Posts Tagged ‘beat generation’

You Review: Rub Out the Words: The Letters of William S. Burroughs 1959-1974, edited by Bill Morgan

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

Reviewed by Zoey Tsopela

“Dear Allen, thanks a million for the mescaline..” is how Rub Out the Words: The Letters of William S. Burroughs begins. How can I not be captivated from the first page? The thousands of letters that are compiled by Editor Bill Morgan are an intense roller-coaster ride through Burroughs’ 15 years (1959-1974) of drug-induced, unapologetic gay porn tendencies, and literary conceiving life. These letters reveal his thoughts behind some of the great works produced, his thoughts on other writers of his time, his family, and of course his addictions- illegal and legal.

I found myself obsessing over Burroughs’ infatuation with adopting the Cut-Up method to film and audio as well as print. Although very difficult to follow and understand some of his letters due to his demonstration of the cut-up technique, their emotional appeal still lingers. Burroughs’ difficulties with his finances, publishing and drug addiction gave birth to an unbreakable emotion of empathy. Throughout the compiled pages of these 15 years, Burroughs never ceased struggling to break free from these predicaments which kept forcing him to stay on the move.

We also get a glimpse of some other Beat Generation protagonists- Gysin, Kerouac and Ginsberg among others. It was like having them all in the same room- very surreal. Burroughs shares intimate and very colorful stories with Gysin who grew to become one of his closest confiding friends. And unsurprisingly, we witness how Burroughs grows apart from other writers of his time.

As one of the main souls of the Beat Generation and co-parent of the Cut-Up method, Burroughs’ letters are everything I expected them to be; saturated in the generation’s slang, intimate and incredibly intimate.

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Win the new Bach-Bukowski CD!

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

As a young boy Willem van Ekeren admired the music of J.S. Bach. In the nineties he also became captivated by the poems of Charles Bukowski, an internationally famous American writer of contemporary prose and poetry. It became apparent to Willem that he had to combine the words of Bukowski with the music of Bach.

On his latest CD, Walking and Living Through This, the poems of Bukowski’s The Last Night of the Earth Poems are woven together with parts of the Well-Tempered Clavier of Bach. The lyrics are sung blues/jazz style in combination with authentic Bach music on the piano.

The result is an extraordinary mixture of piano and singing through which Bach‘s baroque music and Bukowski’s hard-driven lines sound simultaneously.

Curious? You can hear and see the results in the videos on the Bach-Bukowski site.

The Bach-Bukowski CDs are available in our stores. Call or mail us for details.

We have three copies of Walking and Living Through This to give away!

If you’d like to win one, e-mail your name and address to We’ll pick three winners at random after May 10th. Winners will be informed via e-mail.

Bookbits for June 25th, 2009

Thursday, June 25th, 2009

These poor ignored Bookbits!  It’s not a good year for them.  If only I had a Time-Turner.  But enough babbling, here’s a first part of the past two weeks worth of news, with at least one more part due tomorrow or so: