The Denver Post has an article about the Neal Cassady Birthday celebration that will take place tonight (Friday) at the Mercury Cafe in Denver, CO, focusing on the decision to award Neal posthumously with his High School diploma. As you guys know, Neal was the inspiration for Dean Moriarty, the character that Garrett plays in On the Road and he was a pivotal figure in the entire Beat movement.

Here are some excerpts and the complete article can be read HERE.

Neal Cassady, finally, gets his Denver East diploma

So what would Cassady think about the degree? Although a voracious reader, the man who inspired Kerouac, was name-checked in Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl” and drove Ken Kesey’s bus “Further” during the ’60s “acid tests” was an iconoclast of the first rank. (Granted, he was also a doting father and hard-working railroad man.)

Bliesener wondered about that, too.

“I was in London last year and met with Carolyn Cassady, Neal’s ex-,” Bliesener said. “I asked her, ‘What would Neal make of this? Would he think it’s silly?’ ”

Any concern was put to rest.

“She told me he’d be honored,” Bliesener said. “His life was all about bettering himself. Maybe not in a formal way, but he was the classic lifelong learner who educated himself.”

Cassady would have turned 86 on Feb. 8.

“Neal was an inspiration and muse for Kerouac and Ginsberg,” Bliesener said. “He arguably started the Beat Generation. And he also served as a bridge between the Beats and the hippies.

“He was a real kernel of originality.”

Source. Thank you to Mark, the organizer of the event, for passing the link onto Elle.

And if you’re interested in reading more about the real people who inspired Kerouac, The Beat Handbook has a brand new interview with Al Hinkle, Big Ed Dunkel in On the Road and one of Garrett’s traveling companions when he delivered the Hudson to the Beat Museum. He shares some wonderful stories. That article can be found HERE.

More Information About the Neal Cassady Birthday Bash in Denver
Laura
02 Feb, 2012



This entry was posted on Thursday, February 2nd, 2012 at 8:43 pm and is filed under MH.com, On The Road. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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