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Howl (Remastered)

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Album Review

"Howl" itself (presented in an 18-minute version here) is one of the most important poems of the 20th century. Its shock value has largely dissipated in the ensuing decades, but that, in a way, is a blessing, as attention is now focused on its literary strength and life-affirming passion. "Kaddish (Part 1)" is the only other comparably famous work here, though the rest is also quality work that struck serious blows for non-conformity; it took real guts to read (and for a label to release) something like "America" in 1959, with its line, "Go f*ck yourself with your atom bomb." As far as the poems' translation to disc goes, it helps that Ginsberg was an above-average reader, though "Howl" itself could have been better recorded. It and a few other cuts were recorded at a Chicago reading (though most were done in the studio); interestingly, as Ginsberg himself revealed in the liner notes, he did try to record the "Howl" poem in the studio, but felt he couldn't match the spirit of his live performance. The CD reissue, in addition to reprinting Ginsberg's original liner notes, adds interesting comments by his colleague Anne Waldman and reissue producer Bill Belmont.

Customer Reviews


Allen Ginsberg is by far one of the best poets of all time, I own his full collection of poems and they are all beautiful. I highly suggest researching his work and listening to and/or reading it. My favorite is America, but each one of them is brilliant.


This is one of the finest group's of poem's. Listen to America and you can here the pain in his voice. I love Allen Ginsberg let that be recorded in heaven's un changable heart= Jack Kerouac. I can only agree. I sugest track 4 5 6 7 8 to get started with the great poetry machine that is Allen Ginsberg.


I love that this is here. I didn't even realize there was a formal recording. I read this for my senior thesis in college (last year) and I've loved it, and read it over and over, ever since. I keep Howl on my bookshelf at work. It's so tiny it hides between the law books. AMERICA, is my favorite poem. I've memorized it, and love that I can listen to Ginsberg recite it whenever I'd like now. Definitely worth reading and downloading.


Born: June 3, 1926 in Newark, NJ

Genre: Spoken Word

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

The greatest poet of the Beat movement and one of the most renowned American writers of the 20th century, Allen Ginsberg transcended literary and intellectual barriers to exert a profound influence on the culture at large. His accomplishments are too numerous and his oeuvre too large for a music reference resource to do them justice; many other sources exist that offer more complete perspectives on his life and work. Ginsberg made sporadic recordings of his work, both formal and otherwise, starting...
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Howl (Remastered), Allen Ginsberg
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