Hooray For Hollywood

HollywoodHollywood by Charles Bukowski

The Rachael Rad Rating : 5 of 5 stars

I loved this book. See a lot of ‘eh’ reviews. Have no idea if it’s my own involvement in film, writing and Los Angeles of the past that makes this tale a spark of real life. I believe it’s the writing alone that does it.
This is Bukowski as Bukowski, not ‘Hank’.

‘Hollywood’ was and still is a pleasure to read. A must have for any screen writer, rags to riches bum, alcoholic literary being, or the real reason to read Buk or Fante.. The Clean Line.

It’s the story of ‘Barfly’ (a Bukowski book) and the making of that film. It starred Mickey O’Rourke. Bukowski had such a wonderful time seeing the project through and it shows in this work. It is a peek into the real life of an icon.

Some people never go crazy, what  truly horrible lives they must lead
Seems readers either love him or hate him. I met him in a bar, in Long Beach in the very early 80’s, and thought that he was a consummate asshole.
Based on a personal experience I refused to read any more of his work and filled myself with righteous indignation.
What an ass. Me. Not Buk.

The man could write. I feel that Bukowski is one of the Top 5 Best Writers of the 20th Century. His words could immediately sabotage the happiest fool, punch your lights out with the measure of anger at society, and stun you with his graphic and street-level view of humanity, and heighten your mind to poetic grace with his insights. Within the same piece all of these textures could be transfused. You loved with his heart and so hurt with his hurt.
He enjoyed doing live readings with a cooler on the stage next to him. Woe be to a heckler or someone foolish enough to speak too loudly. It’s true. Beer cans can fliy.

Hollywood is a personal story, filled with the real feelings and observations of an author finally revered for their work. Finally taken seriously. Finally able to let his personal side and thoughts of his life come out. It is quite different from any of his other writings. Well, so was Pulp. Pulp however… was truly the ‘eh’ Bukowski.

And Our Musical Selection For This Evening

Currently Listening: ย Hollywood Madness

Richie Cole
The Rad Rachael Original Signed Vinyl Stack

Richie Cole: Hollywood Madness

Richie Cole plays an amazing, high energy, gorgeous alto. It’s scary-cool pure synchronicity that a sneaky little subconscious slapped this on the turntable while writing the Bukowski review.

First time I heard Richie I thought “Damn, this guy can blow.. and he’s white!” Couldn’t believe I hadn’t heard him play before. He was an L.A. fixture and his style is the combination of his be-bop roots, and late 70’s and early 80’s fusion. Richie Cole has added his raucous and heavenly talents to other musical acts ranging from Buddy Rich to Manhattan Transfer. That’s a lot of years and genres.

These were the days when my radio tastes went from punk to jazz. Oddly I could never get my punk rock friends interested in Sonny Rollins, Richie, Stanley Turentine or Weather Report. Conversely, the Jazz contingent would never end our nights with a stellar a cappella rendition of Beat on the Brat With A Baseball Bat.
Met Richie at the Queen Mary Jazz Festival in 1982 or ’83. Cool cat. Down to earth and a smile as big as the Ritz. We had a few beers and talked music, and life. Met up with him again at another festival in the early 90’s.

Holy Shit Batman. Age and drugs had taken a toll. No, his entire wallet.
Heard him play then later hit an after-party at a friend’s house. Richie sat alone on a couch, towards the back of the cluttered living room. Naturally I made a bee line and plopped the ass down beside him.
Couldn’t believe that nobody else at the party was in line to shake his hand. He lit up a doobย and we smoked and people watched for a while.
Mentioned that I had talked with him before. He remembered me, or at least said he did. Which was nice.
His name, and remarkable style, had faded by 1994.
It was a comfortable chat and I’ll always remember the way it felt in that room. The cigarette smoke, a fire in the old stone fireplace, musicians aplenty, a very faint smell of spilled beer in old carpet, and the quiet peace of smoking a joint with a good friend. Maybe that was it. He wasn’t a long time friend, but he made me feel that way. Left the party and took Richie’s number with me, he took mine as well. A happy ‘I’ll call you when I’m back in town’ and that was the last time I saw him.

Heard later he’d been in and out of rehab for heroin. Same drug that clipped the wings of Bird. It explained his deteriorated appearance.
Never saw Richie again, but I’ve kept his albums through all the years of marriages, divorces (Divorce: noun. Meaning ‘to lose your favorite music.’) and cross-country moves.

Bukowski and Richie Cole are two great examples of my Hollywood. As a L.A. kid, New York City grown-up, Reno, Nevada hell-if-I-know, the memories of my original home and experiences are still easily stirred. Think it’s the same for anyone with a bit of dreamer inside.
A sight, a bar of music, a phrase on paper, can fill our souls with a spate of emotions.
Can’t think of a better reason to elicit Hooray for Hollywood.

~Miss Noir

25 thoughts on “Hooray For Hollywood

    • LB! Just thinking of stopping by your place. Been busy. Most days I just lay around and exercise., you’re still drinking for two right? Had a year sober on Groundhogs Day.
      Yeah, couldn’t have planned that better.
      Thanks for stopping by!


    • GFB: If you already like Bukowski it’s a no-brainer. If you’re not familiar with his work you’ll enjoy it, I promise., it is quite different from his other books, articles and poetry. In a good way.
      Happy Valentine’s Day my sweet!


      • You should see my Zombies, they are as
        rampant as Hyena’s on a laughing spree ๐Ÿ˜‰ lol


        Did someone mention wood? How wicked, but then
        you will insist on being naughty my sweet and dear
        friend so it has to be expected, especially with your
        translucent negligรฉe and that wicked smile ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Now where’s my towel, I am needing a cold shower…

        Have a delicious Tuesday
        Miss. R and be good, like me ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Andro xxxx


        • Ando… wood? tsk tsk tsk. Wood eye wood eye. Peg leg peg leg!
          Don’t know if that old joke is a UK fave but I couldn’t help it. Of course, there are so many things I can’t help -grin-.


  1. Despite how often I’ve seen him referenced, I’ve never read Bukowski. I should probably fix that.

    On the other hand, I’m listening to Richie Cole now and loving it.
    Hope a DJ digs out the back catalog and gets him back on the air.

    How is everything with you?


    • EG, start with Ham on Rye or Post Office. Both are fine books and honestly representitive of his style. Folks either love him or hate him. Those that hate him take his over the top mysongeny seriously. If the man really hated women he would not have surrounded himself with them True? The book which tends to agitate people the most is called The Women. It’s just plain great. The man writes with a concise style and trims everything extraneous from his tales. A smooth read.
      He was out to stir up the shit ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Last 3 days have been good pain-wise. This makes anything easier to deal with! New neurologist today. 6’5″ tall, feet like aircraft carriers, rumpled clothing, a german accent and a rather dingy office. We’ll call him Dr. Mengele for now.
      Didn’t really like him but there aren’t a lot of choices around here. Suppose that if he can read an MRI and use his tuning fork and mallet to test reflexes I should be grateful. Yet…. I’m not.
      Since my newly aquired position as Professional Patient I see only the creme de la creme of the medical establishment.
      Really. That is ALL I see. Only doctors. No trips to a grocery store, coffee house, ski run (-sad face and tears-), or even down the street.
      Please send help. I am locked in the back room of my mother’s house and I fear her death may be imminant. Oh, she’s not sick….

      Got my Burning Man ticket! The bastards will never keep me down. Looking for another Spanker to help me find a trailer/RV/llarge metal box to camp in. With a ramp.
      Trying to figure out a way to get a used wheelchair from a thrift store and adapt it to the playa.
      Then add a propane powered flame thrower.
      Cause that’s how I roll Buzz ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Still unable to afford an electric model, but I’m saving pennies. If Jesus saves then I can too.

      Love you Sweetie! A kiss on the head to your beautoful acronym


  2. Never heard of Richie. Bukowski sounds familiar. Heard of Barfly. Never saw/read it. Can’t remember anything else he did.

    I think you could use a transporter. I’ll see if I can get one to work for you.


    • Binky, I can’t recommend Bukowski highly enough. The man has a style of writing that has influenced a lot of authors you probably are familar with. Claifornication, the Showtime television series with David Duchovney, is loosly based on Buk’s life. Quite loosly as the TV character is handsome (Mr. Buchowski was one ugly dude, and he knew it) and has moved to LA from NYC. Much of Buchowski’s work is based on his lifetime spent in Los Angeles. His poetry will often amaze you with it’s seemingly simple lines, but profound meaning. Or, it will punch you in the face with foul language and a release of anger. Both are equally powerful.

      As for Guap I recommend Ham on Rye to Start. Also pick up a copy of Love is a Dog From Hell. The latter a compilation of poems, essays and columns called ‘Notes From A Dirty Old Man’, which appeared in a widely-read underground newspaper during the late 1960’s. I feel he is as important to read as Steinbeck, Hemingway and Vonnegut.
      In my opinion Buchowski is one of the Top 5 Best writers of the 20th Century.
      Whew. Quite the diatribe eh?

      Binky, you gotta get yourself some Richie Cole,(Hollywood Madness is fun and cool cool cool btw) and you’ll have the ultimateMusic To Build Transports by.

      I’ll be waiting for your instructions to beam up. Victor and Victoria can hardly wait to try your newest invention. Hey, do you serve wine gums instead of those packages of peanuts?


      • Hey Rachael ๐Ÿ™‚

        Winky is developing a rocket fuelled pancake mix
        so get ready to be jetted into Space with maple syrup
        around your mouth ๐Ÿ™‚ I can hardly wait for it ๐Ÿ˜‰ lol

        Andro xxxx


        • Let’s face it, Winky is the resident’s resident rocket scientist. Now I can truthfully say ‘What are you a rocket scientist?!’ Winky will not only answer yes but provide wine gums as well a space age pancakes. I can see the movie trailer now:


  3. I have to agree with our Loon, it is really great knowing that
    you are getting better by the minute and I love that idea of the
    rocket Coyote style ๐Ÿ˜‰ lol Let me light the fuse and don’t worry
    I will be clinging on to you for the ride of wickedness ๐Ÿ™‚

    Have a fun evening
    my sweet and great
    friend ๐Ÿ™‚

    Andro xxxx


    • It’s always such a blood-warm and trickly feeling to know others are sending good wishes. My black little heart swells with happiness.
      Am making progress and working hard at my own person PT program. Thinking of joining the 4 legged potato sack race at the 4th of July picnic this year. Sure, it’s usually the 3 legged race but I figure using a prosthetic will give me a boost.
      Don’t worry, it will be a freebie. Plan on knocking some old bastard over at the post office. Am installing the new Razor Blade wheel guard accessory to saw that baby right off.
      I got your Cure for Paralysis right here baby!
      Now, gimme a foot up.
      No, not my ass this time ๐Ÿ˜‰


  4. That’s a real good post! Entertaining and educational, I mean, I’ve never heard of Richie Cole. I cannot believe that you met Bukowski! Buk is up there with Richard Pryor and Tom Waits. I’ve had a lot of emotional moments with those guys, ya’ know?


    • Awwww thank you! Your comment has made my evening. You’ve uncovered your fine taste: Tom Waits -a musical hero, and favorite for Sunday afternoons. In the past life had a few of his tunes sprinkled in my piano sets.
      Pryor? Damn he was a comic genius. Too bad more people aren’t aware of his live albums and writing.
      Agree with ’emotional moments’ comment. What a great way to put the feeling of art meeting heart.
      Take care!


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