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Hell's Angel: The Life and Times of Sonny Barger and the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club [Anglais] [Relié]

Sonny Barger

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Description de l'ouvrage

16 mai 2000

Everything the public thinks it knows about the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club (HAMC) comes from law enforcement, Hollywood B-movies, tabloid exposes, or exaggerated "I was there" testimonials. Never before has the story of this uniquely American subculture and the wild, dangerous life of quintessential Angel Ralph "Sonny" Barger been chronicled with such hard-hitting honesty and candor--straight from the source. Finally, the Angels' side of the story has been laid out by one of their own.

Hell's Angel provides a fascinating all-access pass to the secret world of the notorious HAMC, recounting the birth of the original Oakland Hell's Angels and the four turbulent, tumultuous decades that followed. It features a cast of colorful fellow "one-percenters" like Terry the Tramp, Charlie Magoo, and all those who rode alongside Barger throughout the years. Hell's Angel also chronicles the way the HAMC revolutionized the look of the Harley-Davidson motorcycle and built what has become a worldwide bike-riding fraternity, a beacon for freedom seekers the world over.

In his own words, Barger recounts his relentless battles against government efforts to destroy the HAMC, explains what happened in the standoff between the Hell's Angels and the 1960s antiwar elite, and tells the real story behind the infamous 1969 Rolling Stones concert at Altamont Raceway, an epochal moment that came to symbolize the end of the sixties. This epic saga provides insight into the personal life of a charismatic visionary who embodies values uniquely American: personal liberty on the open highway, beating the odds, staying on top, and never backing down. Dozens of photos, including many from private collections--as well as images shot by noted photographers--provide added dimensions to this extraordinary tale.

Barger's stories highlight the personal triumphs as well as the rough-and-tumble tragedies of his life: constant battles with law enforcement, incarceration, overcoming throat cancer, love and marriage, and continuing to live the biker life--still crazy after all these years. And Hell's Angel doesn't gloss over heated topics such as violence, drugs, and the strong women who always stood behind Barger and the club. Never simply a story about motorcycles, colorful characters, and high-speed thrills, Hell's Angel is the ultimate outlaw's tale of loyalty and betrayal, subcultures and brotherhood, and the real price of freedom.




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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

“Maybe the baddest man on two wheels.” (Rolling Stone)

“Hell’s Angel chieftain Ralph ‘Sonny’ Barger has led one interesting, bad-to-the-bone life.” (Seattle Times)

“Barger’s autobiography is about as subtle as a kick in the groin, and that’s what’s so refreshing about it.” (San Francisco Chronicle)

“One of the best books of the year.” (Maxim)

“The hombre who gave you motorcycle culture…The biker style that Barger originated remains timeless.” (Chicago Tribune)

“Not your ordinary book…A peek at another side of America.” (Tulsa World)

“A ripping good read…as gripping a tale as you would expect from the most famous pack of all time.” (New Times Los Angeles)

“Barger paints an engrossing picture of a distinctive subculture that receives precious little literary attention.” (Booklist)

Biographie de l'auteur

Ralph "Sonny" Barger is the author of Hell's Angel: The Life and Times of Sonny Barger and the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club. A master mechanic who has owned and operated his own bike shops, he currently lives in Arizona, where he rides every day.

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Amazon.com: 4.1 étoiles sur 5  224 commentaires
120 internautes sur 133 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Memoirs of a modern outlaw 17 juillet 2000
Par Chapulina R - Publié sur Amazon.com
I remember a thrilling experience during my childhood in the mid-sixties: while driving to San Francisco, our family car broke down on the Bayshore (101) Freeway. My parents were startled when two long-haired, bearded, beSwaztica'ed patch-holders pulled up on their loud, chopped Harleys. The bikers spoke briefly with my dad, then performed some minor mechanical magic on our carburetor. They accepted no payment for their assistance, but left us a business card featuring their winged deaths-head logo and words to the effect: "You have been assisted by... the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club. When we do right, no one remembers. When we do wrong, no one forgets." At least one person has always remembered. Within a mere few years, I had a stripped-down Hawg of my own, and began acquiring tattoos and speeding tickets. While I was never a one-percenter, it seemed during that tumultuous era that *all* motorcyclists were judged "guilty by association" with the legendary Hells Angels. Whether describing doing right or wrong, HAMC president Sonny Barger minces no words in his hard-riding, fast-reading biography. Nor does he pull any punches. He explodes the myths perpetuated by grade-B biker-flicks and trashy "wannabe" publications, but unapologetically depicts the counterculture without romanticizing it. The Angels we meet in these pages are neither ravenous, rapacious Huns nor iron-steed-mounted rescuers of stranded citizens. Barger's raw writing style, anecdotes, and numerous photos give his book genuine, gritty, outlaw character. It should appeal to one-percenters, citizen-bikers, and even to the "cagers" who fear and loathe them. There is something exhilerating, even archetypal, about the sight and sound of a chapter of Hells Angels, in full color, thundering down the highway. Could it be something remniscent of the soaring, awe-inspiring formations of Bombers and Fighters which spawned the post-War motorclubs? More likely, like a pack of wolves running wild, they symbolize an unfettered and formidable free-spirit, feared by a civilized Society.
40 internautes sur 42 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Sonny Barger's Flawed Philosophy 20 janvier 2003
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
I read it in a single day, a rarity for me. Couldn't put it down. Barger's honest and open telling of his own worldview and the detailed sketch of the culture of HAMC, along with the complete lack of apology, make it really compelling.
But he is a criminal, and the con in this book is the statement near the beginnning, to the effect of: "All I ever wanted to do was ride and be free." He proceeds to prove, through the rest of the book, that that is merely a justification for his lifestyle and (possibly) plea for fame and respect in the valuable cultural currency of 'freedom from oppresive powers' (he already has plenty of fame and respect on his own terms), but its not true. Barger likes to pick fights, bother innocent workaday people and locals, and be the center of attention wherever he goes. His quest for freedom required the abrogation of everyone else's freedom, not just the police and rival clubs as he seems to want you to believe.
"Hell's Angel" is most interesting, for me, in the depiction of his dynamic leadership and the need, so often suppressed, for men to band together and be unified in something. I envy him the brotherhood he founded and don't begrudge them the right to defend it's name, by violence if necessary, against fools who want to challenge it or steal it. But I don't believe for a moment that he wants to live and let live. He and his club steal, con, and completely disregard the wishes of the citizen's of any community they enter; in reality, it's power that they want, not freedom. Just admit that, and this account would be balanced. Its already very entertaining and valuable cultural history.
72 internautes sur 90 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Hell's Angel speaks the truth. 19 mai 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Back in the late 60's, I was a member of the Green Dragon'sMotorcycle Club in Houston. We were a linked brotherhood with theBanditos MC. During a rally in Dallas, some 50 or 60 Hell's Angels attended. To my pride I was able to meet Sonny Barger, he was at that time with the Oakland Chapter of the Hell's Angel.
He is nothing short of one classy, dedicated to bikes and bikers, and honest to the bone. This book, he brings IT ALL OUT. I was amazed to read how the Angels got started and managed to stay together dispite the law breathing all over them, the public have a definite attitude against them. It was Sonny who kept the brotherhood together. Yes, we all know of the legal problems with the ANgels as well as other biker groups, in this book Sonny is totally honest and forthcoming. He has some very funny stories on state rallys and of course the problem at Altamont. This book is a must read for all bikers and those who WANT TO BE A BIKER. A classic read by Sonny. May God Bless You Sonny and keep doing just what you are doing. Don't change one thing. "The Attorney" Green Dragons MC - Houston
12 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 must read for die hards 4 juillet 2000
Par Wayne T. Heiliger - Publié sur Amazon.com
Sonny is one of the most prolific and a true outlaw. I've admired him and his followers since I first became aware of the spirit of Harley Davidson. After Korea, my dad and his partner both bought HD's and traveled the US of A! Although my father wasn't an outlaw,he raised a few. I can say only one thing, Buy the book! To Sonny, Hail the Red & White! To Ole Buzzard {omaha, NE} tow on bro! bigwayne53
18 internautes sur 21 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Leader of the Pack 15 juin 2000
Par Donald Mitchell - Publié sur Amazon.com
The motorcycle club subculture has been an important theme in Hollywood (from The Wild One to Easy Rider) and in recordings (the song, Leader of the Pack). Everyone who sees the Hell's Angels has an opinion about what is going on, yet few have had a first hand relationship with a member. This book gives you a behind-the-scenes look at what it was like for Oakland's leader of the pack, one of the first branches of the Hell's Angels.
I grew up in San Bernardino (Berdoo in the book) which was an even earlier branch of the Hell's Angels than was Oakland. Some people I went to high school with joined the Hell's Angels. We all heard many stories about the group, and what went on. We treated these people with extreme caution and gave them a wide berth.
The book brings out an ethos of freedom (the open road) combined with a masculine emphasis on being respected and being loyal to friends. At the same time, there is an underlying sense of the frontier marshall, wanting to clean up those who were challenging law and order. Behind that there is a disregard for the rules most of us follow, whether in speed, drugs, theft, or violence.
This book is filled with deaths, injuries, and destruction. The Hell's Angels live in a dangerous world, and that doesn't bother them. What would bother them is not following their code of ethics.
Having read about all of the things the Hell's Angels are supposed to have done in the last 50 or so years, it is interesting to hear it from the other side.
Although you probably won't want to emulate Sonny Barger in too many ways, you'll certainly never forget him. If you love motorcycles (as many of us do), you'll be moved by his loving descriptions of various bikes. He was truly the wild one at the head of the bike pack.
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