Friday, January 9, 2015

Herbert Huncke Centennial

["Old-timer & survivor, Herbert E Huncke, Beat Literary Pioneer, early decades thief, who introduced Burroughs, Kerouac & me to floating population hustling & drug scene Times Square 1945. From '48 on, he penned remarkable musings, Collected as autobiographical vignettes, anecdotes & storyteller's tales in the classic The Evening Sun Turned Crimson (Cherry Valley, 1970) and later Guilty of Everything. Here age 78 in basement back-yard, his apartment East 7th Street, near Avenue D, New York, May 18, 1993" - (Photograph and Inscription by Allen Ginsberg)]  

January 9 1915, the birthday of Herbert Huncke, original Beat - yes, today marks the day, the official day of the Herbert Huncke Centennial. There'll be a film-showing, as we mentioned last week, of Laki Vazakas' extraordinary documentary, Huncke and Louis,  (in Lowell, not so far from his birthplace, in Greenfield, Mass), tonight, to mark the occasion, and, next week, a big gathering in San Francisco at the Beat Museum featuring Laki Vazakas, Hilary Holladay, Ben Schafer, Dennis McNally, Brenda Knight, Regina Marler and Tate Swindell 

Meantime, Huncke on the Allen Ginsberg Project -
There's some invaluable resources. Don't miss our four previous birthday postings
  - here, here, here and here 

His memorable 1982 workshop at the Jack Kerouac Conference at Naropa is available (with transcription)  here

Our note on Hilary Holladay's 2013 biography, American Hipster - here

A shout-out to the sadly out-of-print Herbert Huncke Reader here

here's a selection of Laki Vazakas videos  (including, first off, this - a Q & A from a 1995 visit to the University of Connecticut and Ann Charters)

and this (1994, in New York  at Cafe Nico) 

Here's, From Dream to Dream,  Huncke recorded in 1994 in Brugge, Belgium

Here's another (this time Amsterdam) recording

Alongside the essential Huncke and Louis footage, there's also James Rasin's The Burning Ghat (1990) (Huncke (and Louis Cartwright's) only non-documentary acting roles)

and take a look at this - pages from (and notes on) Huncke's legendary journals

Huncke Tea Company, the official web-site of the Herbert Huncke Estate, is now an on-going essential resource. See here for (amongst other things) Allen's December 5 1965 letter to Herbert, dutifully transcribed by his literary executor and Huncke-0-phile, Jerome Poynton  (there's still a few places in deciphering where perhaps you can help)

More Herbert Huncke tomorrow

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