10,004th Maniac - lost now on the country miles in his Cadillac...

Posted On: Friday - January 19th 2018 10:02PM MST
In Topics: 
  Music  The Dead  History  Pundits

Not least of all of the beat generation mentioned in the last post was a guy named Neal Cassady (yes, along with other problems like his Mom died when he was 10 and he had lived on the street with his drunkard Dad, he was a COBS victim too - that's Children Of Bad Spellers. OK, pretty low, even for Peak Stupidity, but c'mon messing up the 1st AND last names?). Now, unlike the 3 beat generation guys discussed previously, I wouldn't call Neal Cassady a "piece of work", just more like a "character", which is a hell of a lot better.

Being a "character", Neal Cassady is one of the major characters in the Tom Wolfe book "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test" which younger people who don't really know what all went on in the 1960's would think is some "Alice in Wonderland" type novel. Nope, that Tom Wolfe book is non-fiction, so Cassady is "featured" in that book, and shouldn't be called a character in that sense. Well, it would be hard for someone who has grown up during the last 30 years to understand that, yes, what went on in that book was a weird, weird trip, but you could do all that, as it was a free country back then.

The post title is from the great great-ful Dead song, spelled correctly, really because, although this Beat writer is mentioned in this John Perry Barlow written song (music written by Bob Weir), it was really about the birth of a baby girl, Cassidy Law, into the Dead extended family. The lyrics in the post title are about Neal Cassady's big penchant for long road trips, like Jack Kerouac. Additionally, they both wrote in the stream-of-consciousness manner.

Oh, yeah, speaking of beat-niks, beat-this, and beat-that, it was a band called the beat-les, it turns out, that provided Paul McCartney his path to stardom with the band Wings. Just a bit of trivia for the curious reader that doesn't have the deep trivial knowledge base of the Peak Stupidity blog.

This is another acoustic Dead song from the album Reckoning - like "Ded Reckoning", "Ded" for "Deduced", see, the most basic form of navigation other than pilotage (looking at the ground). We have posted two songs from this same album before, "Dark Hollow" and "The Race is On".

Come to think of it, may as well post this Doobie Brothers' rock song, "Neal's Fandango", as this guy was thought enough of to be in at least 2 songs. It's from the album Stampede, way before the band was single-handedly ruined by the more jazz-oriented Michael McDonald. Can you follow these lyrics, at that speed? After you figure it out - hey we didn't have the internet during the time of The Doobies - you can hear:

"It was Neal Cassady who started me a-traveling, all the stories that he told, I believed them, every one."

Neal Cassady and that free beatnik lifestyle of his sure made an impression on a lot of people.

I like the Dead/Barlow lyrics so much, I'll just end the post with that. Good night.

"I have seen where the wolf has slept by the silver stream.
I can tell by the mark he left, you were in his dream.
Ah child of countless trees, ah child of boundless seas.

What you are, and what you're meant to be
Speaks his name, though you were born to me,
born to me, Cassidy.

Lost now on the country miles in his Cadillac.
I can tell by the way you smile, he's rolling back.
Come wash the nighttime clean, come grow the scorched ground green.

Blow the horn, and tap the tambourine.
Close the gap of the dark years in between
you and me, Cassidy.

Quick beats in an icy heart, catch colt draws a coffin cart,
There he goes and now here she starts, hear her cry.

Flight of the seabirds
Scattered like lost words,
Wheel to the storm and fly.

Fare thee well now,
let your life proceed by it's own design.
Nothing to tell now,
let the words be yours, I'm done with mine.
Fare thee well now,
let your life proceed by it's own design.
Nothing to tell now, let the words be yours,
I'm done with mine."

Flight of the seabirds
Scattered like lost words,
Wield to the storm and fly.

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