My Little Red Book
Small Town Talk: Bob Dylan, the Band, Van Morrison, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix & Friends in the Wild Years of Woodstock
Reviewed by Jim Caligiuri, Fri., June 17, 2016
Mention Woodstock and everyone thinks of the 1969 festival that made legends of almost everyone who performed during those three days of peace, mud, and music. Barney Hoskyns examines the small upstate New York town that lent the festival its name and uncovers details long forgotten, and in some cases, previously unknown. From Woodstock's origins in the 1800s as a bohemian artists' colony to its invasion by the NYC folk scene in the Sixties, the UK music journalist and author of celebrated works on the Band, Doors, and more brings to life such colorful characters as Bob Dylan's power-hungry manager Albert Grossman, who drives the narrative even after his death in 1986. There's sex, plentiful drugs, and all sorts of rock & roll provided by Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Paul Butterfield, and a multitude of those passing through, like Louisiana's Bobby Charles, whose song gives the book its name. Leave it to former Austinite and Woodstock native Cindy Cashdollar to sum up the entire Woodstock experience. "It's like the circus came to town and never left."
Small Town Talk: Bob Dylan, the Band, Van Morrison, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix & Friends in the Wild Years of Woodstockby Barney Hoskyns
Da Capo Press, 424 pp., $26.99