COLUMN 103, MARCH 1, 2003
(Copyright 2003 The Blacklisted Journalist)


Subject: Letter about column "Let's 'ave a larf"- The Beatles.
Date: Thu, 11 Dec 2003 14:12:20 -0300
From: C?Mi 12o8 

Dear Mr. Blacklisted Journalist,

I am writing to you in connection with the column "Let's "ave a larf" about the Beatles (October 1, 1995) " because I want to clear some things up. 

First of all, I'm wondering why you wanted to introduce Bob Dylan to the Beatles, and make them try marijuana. Since I know the Beatles, I always tried to think that drugs didn't affect their music, but I guess that really happened.

I know that what you did helped them, in a way, because it made them more successful. But, in another way, it just helped them to destroy themselves. I personaly think that the effects that drug has on you are just not worth a successful carreer- and maybe not such a successful career- thinking about what fame really means. Think about what happened to them because of that : health problems, they got arrested because of using it...... and the worst thing is, they didn't feel right with each other, and with themselves. 

I really, really think that what you did was a bad choice, you should have thought it a bit more, but, as you know, now it's not the right time to stop it, or to fix it. 

You must be thinking now why I tell you this and, why she's complaining about all this stuff now....

but what I'm trying to communicate you is the problem about the drug. 

I know that The Beatles would have tryed it in another occation given it by somebody else, but If they just have tryed it later- probably they would have thought about it. 

Finally, what I wanted to say is that drugs are a big problem, and, you could have delayed that problem to them- not avoid it- but just trying to help them by not giving marijuana to them at that time, and probably delaying the proccess that drug had on them.........just delaying........

Well, I hope you can understand my point, my thoughts, and if there's something you want me to know, or something you think it was wrong, please feel free to write me. I'm sorry if I have any gramatical mistake.

Kind regards, 

Camila .R. 

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Subject: About the Beatles...
Date: Sun, 2 Nov 2003 23:30:50 EST

Hello -

I have just enjoyed reading your column (#16) which was "trimmed" to appear in The Saturday Evening Post's 1964 cover story on the Beatles.

I'm currently doing research for a project about the Beatles in 1963 and early 1964 and I'm hoping you can help me. Your firsthand account was very enlightening - I was led to you after finding Michael Braun's accounts in a teen magazine.

If you would be so kind as to respond, I would really appreciate it. I'm sure you understand the value of hearing from someone who "was there."

Thanks so much.
Gay Linvill

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Date: Thu, 1 Jan 2004 11:53:39 +1000
From: Bear 

AARP is very good for substantial discounts on a huge array of services, no additional payment other than the membership fee is required- you are under no obligation to buy insurance or special discount cards, and why would you want to? All insurance is worthless and drug discounts are already available with the membership
card at many pharmacies.



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Date: Thu, 27 Nov 2003 15:01:30 -0500
From: "David Weaver" 

Hello Al,

Happy Thanksgiving to you! I've enjoyed the many editions of BLACKLISTED JOURNALIST since our first communication over "My Man's Gone Now" and our stories of Billie Holliday.

Just wanted to let you know that last spring I completed my manuscript about Ruby Elzy, whom I wrote about in TBJ, who introduced "My Man's Gone Now." I'm pleased to tell you that it will be published in August
2004 by University Press of Mississippi. The title is BLACK DIVA OF THE 30s - THE LIFE OF RUBY ELZY.

if I get to NYC to promote the book, perhaps we can have a chance to meet in person. Maybe you will be doing the "Saddest Song Ever Sung" evening with your friend, the singer [AMINA BARAKA], and I can attend.

Take care, David

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Subject: Article
Date: Wed, 14 Jan 2004 12:55:41 -0500
From: dey21 
To: 'Al Aronowitz' 

Dear Al,

This article is written with a very sad heart, believe me. In it, I intend to show where President George Walker Bush knew, beforehand, of the 9-11-01 bombing of the Twin Towers in New York City and the Pentagon. Since the president was in the air at the time, I feel that he felt very secure in the knowledge of his safety while those innocent people died.

I, firmly, believe that President Bush stole the election by winning in his brother's home state, Florida. If the reader will remember, there was quite a controversy of counting and recounting Florida's votes. If the reader will, also, recall there was no publicity on the theft of the election after the 'surprise? bombing on 9-11 that even remotely came close to the fraud that was perpetrated in the election in Florida. Therefore, I have concluded that the 'sneak attack? on 9-11-01 was a surprise to the American people, and not the President of the United States. Also, there was, hardly, any mention of what the evil, Al Qaida, did in his part in the bombing. The President, conveniently, did a turnabout and chose Saddam Hussein as one of his many enemies.

The United States waged war on the tiny country of Iraq, just as it did on the tiny country of Vietnam in the 60s and 70s. It, like its counterpart, was based on a total deception of this country and will be, if my prognostication is right, will be the deaths of countless soldiers, both American and Iraqi. 

The infamous Tonkin Gulf attack gave LBJ the excuse that he needed to involve this country, fully, in the Vietnam War. The events that led up to 9-11-01 are very similar, sadly, for the American people trusted the word of this politician, as well. 9-11-01 gave the President the ammunition he needed to wage war on Iraq. America is still in the process of waging that war to liberate the Iraqis. I don't believe we'll do that just as we didn't disabuse the Vietnamese from their views. Iraq is very similar to Vietnam in many respects, with the outstanding one that they know what they want. It's my view that we haven't learned a thing from that Vietnam fiasco. If we did, we aren't applying the lessons and are on a collision course with the fate of the Roman Empire. I'll quote from the philosopher and writer, George Santayana: Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. America is repeating its errors just as it repeated the errors of the French in Vietnam.

Dick Dettrey, a Vietnam (ugh) vet and a sensitive human being

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DAN PROPPER, 1937-2003 

Subject: Dan Propper obit
Date: Mon, 05 Jan 2004 15:57:05 -0500
From: Mikhail Horowitz 
To: al aronowitz 

Friends and Comrades: 

Some of you have probably already received the news of Danny Propper's death in late November. I was able to convince my former employers, the Woodstock (NY) Times, that he deserved an obituary. Here's my obit as it appeared in the January 1, 2004 edition of the paper, accompanied by a photo and a poem. Feel free to spread it around in your respective online and/or print publications. (Just for the record: Dan's son is actually named "Wylie," but for personal reasons he asked me to cite him as "Willie." I gave Wylie the addresses for both Hunger and Mad Blood, so Padma and J.J. will each be hearing from him directly re: unpublished poems. If anyone else is interested in Danny's unpublished work, drop me a note and I'll send you Wylie's address.) 

Daniel T. "Danny" Propper 

Danny Propper, a second-generation Beat poet who swung with the best of them, died on Saturday, November 22, at his cabin on John Joy Road in Saugerties. He was 66 years old. 

A self-described "quasi recluse," Propper had been an elder statesman of Woodstock's lively poetry scene since the early 1990s. Prior to that, as a sales rep for Decca Records, a sometime teamster, and an "amazing tramp," he made the late "50s-early "60s Beat scenes in New York City, San Francisco, New Orleans, and Denver. Back then, in the heyday of the hipster coffeehouse, Propper, who described his poetry in a 1991 Woodstock Times interview as being in the "bebop Hebraic long-line romantic surrealist" mode, recited his
poems, on several memorable occasions, to the accompaniment of Dizzy Gillespie's trumpet, or Thelonious Monk's piano and Roy Haynes's drums. His "Fable of the Final Hour," a wildly cinematic long poem featuring apocalyptic cartoon imagery, was published in Seymour Krim's landmark 1960 anthology, The Beats, and subsequently enjoyed great popularity among declamatory performers at poetry readings from New York's East Village to San Francisco's North Beach. 

"He was one of the smartest men I've ever met," said Dean Schambach, the dean of Woodstock's open-reading emcees. "His knowledge was encyclopedic; he knew jazz backwards and forwards, knew it cold. He'd come to the readings and make so many rich observations. He sometimes had a cruel sense of humor, because he was so bright, but he could be sweet and tender and innocent, too." 

And, like so many of his peers, he could be self-destructive. In Propper's early years his vice of choice was Benzedrine; it was the decades of heavy smoking, however, that cut his set short. Several friends related how, a couple of years ago, following lung surgery, he prevailed upon his buddy, the late Bob Dacey, to stop for a carton of cigarettes on his way home from the hospital. Yet Propper accepted himself as he was, much as he always accepted others as they were, and never pissed or moaned about the repercussions of his bad habits. Indeed, because he never complained, many of those close to him had no idea how sick he was over the last few years. 

Propper was born in Coney Island Hospital on April 13, 1937. He studied with Stanley Kunitz at the New School for Social Research; Kunitz advised him to drop out, and Propper never looked back. He did maintain a friendly correspondence with Kunitz for many years after, sending him poems and signing them, "Your grateful student, Danny." His published work includes three volumes of poetry'the Fable of the Final Hour (Energy Press, 1958); The Tale of the Amazing Tramp (Cherry Valley Editions, 1977); and For Kerouac in Heaven (Energy Press, 1980)?along with some translations of Pablo Neruda. He also published scads of poems in as many lit mags?Evergreen Review, Invisible City, Coldspring Journal, Longhouse,and Hunger, to name just a few. But for Propper, publication was incidental to being a poet; he was most emphatically not
a self-promoter, which made him closer to the pure spirit of being "Beat" than many a beatnik of greater renown. He once intimated to this writer that he had a "gang of stuff" squirreled away in notebooks and loose papers; among his effects at the time of his death was a briefcase full of unpublished poems, which is now in
the possession of his son.  

"I learned so much from him," said Myrna Hilton, his "New York Times puzzle buddy" and a fast friend over the last 10 years. "His words, his passion at live readings, often brought the audience to a frenzy, begging for more." 

In the fable of his own final hour, Propper chose to pooh-pooh a bed at the hospital and opted to die peacefully at home. Shortly after his death, a dozen or so of his friends and his son, Willie, gathered at his cabin in the woods. They spread his ashes over the property, saving some for a favored fishing hole in Jersey, and took turns standing on the stump of a newly hewn tree, offering praise to the poet and the man. Last Saturday, recalling the ceremony, Willie said, "I look forward to catching five-pound flounders with him in heaven." 

It would certainly speak well of the Creator if, in addition to those flounders, Danny Propper could spend eternity catching jazz in celestial bistros, sitting at a table near the stage and digging his beloved Monk, Diz, Bud, and Charlie Parker, and every once in an endless while stepping up to the mic himself, to blow. 

In addition to his son, survivors include his parents, Stanley and Ruth Dreisin Propper, and his aunt Rita. 

Mikhail Horowitz  ##



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