EUR 26,66
  • Tous les prix incluent la TVA.
Il ne reste plus que 1 exemplaire(s) en stock.
Expédié et vendu par Amazon. Emballage cadeau disponible.
Fear and Loathing at Roll... a été ajouté à votre Panier
Vous l'avez déjà ?
Repliez vers l'arrière Repliez vers l'avant
Ecoutez Lecture en cours... Interrompu   Vous écoutez un extrait de l'édition audio Audible
En savoir plus
Voir les 3 images

Fear and Loathing at Rolling Stone: The Essential Writing of Hunter S. Thompson (Anglais) Relié – 25 octobre 2011

Voir les formats et éditions Masquer les autres formats et éditions
Prix Amazon
Neuf à partir de Occasion à partir de
Format Kindle
"Veuillez réessayer"
"Veuillez réessayer"
EUR 26,66
EUR 10,39 EUR 6,33

Offres spéciales et liens associés

Descriptions du produit


Fear and Loathing at Rolling Stone


Paul Scanlon

When I first met Hunter S. Thompson in 1971, I didn’t know what to expect. I was familiar with his work, of course, and had read the wonderful account of his campaign to become sheriff of Pitkin County (Aspen), Colorado, in the pages of Rolling Stone. He had been in Los Angeles working on a piece about the murder of newspaperman Ruben Salazar. There had been talk—very vague talk—about his writing something about Las Vegas. Then, one fine spring day, he appeared in Rolling Stone’s San Francisco office. For me, and the magazine, nothing would ever be quite the same.

•   •   •

If you were a progressively minded college student in the 1960s, certain books were required reading: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey, A Confederate General from Big Sur and Trout Fishing in America by Richard Brautigan, The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby and The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe, and Hell’s Angels by Hunter S. Thompson.

As an undergraduate majoring in journalism, I was drawn to the writing of Wolfe and a few others who were practicing what was not yet being called the “New Journalism.” It’s funny, but even at an überliberal school like San Francisco State, there was a schism—what was known in the day as a “generation gap”—between faculty and students over this new kind of writing. Our professors considered Wolfe and his ilk poseurs, inspiring some kind of journalistic vaudeville by applying fictional techniques to reporting. We thought our instructors intended to mold us into drones, destined to carve out careers at small-town dailies.

I guess it was my junior year when I pulled a copy of The Nation from the student lounge magazine rack and had my first encounter with the writing of Hunter Thompson. It was the first of his two-part report on traveling with the Hells Angels. The outlaw motorcycle club’s Oakland chapter was a fixture in the Bay Area. Encountering a group of Angels was not uncommon, especially after they embraced LSD and began hanging out at dance-rock concerts in places like the Fillmore Auditorium and Winterland. Big Brother and the Holding Company became their “official” band. The rule of thumb was simple if you were nearby: keep your distance and try not to make eye contact. Even in their brief, acid-drenched benign phase, the Angels were downright scary, clearly capable of unpredictable violence.

So it was a revelation to me that there was a writer who could figure out a way to win their trust and run with these characters. Hunter Thompson clearly had the smarts and the courage to do so. Or he was a hell of a salesman and a little bit crazy. Whatever. That early installment in The Nation convinced me he was the real deal. Later that day, I wondered aloud to my fellow campus newspaper staffers what our faculty advisers would make of him.

•   •   •

Rolling Stone in the early 1970s was an exciting place to be. Social, cultural, and political unrest was in the air and we tried to cover that turbulence in ways that newspapers and newsweeklies did not. I was the managing editor for many of those years and was fortunate to work with some of the finest journalists in the land, including several on the magazine’s masthead. My colleagues were a gifted bunch of renegades who had served apprenticeships in places like the Los Angeles Times, the New York Post, the Detroit Free Press, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, and the Wall Street Journal. Two of our most talented staffers came from the creative writing programs of San Francisco State and Stanford. Our first copy chief, who kept the place from coming unglued every two-week publishing cycle, was a Middle East scholar who had once roomed with Owsley Stanley III. We all shared a disdain for traditional, mainstream journalism and a penchant for hard work.

When Hunter entered our ranks he quickly became, in many ways, our team leader. He had already established his credentials as an outlaw journalist, and the Salazar piece would demonstrate his investigative zeal.

You had to like the guy. I think some of it came from his innate Southern charm and the contradictory fact that he was, well, a little shy. He was in town that spring to work on “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Part I,” and had set up shop in the basement of Jann Wenner’s house. His visits to the office, a converted downtown warehouse with lots of exposed brick and wooden beams, were infrequent, but always memorable. Hunter was a big, hulking but graceful guy who clearly had charisma, and we responded to it.

Standing about six-foot-two, usually clad in khaki shorts, high-topped sneakers, a baseball cap, and either a parka or a safari jacket, he’d amble into the office with a bowlegged quickstep, making the zigzagging, seriocomic, dramatic entrance we had come to expect. There was a big, round oak table in the middle of the editorial department, a sort of central gathering spot, where he’d plop down his leather rucksack, open it, and wordlessly proceed to remove the contents, which varied, but usually included something edible, like a grapefruit, a carton of Dunhills, a large police flashlight, a bottle of Wild Turkey, and a can of liquid Mace.

Next, he’d open his mouth and speak. I called it “Hunter-ese.” His delivery was something akin to a lawn sprinkler or a Gatling gun, a rapid-fire baritone mumble that was hard to understand at first. But once you caught on to the rhythms, you realized he was spitting out perfect sentences.

Late one morning, Hunter came in and handed some manuscript pages to a couple of editors and me, then turned and motored out with nary a word. He had given us copies of the first section of “Vegas,” and by late afternoon most of the staff had read and digested them. We were flat knocked out. Between fits of laughter we ran our favorite lines back and forth to one another: “One toke? You poor fool. Wait until you see those goddamned bats!” Delivered in Hunter-ese, of course.

Between bouts of serious writing there was the usual goofing off and troublemaking. There were evenings of drug-fueled adventures that left more than a few staffers dazed and worn out. There were interesting characters who were part of his—and subsequently our—orbit, including Oscar Zeta Acosta, who was the model for the “three-hundred-pound Samoan attorney” in “Vegas,” and his sometimes sidekick, a fellow named Savage Henry.

Early on we became familiar with Hunter’s penchant for fright wigs, bizarre recordings of animals in their death throes that would somehow find their way onto the office public address system, and novelty store pranks. One evening Jann invited a few of us over to his place on some pretext or other. We walked in and saw Hunter standing there in a torn tie-dyed T-shirt covered in red splotches. Brandishing what looked like a giant horse syringe, he announced that he was going to inject 151 proof rum directly into his navel. He then jammed the “needle” into his belly and doubled over as he let out a series of wails and groans. One of my companions almost fainted.

But the fun and games—for Hunter and for the rest of us—always took second position to the work. We loved what we were doing, and none more than he. Once, reflecting on the scrambling years of his early career, he stated that he had “no taste for either poverty or honest labor, so writing is the only recourse left for me.” His tongue, of course, was firmly in his cheek. He was serious about his craft and was an ongoing student of correct grammar and syntax, and enjoyed sharing that knowledge. One of our staff writers was quite talented but often taunted for the sloppiness of his copy. I stood by one day as Hunter patiently lectured him on the necessity of producing a clean manuscript and how it would complement his writing skills (Hunter was right). In fact, he went out of his way to be friendly and helpful, even solicitous, about our work. Hunter would somehow get wind of what I was assigning and often I’d find on my desk a note in his distinctive scrawl suggesting a source or a contact. The notes were always signed: OK/HST. He had a gift to inspire, and he lifted everybody’s game.

He could have played the star, but the really good ones never do. Hells Angels brought notoriety, and his Kentucky Derby piece for Scanlan’s as well as the early Rolling Stone appearances received attention. He chose to be a friend and colleague, and we responded in kind. When the sloppy manuscript guy heard that Hunter used swimming as a way to relax, he escorted Hunter to a scuba school a couple of blocks away where he could do laps when the pool was free.

When he was in town, Hunter became a low-key regular at Jerry’s Inn, the staff watering hole across the street. He was very much at home there at the bar, and would love to engage us, one-on-one, in everything from his heroes, Scott Fitzgerald and Joseph Conrad; to classic sportswriters such as Jimmy Cannon or Red Smith; to the fortunes of the Oakland Raiders, the scruffy, mean-spirited pro football team on which he had a few friends. He also loved to talk shop, about articles we would read in Esquire and elsewhere, which I like to think validated a few of the hours we spent in Jerry’s instead of in the office.

When Hunter embarked on the 1972 campaign trail, it signaled the end of one chapter and the beginning of another for both him and the magazine. At first there was no real blueprint other than establishing a presence with an office in Washington, D.C. But he quickly found himself reinventing the mission statement almost issue by issue, and pretty soon the assignment had become an endless road trip. He was always writing against extreme deadline and filing copy at the last possible minute, which became a crucible for both him and the magazine. I was mercifully out of the direct line of fire, with too many other things on my plate. But I was close enough to feel the terrible weight borne by Jann, associate editor David Felton, copy editor Charles Perry, and a heroic production staff. The now legendary Mojo Wire sat just a few feet from my office door. Night after night, in the midst of deadline frenzy, that infernal thing would be beeping away, signaling Hunter’s presence at the other end, while Jann or Felton stood by, waiting for the copy to be slowly ejected. It was as if he was always in our midst. And in the final accounting, those articles solidified Rolling Stone’s commitment to political coverage, made Hunter a true celebrity (for good and ill), and eventually resulted in a great book. It was a miracle of journalism under pressure, and only Hunter could have pulled it off.

A few months after the election we were sitting in Jerry’s. Hunter looked like hell and was clearly not in great spirits. For reasons that will ever elude me, I decided to give him a helpful lecture. Retire your alter ego Raoul Duke, I said. Or send him on a long vacation. Go back to being the journalist who wrote Hells Angels. Cut back a little on the drugs and the booze. He turned toward me as he reached into the pocket of his safari jacket. He gave me a look; nothing nasty, just a look. He extracted a tab of Mr. Natural blotter acid from the pocket, stared me in the eye, and swallowed it. I got the message. Our conversation resumed.

•   •   •

The last time I worked with Hunter was on his “interdicted dispatch” from a rapidly falling Saigon in 1975. We pretty much lost contact after that, although I’d occasionally run into him in New York. The last time I spoke to him was at a 1996 celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and the simultaneous publication of a Modern Library edition, an acknowledgment of his work by the literary establishment of which he was justly proud. It was a splendid evening. A lot of Rolling Stone alumni were there, and among the guests was Johnny Depp, Hunter’s great friend who would portray Raoul Duke, Doctor of Journalism, in the movie version of Vegas in 1998.

One of my favorite memories of Hunter goes back to the spring of 1973, and it’s actually on video tape. He had been sequestered at the Seal Rock Inn, on the western edge of San Francisco, finishing the final edits on Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail ’72. A group of video journalists who had been assigned to do a documentary on Rolling Stone for public television had taped him at the hotel as he was preparing to leave, and he obliged them with a few minutes of classic Hunter S. Thompson gibberish and shtick.

But when he got to the office to say his good-byes before heading home to Colorado, the video crew had preceded him and closed in, peppering him with stupid questions. Hunter and I tried to ignore them by poring over his fan mail, which in itself was something to behold. Finally, Hunter gave up. He started moving down the hallway, looking back over his shoulder at me, saying, “I have to meet a guy across the street!” By the time he reached the exit, he was shouting, “I HAVE TO MEET A GUY ACROSS THE STREET!” Across the street was Jerry’s, naturally. The guy was me.

Hunter was a terrific writer whose unique talent and enthusiasm helped propel Rolling Stone forward at some crucial points in its early history. He was a swell drinking companion, a hell of a salesman, and yes, a little bit crazy. Crazy like a fox.

•   •   •

It’s been forty years since Hunter Thompson embarked on the presidential campaign trail and almost seven years since he passed away, but somehow he still manages to consume many of us to this day. When I began work on this book, I figured his total output for Rolling Stone exceeded four hundred fifty thousand words. The main text, after some pretty serious editing, is still about two hundred ten thousand words.

The selection process was easy: practically everything. Only four articles were omitted; they simply weren’t up to par with the other material. But this meant that cutting would be that much more difficult.

The campaign trail material was the least difficult to work with. It was specifically geared to the moment, and much of it had simply ceased being topical. But there were plenty of vignettes and colorful incidents, and the overall reporting has held up remarkably well.

A characteristic of Hunter’s writing is the long digression, or the shorter but carefully designed tangent. If a digression got in the way of the main narrative, out it came. The best example is “Fear and Loathing at the Super Bowl.” Almost half the article was a world-class digression on the Oakland Raiders, which had nothing to do with the contest itself. Of course if a digression or tangent was outrageously funny, it had to stay in. It would have been a crime to cut Hunter’s adventures riding the Vincent Black Shadow motorcycle. Such is also the case with “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.” The excerpt presented here is a stand-alone section from Part II in which Duke and his attorney have their way with a hapless delegate to the district attorneys’ conference.

Curiously, the hardest article to cut was Hunter’s first piece for the magazine, “The Battle of Aspen,” which details his efforts to unseat the sheriff of Pitkin County, Colorado, through the use of “Freak Power.” I made a moderate initial cut, but the second time around I struggled and finally gave up. The damn thing was too intricate and dense.

•   •   •

The arc of Hunter’s relationship with Rolling Stone is pretty clear looking at the table of contents. His output from 1970 through 1972 was amazing, and Watergate and all things Nixon kept him involved through 1974. But when he was dispatched to the Ali-Foreman heavyweight championship fight in Zaire that year, he returned empty-handed. His trip to Saigon as the Vietnam War wound down yielded an abbreviated, unfinished piece. A later excursion to Grenada yielded nothing. In the meantime, he had become—and would continue to be—a popular speaker on college campuses. The money was good and the appearances were plentiful. The writing just wasn’t there, for long periods.

When he would reappear in the pages of Rolling Stone, the results were often first-rate. In 1977, “The Banshee Screams for Buffalo Meat” was a paean to his friend and sometimes nemesis Oscar Acosta, who had apparently perished in a drug deal gone bad. His two-part profile and interview with Muhammad Ali the following year was insightful and hilarious. Who else would leap into Ali’s hotel room wearing an African fright mask, sending the Champ into gales of laughter?

Another five-year absence ended with Hunter’s last great piece of reporting when he was sent to cover the sensational Roxanne Pulitzer divorce trial. “A Dog Took My Place” features Hunter at his best, exploring the sex-and-drugs culture of well-heeled Palm Beach denizens in wide-eyed amazement and disdain.

The 1990s would produce two late masterpieces. “Fear and Loathing in Elko” is a sustained fantasia of nightmare imagery featuring Supreme Court justice Clarence Thomas and a cast of weirdos. It is mordantly funny and dark—in fact much darker than “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.” “Polo Is My Life” would prove to be his last great piece of lyrical, expansive writing, involving his observations on a sport for the wealthy, the lost world of F. Scott Fitzgerald, and sex dolls. It should be noted that these two articles, like his first for Rolling Stone, were extremely difficult to cut.

The correspondence between Hunter and Jann starts with their very first exchange in 1969. There are backstage looks at the writer as he works, how “Vegas” came to be, the evolution of the 1972 campaign coverage, story ideas (mostly discarded), and the push-me, pull-you faxes required to produce Hunter’s later work. Taken as a whole, the letters and memos are a kind of additional biography of the writer who did his signature work for Rolling Stone.




In the Beginning . . .

Hunter first wrote to Jann Wenner in January 1970, having already published his first book, Hell’s Angels, in 1966 to generally positive critical attention. Rolling Stone, then two years old, had gained national attention with a special issue on Altamont, the Rolling Stones’ debacle of a free outdoor concert in December 1969, at which the Hells Angels (incredibly, hired as security) terrorized the crowd, stabbing one spectator to death. Early correspondence between editor and writer danced around the possibility of a story about Terry the Tramp, an Angel who’d recently died, until Hunter casually mentioned his nascent campaign for sheriff of Aspen, Colorado. “The Battle of Aspen”—both Hunter’s run for office and his account of it in the magazine—inserted Hunter into the national conversation both politically and journalistically, and was the opening battle cry to an epic, righteous, and occasionally combustible partnership between Hunter and Rolling Stone.

Undated letter from Hunter S. Thompson to Jann S. Wenner

Owl Farm

Woody Creek, Colorado

Jann Wenner

Rolling Stone

Your Altamont coverage comes close to being the best journalism I can remember reading, by anybody. When I cited it to a friend who teaches at UCLA’s journalism school he said he’d never heard of Rolling Stone . . . and that sort of says it all, I think, except maybe to speculate that the trouble isn’t really with print, but with the people who control print. And that’s an old bitch, too, so fuck it. Anyway, Rolling Stone makes [Marshall] McLuhan suck wind. It’s a hell of a good medium by any standard, from Hemingway to the Airplane. People like [founder of the Los Angeles Free Press Art] Kunkin and [author-journalist Paul] Krassner never came close to what you’re doing . . . so don’t fuck it up with pompous bullshit; the demise of R.S. would leave a nasty hole.

Which reminds me of that shitty ignorant slur you laid on Eric Von Schmidt’s last album, Who Knocked the Brains Out of the Sky? It’s one of the few really original things I’ve heard in five years and “Wooden Man” ranks with the best of The Band’s stuff. Whoever wrote that sleazy rap is a waterhead with a shit ear. Dismissing Von Schmidt as a bad rock artist is like comparing Lenny Bruce to the Hells Angels & saying that Bruce didn’t make it.


Hunter S. Thompson

Undated letter from Jann S. Wenner to Hunter S. Thompson

746 Brannan Street

San Francisco 94103


Thanks for your note. Having once read your Angels book in galley proof forms (stole them when I worked at Ramparts) and having really dug it in its pre-cut form, I’ve been a fan of yours. Glad you are now a fan of ours. So, good to get your note.

The record review section has been a problem—a lot of prep-school masturbatory reviewers getting their rocks off in the past. We’re weeding them out now, and bringing the section back under my control, so I apologize for past idiocies in that part of the paper.

How about doing something for us? What have you been writing lately? Send it to me. Maybe we can use it, or maybe you have some ideas for some new stuff. Let me know.

Two items for your interest: 1) We submitted Altamont (plus groupies, ups, Dylan, etc.) for a Pulitzer. I doubt it will happen, but what the hell; and 2) I found out yesterday that Terry the Tramp committed suicide—sleeping pills—he wanted to quit the Angels after Altamont, and that’s how he did it. I think we’ll be having a good story about it. Would you be interested in adding your thoughts?

Hope Woody Creek is as beautiful as it sounds.


Jann Wenner

Letter from HST to JSW

Owl Farm

Woody Creek, Colorado

Feb 25 ’70

Dear Jann . . .

Thanx for the note & good luck with the Pulitzer gig. If I had a vote you’d be in good shape . . . but you’ll be dealing with a gang of crusty shitheads, so don’t let it worry you if they don’t give you a medal. And even if they do it’ll probably be for the wrong reasons.

About writing something: Your news about Terry the Tramp depresses the shit out of me. When I think of all those worthless mean-souled fuckers who should commit suicide, it’s rotten to hear that Terry was the one who did it. I have hours of tape-talk with the bastard & I was listening to them tonight & remembering how he always knew that Angel thing was a bad trip & how he wanted to get out of it . . . but he never knew how, or where to go. He was the only one of the Angels I ever felt next to for long enough to consider him a friend. I kept expecting him to show up out here & I’d have been happy to see him—but he never did. And now, looking at your letter, I don’t mind knowing he’s dead so much as I hate to think of him sitting around deciding to do it. He should have gone out at about 120, head-on with a cop car. That’s what he was looking for; and it’s a bitch to know he had to go out on his knees.

Anyway, I’d like to write something about him. Maybe a long thing—because thinking about him puts me back in a scene that’s beginning to look very rare. San Francisco in the mid-Sixties was a very special time . . . and Terry, to me, was a key figure. I remember taking him down to the Matrix to hear the Airplane before they ever got into the Fillmore . . . then taking him down to La Honda to meet Kesey . . . and those fuckarounds with the Berkeley peace freaks. So probably I could write a decent thing about him—as a freak-symbol of an era he never quite understood. What do you have room for? A short obit . . . or a long rambling truth-nut? Let me know quick—if you need it quick—and also say what you pay. I’ll write the fucker anyway, if there’s room, but I tend to bear down a little harder when I smell money.

Whatever you think: I’ll do a short obit (say, 2500 words) for nothing . . . or a long (10–15,000 words) for money. I’d like to get into it, and it fits with the long-overdue book I’m supposed to be finishing right now for Random House . . . so if you can use a long piece it’s no problem. Shit . . . I sound like a pawnbroker here (or a speed-dealer), but in fact there’s no point in my zapping off a huge chunk of esoteric madness that nobody can use. I’ve done that all too often, and it gets old . . .

OK for now . . . and in any case keep R.S. on its rails. We are heading into a shitstorm on all fronts.



Also—send any details or news clips about Terry—like if there’s a funeral, etc. They would help if I do anything long or serious—Thanx

Letter from JSW to HST

March 30, 1970

Hunter Thompson

Owl Farm

Woody Creek, Colorado

Dear Hunter:

Sorry for taking so long to get back to you but just before your letter arrived I went to London for awhile and I’ve just gotten back.

In the meantime, Terry the Tramp has passed from memory and we have received a beautiful piece by one of our writers in London, Chuck Alverson. I think we will be using this piece for a special issue we will be doing this fall about the Sixties. This obviates the need for the Terry the Tramp piece.

However, I would like you to write some things for us. You say you’re working on a book right now for Random House, and if Terry the Tramp fits into it, perhaps then something from your book would fit into Rolling Stone. Maybe you could send us the chapters or some chapters, and maybe we could run some of it. I’d enjoy reading them in any case.

Best regards,

Jann Wenner

Letter from HST to JSW

Owl Farm

Woody Creek, Colorado

Apr 10 ’70

Dear Jann . . .

OK, I’ll try to let you know whenever I have something suitable for R.S. God only knows when, or what, it will be. Between running for Sheriff and getting this new Wallposter off the ground, I don’t have much time for heavy writing. But I have to do it—or else start looking around for a job; so I’ll get something together pretty soon.

Meanwhile, how can I get on the list for the Earth Times [Jann had recently launched an environmental publication with this title]? Who’s running it? If it’s you, write me in & bill me, or we can trade straight across for 12 issues of the Wallposter—which is on firm enough footing at least until next Nov, when we plan to bring everything to a terrible climax. Until then, the WP is our forum. I’m enclosing the first two issues, FYI.

What I’m hoping for now is just sending out all kinds of queries, hoping to come up with a few good ideas about printing and distribution before June, when we’ll have to get down to serious twice-a-month publication. So if you have any ideas—mainly about how to sell this thing on the coast, or maybe a name or so of some distributors, I’d appreciate hearing from you pretty soon. Thanks for anything you can send.

And meanwhile, put me on the list for the Earth Times.

Ciao . . .

Hunter S. Thompson

In re: Chuck Alverson in London—he’s an old friend of mine from the SF era—he did one of the first big magazine stories on the Angels (in True)—say hello when you see him.

Letter from JSW to HST, April 16, 1970

Hunter S. Thompson

Owl Farm

Woody Creek, Colorado

Dear Hunter:

Thanks for your letter. Something suitable for Rolling Stone: how about the tale of your campaign to be elected Sheriff? That would be beautiful.

Wallposter is a gas. There’s nothing I can do for you in the way of distribution, but if you would like to sell a lot of single copies through the mail at 25 cents each, we could give you a plug in Random Notes.

Enclosed are the first two issues of Earth Times. I’d really love to have your first-person piece on running for sheriff. It sounds like it would be beautiful, especially with a lot of general material about Aspen and the scene there worked into it. How about 2500 words?


Jann Wenner

P.S. Chuck Alverson is now traveling around the Mediterranean for us, doing a special issue on the hashish trails. He’ll be in San Francisco in August, and would probably love to see you.

Letter from HST to JSW

Owl Farm

Woody Creek, Colorado

Apr 23 ’70

Dear Jann . . .

OK . . . but first let me explain the X-factors in both the Sheriff’s campaign piece and the 25-cent Wallposters.

First: I saw that photo/caption in the last issue of R.S. about the lad who was running for sheriff of Virginia City—and although it sounds fine, that scene is a long way from ours. This one is getting very grim. . . . and our real opposition goes by names like 1st National City Bank of NY, “First Boston,” and the Aspen Ski Corp.—with directors like Rbt. McNamara, Paul Nitze & other Washington heavies. What we’ve been trying to do—since we lost last November’s mayoral race by six (6) votes—is seize control of what the opposition regards as a working gold mine. And it is. The idea that a 29-year-old bike-racer head almost became the Mayor of Aspen last fall has put the fatbacks in a state of wild fear; at the moment they’re trying to pass a new City Charter that would disenfranchise most of “our” voters & also bar most of “our” candidates from running for office. So—to destroy this New Charter—we have to mount a serious campaign almost instantly. The charter election (Yes, or No) is in June. And if we can beat them on that, I think we can generate a fucking landslide in November—not only in the Sheriff’s race, but also in the crucial County Commissioner’s contest—and also for the ballot proposition to change the name of Aspen, officially, to Fat City. This would wreck the bastards, and give us working control of the whole county.*

Anyway, I trust you see the problem—both in timing and magnitude. My sheriff’s gig is just a small part of the overall plot, which amounts to a sort of Freak Power takeover bid. It began last Nov. and won’t end until Nov ’70. So maybe you should ponder the timing of any article; For my own purposes, I’d rather do it sometime this summer, like August, when we’re well underway. Or I can wait until after it’s over . . . although chances are that I’ll be somewhere in Chuck Alverson’s territory by that time, if I lose. If I make a serious run at the sheriff’s thing, I’ll either win or have to move out. That’s the tradition here—and it’ll be especially true in my case. Last summer was heavy with violence, and this one looks nine times worse. Last year the dynamite action didn’t even start until mid-July, but this year it’s already heavy in April . . . and last fall’s near-miss election has given the local freaks a huge shot of confidence for whatever lies ahead.

So . . . on the “Sheriff’s Campaign” article, I’m inclined to look at it as part of a far larger thing. If Freak Power can win in Aspen, it can win in a lot of other places . . . and in that context I’d just as soon do the article fairly soon, maybe in time for August publication, so that what we’ve learned here might be put to use somewhere else, before November. The important thing here is not whether I win or not—and I hope to hell I don’t—but the mechanics of seizing political power in an area with a potentially powerful freak population. (As a passing note, there, I suppose I should say that if I do win, I’ll serve out the term—although not without the help of a carefully selected posse and a very special crew of deputies, most of whom are already chosen and working to register my constituents.) We found, last fall, that registration is the key to freak power.

And so much for all that. I can do the piece sooner, or later; I’d prefer sooner, but what the hell? We’re into it anyway, and by autumn a hell of a lot of people are going to be leaving this town: The only question is Who they’re going to be.

*   *   *

Well . . . 3 days later now, & I’ve just talked to [Ramparts and Scanlan’s editor] Warren Hinckle about doing a piece on the Kentucky Derby for Scanlan’s. I’m leaving in a few hours for Louisville, so I want to get this off quick.

Right now the political balance looks about 40/60 against us—but that’s without the crazed brilliance that we’ll naturally bring to any serious effort we decide to make. So I figure the real balance, right now, is roughly 50/50—which means, if we don’t make any serious mistakes, we’ll probably control the town & the county by November of 1970. This includes the Sheriff’s race, the (more important) County Commissioner’s race, and also the referendum to change the name of the town to “Fat City.”

Meanwhile, we are being sued by the County Attorney, who claims that Wallposter #1 forced him to quit his job. He wants more money than the Meat Possum Press Ltd. [Hunter’s loose collective of like-minded freaks] can ever earn, so fuck him—we welcome his action. In WP #4 we intend to go for his throat & goad him on to further frenzies.

So that’s it for now; I’m off to the Derby. Let me know when you’d like the Sheriff article—and write the Random Notes Wallposter note however you see fit; we’ll honor it. OK . . .


Undated letter from JSW to HST

746 Brannan Street

San Francisco 94103


Aspen story as is sounds great. I would dig it—at length, long really, maybe 5000 words, whatever it is worth once you write it—on the whole thing. Last year’s elections, this year’s, the dynamite things, all the local color and personalities. It sounds superb for us. I would like it in June to run in July or something. I don’t want to wait until it’s over. I’d like the story while it is still in progress. If you know of a local photographer, then we’d like him on the story as well. If not, we’ll send our own photographer.

The whole thing really moves me, as freakpower or whatever you call it, but the story of how young turned-on people are trying to take over the town in a regular election in Aspen, the Aspen scene in general for a while, the specifics of the election, who is running against whom, the reaction of the local gentry. And registration.

Your story in RS should be part of the larger effort to get everyone to register for 1972.

So do it. We can use it as soon as you finish it. Rate is 5 cents a word. Let me know on the photos.


Rather than plug the Wallposter now, let’s get it with the issue we run the above piece.

Letter from HST to JSW

Owl Farm

Woody Creek, Colorado

June 1 ’70

Dear Jann . . .

OK, back now from the Derby & recovering from a massive fuck-around—with Wallposter #4 due at the (Denver) printer in 4 days, and nothing written. Not even a cover—and my art partner, Tom Benton, is in the hospital for a shoulder operation. So things are jangled here. Selah.

On the Aspen/politics piece, I’ll aim at getting it to you around mid/late June. One of the main problems is that anything I write in RS is going to get back here pretty quick, so I have to consider that aspect before I get it on. Our county commissioner candidate hasn’t been told, yet, that he’s it . . . and I want to get him solidly committed before I announce for sheriff. Otherwise, he—and our whole liberal/money gang—will freak right out and leave me running a straight Freak-Power shot; and that won’t work. The dropout Head mentality is a maddening thing to work with; they don’t know Kent State from Kent cigarettes, and frankly they don’t give a fuck. But I’ll get a decent piece out of this scene—for good or ill. Let’s look at June 20 or so.

As for photographs, we have some competent locals but they don’t give a fuck either—but let’s wait a while until you send somebody out. July 4 is always a bitch here: Violence, bombs, bikers, posses with shotguns, etc. So if I can’t root up a batch of good photos by July 1, maybe you should send somebody out who can do this scene with a fresh eye. There are one or two local photogs who could get the stuff pretty easily, but if I can’t prod them out of their lethargy we’d be better off with somebody interested. I’ll let you know.

But frankly I’d just as soon have one of your people come out. Otherwise, I’ll have to ride herd on the local fuckers & do everything for them except push the button. (And in fact I might do that. I used to take pictures for half a living. No reason why I shouldn’t make a run at it this time . . . and if my own stuff bombs we can always use one of your people.)

Anyway, the thing is cooking. My only real problem is how to write it without screwing myself to the floor in November. We’ll see . . .



* we’ve just rented a large mid-town office—a log building with huge windows

Revue de presse

“Hunter was the only twentieth-century equivalent of Mark Twain.” —Tom Wolfe

“Thompson is a genuinely unique figure in American journalism, a superb comic writer and a ferociously outspoken social and political critic.” —Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post

“Mr. Thompson, the flamboyant apostle and avatar of gonzo journalism, still exerts a powerful hold on the American psyche. . . . He was first and foremost an original, vivid prose voice.” The New York Times

“Some of the finest political and social writing of our times.” The Seattle Times

“Thompson should be recognized for contributing some of the clearest, most bracing and fearless analysis of the possibilities and failures of American democracy in the past century.” Chicago Tribune

“At his best he has the kind of trenchant, mordant wit of H. L. Mencken and Mark Twain.”Houston Chronicle

Aucun appareil Kindle n'est requis. Téléchargez l'une des applis Kindle gratuites et commencez à lire les livres Kindle sur votre smartphone, tablette ou ordinateur.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

Pour obtenir l'appli gratuite, saisissez votre adresse e-mail ou numéro de téléphone mobile.

Détails sur le produit

En savoir plus sur l'auteur

Découvrez des livres, informez-vous sur les écrivains, lisez des blogs d'auteurs et bien plus encore.

Dans ce livre

(En savoir plus)
Parcourir les pages échantillon
Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Quatrième de couverture
Rechercher dans ce livre:

Quels sont les autres articles que les clients achètent après avoir regardé cet article?

Commentaires en ligne

Il n'y a pas encore de commentaires clients sur
5 étoiles
4 étoiles
3 étoiles
2 étoiles
1 étoiles

Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) HASH(0x912b3ed0) étoiles sur 5 52 commentaires
129 internautes sur 129 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x90e9bd08) étoiles sur 5 Avoid this HEAVILY EDITED collection 20 janvier 2012
Par Rory Feehan - Publié sur
Format: Relié
This book is an utter disgrace. It is far from "The Essential Hunter S. Thompson" as it is heavily edited throughout by Jann Wenner and Paul Scanlon. So what the reader is getting is a chopped and butchered version of Hunter S. Thompson's original articles. We are not even talking about excerpts here, the articles in this collection bear no resemblance to the original writing. For example, Strange Rumblings in Aztlan has the entire first page chopped out, with this new edited version kicking off in the middle of a paragraph. To mask this Wenner and Scanlon have combined two of Thompson's sentences to start off the article. Yeah you read that correctly, the first sentence is a mutated piece of writing thanks to the hand of the editors. Fear and Loathing at The Super Bowl has pages upon pages cut from the original source, leaving an article that is disjointed and all over the place. The entire collection continues in this fashion with only 2-3 articles remaining untouched.

I cannot fathom what Jann Wenner was thinking when he decided to take this approach with Hunter's writing. Thompson would never have tolerated such interference with his work and Wenner knows this only too well. The collection also claims to include letters and memos between the pair but the reality is that you get 50 short letters of little substance, some of which are already published in Fear and Loathing in America. Comparing the two, the reader will also discover that Wenner has edited the letters, as if butchering the articles wasn't enough.

So at the end of the day, this book serves no real purpose. All of this work is already freely available in its original form, as Thompson intended, in both The Great Shark Hunt and The Gonzo Papers Anthology.

So please avoid this disgraceful publication and purchase either of the above books instead. At least you know you will have the original work and not some piece of quackery from Jann Wenner, who should know better and wouldn't have dared pull such a stunt if Hunter was alive.

I'd give this publication 0 out of 5 stars if Amazon would allow me to do so, it is that bad.
50 internautes sur 51 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x90f5aa14) étoiles sur 5 Buyer Beware! -- His text has been edited/re-arranged -- why?!! 25 janvier 2012
Par Johnny LaRue - Publié sur
Format: Relié
From Totally Gonzo dot org: "... Jann Wenner, with the help of Paul Scanlon, decided to severely edit Hunter's original prose. I am not just talking about taking excerpts from the original articles - that might actually have been a sensible move considering the length of some of his work. Instead however, what is contained in the pages of this collection can only be described as a kind of horrific experiment gone wrong, FrankenGonzo if you like, starring Jann Wenner as the crazed creator holed away in a workshop of filthy creation. The result of his efforts of course is a creature of monstrous ugliness.

It is hard not to form this impression when you see the heavy handed dissection of Hunter's work. The original flow of his writing is all but destroyed, with paragraph after paragraph hacked away in favour of this new re-imagined beast..."
41 internautes sur 44 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Par Stuart Jefferson - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Hardcover-3 page Forward by Jann Wenner, publisher of Rolling Stone Magazine (RS) and Thompson's friend, 8 page Introduction by writer Paul Scanlon, 561 pages of text, and Acknowledgments page. The book contains no photographs or other reproductions, except the cover photo. Interspersed throughout is a very small sampling of correspondence between RS publisher Wenner and Thompson, which tries to tie together the various pieces used in this book. But the various pieces (and I mean pieces) of writing lose most, if not all, their effectiveness used the way Wenner has done here. He should be ashamed of himself for exploiting Thompson's name and writing in this manner.

Depending on how you view this book, it may simply be a money generating effort (which I believe), or as a kind of (very) loose, alternative biography (?) of Hunter Thompson and his (early) years at RS, as seen through heavily edited excerpts of his writing. If (like me) you've read all of Thompson's writing over the years-including his books and articles published in RS-you won't glean anything in the way of information about Thompson's life and/or writing. But for some new readers, they will find Thompson's take on America and the legal/political machine-and the people involved-during some intense years interesting. But purchase the original books as written by Thompson. The "star" rating is used as a loose guide for people who've read nothing of Thompson's writings.

This is a look, using Thompson's writing and some "correspondence" between Wenner and Thompson, at the "Hunter Thompson era" at RS. Is it interesting? Yes-maybe if you're new to Thompson and the many articles published in RS over a number of years. But to most readers this will read as a travesty. It's no accident that Thompson's name is listed at the bottom of the masthead of RS (along with Ralph J. Gleason), because in the early years of the magazine, Thompson helped define a new style of writing, in a new type of magazine, for a new generation-primarily those who came of age in the late 1960's/early 70's. During his years at RS (especially), his articles were looked forward to by many people. I still remember pouring over his pieces (like many others) as they appeared in the magazine, all these years later. And (perhaps) the best thing this book does, with this "overview" of his writing is bring back those uncertain, exciting times. If you weren't there during that era, this book will give you a small, confusing glimmer of what things were like "back then". But-the original pieces are the true test and proof of HT's writing style.

This overview "begins" in 1970, and Thompson's slightly weird run for sheriff of Aspen, where he lived in his "fortified compound". From there we read part of a piece on the murder of Ruben Salazar by a Los Angeles sheriff's deputy, who shot a tear gas bomb into a bar where Salazar was sitting, killing him. Thompson's crazed trip to Las Vegas, to a law and order convention is also here-with some of that long articles best writing-but again, read the original. Of course no book of Thompson's writing would be complete without his twisted look at politics in the early 1970's. His writing on politics is really the meat of this book-if you can call it that. From McGovern to Nixon to Clinton-politics, as seen through Thompson's strained, slightly delirious eyes-is laid out as political writing had never been done before. But the pieces are so cut up that the real depth of Thompson's style is lost. The book effectively ends with a piece on George Bush, who Thompson despised about as much as he did Richard Nixon. In between is a lot of demented, twisted writing-writing that nonetheless seemed to open up and shine a light on "the American dream" as never before. But this has been pieced together in such a way that it's effectiveness is questionable.

But this book can also be seen as a "biography" (as such) on Rolling Stone Magazine, and the generation who were fast becoming aware of the political scene in America. Thompson was given the title, head of the "National Affairs Desk" at RS, and he used that title (and quite possibly some weird substances) to go wherever the story might take him-and to some places only in his mind's eye. But that's what made Thompson's writing so electric, so alive, so pertinent, and sometimes so unalterably twisted. There's a reason that Thompson was included in the recent (well worth reading) book "Deadline Artists-America's Greatest Newspaper Columns". His writing speaks to people about something important-and his inclusion in that collection, along with many other of our greatest columnists, is certainly secure and proper. But reading this "collection" by Wenner and his minions would make one wonder if his inclusion was a mistake.

If you've only read his book on the Hell's Angels, this collection of writing will not be an eye-opener. This is a book for anyone who isn't truly interested in knowing more about Thompson's writing, and about those years (1970-2004) of great change in America covered in the book. And while it took a new kind of magazine (with Ralph Gleason's help and encouragement) like Rolling Stone, who steadily published Thompson's work, to the delight of a new generation, this isn't any place to start. If you come across something appealing-then investigate the entire piece in the pertinent book-you'll find more of the same, and then some-but with the true Hunter Thompson feel. Thompson was unique-from his early boyhood to his days in the Armed Forces, to the era this book covers. The book "Gonzo: The Life of Hunter S. Thompson", is a biography worth reading, if you want to know what made him tick. He had a way of distilling things down to their basic components, and then shining a clear light on what he found. This book is not a good example of that. America could use a writer of Thompson's caliber today, but this book won't enlighten you as to why.
23 internautes sur 23 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x923a4270) étoiles sur 5 Edited? Good thing Hunter is no longer with us. 26 janvier 2012
Par CHELSEA J MATHEWS - Publié sur
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
If Hunter was still with us he would have hogtied and butchered the poor fools responsible for the raping of some of his finer work.
14 internautes sur 15 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9106bf54) étoiles sur 5 Shame on you, Jann 18 septembre 2012
Par J. Mesrine - Publié sur
Format: Relié
This is a pathetic attempt by Jann Wenner to squeeze a few more dollars out of his association with Hunter S. Thompson. As some of the other reviews have already mentioned, many of the pieces in this book have been edited. If you want to read a good HST collection that hasn't been butchered, buy a copy of The Great Shark Hunt.
Ces commentaires ont-ils été utiles ? Dites-le-nous


Souhaitez-vous compléter ou améliorer les informations sur ce produit ? Ou faire modifier les images?