Monday, February 19, 2018

Curation #5 from my Kerouac bookshelf -- Neal Cassady: The Denver Years

Front cover
Back cover

The 5th installment of my curation project is the documentary DVD, Neal Cassady: The Denver Years. It's a product of Colorado Public Television and Mother Mind Studios, produced in 2015. I only see one left on Amazon (for 100 bucks!), but you should be able to order it from the estate for 25 bucks (

You can view an extended trailer here: (Note: There's a second clip after this one plays.)

I used to show this in my Kerouac class at the University of Maine at Farmington. It's based on Neal's writings (The First Third and the Joan Anderson Letter). As such, it includes a lot of voice-overs with relevant still pictures. It also includes interviews with a host of people who knew Neal, from his wife, Carolyn, to his children, to well-known Beat Generation figures like Lawrence Ferlinghetti, David Amram, and Al Hinkle.

There are some excellent insights into Neal's life here. I enjoyed this documentary and so did my students, plus I learned a few things about Neal's early life and about Denver. I think you'd find it worth the price.

Below is a picture of the top shelf of my Kerouac bookshelf showing the placement of my Neal Cassady DVD on the day I started curating my collection (just under the bobblehead).

The top of my Kerouac bookshelf

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