Preview Stream of The Gonzo Tapes!

 

The Gonzo Tapes
The Gonzo Tapes

Here is a little Halloween treat for Gonzo fans!! I received a great email this week (thanks Amy !) full of information concerning the release of The Gonzo TapesThis truly is the Holy Grail of bad craziness folks! For those of you that may still doubt me (shame on you!) why not listen to the preview and judge for yourselves – and yes that is Hunter and Oscar driving around Vegas listening to One Toke Over The Line!! More thoughts on this release coming soon.

The Gonzo Tapes Stream   

Happy Halloween!,

 

Ron Mexico

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PS: Here is the Official Press Release:

On October 28 Shout! Factory will make available the previously unreleased Gonzo Tapes in a newly produced collection titled The Gonzo Tapes: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, in concurrence with the Magnolia Pictures film release of Gonzo: The Life And Work Of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, directed by Academy Award®-winning director Alex Gibney.

Legendary Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson knew from the beginning of his career that he would one day be famous and so became a dedicated archivist of his own writing, saving copies of all his correspondence including personal letters, drafts for magazines and books, angry letters to his editors, and even notes written on cocktail napkins. But most important to Thompson was his tape recorder, which allowed him to document his experiences as a participant rather than an observer, often setting it down in a bar or hotel room to pick up the mood and conversation, or to record what it was like spending days speeding down highways with the Hell’s Angels.

Recorded by Thompson between 1965 and 1975, these tapes capture his thoughts and descriptions both as they’re happening and in reflection, as he would often go back to rerecord commentary. Filmmaker Alex Gibney, producer Eva Orner and Gonzo archivist Don Fleming were given permission by Thompson’s widow to explore the boxes of tapes stored in the basement of his Owl Farm home in Woody Creek, Colorado, left behind after Thompson’s suicide in 2005. Fleming transferred the audiocassettes and reel-to-reel tapes to digital files, and they made their way to the cutting room for the film Gonzo: The Life And Work Of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson.

Gibney, the producer/writer/director of the film who also made “Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room,” and “Taxi to the Dark Side,” writes in his introduction to The Gonzo Tapes, “These tapes were pure gold, lending an intimacy to the film that it couldn’t have had otherwise.” As Loren Jenkins writes in the notes that accompany The Gonzo Tapes, “The idea that these tapes will now be made available to the public to help reveal some of what went on behind the Gonzo screeds is something I believe Hunter would delight in if he were still alive today.”

              The Gonzo Tapes features original cover artwork by Gonzo artist Ralph Steadman, an introduction by film director Alex Gibney, an essay by journalist and Thompson’s fellow foreign correspondent Loren Jenkins, and notes by The Gonzo Tapes producer Don Fleming, former front man of the Velvet Monkeys and Gumball who has produced Sonic Youth, Alice Cooper, Hole, and more.

              Disc 1 of the 5-CD set is titled “Hell’s Angels,” and includes Thompson’s notes from a year of riding with the infamous biker gang, an unprecedented feat from which Thompson made a name for himself and which famously became a book. Discs 2 and 3 contain the notes that materialized as his well-known novel Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas, and eventually of course a major motion picture.

            Disc 4, titled “Gonzo Gridlock 1973–1974, captures Thompson in the years following the completion of his book Fear And Loathing: On The Campaign Trail ’72,  recording his thoughts for a new novel, drafts of a never published Rolling Stone story involving Fear and Loathing cohort Oscar Acosta, a cocaine-fueled never-written assignment from Rolling Stone on a book titled Cocaine Papers: Sigmund Freud, as well as notes and an argument with Ralph Steadman during a 1974 trip to Zaire where he was to report on the legendary “Rumble In The Jungle” between George Foreman and Muhammad Ali for Rolling Stone, and which he skipped for a swim in the hotel pool.

             Disc 5, titled “Fear and Loathing in Saigon,” finds Thompson traveling to Vietnam just days before the fall of Saigon in 1975, where, armed with a cooler of beer and wearing Bermuda shorts and a Hawaiian shirt, he rode to the front line and observed the final major combat action of the war. The day before Saigon fell Thompson left for Laos to work on a story he had in mind about CIA concentration camps.

Shout! Factory is a diversified entertainment company devoted to producing, uncovering and revitalizing the very best of pop culture – The Stuff You Grew Up On But Never Outgrew.  Founders Richard Foos, Bob Emmer and Garson Foos have spent their careers sharing their music, television and film faves with discerning consumers the world over. Shout! Factory’s DVD offerings serve up classic, contemporary and cult TV series, riveting sports programs, live music, animation and documentaries in lavish packages crammed with extras. The company’s audio catalogue boasts Grammy®-nominated boxed sets, new releases from storied artists and lovingly assembled album reissues. These riches are the result of a creative acquisitions mandate that has established the company as a hotbed of cultural preservation and commercial reinvention.  For more on Shout! Factory, visit www.shoutfactory.com.

Rare Hunter S. Thompson Article – Nights In The Rustic

Sorry for the gap in updates everybody I have been extremely busy over the past month and I also landed myself a rotten bout of illness just for good measure. So to make up for the silence I have just uploaded a rare article by Hunter – Nights In The Rustic – that first appeared in Cavalier Magazine back in August 1967. Just scroll down a bit in the rare articles section and you should find it.

Thats all for today folks but I will be updating again over the coming days on the various Gonzo releases on the horizon – some really cool stuff on the way.

All the best and thanks for your patience!

Ron Mexico

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Hunter S. Thompson: The Glory Years

Just spotted this new title on Amazon – Hunter S. Thompson: The Glory Years by Jay Cowan. Here is the blurb on Amazon about this release:

From military sportswriter to roving correspondent for the National Observer, from quasi Hell’s Angel to counterculture author and gonzo journalist, Hunter S. Thompson led a life of legend. Hunter S. Thompson: The Glory Years tells the remarkable insider’s story.

Jay Cowan, who was caretaker on Thompson’s ranch and a trusted friend, paints a sensitive portrait of a man who redefined participatory journalism, who captured the decadence and depravity of an era, and generally consumed more drugs and alcohol than any other living creature on the planet. A self-professed “lazy hillbilly,” Hunter Thompson would immerse himself researching a story, then write it all in a multi-day frenzy of drugs and sleeplessness. In his role as America’s “rock star author,” he was invited to the White House (where he claimed to have snorted coke with presidential aides) and rubbed elbows with the marquee celebrities of his time. Featuring previously unpublished color photos, this book provides the most compelling and readable portrait to date of one of America’s most extraordinary personalities. ”

The book is due for release on March 17th 2009. Perfect for St. Patricks Day hehe.

Edit: Just came across this article on Sheriff Bob Braudis by Jay Cowan. 

 

Ok for now,

 

Ron Mexico

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Ralph Steadman – The Whole World’s Watching

From RalphSteadman.com :

I wrote to my soul sister, Anita Thompson recently: From over here the stakes look weird and unexpected.  Many wanted Hillary and it looks like, in the most perverse way, that Palin woman could win for McCain- in spite of 8 years of the most hideous presidency in living memory- a stumbling economy and a divisive Foreign Policy for the dumbest and the silliest. I wouldn’t have known two weeks ago that you could get to here from there.  It is almost like a conjuror’s Illusion and you look twice to see how the transformation took place. Beware the fickle!   It’s as though party strategists have kept Palin’s ass cool on some floating iceberg up there in Alaska and produced her like a rabbit out of  a hat. That’s entertainment and that is exactly the knack she has. It’s a trick but it’s a neat one. And incidentally, has anyone noticed that PALIN is an anagram. LAPIN is the french word for rabbit.

Speaking as a bloke- albeit a Welsh one!  I don’t find it hard to imagine armies of heavy-breathing guys from Maine down to Alabama and west across to Sacramento, ogling, guffawing, letching and already shifting their earlier resolve to get the Republicans out once and for all and instead saying the Hell with it. That’s for me and you can bring the old ‘un along too.  He’s got a couple of years left in him and he can teach her as they go. Politics goes straight out the window- or maybe that IS the new politics. Politics and Sex!   Sex as Patriotism.  American flag as Bikini. The riots in Chicago in 1968 were, I guess, the first inkling in modern times, to the fatuous  lie called ‘the American Dream’, realised only as Vietnam transformed some Americans from Isolationist do-gooders into thinking protesters.  Just a few thoughts as I watch this Capitol Hill Circus regroup and change the shape of what was, up to last weekend, a ruinous Hurricane. There are still over 50 days to go so even more alarming things can happen. I am so sorry that Hillary and Barack wasted so much time and energy on egos.

Surely, it is enough damning evidence to know that while Sarah Palin was Mayor of a town called Wassila, Alaska, she tried to get the local Librarian to remove certain books from the shelves, including The Origin of Species. This is damning dumbness rearing its head as glamour. Courage is toting a gun and invoking God as some patron saint of compassion for the chosen few. God is a private and personal matter and we should be allowed to imagine him, it or her, or not,  in whichever way we choose. God as nature is a mean sonofabitch and all are witness to some of the worst examples of its power and have been victims to it since a life supporting atmosphere allowed organisms to crawl around and feel at home. And man evolved and learned from this meanness and ‘humanity’ was born.  In my book, ‘THE BIG I AM’ I imagine a scenario and course of events to ‘explain’ how it all came about.  But that had to be entertainment just as politics has always been.  Now I am lost and hold no compelling convictions.  America is lost too, but this election is making a theatrical stab at something while carrying along in its baggage some of the worst, most reactionary bullshit from its blinkered past, into this new century.

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Hunter S. Thompson on 9/11

It was just after dawn in Woody Creek, Colo., when the first plane hit the World Trade Center in New York City on Tuesday morning, and as usual I was writing about sports. But not for long. Football suddenly seemed irrelevant, compared to the scenes of destruction and utter devastation coming out of New York on TV.

Even ESPN was broadcasting war news. It was the worst disaster in the history of the United States, including Pearl Harbor, the San Francisco earthquake and probably the Battle of Antietam in 1862, when 23,000 were slaughtered in one day.

The Battle of the World Trade Center lasted about 99 minutes and cost 20,000 lives in two hours (according to unofficial estimates as of midnight Tuesday). The final numbers, including those from the supposedly impregnable Pentagon, across the Potomac River from Washington, likely will be higher. Anything that kills 300 trained firefighters in two hours is a world-class disaster.

And it was not even Bombs that caused this massive damage. No nuclear missiles were launched from any foreign soil, no enemy bombers flew over New York and Washington to rain death on innocent Americans. No. It was four commercial jetliners.

They were the first flights of the day from American and United Airlines, piloted by skilled and loyal U.S. citizens, and there was nothing suspicious about them when they took off from Newark, N.J., and Dulles in D.C. and Logan in Boston on routine cross-country flights to the West Coast with fully-loaded fuel tanks — which would soon explode on impact and utterly destroy the world-famous Twin Towers of downtown Manhattan’s World Trade Center. Boom! Boom! Just like that.

The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all hopes for Peace in Our Time, in the United States or any other country. Make no mistake about it: We are At War now — with somebody — and we will stay At War with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives.

It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy. Osama bin Laden may be a primitive “figurehead” — or even dead, for all we know — but whoever put those All-American jet planes loaded with All-American fuel into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon did it with chilling precision and accuracy. The second one was a dead-on bullseye. Straight into the middle of the skyscraper.

Nothing — even George Bush’s $350 billion “Star Wars” missile defense system — could have prevented Tuesday’s attack, and it cost next to nothing to pull off. Fewer than 20 unarmed Suicide soldiers from some apparently primitive country somewhere on the other side of the world took out the World Trade Center and half the Pentagon with three quick and costless strikes on one day. The efficiency of it was terrifying.

We are going to punish somebody for this attack, but just who or what will be blown to smithereens for it is hard to say. Maybe Afghanistan, maybe Pakistan or Iraq, or possibly all three at once. Who knows? Not even the Generals in what remains of the Pentagon or the New York papers calling for WAR seem to know who did it or where to look for them.

This is going to be a very expensive war, and Victory is not guaranteed — for anyone, and certainly not for anyone as baffled as George W. Bush. All he knows is that his father started the war a long time ago, and that he, the goofy child-President, has been chosen by Fate and the global Oil industry to finish it Now. He will declare a National Security Emergency and clamp down Hard on Everybody, no matter where they live or why. If the guilty won’t hold up their hands and confess, he and the Generals will ferret them out by force.

Good luck. He is in for a profoundly difficult job — armed as he is with no credible Military Intelligence, no witnesses and only the ghost of Bin Laden to blame for the tragedy.

OK. It is 24 hours later now, and we are not getting much information about the Five Ws of this thing.

The numbers out of the Pentagon are baffling, as if Military Censorship has already been imposed on the media. It is ominous. The only news on TV comes from weeping victims and ignorant speculators.

The lid is on. Loose Lips Sink Ships. Don’t say anything that might give aid to The Enemy.

– Hunter S. Thompson

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The Gonzo Tapes Now Available for Pre-Order

You can now Pre-Order The Gonzo Tapes through Amazon. The five-disc set is priced $59.98 and you can check out the artwork below.

From Amazon : “Recorded by Hunter S. Thompson between 1965 and 1975, these tapes capture his thoughts and descriptions both as they’re happening and in reflection, as he would often go back to rerecord commentary while writing. Filmmaker Alex Gibney, producer Eva Orner and Gonzo archivist Don Fleming were given permission by Thompson’s widow to explore the boxes of tapes stored in the basement of his Owl Farm home in Woody Creek, Colorado, left behind after Thompson’s suicide in 2005. Fleming transferred the audiocassettes and reel-to-reel tapes to digital files, and they made their way to the cutting room for the film Gonzo: The Life And Work Of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson. Now for the first time these previously unreleased recordings are available in a 5-CD set. The Gonzo Tapes features original cover artwork by Gonzo artist Ralph Steadman, an amazing 44-page booklet full of never-before-seen images from Hunter S. Thompson’s estate, along with memorable photos and an introduction by film director Alex Gibney, an essay by journalist and Thompson’s fellow foreign correspondent Loren Jenkins, and notes by The Gonzo Tapes producer Don Fleming, former front man of the Velvet Monkeys and Gumball who has produced Sonic Youth, Alice Cooper, Hole, and more.”

 

I want a copy nowwwwwwwwww!!!!

Ron Mexico

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Rare Hunter S. Thompson Article – Why Boys Will Be Girls

Algren has never been accused of being “sexually confused,” and he doesn’t wear his hair particularly long. Nor do I, for that matter, but I have a fine collection of women’s hats. I cultivated this taste in the Air Force, as a reaction to the ugly bus driver’s caps that found favor with General LeMay. Unfortunately, he retired before I had a chance to confront him at a command inspection. I had a feathered bonnet, at the time, that would have stunned his eyeballs and ruined his mind.”   

Hunter S. Thompson – When Boys Will Be Girls (Pageant Magazine Aug. 1967)

I was lucky enough to pick up a copy of Pageant Magazine recently after a furious bidding war on ebay (sorry Tom), and inside the covers this fabulous story from the Good Doctor graced several pages. It is the only place that I have seen it to date and it makes for a really interesting read. You can check it out in full over in our rare articles section.

In other news it appears that Alex Gibney’s Gonzo will be available to purchase on Amazon from November 18th. You can place pre-orders and reserve a copy now.

Thats all for now,

Ron Mexico

 

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