Album Preview: Kenneth Patchen / Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Rebel Poets of America

Label: El
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The Independent Culture

Back in the late-Fifties heyday of the Beat poets, the fusion of poetry and jazz was the most thorough rejection of establishment values that could be achieved.

It resulted in pieces like the 1957 recordings collated here, of Beat godfathers Kenneth Patchen and Lawrence Ferlinghetti reading their prose and poetry over jazz arrangements.

Patchen reads verses like “State Of The Nation” in a laconic, enervated tone while Ferlinghetti’s sing-song delivery of “Autobiography” and “Junkman’s Obbligato” is more mindful of the obligations of metre, its deadpan mien ultimately bordering on the annoying.

Perfect for the Howard Moon in your life, though.

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