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JACK KEROUAC & STEVE ALLEN: Poetry for the Beat Generation (Limited Black & White “Beatnik Smoke” Vinyl Edition). LP

  • Along with Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac Was the Leading Light of the Beatnik Movement in Literature

  • Issued in 1959, Poetry for the Beat Generation Marked Kerouac’s Recording Debut

  • The Author’s Partnership with TV Personality and Musician Steve Allen Came About After Allen Rescued Kerouac from a Disastrous First Set at the Village Vanguard

  • The Duo’s Collaboration Was So Impressive that Legendary Engineer Bob Thiele Brought Them into the Studio to Record an Album for Dot Records

  • In True Kerouac Fashion, the Entire Album Was Cut in One Session with One Take for Each Track

  • Dot’s President Randy Wood Rejected the Master Due to Its Then-Daring Language and Subject Matter (but Not Before 100 Promo Copies Got Out)

  • Thiele Then Founded Hanover Records with Allen and Released the Record in 1959

  • One of the Most Momentous Spoken Word Records of All Time

  • Released on Black & White “Beatnik Smoke” Vinyl

  • Limited to 900 Copies 


    Jack Kerouac & Steve Allen: Poetry for the Beat Generation (Limited Black & White “Smoke” Swirl Vinyl Edition). LP

    The story behind this album, which marked Jack Kerouac’s debut as a recording artist, is almost as fascinating (but not quite) as the performances it contains. Kerouac had completely bombed in his first set during a 1957 engagement at the Village Vanguard when TV personality, comedian, and musician Steve Allen volunteered to accompany him on piano during the second. The results were so impressive that legendary engineer Bob Thiele then brought the duo into the studio to record an album for Dot Records. In true, stream-of-consciousness, Beat fashion, the entire album was cut in one session with one take for each track, Allen’s piano weaving in and out and occasionally commenting on Kerouac’s verbal riffs to great effect. However, when Poetry for the Beat Generation was ready for release in March 1958, Randy Wood, the president of Dot Records, was appalled by the then-daring language and subject matter and canceled the release…but not before 100 promo copies got out (and if you have one you’re set for life)! Thiele then left the company over the dispute and got the master tape in the bargain, which he finally released on the Hanover label which he founded with Allen in June 1959. That release still stands as one of the most momentous spoken word albums not just of the ‘50s but of all time…and we at Real Gone Music are proud to bring it to you in a black and white “beatnik smoke” vinyl version limited to 900 copies!

    For years, Jack Kerouac’s debut album, Poetry for the Beat Generation, has had a discrepancy in its side breaks between the original album jacket and label art and what is listed online. The original album art shows Side 1 with five tracks and Side 2 with nine; yet all references to the album online display the sides with seven tracks each (which makes sense because that way the two sides are nearly equal in timing). Our reissue of this classic spoken word record reflects this discrepancy; it preserves the original album art and label art showing Side 1 with 5 tracks and Side 2 with 9 tracks, but the actual disc splits the tracks seven and seven. All the material is intact.

    1. Abraham
    1. October in the Railroad Earth
    2. Dave Brubeck
    2. Deadbelly
    3. Charlie Parker
    3. I Had a Slouch Hat Too One Time
    4. The Sounds of the Universe Coming in My Window
    4. The Wheel of the Quivering Meat Conception
    5. McDougal Street Blues
    5. One Mother
    6. Goofing at the Table
    6. The Moon Her Majesty
    7. Bowery Blues
    7. I'd Rather Be Thin Than Famous

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