More Questions from David Wills
You've described yourself as falling between the Beat and Psychedelic generations. So how were you influenced by the Beats, and how did you influence the counterculture in the years following the bus trip?
We are on a path to far away that came across the seas to comingle with the indigents already here in order to formulate great literature and spiritual awakening exemplified by the writings of Melville and Poe, and the transcendentalists, and Whitman, Jack London, Mark Twain, Willa Cather, Steinbeck and Hemingway and Faulkner and Kerouac and Mailer etcetera etcetera; not to forget the other arts of dance and painting and music etcetera etcetera. The beat goes on. Expanding through psychedelic awakenings and awarenesses of spantaneous eruptions of joy and glee in order to puncture the balloons of stuffy rigid necked spouters of ancient ugly arguments they keep alive with hot air, having too much money along with utter disregard for the sanctity of life of those who are poorer, dumber, different, another color or religion; all that old malarkey the counterculture thumbs its nose at while practising the disciplines that will save this world from destrucktion. so ther.
How would consider the Pranksters' and the Acid Tests' roles in modern American culture?
When I was a kid, world war one was over forty years ago and it seemed like it was another century, another time. Ancient history. Now, the action of the 60's that happened over forty years is still alive and well. I speak all over the place (sometimes only to myself, but as Cassady said, That way you can have an intelligent conversation) and everyone wants to hear the stories, what our motivations were, was what we were doing something meaningful, does it have enduring importance that people today (especially the kids asking) can use in their lives. This being the fortieth anniversary of the summer of love, the questions and answers are being re-examined once again, down to the nitty gritty, just like the jug band. Speaking of that, where did Steely Dan get its name? Inspector John Rebus in the new Ian Rankin novel supplies the answer. The only role that matters is jelly roll, thus we have morton. When it rains it pours. Make like a duck and let the water run off your back. These and many other secrets will be revealed.