or at least part of it) at MuckRock.

Thank you, Chris Campion!

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Hunter S. Thompson: Fear and Loathing in Gonzovision, 1978

Fear and Loathing in Gonzovision AKA Fear and Loathing on the Road to Hollywood, is a 1978 film produced by BBC Omnibus and directed by Nigel Finch.

Here’s how Documentary Heaven described the film:

A fascinating, 30 year old BBC documentary on the Good Doctor and Ralph Steadman, five years after Nixon’s resignation, and on a road trip to Hollywood (to work on what would become Where the Buffalo Roam).

Includes an interesting scene of John Dean chatting with Hunter about his Watergate testimony (at about 32 minutes), the birth of the “Re-Elect Nixon Campaign” (with a Bill Murray cameo), and a remarkably eerie scene with Hunter and Ralph planning Hunter’s final monument and his ashes being shot into the air, long before the actual fact.


Via Exile on Mona Street

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Hunter S Thompson would have been 75 today

Hunter S Thompson would have been 75 today, had he not blown his brains out one cold winter’s day in 2005. Thompson was a brilliant and exuberant writer, who may have been the last great journalist to inspire generations of wannabes to follow in his footsteps - perhaps more for the drink, drugs and counter-culture life-style, than a dedication to the solitary toil.

Thompson’s best writing came between 1965 and 1980, with Hell’s Angels, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail and The Great Shark Hunt. These books contain the essays, articles and tales that revolutionized the contents of every editors in-tray, and spawned a flood of Gonzo-lite writers.

Sadly, the life of excess took its toll, and by 2005, Thompson’s writing was read with the affection one has for an old and trusty dog, now too gone to run and hunt through the woods, but one is warmed by a sense of longing for those past adventures shared. The problem for Thompson was he became, or was perceived to be his alter ego Raoul Duke, and a point he raised during a BBC documentary in 1978:

“I’m never sure which one people want me to be [Thompson or Duke], and sometimes they conflict… I am living a normal life, but beside me is this myth, growing larger and getting more and more warped. When I get invited to Universities to speak, I’m not sure who they’re inviting, Duke or Thompson… I suppose that my plans are to figure out some new identity, kill off one life and start another.”

It left Thompson the writer little scope to progress with his literary ambitions. He became cuffed to the drug-addled doctor, firing handguns into the reddening twilight.

Yet, for all that, Thompson has been and still is a major influence on journalism and blogging and literature. How long for, is up to those who can come fresh to his work and see the brilliance of the man and his talents. But today, let’s celebrate the great Gonzo’s 75th anniversary.

Happy Birthday Hunter S Thompson!

Below is Buy the Ticket. Take the Ride a profile of HST, with some fine moments, with rare archive, a selection of interviews (including John Cusack, Johnny Depp, Ed Bradley) and a bizarre opening sequence with the inimitable Gary Busey.


Written by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
Awesome graffitied ‘Fear and Loathing’ ‘Bat Country’ stop sign

Spotted in Hamburg, Germany. Photo by Christian Berg.

Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
Hunter S. Thompson: Live at UC Auditorium, Boulder from 1977

Audio of Hunter S. Thompson at UC Auditorium, Boulder, Colorado, from November 1 1977, where the good doctor discussed:

01. Intro, American Dream, Tex Colson
02. Nixon and Football, Vietnam Books
03. Tom Wolfe
04. Trudeau, Running For Office
05. Rockefeller, Tri-Lateral Commission
06. Rush, Eldridge Cleaver
07. VD, Disco & Rolling Stone
08. World Series, MK - Ultra
09. Kesey, Canada
10. Evil As Nixon?, Uganda, Degeneracy
11. Steadman, Gonzo
12. More Kesey, Avoiding Jail
13. Silver Platter, The Slide
14. Carter Argument
15. Drug Question, Drunk And Loud
16. Three Wishes, Fascist
17. Grateful Dead


Written by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
Hunter S. Thompson’s Cure For a Hangover
03:55 pm


Hunter S. Thompson

Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson’s cure for a hangover—poppers and beer—is good, but nothing beats smoking weed from the minute your feet hit the floor until you go to bed again that night… and a Bloody Mary or five.

(via BuzzFeed)

Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
Hunter S. Thompson: ‘Jam this morbid drivel up your ass’
04:44 pm


Hunter S. Thompson

Yet another polite rejection letter sent to an aspiring writer by Dr. Gonzo hisself, in this case Mike Peterson who unwittingly submitted an article to Rolling Stone in 1971…

Via Letters of Note

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Hunter S Thompson: ‘You are scum’
09:15 am


Hunter S. Thompson

Hand-scrawled missive from Hunter S. Thompson to William McKeen, the author of the first HST bio, Outlaw Journalist (1991). His assistant at the time told McKeen how to “translate” the sentiments:

That’s just his way of saying that he liked it.

The framed letter is now hanging in a place of pride in McKeen’s home.

Via Letters of Note

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Gorgeous stained glass windows of Aleister Crowley, William Burroughs and many more by Neal Fox

Take a look at the amazing stained glass portraiture by Neal Fox. Fox’s work reminds me of the work of many different artists, including Gilbert & George, Roy Lichtenstein, even Joe Coleman (composition, not details, obviously!). I’ll bet this exhibition is impressive “in the flesh.”

Daniel Blau Ltd. is pleased to present Neal Fox’s latest project Beware of the God. Fox’s drawings depict a phantasmagoric journey through the detritus and mythology of pop culture. From a life-long obsession with the tales of his dead grandfather, a World War II bomber pilot, writer and hell raiser, his large-scale drawings have developed into increasingly layered celebrations of the debauched and iconoclastic characters whose ideas have helped shape our collective consciousness.

Fox’s latest project takes many of the recurring subjects of his drawings and portrays them through the medium of the stained glass window. As traditional church windows show the iconography of saints, through representations of events in their lives, instruments of martyrdom and iconic motifs, Fox plays with the symbolism of each character’s cult of personality; Albert Hoffman takes a psychedelic bicycle ride above the LSD molecule, J G Ballard dissects the world, surrounded by 20th Century imagery and the eroticism of the car crash, and Johnny Cash holds his inner demon in chains after a religious experience in Nickerjack cave. One quality in particular binds these characters and the others together; a refusal to conform and conviction in their own ideology.

Working with traditional methods at the renowned Franz Mayer of Munich manufacturer, Fox is producing a set of twelve 2.5 metre high stained-glass windows; exhibited in a single room – an alternative church of alternative saints.

Neal Fox’s “Beware of the God” at Daniel Blau Ltd., 51 Hoxton Square, London until August 10th.

More after the jump…

Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
Page 1 of 2  1 2 >