City Lights Bookstore/Publisher 60th Anniversary special on KOOP Radio…


Today… Monday January 6th from 1:00~2:00 PM Central on 91.7 FM Hornsby Austin, Texas and Worldwide on you can hear the Radio special I produced in honour of CITY LIGHTS BookSellers and Publishers 60th Anniversary..
It has a great bit of history and an Interview with Elaine the GM of City Lights Booksellers & Publishers and interesting Audio clips from some of the Beat writers. The Denouement, the gem in the crown is You, the Community, reading selections of Poetry.
Thanks to everyone who participated in my little idea. Cheers!
Read on.
Write on.
Right On!

…or as we call it ‘rrReadio’.  We Love Books!  We Love to Read!  We Love Radio!

HAPPY 60th Anni ‘Verse’ ary

City Lights Bookstore and Publishing

and may there be infinitely more verses added to the ongoing story of City Lights BookSellers and Publishers.  We Love you and what you do!

     As an Artist I have been asked: “Where does inspiration come from?”

My answer : “BOOKS! BOOKS! BOOKS!, READ! READ! READ!…Read everything, and lots of it.”

There is so much just waiting to be discovered, and, as Artists, Human beings, it is part of our nature to explore the works of others and the world around us. To continuously learn new things, to understand our world and to grow personally is our responsibility to ourselves.  It is, its own reward, and it gives back with daily compounded interest. It makes us better conversationalist, it broadens our understanding, it allows us to contribute more, and to more diverse things, and it just makes us feel good about ourselves and the world we live in. No one, no matter how groovier~than~thou they seem, or how lofty their self-opinion, no one has ever been ‘enlightened’ by closing their eyes and thinking of nothing. That is not enlightenment, that is meditation and relaxation, something you do for yourself to relax. True Enlightenment comes only from Learning and experiencing.  Learning as much as you can, about as many things as you can, as often as you can, brings true enlightenment and self empowerment.  Here’s a well read guy, Thorne Dreyer, interviewing City Lights…Read On!

Thorne Dreyer of KOOP interviews Elaine from City Lights Booksellers and Publishers

Thorne Dreyer of KOOP Radio interviewing Elaine of City Lights Bookstore and Publishers Thorne also produces the iconic publication : ‘The Rag’
as well as ‘Rag Radio’

   {  In addition to interviewing some amazing guests, he is also involved in many active projects in the Community. {visit the Rag for details and updates}  Thorne is also a lover of Books, if fact he managed a bookstore here in Austin for years and deals used and rare books.  He was intrigued with my copy of ‘The Outsider 4/5’ by LouJon Press. Complete with original flower pressing from 1968, a silkscreen by Moondog, and wine/coffee stains.  The book is older than I.   Some of the material submitted exists nowhere else outside this issue of 500 copies.  I am producing a special on JouJon Press soon look forward to that as well on KOOP.  it its an amazing story of a Passion for print.  In fact it has inspired me to pursue the Art of Bookbinding and combine that with my Metal Art skills to produce one-of-a-kind Art Books. } Community Radio from Austin, Texas!  Unique, commercial-free, News, entertainment and diverse Programming to all points around the World,

For the ‘Readio’ special on City Lights Books, I realize there is so much material, way more than a one hour show could possibly cover, and we can spend years talking about it. My goal was not to indulge in everything; that is your job. My goal was three-fold.

First, I wanted to recognize City Lights Books in their 60th Anniversary.  I wanted to give a brief history of the place, convey some sense of the vital role they play, and their contributions to in the Literary world, as well as just thank them for doing all they have done and continue to do.  Thank You CITY LIGHTS!   Just like Books, you are here to stay, and maintain a special place in everyone’s heart and on their bookshelf!  Cheers!

Secondly, Though there is so much material, way more than we could possible cover even in several shows.  I did want to give some sense of the history of the Beat Literary movement as well as a feel of it, historically, musically, lyrically and to listen to compositions from some of the Literary Luminaries that expressed their hearts through their Art that forever altered, emboldened and enriched our Literary landscape by creating and contributing unique, beautiful and diverse verse to the uniquely American Literary Canon.  I strongly encourage everyone to explore on your own, and read as much as you can about the Beat Movement.

Following is a list of resources I found very informative:

Naropa University

Elephant Journal :

howl la loba naked angelsbook the beat book

Howl and other Poems‘ by Allen Ginsberg.  La Loba’ by Dianne DiPrima  ‘Naked Angels‘ by John Tytell  ‘The Beat Book… Writings from the Beat Generation’  Edited by Anne Waldman and Foreward by Allen Ginsberg ,

on the Show ‘La Loba’ by Diane DiPrima was read by Nessa Burden.  Here’s  two good Articles and Interviews with Diane Diprima on ‘La Loba’ and Mother Philosophy:  as well as :

Third, and perhaps most importantly, my goal was to truly engage the Community in all its diverse beauty and voices. I asked folks to record themselves reading a brief selection of Beat era writings they like for critique and educational purposes. I wasn’t sure if there would be any interest, that concern was allayed almost immediately with the enthusiastic responses I received, as well as the kind, genuine gratitude and words of encouragement. I knew this would be a good show, but the Community engagement and participation really knocked it out of the park; so Thank You!

Lacy Reading an exerpt from ‘On The Road’.

folks from the Community reading Poetry

folks from the Community reading Poetry

Lacy creates the most emotionally engaging music I have heard.   Her lyrics are often inspired by Literature.  We spoke of our love of Books and the Classics.  If her voice doesn’t give you chills and make your eyes well up,..well,, may want to check your pulse.   She works hard at her Art  and she is going to single-handedly bring Baroque music back into fashion…..mark my words.

{support her Artistic talents and efforts at You’ll be glad you did}

and here are two Videos of Lacy reading Poetry  ~>

and ‘An Asphodel’ and ‘Song’

mistyMisty and Me  Lary Rose DSC01392


Here is the Audio from the show with Creative Commons Public domain clips, Enjoy!  :

Internet Archive :


In a way, the show, like the station, is about You.  It is open to everyone, engaging you, stimulating you, challenging you, and representing you, giving your beautiful voice a platform to be heard worldwide. I hope in some way this special I produced encourages folks to read more, to explore, to share, and engage on the rewarding life of literature in all its forms; besides, Reading is Sexy! It gives you a beautiful mind. Just as we exercise and take care of our Bodies we must exercise and take care of our Minds. Beautiful Minds make Beautiful People!
Let’s talk BOOKS! While talking with Elaine from City Lights, I first wanted to thank her for her time, dedication, and insight. I also wanted to share with her my genuine love of Books;… thick, clunky, beautiful Books, as well as my love of the Bookstore. The Beat writers could have all met at a pizza parlor, a park, or apartment right? Of course they could have, but they didn’t. They felt it imperative that they meet where?…at the Bookstore! Through out history Bookstores have been more than showrooms and retail spaces, they have consistently been the nerve centers of the mind, a place where great minds come together to meet, share, talk, organize, foment, connect and energize communities.  Bookstores are absolutely vital to any community and civilization in general.  Communication is absolutely vital and essential to Humans.  Computers are great, but we need face~to~face personal interaction with our environment and the people around us.  This is where the magick happens, where truly great and creative minds collaborate.

Personally, I would love to experience all that, but in general If I don’t go to a bookstore at least every couple of weeks to explore and shop, I get irritable and antsy thinking there may be some great new overlooked literary gem just waiting for me to discover there. Believe me, I make the rounds between the bookstores and never know what I will find, but I always find some amazing new treasure to read. Recently I was at a local Bookstore and I heard a guy saying to his girlfriend, sarcastically : “Ya know they have this thing called the Internet now…and books are unnecessary.” I really wanted to say something to this gentleman but I refrained, I wish her luck with that relationship, she’ll need it.

Anyway, my point is this: Books are here to stay.   They are not going anywhere.  Books and electronic readers can co-exist and will, just like Vinyl records. When you buy a new Vinyl record you get a free download for your computer. The same should apply to Books. E-readers have their place, like when traveling.  Books will always have a place, my Heart and on my Bookshelf. There is something about having the physical, tangible Book, I love everything about it, there is a timeless romance about it. I love the look the feel and the smell…ahhh the smell of Books.  Unless E-reader’s come up with an APP that duplicates the subtle nuances of the smell of Books,..well even then I’d still stick with my Books.  You know how a certain song or smell can instantly transport you to a special time and place?  Me too.  Books are one of the things that do that consistently.   There are times when while reading a book I’ll just stop and smell the pages and absorb what I just read.  I’ve gotten a few unexpected ‘I understand’ comments from other book lovers.


To this day I am immediately transported by the simple scent of Books.  A new book sends me back to third grade, Mrs Thompson’s English class Back to School, Autumn in the North East, a slight refreshing chill in the air, the smell of leaves, of wood, of Pumpkins, of apple cider, of Sunshine and sorrow, of my first love, my first girlfriend, the faint soft sweet scent of Shannon, and the scent of… “the BookMobile!”

The BookMobile!”, that, is what was yelled out, interrupting every class and meeting every teacher with a smile. The BookMobile would pull into the parking lot mid to late afternoon and like a religious procession we would single file one wild-eyed student at a time…into the BookMobile. It was a huge RV full of new books. Shannon and I were in most classes together, and I think we were the first to kiss in the entire grade. We were a daily scandal, stealing sweet kisses in between classes and around corners. We caused quite a stir for some reason.  We seemed to always be together, magnetically drawn to one another. We both loved Books and would spend timeless hours and delirious afternoons reading and sitting close, perhaps not even saying a word for hours, just transported individually, together.  Well, we were next in line to go into the BookMobile, standing on our toes trying to see what books were in there.

Upon entering, the first thing we would do is close our eyes, and draw in a deep breath. It is indescribable, but that condensed, faint scent of so many Books in such a small closed space really made our heads swoon nearly as much as our blinding kisses in the afternoon.  We’d exhale, opening our eyes smiling and then take off into our own journey of literal excitement and Literary discovery. We wanted to live there, that was our daydream, to read our way through the whole universe.  I think of Borges quote, something like ” I had always imagined that heaven would be something like a Library”  and then this quote from Afterthoughts in The Night Bookmobile,  “What would you sacrifice to sit in that comfy chair with perfect light for an afternoon in eternity, reading the perfect book, forever?”

Look..The Bookmobile!!!

Look..The Bookmobile!!!

The scent of Books still, and always will, transported instantly to this place in my Heart, this place of Wonder, of Love and Discovery. That can never be replaced, and I feel I am not alone in this. I am sure others share similar feelings.
I love the Rare, nostalgia section in Bookstores. It fascinates me. Though expensive, I always find something well worth the asking price, and I usually have some coupon.  There are always  a dozen or so others I’d love to have someday, so I make a list. This place as well transports me.

 Like a wine connoisseur, I can sense from the scents of the book the type of personal Library it came from. I can discern if they smoked tobacco, if they smoked a pipe, cigar or cigarettes. The pages are tinged around the edges with light burnt Umber where the years of nicotine tar have soaked into the fibers of the page, betraying their age.  {by the way if you want to remove the tobacco smell place the book in a freezer bag with coffee grounds for a few days Voila~ no more tobacco smell}

       A separate thing altogether is the scent of a Woman’s perfume on the page; perhaps as she held it to her breast while reaching for a drink. I can sense it, the delicate lilt of it from her gently turning the pages with her slender fingers that perhaps have recently run through her perfumed hair.  I think of Alice Maynell, Emily Dickenson, Elizabeth Barrett, Catherine Booth, and Edith Cooper to name a few embodiments of an ideal.


Emily Dickenson




Quietly sitting in the drawing-room, or reading room, as long white lace curtains sway from the gentle breeze that drifts in through open French doors, the sound of birds and Cicadas in the summer afternoon, and the slow trickle of a water fountain in the background. There, in my Victorian dream, forever relaxing on a lazy summer afternoon near our English Garden in the quiet Countryside, writing and reading Books forever.

Here is Woman Reading by a Window 1905 by Gari Melchers (1860-1934) which is in the Greenville Museum of Art.

Here is Woman Reading by a Window 1905 by Gari Melchers (1860-1934) which is in the Greenville Museum of Art.

This is the Beauty of Books:

the ability to engage us,

to transport us,

to teach us,

to take us on the greatest of adventure,…

the journey to ourselves.

Just as an Artist’s most vital masterpiece is the Art of the Self.

Each book takes us closer in the journey to the discovery of ourselves.

Stay inspired my Friends!

~your Booksmith

Thorne Dreyer and your Booksmith from KOOP Radio Interview City Lights Booksellers and Publishers

Thorne Dreyer and your Booksmith from KOOP Radio Interview City Lights Booksellers and Publishers

  your Booksmith, as a kid. ...What am I holding?...

your Booksmith, as a kid. …What am I holding?…

 …What am I holding?….a few books. And if ya see me today, what do I have with me?..a few books! Proof positive: a Love for reading is lifelong, and it’s never too late, or too early to start.
Read On,..Write on,..Right on!…
~Your BookSmith

City Lights’s a hell-of-a-good Bookstore and so much more…”

Log on & support their hard-fought efforts and everlasting Passion.



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One thought on “City Lights Bookstore/Publisher 60th Anniversary special on KOOP Radio…

  1. Pingback: City Lights Bookstore/Publisher 60th Anniversary special on KOOP Radio,… « Adiablanca

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