Poetry readings (1 Viewer)

cirerita

Founding member
Unpublished letters are sure a treasure trove. I just finished reading a bunch of letters to Weissner and B. mentions a few poetry readings not recorded in the timeline:
-Feb. 17, 1970 (in a place called "Heritage Room" in Cal State L.A.)
-late June / early July, 1970 ("came down off a run of readings. even flew to Seattle and back")
-July 3rd, 1970 ("even read in a chickenshit bookstore")
-July 22, 1970 ("read at Long Beach State College at noon...")
-April 24, 1971 ("ass drag from giving shitty poetry readings -- read from my stuff at S.C." - maybe Santa Cruz?)
-July? 1971 ("I read at a poetry benefit for Patchen who lives in Palo Alto...")
 

mjp

Founding member
-April 24, 1971 ("ass drag from giving shitty poetry readings -- read from my stuff at S.C." - maybe Santa Cruz?)
In Los Angeles, references to "SC" are usually shorthand for USC. University of Southern California. But where Bukowski is concerned, SC could mean USC, Santa Cruz, South Carolina... ;)

-late June / early July, 1970 ("came down off a run of readings. even flew to Seattle and back")
That would probably be West Washington State College [5/29] and Bellevue Community College [5/30].

-July 3rd, 1970 ("even read in a chickenshit bookstore")
The Kiva, University of New Mexico [5/15] ?

-July? 1971 ("I read at a poetry benefit for Patchen who lives in Palo Alto...")
Funny, I was trying to find info on this and found a Patchen benefit as early as the 1950's. Seems like this guy has a history of needing benefits...
 

cirerita

Founding member
I will check those letters again later on today as Ona is sitting on my knees as I type this, but I had the impression they were different readings as B. mentioned the New Mexico one in a previous letter...
 

cirerita

Founding member
In a Apr. 23, 1970, letter he says: "Reading at Univ. of New Mexico in mid May, then may swing up to Western Washington State College and hit them."

In a July 5, 1970, letter he says: "came down off a run of readings. even flew to Seattle and back. I get so high I don't care. bust out the bottle right in the university and go ahead. even read in a chickenshit bookstore July 3. then afterwards..."

I might be wrong, but it seems to me that the New Mexico reading and the bookstore one are not the same one...
 

mjp

Founding member
Oh, I thought the July 3 date was the letter, not the reading. July 3rd is definitely a new one. Too bad we have no other details. I'll assume it was Los Angeles.
 

cirerita

Founding member
August 14th, 1970 letter to Malone: "... I hustle the poetry readings. Gerry Locklin got me on at Long Beach State [the 7/22/70 one]. It was hell but it's money and I am staying off skidrow. a while. also read at a coffehouse at Venice last Wednesday night and picked up $50."

Looks like you could add another poetry reading to the timeline!
 

cirerita

Founding member
April fool's day, 1972 letter to Locklin: "It was a good audience at your place [...] The best audiences I've read at -- your place, Claremount [!!], Univ. of Kalamazoo [!!], Cal State L.A. The worst: U.S.C."
 

mjp

Founding member
He must be writing about the upcoming reading there...if it's an April 1 letter.

USC - we can assume then that's what he meant by SC.

Claremont is a college about 20 miles east of Los Angeles, so that makes sense.

Kalamazoo, that is really an oddball if it's true. There's nothing else to place him in Michigan in '70 or '71...though he did the reading on TV in Detroit in late '74, and there's nothing else to place him in Michigan that year either, so Kalamazoo is probably legit.
 

1fsh2fsh

I think that I think too much
Founding member
He must be writing about the upcoming reading there...if it's an April 1 letter.

USC - we can assume then that's what he meant by SC.

Claremont is a college about 20 miles east of Los Angeles, so that makes sense.

Kalamazoo, that is really an oddball if it's true. There's nothing else to place him in Michigan in '70 or '71...though he did the reading on TV in Detroit in late '74, and there's nothing else to place him in Michigan that year either, so Kalamazoo is probably legit.

what? WHAT???? that would have been amazing as I was hanging in the niehbor hood in those days, and actually there really isn't a kalamazoo university, there is a kalamazoo college tho in those days I think that it was a catholic school and maybe not even co-ed. I'm sure at one time it was a womens school. and then theres western michigan university. if he read here it would have more than likely the place. I wasn't aware of bukowski that early, more like '76 or '77, but k-zoo being a small town (especially then)and being very much involved in the counter-culture community it seems that I would have heard of something like this. Seamus cooney, lives hear and I'm sure that he would (might) know. maybe I'll e-mail him and ask. also I think that Buk read someplace like east lansing or ann arbor around that same time. I know that some of the BSP books were printed in A.A. and Sun Dog Press is in that area also.
 

number6horse

okyoutwopixiesoutyougo
If I may have a sidebar in the court -

Isn't the "Bellevue" DVD footage perfectly edited, considering the source material ? They succesfully matched the audio track to the video, including all the frame jumps, when things had to be spliced. Very artful. But now back to our regular programming....

[EDIT - I now realize this should have been posted in the movies section - sorry]
 

cirerita

Founding member
ok, the Buk Book mentions two readings which are in the timeline, but the dates are different. On page 38, Christy says the Telegraph Hill Neighboorhood Center took place in Sept. 1973, and on page 39 he says that the War Memorial Building was held "later that year".
 

cirerita

Founding member
In CB: Second Coming Years, page 92, Winans says that "Hank informed me that he had just returned from a poetry reading in Los Alamitos, against his better instincts". Given the context, I would say this was in late 1978 or early 1979.

In Bukowski in the Bathtub, page 87, Long says: "Michael Moore recalls two readings Bukowski gave in the back room of Papa Bach [Book Store]". I'm almost sure this was in 1972. This is confirmed by Harvey Kubernik in his "I'm Producing Steel" piece collected in the Drinking with Bukowski book, where he says: "I also caught one of his readings in 1972 at Papa Bach Bookstore."

In "The Liberated Billie and the Old Troll" piece by Linda King which appears in Drinking with Bukowski, page 54, King says: "Bukowski and I were both asked to read at the second annual Santa Cruz Poetry Festival to take place on November 25, 1974 [...] The reading was reviewed in the Berkeley Barb." This is true, and the interview was collected in Sunlight Here I Am.

Are these already in the timeline? ;)
 

mjp

Founding member
ok, the Buk Book mentions two readings which are in the timeline, but the dates are different. On page 38, Christy says the Telegraph Hill Neighboorhood Center took place in Sept. 1973, and on page 39 he says that the War Memorial Building was held "later that year".
That makes the third different date I've had for those SF readings (from people who were there). Which leads me to believe he read up there a lot more than we realize...and at the War Memorial building more than once.

We need a San Francisco operative who can go microfiche through some old alternative weeklies up there. ;)

In CB: Second Coming Years, page 92, Winans says that "Hank informed me that he had just returned from a poetry reading in Los Alamitos, against his better instincts". Given the context, I would say this was in late 1978 or early 1979.
I will add a reading with a non-specific date, but not a non-specific year. That doesn't fit in the grid, man!

Are these already in the timeline? ;)
Well of course!
 

cirerita

Founding member
mjp said:
I will add a reading with a non-specific date, but not a non-specific year. That doesn't fit in the grid, man!

well, I don't have that specific info and I learned not to trust Winans too much when it comes to names and dates -the Impetus/Impulse confusion comes to mind.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
Really? Thanks. I didn't know my word was that good. I realize my memory isn't always 100% reliable. Yesterday a coworker told me "you don't have to get senile when you're old like your mother did. You can fight it." I do -- daily.
 

cirerita

Founding member
Couple of interesting tidbits here:
-Confirms USC as being the worst reading to date.
-Says he has given 20-25 poetry readings so far [the interview is from 1972!], all of them in California.
 

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mjp

Founding member
That Stonecloud interview is good - I have scanned it to text somewhere but never got around to formatting it for the site. I'll have to dig that file off the old computer.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
So, he gave far more early readings than was formerly believed -- it that the thought? There may never be a complete list of those early ones.
 

mjp

Founding member
I think there will eventually be a pretty complete list. But then again, how would we know it was complete, unless Bukowski kept them listed in a notebook somewhere...
 

cirerita

Founding member
From Adios Againe #7, 1975:
"Bukowski appeared at the West Coast Bodega, Long Beach's premiere poet-bar, March 5, 1975."

There's a poem about the reading, illustrated by a Jesus Guttierrez.
 

cirerita

Founding member
The poetry reading at the Venice coffeshop took place on Jan. 27, 1971.

Also, B says: "just finished reading at Claremont (or Pomona college)..." in a letter dated Nov. 23, 1970.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
I think I mentioned it in another thread, but for the record, I have a letter somewhere from an early Bukowski fan who saw him read at a bookstore in the mid-1950s. When I find it, I'll post the details. I'm sure I kept that letter. It's here somewhere. By the way, I finally found my stash of Steve Richmond letters and cards, after months of searching. I don't throw stuff like that out, but it gets moved around in piles until it's buried.
 

mjp

Founding member
The poetry reading at the Venice coffeshop took place on Jan. 27, 1971. Also, B says: "just finished reading at Claremont (or Pomona college)..." in a letter dated Nov. 23, 1970.
I think there were numerous Venice readings. Pomona is already in the timeline, but "just finished" could mean anything. But it's probably safe to put it in November.

David, That is such an unlikely story -- it would be great to have the details. The only reason I would even consider it to be an outside possibility would be due to Barbara Fry's influence, such as it was. 1956-57 they were together, so the general time fits.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
mjp -- I know it's an unlikely story, the mid-1950s reading, but the guy who wrote to me about it was an oldtimer, had been there in the early days of Buk's career, and didn't seem like the type to make up stuff. His letter was written in the 1980s. Maybe this was one of those literary events Barbara Fry dragged Bukowski to. I'll look again for the letter but that's like saying I'm going down to the beach to dig for pirate gold. Sure, it's there somewhere along the coast. You just have to dig in the right spot.
 

cirerita

Founding member
I'm pretty sure the Venice reading from January 1971 took place on the 27th and it was in a coffeeshop... unless he read twice in Venice that same month.

A very reliable source told me that he met Bukowski in the early 60s at a literary party where B. read some of his poems... but no one else can confirm this, so who knows?
 

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