A thrilling account of the Altamont Festival--and the dark side of the '60s.If Woodstock tied the ideals of the '60s together, Altamont unraveled them.In Just a Shot Away, writer and critic Saul Austerlitz tells the story of "Woodstock West," where the Rolling Stones hoped to end their 1969 American tour triumphantly with the help of the Grateful Dead, the Jefferson Airplane, and 300,000 fans. Instead the concert featured a harrowing series of disasters, starting with the concert's haphazard planning. The bad acid kicked in early. The Hells Angels, hired to handle security, began to prey on the concertgoers. And not long after the Rolling Stones went on, an 18-year-old African-American named Meredith Hunter was stabbed by the Angels in front of the stage.The show, and the Woodstock high, were over.Austerlitz shows how Hunter's death came to symbolize the end of an era while the trial of his accused murderer epitomized the racial tensions that still underlie America. He also finds a sil...
|Title||:||Just a Shot Away: Peace, Love, and Tragedy with the Rolling Stones at Altamont|
|Number of Pages||:||336 pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Just a Shot Away: Peace, Love, and Tragedy with the Rolling Stones at Altamont Reviews
Austerlitz does a good job of bringing Meredith Hunter to life through accounts of his troubled family life, which was mitigated somewhat by his sister Dixie, who raised him. The author also has a solid feel for what it was like in the crush of the crowd near the tiny stage that was bristling with Hell's Angels. Lastly, he gives full attention to the aftermath of the concert - the making of the film, and the trial of the Hell's Angel who drew first blood in the killing of Meredith Hunter.
This reads like an overly long magazine article than history book with just a bit too much proselytizing by the author about comparing this event to today. But the facts remain, Meredith Hunter's name is known for his tragic murder, but no one remembers the young man or knows his story. Also, the Grateful Dead remain one of the largest collection of scum bags and their actions at Altamont are unconscionable.
Disappointing and poorly edited. The lack of footnotes — probably the decision of the publisher to save space and production costs — is particularly galling in a book that relies very heavily on factual reconstruction of long ago events. And basic fact checking is shockingly lacking. It’s hard to have much faith in a book that gets details wrong, especially about the Rolling Stones. How hard is it to fact check song titles? At times the writer uses a narrative style that suggests he was actually ...more
Held in December, 1969, the Altamont concert conveniently marks the end of the 60s and casts a cloud over the often upbeat assessment of the counterculture and Woodstock Generation. Because of the killing of Meredith Hunter by the Hell's Angels, who were hired as security for the concert, the focus of the narrative was on tragedy rather than a celebration of high profile bands. It was a free concert offered by the Rolling Stones in a hastily assembled venue that was ill-equipped to handle the ma ...more