Sunday, 10 January 2010

big cats in dalston

John Sinclair performs "The Crossroads", his poem about Tommy Johnson (not Robert) who is said to have acquired his mojo when he met a dark stranger at the Crossroads at midnight.

John was the visionary manager of the MC5 who founded the White Panthers when the Black Panthers called for support from the white population. Having caught the eye of the authorities, he was arrested for giving — not selling — two joints to an undercover cop, and served two and a half years of a draconian ten year prison sentence. John Lennon wrote a song about him (it's the one called "John Sinclair"), and a number of luminaries (including Stevie Wonder, Yoko Ono, Bob Seger, Allen Ginsberg, Abbie Hoffman and Bobby Seale) campaigned for his release which happened days after Lennon headlined a benefit Free John Now Rally.

He now lives and works in Amsterdam.

John is accompanied by Charles Shaar Murray on resonator guitar and Buffalo Bill Smith on harmonica. Recorded by Madam Miaow at the Café OTO in Dalston, North London, Saturday 14th March 2009.

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