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Tiki Central Forums Beyond Tiki What is a beatnik?
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What is a beatnik?
tikibars
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 11, 2002
Posts: 2022
From: Aku Hall, Chicago
Posted: 2003-11-16 12:55 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2003-11-16 10:03, seamus wrote:
JT !! You and I have got to do some more drinking buddy! Joe Strummer and Tom Waits are two of my Favorite guys. Both are best known and beloved for their musical endeavours, but both were/are known to appear in the occaisional offbeat indy type movie as well. Joe strummer is one of my personal heroes.



Although I think you were addressing this to a different JT, I want to pipe in that Strummer and Waits are two of my hugest musical gurus as well. Although I do agree that Waits is the last true Beat, I don't think I can include Strummer in that category.

And not to contradict the mighty Jab, but my impression was that the Beats were serious writers of the late 40s and 1950s such as Keouac, Ginsberg, Burroughs, et al, and the Beatniks were the trendy kids who were trying to emulate them?

My understanding of 'Beat' was that it is a term coined by Kerouac, meaning both beatific, and beat-up - not physically attacked, but run down, defeated by life, world-weary.

I guess there are as many explainations for these things as there are historians writing about them.

For the record, I have seen many photos of the Beats in their heyday, and I have never seen a single photo of any of the original Beats, the ones mentioned above or otherwise, in stripey shirts, berets, goatees or playing bongos. These were cliches introduced by the wannabee Beat followers - the Beatniks, in my understanding of the word - and seized by the popular media in creating the Beatnik stereotype we know today.

Beatniks, by the way, begat Hippies, another term coined by Keroac, derived from Hipster.

Finally read Joey's literature list above. Good stuff, all of it.





 
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seamus
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 07, 2003
Posts: 462
From: Portland
Posted: 2003-11-16 1:18 pm   Permalink

..."Although I think you were addressing this to a different JT, "...

Yes I was, but perhaps you and I should throw a few back as well!
I agree with you about Joe. I don't see him as a beatnik at all, but I can kinda see where theJab is coming from(Sandinista comes to mind). Once a guy reaches that folk hero status, the lines start to blur a bit and they speak to people in ways never before intended or imagined. Joe was a unique character that, to me, trancended any and all stereotypes. I feel a little robbed that his light was extinguished when he clearly had so much more to say and contribute.
In the future I'll be more careful w/ the JT referals!


 
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thejab
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2986
From: Tradewinds Apartments, Alameda, CA
Posted: 2003-11-16 1:23 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2003-11-16 12:55, tikibars wrote:
Although I think you were addressing this to a different JT, I want to pipe in that Strummer and Waits are two of my hugest musical gurus as well. Although I do agree that Waits is the last true Beat, I don't think I can include Strummer in that category.

And not to contradict the mighty Jab, but my impression was that the Beats were serious writers of the late 40s and 1950s such as Keouac, Ginsberg, Burroughs, et al, and the Beatniks were the trendy kids who were trying to emulate them?



Maybe seamus meant TJ (as in The Jab), not JT.?

You're not contradicting me because I agree with you JT! I was trying to say what you said, that beatnik was a media term applied to the followers of the beats in the 1950s, not the original beats. The black clothes, striped shirts, berets, sandals etc. were popular dress with Greenwich Village hipster types in the 1950s so the media used the look as the beatnik costume.

I was just reading a recent article on Joe Strummer in a magazine, and it explained how the man lived his life out of a bag, how he often stayed up all night drinking in bars with strangers, he liked to hang out with the gypsies who live in caves in Spain, he was a cartoonist and a writer, not to mention his songwriting and musician talents. It seems a lot like the beat lifestyle to me.

Chris Jarhead was beat. (shipwreckjoey may understand this).
_________________


 
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seamus
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 07, 2003
Posts: 462
From: Portland
Posted: 2003-11-16 1:33 pm   Permalink

MY JT was for JungleTrader, but hey, I'll drink with you too!
Strummer turned out to be a devoted husband and father too. I got to meet him in the basement of the Warfield Theatre once, after a Pogues show. He replaced Shane MacGowan as frontman for awhile. What a night!


 
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Sneakytiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 31, 2003
Posts: 1795
From: Boise, Idaho
Posted: 2003-11-16 2:59 pm   Permalink

hep begat hip hence hippies

Nice Charlie Parker photo. I think beat-niks were contemporaries to be-bop. I'd have to say one scene preceding the beat-nik scene was the Cool scene. In it's original meaning cool came from the very old jazz clubs which were not well ventilated and were dark and smokey, filled with customers who'd drink and smoke all night while listening to jazz.
After a while they'd have to prop open windows and doors to let the cool fresh air in and the smokey hot air out. This jazz beacame known as cool jazz and scenesters would refer to a person as being cool if they were part of the scene.

P.S. What is a YIPPIE?


 
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DaneTiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 29, 2002
Posts: 113
From: Minneapolis, MN
Posted: 2003-11-16 2:59 pm   Permalink



[ This Message was edited by: DaneTiki 2009-08-30 19:15 ]


 
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emspace
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 05, 2003
Posts: 875
From: Vancouver
Posted: 2003-11-16 3:19 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2003-11-16 14:59, Sneakytiki wrote:
P.S. What is a YIPPIE?



Yippies: Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman. Don't want to talk about them. Let's stick to beatnik puhleeze.

aloha,
em.


 
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kctiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 22, 2003
Posts: 439
From: Kansas City
Posted: 2003-11-16 4:41 pm   Permalink

Truman Capote didn't think much of beat writing - so much of it was unedited stream of consciousness. He said, "That's not writing, that's typing."

But I think Capote was sort of beat, despite himself. He had an uncanny knack for rooting out the sublime essence of life in the most mundane circumstances. That's what beat is to me.


 
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Jungle Trader
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 04, 2003
Posts: 3728
From: Trader's Jungle Outpost, Turlock, Ca.
Posted: 2003-11-16 6:26 pm   Permalink

Seamus, I'm ready to throw some back when you are. Ready to dive into this subculture and see what it's like, the world of the beat, the music, the books, the poetry. I dig. Turn me on, turn me on.
SES is a beat? Dig it!
Shipwreck, I'm 2 hrs. drive from S.F. Next time I get out there I'll check out City Lights....Must see! For now I'll see what Borders has.
When I think of a beatnik, I think of laid back, easygoing. That's the part I like and man do I need some a dat! Blends well with Aloha. Blend? hmmm, somebody ought to think of a new drink and call it "The Beatnik". I'll bet The Jab already has one.
_________________

Oki NiKsoKoWa
(Hello all my relatives)
TikiJungle.com

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martiki
Official Mixologist

Joined: Mar 29, 2002
Posts: 3058
From: http://www.smugglerscovesf.com
Posted: 2003-11-17 4:01 pm   Permalink

City Lights (along with Vesuvius next door) were the beat places to hang out. They are both still there and still great places to check out. (along with Spec Adlers bar just down the street)

I can also confirm what The Jab said- Herb Caen most definitely coined the term beatnik.


 
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thejab
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2986
From: Tradewinds Apartments, Alameda, CA
Posted: 2003-11-17 5:06 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2003-11-17 16:01, martiki6 wrote:
City Lights (along with Vesuvius next door) were the beat places to hang out. They are both still there and still great places to check out. (along with Spec Adlers bar just down the street)



I second that list with the addition of Cafe Trieste coffee house, also in the North Beach area. It still has the same bohemian feel it must have had some 50 years ago.
_________________


 
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tikicleen
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 11, 2003
Posts: 327
From: ripon: almond capital yet no orgeat
Posted: 2003-11-17 5:59 pm   Permalink

anyone heard of kepler's? back in the day, it was a ragtag joint that welcomed all walks of life, especially the beat. alan ginsberg was one of the gang that frequented kepler's. to the best of my knowledge, i believe it was the first place to mix books and coffee...spawning coffee houses and super bookstores. mind you, when you got a coffee at kepler's, you had to take it out and cut it with a pair of scissors. but they were known for having beat readings paired with bongos and the sort. unfortunately, the original kepler's is long gone. a new kepler's stands across the street on el camino in menlo park. it is upscale and fits in with the menlo park atmosphere (if you know what i mean)

 
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MTKahuna
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 11, 2003
Posts: 477
From: LB to LA, CA
Posted: 2003-11-19 08:15 am   Permalink

Beats were the original counter-culure and anti-establishment group. It's funny to think that marijuana, coffee, jazz, and poetry used to be considered unusual...

We have come a long way in 60 years.

Beats were probably the first Western group that also embraced tikies.

Favorite Beatnik Lingo:

Croaker: a physician who writes scripts
Cornball Creep/ John Square: an unhip conformist
86'd: banned or told to leave
Eye Heavy: Drunk
To Freeze: Snub someone
To Front the Necessary: Give $ upfront
Make the run: buying booze
A Poke: wallet
A popcorn: someone with alegitamate job
Sides: records


 
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kctiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 22, 2003
Posts: 439
From: Kansas City
Posted: 2003-11-19 11:12 am   Permalink

Yes, I've heard old timers use the term John Square or Square John. Also, Malicious Eyeballing, which I thought was funny.

 
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Shipwreckjoey
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 29, 2002
Posts: 1794
From: San Diego, CA
Posted: 2003-11-19 9:16 pm   Permalink

Captain Beefheart is beat! A cohort of Frank Zappa back in the '60's & '70's, he would have been right at home on the '50's bebop scene. Last I heard he is out in the Mojave desert painting & digging life. He's a true American classic. Perhaps his song "Smithsonian Institute Blues" will be prophetic.

 
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