Quick Book Review: “The Haight: Love, Rock, and Revolution – The Photography of Jim Marshall” by Joel Selvin
Not surprisingly, I loved this book. I love photography, and I’ve been enthralled by the Haight-Ashbury era and the music coming out of that scene for years. Jim Marshall was a spectacular photographer who not only took iconic photos of musicians (he’s the guy responsible for the photo of Hendrix setting his guitar ablaze at Monterey Pop, Johnny Cash famously flashing his middle finger, and many instantly-recognizable others), but also chronicled life on the streets of The Haight. This was a hopeful, exciting, unique time in history, and Marshall documented it brilliantly. Accompanying the fabulous photos is insightful commentary by Joel Selvin, an excellent author. His book about Altamont is a favorite of mine. The origins of some of the key bands of the era (Big Brother and the Holding Company, Jefferson Airplane, Grateful Dead, Quicksilver Messenger Service) is covered in detail, and I learned quite a bit. You get the scoop on the music, as well as some history and sociology thrown in for good measure. The text and photos combine perfectly, and you’re quickly transported to this magical era as you flip through the pages. The Hendrix photos alone are worth the price of the book. For lovers of the San Francisco ‘60’s scene, and rock music in general, this book is a treasure.