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I forgive Johnny for turning into such a Republican Pro-Bush Jerk. His guitar playing sounded so good! They're all dying so close to each other in years!!! Joey (totally unique vocals and stage stance), Dee-Dee (despite a dumb personna, quite witty and funny) and now Johnny. I loved them so much when I first heard them, and they sound as good now as they ever did. THey got so little respect when they were a vital band from the mainstream. I heard so much bullshit about them from people who never had a real rock 'n roll feeling in their bones. Whatever. They were one of the best things I have heard in my life. You can have musicians who surpass all others in technique and theory, and they won't be able to begin to touch the Ramones who finished recording their first album a little over an hour after entering the studio to record it. Gabba Gabba Hey!!!!

Yay Johnny (I used to think you were the cutest of the Ramones) you have joined your brothers Joey and Dee-Dee.

'Superman' Star Reeve Dies at Age 52

MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. (Oct. 11) - Actor Christopher Reeve, who soared through the air and leapt tall buildings as "Superman," turned personal tragedy into a public crusade, becoming the nation's most recognizable spokesman for spinal cord research - from a wheelchair. Reeve went into cardiac arrest Saturday while at his Pound Ridge home, then fell into a coma and died Sunday at a hospital surrounded by his family, his publicist said. He was 52.



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RIP Jacques Derrida, Father of Deconstructionism...

This from the Film Forum newsletter, looks like a fascintating flick!

One of the most influential and iconoclastic figures of the 20th century, French philosopher and father of Deconstruction Jacques Derrida died last week in Paris at age 74. In tribute to his memory, Film Forum is presenting a 5-day return engagement of DERRIDA, the critically acclaimed documentary portrait by filmmakers Kirby Dick (SICK: THE LIFE AND DEATH OF BOB FLANAGAN, SUPERMASOCHIST) and Amy Ziering Kofman.

Friday, October 15 - Tuesday, October 19 only

To buy tickets online:
In English and French with English subtitles
Original score composed by Ryuichi Sakamoto
Showtimes: 1:15, 3:00, 4:50, 6:45, 8:35, 10:10

Jean-Paul Sartre, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida: 20th century French philosophers who have revolutionized the way we think. Derrida -- Jewish, Algerian-born -- was kicked out of school at age 10 as
part of an anti-Semitic purge. As the father of Deconstruction, a school of thought that confronts the basic assumptions underlying our thinking, he has perfected the role of outsider and iconoclast. In this wry, often funny slice of his life, Derrida helps deconstruct his own image: at one moment he's the playful, sartorially elegant Paris professor, at another the wily subject who refuses to be pinned down --
and then he's the rigorous thinker who counters with a brilliant, in-depth response to a question he initially disdained.

Also featuring a mesmerizing score by Oscar-winning composer Ryuichi Sakamoto (THE LAST EMPEROR), DERRIDA
is a playful and provocative glimpse at a visionary thinker as he ruminates on everything from SEINFELD to
the sex lives of ancient philosophers.
am still in major shock about this.... I worked with John for many years but actually met him when I was about 16yrs old... He used to come to my house in Liverpool when he came up for the football match (soccer) and my mum used to make him dinner and he for some odd reason hebefriended me. I went on to produce and present at the BBC Radio 1 and was given an small office right next door to the office Peel,Walters and Andy Kershaw all shared in Egton House (BBC) which was no bigger than the ole Jackie 60 bathroom. Kershaw described their office best at Walters funeral the other year "Peel and Walters were like this elderly childless couple biccering about who last made the tea and whose getting a bacon sarnie for lunch...i arrived like the child they never had or even wanted" It was true, Andy used to bound around like Tigger and encourage me to come and hang each day in this tiny cramped record filled Peel and Walters psuedo argued each day...the BBC would pay me peanuts and i lived in a one roomed bedsit in Notting Hill with a shared bathroom...i didn't even have enough money for a cab home after working so late...Peel would often walk me to the bus at night...or we'd sit in the pub and he would rant about Livepool Football Club. He had this funny way of closing his eyes and blinkin allot when he talked which after 2yrs Kershaw picked up too like some kind of disease.. Am shocked that he is dead.. hope he and 'the pig' (his endearing name for his wife Sheila) were in Peru having fun b4 his lights went out.... irony of all of this is that only on Monday I was nattering with Kershaw about him spending Christmas with us here in NYC and Peels name came up... I think I even outed my chat with him saying "tell him I said hello" ..
Kersh just sent me this... its to appear in the British press (independent I think...)

'He was the most important person in British music since the birth of rock 'n' roll'
By Andy Kershaw

It was like I had been hit by a hammer. Jenny Abramsky, the BBC's controller of network radio, called me and said: "I've got some bad news for you, and I think you ought to sit down." As soon as she said that, my mind just raced and in a flash, before she had said it, I thought "Peel's dead".

John had died of a heart attack, in Peru, aged 65. It was like being thumped. If I were a 16-year-old kid tonight in a band, dreaming of making it big, I would be thinking my chances were far less than they were yesterday. This is a huge cultural loss. John Peel was the most important figure in British music since the birth of rock'n'roll. Full stop. He is more important than any artist because he was the enthusiast who discovered so many of those whom we think of as the big figures of pop over the past 40 years.

Everyone was talking yesterday about how John was the only surviving member of the original Radio1 line-up. His legacy is far bigger than just having been a veteran DJ. It's not the longevity - it's what he did. He was forever championing bands and being ridiculed for being weird. Those bands became mainstream, from Pink Floyd to The Clash.

I consider myself lucky to have known him and to have been his friend. But I was also hugely fortunate, right at the start of my career, to have been put in an office with him and John Walters. What better education? What better comrades when you are starting out?

Since my early teens, John Peel had been my great musical influence. He shaped my tastes as a kid, giving me a breadth of enthusiasms. Then suddenly, blow me, I was sharing his 10ft by 10ft office space, having to sit on an upturned litter bin as there wasn't a third chair. It was the summer of 1985 and I had arrived at Radio 1 as a rather wild young thing. At first, I think Peel saw me as some kind of threat.

Once he realised I was a huge admirer and that we shared many of the same tastes, we became big pals. We had a lot in common. We enjoyed a breadth in music that covered everything from punk to country, reggae to African.

We used to go together to Stern's African record shop, just behind Broadcasting House in London, and buy piles and piles of records on spec. We'd come back to the office and have a wonderful afternoon finding out what we'd bought, like a couple of kids in the playground swapping bubble-gum cards - even though there was a 20-year age gap between us.

We would go to the TT races in the Isle of Man together. I remember John stood in the drizzle with an Eccles cake in one hand and a cup of red wine in the other. He was like Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh, stood behind a dry-stone wall in the corner of a field.

John was immensely good company. He was avuncular and protective. He was also the most natural broadcaster I have known and he taught me to talk to listeners as though you're talking to one person.

The last time I saw him he looked absolutely worn out. We went to a café near Radio 1 and I said: "John, you look terrible." He said: "They've moved me from 11pm to one at night and the combination of that and Home Truths (his Radio 4 show) is killing me." He felt he had been marginalised.

Since we heard the news, people have asked me: "What was John Peel like away from the microphone?" I'll tell you. He was exactly the same as he was when he was in front of it.
I just heard about John Peel. Very sad.
He pushed my first record (Jam Hot) in 1983. It's a wierd record (to say the least) and really took courage to play it on the radio (did I mention that I can't sing?). It eventually went to number 1 or 2 on the charts. Mostly because of him. I never met him but I talked to him on the phone once. (The record co. made me call him and thank him for the support etc.) He was very nice.
And anyone that would walk my Anna Nicole to a bus is OK by me!

New York Times


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There isn't anyone remotely like him in the US doing what he did. Not since the days of John Hammond Sr., and he wasn't on radio. The BBC is only left with a hollow second stringer in Jools Holland on the telly, and he doesn't EMPHASIZE the new musicians. Peel essentially did what the entire college radio world took up doing, like, seven years ago.

You can't sing Daddy? That's not what I heard about you from audiences of one. Their only complaint was that they never got to look you in the face while you warbbled.
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O.D.B. made Snoop Dog look like a born again Christian. Kalief said it in the Times today, unlike Rockers, living off the edge and getting into trouble with the law for Rappers is not a sign of having a great time. I'm not a WU T fan, but it seems to me the vast majority of rappers are total poseurs, and O.D.B. was not one of THEM. So maybe if nothing else he deserves some props for being real. I always have sympathy for those who are too much of a misfit for even the misfits to put up with.
my mate Kersh just sent me this.. his report from the John Peel funeral which I thougth I would share with you...
On our pew alone sat Joe Boyd, Mark Ellen, Our Elizabeth, Billy Bragg,Robert Plant and half of the Undertones.

John Peel's funeral at the cathedral in Bury St Edmunds was, it has to be said,fabulous. And the turnout gave ample indication of the affection with which the great democrat of the airwaves was regarded by much of the nation.
Fittingly, it was a public service - and one at which spotty youths wept alongside the
elderly on sticks. To anyone who listened to him - on Radio 1 or Home Truths - John was a personal friend, even to those who had never met him. That was the measure of his broadcasting genius. Tony Blair broke into his busy schedule of bringing chaos to Iraq to catch,shamelessly, some of the reflected national affection for John.. Perhaps you saw his onion-from-pocket tribute on television on the day of John's death. In fact, many of you will have seen and heard it before. It was his People's Princess speech at Northolt airfield in 1997. Only the name had been changed. Granted, he didn't quite call Peel the People's DJ but all those phoney pauses were in there as, to suggest sincerity and emotion, he pretends to be fumbling for the right words. Peel loathed Blair. He admitted to me that he'd been seduced initially by the New Labour rebranding but, especially since Iraq, later felt betrayed and recognised Phoney
Tony as a wrong ˜un. In contrast, Paul Gambacini made the most moving, elegant tribute, speaking at the funeral without notes for twenty minutes and addressing not the congregation but Peel himself in the coffin. Paul began by reminding us that Peel had always
expected this task would fall to our old producer John Walters. "But Walters got out
of that job three years ago..." At this point few of us would have been surprised if we had
heard a familiar voice blustering in, down the aisle, from the back of the cathedral to
correct Gambo on one or two details of Peel's life and career.

Paul then mused on the possibility that, if there is an afterlife, Walters and Peel are
already sitting up there, making an absolute tip of heaven whilst discussing the Archers. And, worringly, as I remarked to Paul in the pub later, if they have established a celestial Room 318, there must already await me a celestial upturned litter bin for me to sit on, just like the one they allocated to me in that chaotic Radio 1 office back in 1985.

I am no believer but I sincerely hope the old pals are somehow reunited. John's wife, Sheila, told me that in the bar in Peru (˜Scuse me, Peru? Peel? He never went anywhere. The prospect of a family motoring holiday around northern France would give him anxiety attacks weeks before departure...) just half an hour
before he had his heart attack, he put down his glass and sighed, "I do miss Walters."

Alas, the reality is much more likely to be a scenario often predicted by Peel when in his deeper Eeyore moods. Reincarnation was a subject he brought up frequently and he was fond of speculating on how he might return. As a barnacle was one possibility. Or "as a section of the East Lancs Road" was another favourite. John's kids, in an intimate and often hilarious address, read out at the funeral by a neighbour, recalled his prediction that he might return "as the year 1847. Or as a tailback on the M6."

Laughter often rippled, unavoidably, through the congregation which helped many of us to hold it together. I lost it only right at the end when, after we'd heard a compliation of some his pithier musings, Teenage Kicks was played as the coffin was carried past us and everyone burst into spontaneous applause. At that point it hit me that he's not coming back.

Our little party then regrouped in a base camp established before the service: the Queen's Head in a narrow street behind the cathedral. There were characters and representatives from all stages in John's career - former hippy activists rubbing shoulders with rock legends and punks-turned-executives. Egos were checked
in at the door. Robert Plant kept me topped up with strong tea. Peel stories flew backwards and forwards. (I never tire of the one in which the young John Ravenscroft, as "a failed crop insurance salesman" in Texas in the early
60s, bought himself a car so powerful that, when he hit the accelerator, "it gave me an
erection.") It turned into quite a jolly afternoon, as Dr Excitement himself would
have wished.
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At Malcolm X's funeral, I can remember that Ossie Davis got up an delivered the eulogy, throwing every white liberal in this country for a loop, and calling Malcolm, "My sweet Black prince..." It was an amazing and very apt choice of words at a time when many whites as well as Blacks had distanced themselves from Malcolm, whom they considered to be quite a "firebrand."
I have always had an enormous amount of respect for Davis for that. Bless him!
One of the local network teevee channels used to have a once a month 'black late movie' night hosted by him and his wife who would do a kind of down home Aliester MacClean intro and outroduction to whatever ripe film from black cinema was showing. They would be totally unrehearsed, slouching low on a couch in a mock lower middle class living room, and just adlib anecdotes about the movie stars, producers, etc. and tie it all in somehow offhand to a not strident Pan African or Black Nationalism take on it all. The only person who does that well now is Gil Noble on his Like It Is show. Years ago at a rehearsal for a show fronted by Max Roach at Aaron Davis Hall Ossie was cast to read some prose in a section of the production. Inbetween Max's playing and my former employer's African musical contribution. Davis was so commanding on stage all the other participants made comments about how the prose piece was "too long." They were all concerned beneath it all that he was upstaging them. And he wasn't trying to. He just had charisma that didn't need any pushing at all.

Why why why!!!!
I feel betrayed,
My father said, "Well it's like him to just not give a shit!"
My reply, "If you don't give a shit, why bother killing yourself!?"

His wife said he wasn't aging well.
I hate to criticize, but Tallulah did say, "Getting old is not for sissies."

Food-fighting ...

The Chicago Tribune Obit was better than the NY Times, with lots of quotes from Aspenites. I keep trying to look at but it won't load...

Aspen Times article:

Hunter Thompson dead

Seminal gonzo journalist kills himself

By Eben Harrell and Chad Abraham
February 21, 2005

Hunter S. Thompson, legendary author, political commentator and "gonzo" journalist, died Sunday night after shooting himself in the head with a handgun at his home in Woody Creek. He was 67.

Thompson's son, Juan, found his father's body in the kitchen around 6 p.m. By 6:30 p.m., Thompson's home at 1278 Woody Creek Road was sealed off by a sheriff's van.

Shortly thereafter, a grief counselor called in by the sheriff's department arrived at the residence, asking to see Thompson's 6-year-old grandson, William. Later, an unidentified man leaving the property said, "There are a lot of hurt family members up [at the house]."

Heavy snow fell on the property all evening as four or five sheriff's department vehicles quietly guarded the driveway. The silence was broken by a woman's shriek from within the house: "Why are there so many people here? I just can't deal with this. No. No. No."

Hunter Stockton Thompson was an icon of the 1960s counter-culture and was best known for his savage, first-person style of journalism in books such as "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" and "Hell's Angels." His style came to influence an entire generation of writers and reporters.

Thompson had been a resident of Pitkin County since the late 1960s. In a 1970 Rolling Stone article titled "Freak Power in the Rockies" (also later published in the Thompson collection "The Great Shark Hunt"), he documented the rise of a new political generation of hippy activists in Aspen. In 1970, Thompson himself ran unsuccessfully for Pitkin County sheriff.

Thompson's political legacy in Aspen and the surrounding area is far-reaching, even though his involvement dropped off in recent years. His bid for the sheriff's post was a direct attack on the traditional, conservative style of policing in place at the time, and set the stage for the more tolerant, community-minded law enforcement that took root in the 1970s under Sheriff Dick Kienast.

Thompson's activism also extended into the nuts and bolts of county government, and he helped pioneer the anti-development streak in local politics that survives to this day. He backed strict land-use controls and the candidates who were willing to impose them. Many of the land-use regulations still in place in Aspen and Pitkin County can be traced back to Thompson's work as a growth-control activist.

"The guy used to call me at 3 a.m. and talk about land use," said Pitkin County Commissioner Mick Ireland.

He had many friends in his neighborhood of Woody Creek and was for years a regular at the Woody Creek Tavern, the local restaurant and watering hole. At 9 p.m. last night, however, the tavern was packed with tourists and late eaters unaware of the death.

Thompson's compound in Woody Creek was almost as legendary as the author. He prized peacocks and weapons; in 2000, he accidentally shot and slightly wounded his assistant, Deborah Fuller, trying to chase a bear off his property.

News of his death hit Aspen's community hard. Many of Thompson's friends in the sheriff's department, including Sheriff Bob Braudis, were at a Sunday afternoon memorial service for Ross Griffin, a jailer who died unexpectedly this winter, when they heard the news.

"I was totally floored," Braudis said.

"I was at the memorial and Bob was there. He called me aside and said that he just heard Hunter shot himself," friend and Aspen-based artist Thomas Benton said.

In tears, Benton, who designed campaign posters for Thompson's 1970 campaign, said that Thompson "was an old friend for a long time."

Thompson had been in poor health in the last few years, suffering from several injuries and ailments, including a broken femur and recurring back problems. His physical therapist, BJ Williams, said Thompson had recovered well, however.

"Hunter had a lot of things thrown at him physically. He had a fractured leg and back surgery but he took it all in stride and fought back. He never gave up. I am just shocked by this," Williams said.

Fellow leftist journalist Paul Krassner, who once edited Thompson, told The Associated Press that the gonzo journalist was always unpredictable as a writer and a person.

"It was hard to say sometimes whether he was being provocative for its own sake or if he was just being drunk and stoned and irresponsible," Krassner said. "We were willing to risk all of his irresponsible behavior in order to share his talent with readers."
Re: Hunter Thompson

As often happens, Cintra Wilson put it beautifully in today's Salon


I think it is improper and disrespectful to whine about this suicide. Thompson was in the game for a very, very long time, and I think it is a safe bet that he was never comfortable. This was a profoundly tortured guy, the smoke from whose ears always made a whole lot of exciting colors that we all enjoyed. It was a great brain to watch but you wouldn't want to live in it, I'd aver. He was a butch motherfucker and I'd bet cash he stuck it out significantly longer than he really wanted to. Let's face it, HST was not one for the nursing home -- he'd have just stolen everyone else's barbiturates and hurt people trying to arm-wrestle.

May the kindly trickster gods collect you, Hunter Thompson, and drive you to where the buffalo roam, where your mind can unspool itself forever and your spirit can go on groping unsuspecting tits and trashing hotel rooms. You have earned it, Golden and Immortal Son of Classic Letters. Rest in Whatever You Would Prefer to Peace. We, the filthy and leaderless children who cherish your legacy, salute you, and will honor you with every bullet fired out of our car windows toward the unmarked desert sky.

The Post had a bit today about how Hunter was ranting and raving about what kind of funeral he wanted, and then walked right into the kitchen and shot himself without missing a beat.

And why. Why? Possibly boredom. I have noticed as I get older how situations and certain realities repeat themselves, despite all effort to the contrary. You feel metaphysically bored. That even if something seems to be new or different, it's not. This is the dish you are dealt... nothing will ever change.

I think behind the whining is the feeling that Hunter was a "gonzo leader" for us all. He wasn't supposed to "give up". He was fighting the sytem, etc. But as the article in Salon says here we are, the 'filthy and leaderless' bohemians who now have to take it upon ourselves to stay crazy, and not look for any kind of leader.

And no suicide note. That would have been banal.
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I actually tip my glass to Hunter.... he couldn't have gone out any other way really.

Bless im!

The family and friends of cult US writer Hunter S Thompson plan to honour his wish for his ashes to be fired out of a cannon.
The author, who committed suicide on Sunday aged 67, said on several occasions that he would like an artillery send-off for his remains.

"If that's what he wanted, we'll see if we can pull it off," said friend and historian Douglas Brinkley.

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Mr. T was kind of the last link to Neil Cassady, who the Beats tried soooo hard to make their adopted cartheif/Adonis. Thompson's 'first person journalism' was, as someone said here above, the result of his pissed-offedness. There was always an underlying sarcasm to his fumes, and I am sure he understood the deep veins of sarcasm's power. It seems obvious he wanted out, and anger can be a very powerful portal to getting back out in to the Universe. As with Cassady, Thompson's voice was an American original. Part cowboy, intellectual prankster, space-age bohemian, conoisseur of intoxicants (pouring ether on the floor mat of his car and turning the heater on!!!), and all-round contrarian. He knew how to throw the world away. And he knew that even with notoriety, cult status, millions of admirers, peer respect and whatever accomplishments here in life, when it comes to pain, even with caring family, you are ultimately in the end all alone. I hope they do blow him as his own ashes out of a canon.
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This from BBC news
The widow of US writer Hunter S Thompson has said her husband killed himself while they were speaking to one another on the telephone.
Thompson - best-known for his 1972 account of a drug-addled Nevada trip, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas - shot himself on Sunday at his Colorado home.

His widow, Anita Thompson, 32, told the Aspen Daily News she heard the "clicking of the gun".

She said: "I was on the phone with him, he set the receiver down and did it."
I loved that dog.
I'll never forget Monday nights setting up for Jackie 60 when all of a sudden the door would open and this tornado of love would jump on top of me and visciously attack me with frantic kisses. She was an angel. I'm so glad she got to spend her retirement at her country estate in Maine. She loved it there.


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Oh my darling sweet Katy..I remember the first time I met her at Pat fields store and she was covered in red lipstick kisses from Connie and Gina and Codie and all the queens who loved her. She had her own water bowl at my house when her mother would come to have her rootage bleached. 18 years is a long time. May she be running on the lawn of the dog heavens she so deserves.

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