Monday, March 2, 2020

Gary Hinman Murder Scene

Recently the blog received images that were used as exhibits by the Los Angeles District Attorney's office in the four trials for the murder of Gary Hinman.  The photos do not include Gary's body but do show blood stains.  There are pictures of various rooms in the house, Gary's prayer beads and the sword Manson used to slice Gary's face.  These pictures are very sobering and underscore the Family's capacity to exert brutality in the course of their crimes.

All of the images have at least a portion of an LADA watermark on them but it is an opaque watermark so it doesn't obliterate a major portion of the image.  The home is still furnished in the photos so you get a very good idea of what happened and where.

A few years ago Matt posted a link to an Associated Press video of the interior of Gary's home, the link at his post still works so you might want to revisit that, too.  In this video the home has been cleared out of all of Gary's belongings so you get a different perspective.

We will start with a couple of the tamer pictures.

This is what looks to be an enclosed porch off of the kitchen.  You can see the refrigerator in the window.




The dinette set in the kitchen.

Another view of the dinette set.

The dinette set again, notice the musical instrument case in the foreground.

Not sure where this is in the house.  You can see circles drawn on the floor near the wood stove.  Presumably they circled blood splatters.

The living room where Gary died. You can see Gary's prayer beads in the lower middle of the photo.

Another angle of the living room.

You can see a faint chalk outline of exactly where Gary was found.  His arm would have been where the right side of the first A in the watermark is located.  The prayer beads were probably in his right hand.


The prayer beads.





The knife found in the spare tire well of the Fiat when Bobby was arrested.





The sword that was used by Manson to slice Gary's face. It has been said that when George Knoll, president of the Straight Satan's found out that his sword had been used in a murder he became enraged and broke the sword in half.

In the interest of things not getting out of hand in the comments section regarding the letter addressed to Robert Beausoleil in Gary's home here are images of the letter, envelope and related documentation for its being entered as an exhibit in the first trial for Gary's murder.

Envelope

Exhibit Log

Exhibit noted on back

Letter page 1

Letter page 2



62 comments:

Doug said...

The "Political Piggy" on the wall o er where Gary's head would have rested by the baseboard heater is "whited out" in these pics.

In the AP video taken after the home was cleared of furniture etc...it's still visible.

I always thought that the sword was much longer.

Poor Gary...horrendous suffering and, senseless violence for such a peaceful and, spiritual man.

Doug said...

I wonder when THIS may see the light of day? I interviewed Legs when "Please Kill Me" came out...interesting guy. Tells a great story via a series of recollections from various sources pertinent to his subject matter.

https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-features/the-follow-up-to-please-kill-me-is-an-oral-history-about-charlie-manson-869680/?fbclid=IwAR00t-lW0PPieqMZZ_YeIscotvrP4hjLggQndifQcsvSp705dytQCtWajcQ

AustinAnn74 said...

The prayer beads are so very sad. The immense suffering Gary Hinman had to endure at the hands of these savages is just as bad as the other murders this group committed, if not worse. He had to sit there with a giant, painful gash on his face, bleeding and probably going into shock. When you hear people spouting off that "Manson was innocent" then you look at the sword he sliced Gary's face with, it makes one sick to one's stomach!

Panamint Patty said...

Cool pics Deb if only there was one of the "basement"

Peter said...

Not only the physical pain, but the psychological pain of being trapped in the house and knowing your life was in the hands of a bunch of unhinged cbildren.

AustinAnn74 said...

Exactly!

Matt said...

Someone once hinted to me that motive clues were burned in that fireplace.


Fayez Abedaziz said...

Gary, one of those that you gotta know, from reading 'bout him and the pictures, was the kinda mellow guy I did and would always enjoy sitting and talking with:
a well meaning, good hearted guy.
That, is the difference between people like Gary and those that were going around with long hair and the casual 'hip' look in the good ole days of the 60's and 70's.
At first it meant something, but soon, by '67 it was just a fad for many.
Again, with no excuses for the girls Mary or cute Susan, it was the guys:
they led them to violent acts, but what can you do.
Fort Collins, with Colorado State University and the Rams football team, is 60 miles
from where I sit.
It's a real nice town with casual, attractive walking areas to stop for an ice cream or coffee.
A few miles away, you can enjoy a nice walk, bike ride and so on. Also fishing.
Anyhoo, it, and other small and medium towns in Colorado are sorta like those size places in California used to be, until the 80's. Although I'm told that Chatsworth is still nice. Whatdya say to that?

DebS said...

Fayez, since you're in Colorado you might have been at or near some of Gary's family's construction projects. Gary's grandfather, Dale, along with his brother Wallace, started Hinman Brothers Construction Co. back in the 20's. They constructed roads and dams and the like well into the 40s. Gary's father, Robert, eventually took over the company. Do a google search on Hinman Brothers Construction Colorado and I bet you'll see some projects that you are familiar with and may have even used at one time.

Gary is buried in the Rosebud Cemetery, Glenwood Springs CO. Go visit him sometime, leave some flowers or something appropriate for one who studied Buddhism and then report back to us.

ColScott said...

While at the Cemetery named after Orson Welles' sled you might consider doing a grave rubbing for Stoner and Patty...take some large light paper and charcoal and rub it on the epitaph. Send it to them at Box 350, Boston Mass, 02134. They have many of them on the walls of their mobile home as "witchy decorations". Thanks Fayez!

DebS said...

You know Col, I almost suggested that Fayez do a grave rubbing for you! I decided it was best not to go there.

Panamint Patty said...

Insert snarky retort here

starviego said...

I've always wanted to know what was in that unmailed letter from Gary to Beausoleil found in the coffee table in the living room.

Unknown said...

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/6639834/gary-alan-hinman

Peter said...

I still have never been able to find out why he put the paw print and "Political Piggy" on the wall only to then go back and try to clean it off.

DebS said...

Peter, that question is probably second to why Bobby kept the knife used to kill Gary in the spare tire well of the car he stole, from Gary, that he was arrested in! He may have been cute but he was sure dumb.

Ajerseydevil said...

Someone commented on the size of the sword the picture is of the sword once it was broken in half no ?

Fayez Abedaziz said...

Hello
AustinAnn
DebS
ColScott

There, in Canyon Topanga, were five people involved in Gary's murder.
Why? You freaks are only a few miles from the ocean, the beach, the sunshine and cold bottles of 7-up or coke...but no...you hadda commit the murder of poor, good guy Gary.
Here, in Colorful Colorado, I talked with a fella, a regular, (at a Panera bakery coffee shop) that hailed from Grand (they found dinosaur bones again there) Junction who has a brother that lives there. I asked him a coupla questions. He called his brother (both are around 80 years old.)
His brother said, that, why, whatdaknow, he knew of a Hinman from that family that was a politician and so in the legislature of Colorado. He didn't know much about projects the family had constructed.
Meanwhile, in cars, several times that I traveled that way to Las Vegas/and/or California, I passed Glenwood Springs. You have to if you're going through Colorado, in that direction west, then, soon, you hafta pass Grand Junction.
If I had known that Gary does repose their, on my left as I gazed out the window, I'll tell you what would have happened, cause I know my mind: it would have been a sort of 'bummer' probably for much of the drive/ride. My mind woulda been in serious a funk for miles.
That, what? Gary from Topanga? Gary, attacked, killed, suffered, with those five people-Charlie, Davis, stupid cupid Bobby, Mary and Susan as the criminals?
Susan? Susan, it's me...She was there and now I'm a few blocks from where Gary is resting?
It woulda spun my head, I'm glad I didn't know when I went by on those road trips.
Another meanwhile is: I wonder, why, as I was writing this, the song-'Getting To The Point' (ELO)was playing, well, I had it playing on youtube and the lyrics were something I imagined, or at least hoped would be words from the perps at Gary's, especially nice and satisfying if silly Susan would have said them.
"It was out of control and all I can say now is I'm sorry."
Yeah, Susan, I know, but That's The Way It Goes

starviego said...

Peter said..
"I still have never been able to find out why he put the paw print and "Political Piggy" on the wall only to then go back and try to clean it off."

Didn't anybody ever ask him that at one of his parole hearings?

grimtraveller said...

starviego said...

Peter said..
"I still have never been able to find out why he put the paw print and "Political Piggy" on the wall only to then go back and try to clean it off."

Didn't anybody ever ask him that at one of his parole hearings?


Yes and as per with Bobby, lies and fudge in varying degrees over a number of years. I've not come across any explanation by him of why he tried to wipe the paw print and "Political piggy" off the wall so anything one sees on it is pure speculation. But he says the paw print was to try and shift blame onto the Blacks/Panthers {after having denied it}; basically it was all to try and distance himself from all semblance of connection. I think that it's one thing to have the bravado in the way you act having killed someone, but another thing altogether when the reality of what you've done sets in, with the possibility, however remote, that you could fry for it if you get caught.

I've always wanted to know what was in that unmailed letter from Gary to Beausoleil found in the coffee table in the living room

Was the letter actually from Gary to Bobby or was it just a letter addressed to Bobby but at Gary's address ? I thought the letter dated back to 1967.

Unknown said...

You all realize that Gary Hinman was connected to Dennis Wilson, and Bernard Crowe. Gary may not have deserved to die for his part in the drug trade, but he was far more than the innocent naive music teacher that Bugliosi painted him as

Torque said...

Grim, on the letter in the coffee table, I found the following at Cielodrive.com, under the Gary Hinman Investigation:

"Found in small coffee table was a letter dated 10-5-67, addressed to Robert Kenneth Beausoleil."

Yet there is no mention that Gary had addressed the letter to Bobby. I understand that Bobby lived at Gary's house at one point. Perhaps this letter was an unclaimed piece of mail addressed to Bobby by someone else?

Peter said...

Ive never seen anything connecting Gary to either Dennis or Crowe.

Peter said...

You would think if there was a mescalin lab in the basement, they would have taken a picture of that. Guess they ran out of film.

FrankM said...

It's interesting to see that Gary had a complete set of the Encyclopedia Britannica (I956 edition) on his shelves. This would have cost a dollar or three, and is the sort of item to be found in the house of an academic family rather than a reprobate drug dealer. I would imagine that Gary would have acquired the set through his family rather than bought it himself. A long way from Manson's world.

Peter said...

And if you look closely, Gary has arranged the encyclopedia volumes to spell out the name of his killer C-U-P-I-D.

David said...

From the trial transcript of the first trial:

Ross: I have here a letter from the Department of Motor Vehicles, in Sacramento, with a date on it. May it be marked number 32?

Court: Very well.

Ross: I show you a letter here with the name of Robert Kenneth Beausoleil on it and an address in San Francisco. Have you seen that before?

A ( Whitley): Yes.
Q: When and where did you first see that?
A: I found this letter in a night stand on the porch at the bottom of the drawer.

The date of the letter is is October 4, 1967. The post mark on the letter which bears BB's name and an address in San Francisco is illegible but could be October 5th. The letter is between insurance companies and copied to BB with this note:

"P.S. to Mr. Beausoleil: There are still three failure to appear notices against your driving record. Enclosed are release adjudication forms which must be presented to the courts. When cleared, the courts will forward release certificates to this department. As soon as these are received, you will be permitted to make application for a new driver's license in as much as our records show that you do not have a California driver's license."

It was Exhibit 32 at the trial.

The DA used the letter to show a connection between BB and Hinman. Leon Salter, BB's attorney, 'flipped' the exhibit to argue that Hinman had signed the pink slip so he would not be financially responsible should BB wreck the car he "loaned" BB to go to San Francisco since BB had no license or insurance.


Mon Durphy said...

I'm pretty sure the idea that Manson met Dennis at a drug deal at Hinmans place was from Bill Scanlon Murphy's unpublished book, there's an interview with Bill online and he tells the interviewer the story, that's the only place I've read that but Bill was supposedly pretty tight with Dennis so who knows

Mon Durphy said...

Google Live Freaky, Die Freaky by Bill Murphy, Bill tells the story of how Gary, Dennis and Charlie all knew each other

Mon Durphy said...

They found scales and powder but not a full blown lab

DebS said...

I've posted images of the envelope, supporting documentation and the letter found in the bottom drawer of the nightstand/end table located in the enclosed porch which is pictured in the first image in the post.

Peter said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peter said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fayez Abedaziz said...

"If I was dead, I'm sure I'd be the last to know." Concerning the 1969 rumors that 'Paul Is Dead.' One of his responses.
That's Paul (I have a farm in Scotland) McCartney in (here we go again) the freakin' year of-
1969. God help us.
Now, before any of you friends, fellow travelers and ne'er-do-wells get uptight, lemme explain:
I'm still baffled and can't get this straight. I've read, I've asked numerous of my fellow rock/pop history enjoyers', that well, shouldn't Paul have said, "...I'd be the first to know."? I'm still bothered by it.
Okay, dig why, ah... no pun intended as to the subject/s at hand I bring this up.
1- Paul's involvement and responsibility for the mayhem, the crimes of August 8-10 in '69. His escape from such. But, that will be the paragraphs I'll put in the comments when the next discussion comes round about 'Healter Skelter' or is it "Helter Skealter?' No one I have ever known liked that dumb 'song' noisy insertion in that album.
Still, we are talking about where people go after the grim reaper creeps around and says Hello! Or is it "Hello, let's go, say Bye Bye!"
When brother Charlie took his last breath, sighed and thought, "goodbye, I'm outta here man, dig?"...we thought, well it seems like some fine citizens wanna pay respects and perhaps say a prayer for this dear orphan of American society. Huh! No one could!
Well, what about sweet Sadie Susan? When she went to the Pearly Gates, there were and are loved ones, family and others that would wanna visit her resting place and meditate, say some words. But, what happened?
Here, I'll say that I'm only talking about Charlie and Susan and is not to attack those that chose, usually with the dearly departed's wishes at hand (hopefully with some money or something like that in the will.) Hey hey! to scatter the ashes here or in that place. Really, that's throwing the person away or put in a small container. Doesn't seem alright to me, no.
Who decided where brother Charlie and sister Susan shall be when the sneaky old reaper came round? Huh, who?
Why, it was persons not even related to them. Is there something untoward that we may describe as, selfish? They both have living relatives, they both have people they knew that would go pay their respects. I would have gone to Susan's resting place on god's green earth, in California, so anyway, what's up with all that, what?
What the heck, it's supposed to be back to where everyone originated from, the good, life giving soil, the land. Know what I mean? Something like that.

Doug said...

The letter dates back to the timeframe when Bobby was tight with/living with Kenneth Anger.

Nice digs eh!

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Westerfeld_House

Peter said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mon Durphy said...

Why on Earth would Paul McCartney feel any responsibility for TLB? Should JD Salinger feel responsibility for John Lennon's murder? Should Larry Flynt feel responsibility for Bundys murders since he blamed porn for his crimes, McCartney wrote and performed a song about a fucking amusement park slide and 4 space cadets killed 7 people because they thought the song told them to

HellzBellz said...

McCartney wrote and performed a song about a fucking amusement park slide and 4 space cadets killed 7 people because they thought the song told them to.....

Nahh... We were told to believe, 4 space Cadets killed 7 People because the Song told them.... Thats something else.

Peter said...

It was brought to my attention that my earlier post was full of errors, so I've removed it until I can correct them.

Carry on.

Mon Durphy said...

Good point

starviego said...

DebS said...
"I've posted images of the envelope, supporting documentation and the letter found in the bottom drawer of the nightstand/end table located in the enclosed porch which is pictured in the first image in the post."

Thanks for bringing us up to date on that, Deb!

orwhut said...

Doug,
Thanks for the link about the Russian Embassy. It gave the most satisfactory explanation I've seen of how it got it's name.

Doug said...

No problem.

Dan S said...

Helter Skelter is brilliant. Years ahead of it's time. I don't know anybody who doesn't like it.

I was just thinking about the helter skelter club at the ranch. I wonder if that could have been a successful venture for the family. It sure seems like a better direction for them

Dan S said...

Is that true, that the encyclopedias were arranged to say Cupid? That's incredible. Re: Fayez-
Didn't Mr Atkins (James Morehouse i believe his name is) take SA s ashes? I know he adored her

Doug said...

I was completely shocked by the LOW sale price of that humongous 28 bedroom heritage building as late as 1969...even in 2019 dollars!!!

I can kinda comprehend how the Jefferson Airplane could afford their stately mansion at 2400 Fulton now...

I remember sleeping on the 1br apartment converted floor of the head of an indy record label owner who was "courting" my then band in 1999...with my 4 fellow bandmates...and, asking the "honcho" how much would that tiny space (in the crappy part of the Haight) rent for at that time, and...what it cost him to purchase in 1997...

He said rent would be between $2 - $2.5k!!!

And, he paid $315,000 for it in 1997!!!

Damn! I'm gonna send him an email and, show him what he coulda had if he was around 20yrs before that!!

We wouldn't have been overjoyed to have a floor to crash on...we'd be smoking weed and jamming all night with the avantgarde black jazz dudes and dropping sugar cubes with the Chet Helms freaks.

Always late for the dance...

Doug said...

They were abysmal at operating the "business" complete clusterf**k...and, The Milky Way (band) was a shitshow...I think I read something where the bassist (Ernie? Played with an instrumental surf band with the Dragon brothers that recorded a very highly regarded soundtrack not long after his experience with Manson and Beaseleil) said that they attempted to play CREAM's "Sunshine of Your Love" but Charlie was completely lost...oh, and, both he and, the Dragon brothers played with the Beach Boys in the mid-70s (Oooh-eeee-ooh!) With Daryl Dragon leaving to join up with his soon-to-be wife and, a multiplatinum career as the insipid duo The Captain and Teneille...

And, the girls fucked up the bar and $$$ collection...and, hardly anyone drank

Typical MF clusterf**k

Seems like everyone involved in the music community connected to Manson ended up excelling...EXCEPT Charlie

Kinda funny when you think about it

Doug said...

I should stick to calling Bobby "Bobby"

Too many misspellings

Doug said...

That would have been par for the course for the bumbling, yet, violent, drug-addled and, paranoid MF.

Or, if Krenny rearranged them to read as "HEALTER SKELTER"

FrankM said...

Is that true, that the encyclopedias were arranged to say Cupid?

Not possible, not the way the Encyclopedia Britannica spines are labelled. I think someone was having fun here ...

As for the poor business acumen, I read somewhere that [generally speaking] drug dealers don't do dope as they are basically businessmen and don't want their skills and alertness impaired. Not sure how true that is, but it makes sense. Is there an analogy to be drawn here?

Peter said...

You know my methods Wataon. Now apply them !

DebS said...

Frank M, successful drug dealers usually don't do drugs so their profits don't go up in smoke. Most of the lower level dealers simply deal to use for little or no cost.

HellzBellz said...

@ DebS... Yes, can agree with You on this, Loads of kinda low-level Street-Hustlers-Dealers are addicts themselves who support their own Habbit by dealing Dope.
The serious BizzNizz BigTime Guys live by an Unwritten Law:
,,Dont get High from Your own Suply,,

orwhut said...

I'm confused about access to Gary's house. I remember a long stairway up a hill. Was there also drive up access on the other side? I can't see anyone walking up those stairs all winter with enough wood to supply the fireplace and heater.

grimtraveller said...

Unknown said...

You all realize that Gary Hinman was connected to Dennis Wilson, and Bernard Crowe

Well, don't leave the public hanging ! Do tell ! Give us details !

Gary may not have deserved to die for his part in the drug trade, but he was far more than the innocent naive music teacher that Bugliosi painted him as

Methinks thou art guilty of anti-Bugliosi bias there.
For starters, long before Bugliosi was assigned the Beausoleil~Hinman case, in fact, before Bobby had even been arrested, the police had established Gary's connections with drugs and that he had been trying to kick them firmly out of his life. It came up Bobby's first trial.....so no whitewashing there.
Secondly, Bugliosi is on the record as stating that Gary used to "furnish the Family with drugs" as he put it....so no whitewashing there.

grimtraveller said...

Matt said...

Someone once hinted to me that motive clues were burned in that fireplace

Yeah, like the Family kept detailed records that they could burn as the whim took them !

Fayez Abedaziz said...

Whatdya say to that?

What I say to much of what you say is "what's your point ?"

FrankM said...

It's interesting to see that Gary had a complete set of the Encyclopedia Britannica (I956 edition) on his shelves

My Dad bought the complete 1970 red and brown set. They were not cheap. The brown set were much more highbrow and woe betide us if we got fingerprints or stains of any kind on them, but the red set were fair game for children. I always thought they were great. I used to really enjoy reading the Greek or Roman myths contained and they were almost kind of the internet of their day except that no one was on hand to shout at you and capitalize letters to show displeasure. The 1970 edition included world happenings up to and including 1969. I remember reading about the Beatles in it. Their entry said something like "they returned to more straightforward music after a period of experimentation" and there was a great photo of the four of them around a piano {I think John may have been sitting on the piano} that I've never seen anywhere else. I also remember reading about the leopon which absolutely freaked me out. They had a photo of it; it was called Johnny. What a horror show !

Dan S said...

Is that true, that the encyclopedias were arranged to say Cupid? That's incredible

I think Peter was pulling your Holsten there. As Frank pointed out, the way the books were arranged, they couldn't devote one letter to a book. There were usually 20 in a set and they would run something like
Abbey to Arabs
Aran to Bee
Beech to Building etc, all the way to Walnut to Zurich. Number 20 was the index and atlas.

beauders said...

I've also thought of "Helter Skelter" being an early Punk song. Okay Bubble Gum Punk.

Doug said...

https://images.app.goo.gl/GTWm3Pz3SDaU1h3R7

We had the same set!

Peter said...

Grim said:

Yeah, like the Family kept detailed records that they could burn as the whim took them !


I have a feeling that in a not too distant post someone is going to reveal some evidence that the Family kept around.

grimtraveller said...

Fayez Abedaziz said...


"If I was dead, I'm sure I'd be the last to know." Concerning the 1969 rumors that 'Paul Is Dead.' One of his responses.
I'm still baffled and can't get this straight. I've read, I've asked numerous of my fellow rock/pop history enjoyers', that well, shouldn't Paul have said, "...I'd be the first to know."? I'm still bothered by it


It's just good old Liverpool humour. In the UK, there was a time when Scousers {ie, people that hail from Liverpool} were generally held to be the funniest people in the country. Quite a few of the top British comedians of the 60s and 70s were from Liverpool and one of the things that initially endeared the Beatles to both the populations of the UK and a year later, the USA, was just how funny they were. Of course, at the same time certain politicians were complaining in public about how they were "impoverishing" the English language by their usage of it in public.
But they were genuinely funny people. When it was announced that they were going to make their first film, George Harrison was asked who they'd like as their leading lady to which he replied "we're trying to get the Queen ~ she sells !" They said things that were slightly shocking at the time, yet their irreverence was seen as being "cheeky" rather than insulting to the establishment. When they performed in front of royalty at the end of '63, John Lennon had the nation eating out of his hand when he announced before their final song "those of you in the cheaper seats, clap; the rest of you just rattle your jewelry." Apparently he'd been threatening all day to say "rattle your fucking jewelry" which would have been tantamount to exposing his genitals on the TV in 1963.
So Paul was just trying to make light of how stupid the notion of him being dead was. The predictable thing to have said would have been "I'd be the first to know" but the Beatles were rarely predictable. As Macca once said, "We liked to be inventive. It seemed to us to be crucial to never do the same thing twice, in fact, as they say now, 'They never did the same thing once !'"

grimtraveller said...

Mon Durphy said...


McCartney wrote and performed a song about a fucking amusement park slide and 4 space cadets killed 7 people because they thought the song told them to

Actually, that's not really the case. None of the actual killers have ever said that the Beatles were telling them to kill. But Manson, in front of the court and, presumably, the world's media made the connection between the lyrics of popular songs and what the writers of said lyrics were telling their listeners and their subsequent actions. He was definitely of the opinion that the music young people were listening to communicated. "The music speaks to you every day, but you are too deaf, dumb, and blind to even listen to the music.... It is not my music. I hear what it relates. It says, 'Rise!' It says, 'Kill!' Why blame it on me? I didn't write the music. I am not the person who projected it into your social consciousness......"
The song "Helter Skelter" isn't actually about an amusement park slide. It's using the helter skelter as a metaphor for the fall and decline of a once powerful empire. McCartney was thinking of the Roman empire, but as that had long since passed from history, listeners of the day, if they picked up on it at all, applied it to whichever current power they felt needed levelling and Manson applied it to the USA.
Few people, if any, caught what McCartney was alluding to in the song and like it or not, Manson was extremely perceptive in even being able to relate the lyrics of the song to anything remotely revolutionary. Even John Lennon didn't have a clue what the song was pointing at when he said he didn't know what it had to do with knifing people and killing. But what had been one of the defining aspects of the demises of some of emperors of Rome and the empire's eventual decline ? Assassinations and stabbings.....Truth be told, Charlie was very perceptive in what he picked up in "Revolution 9" {which its creator, Lennon, said was the sound of revolution happening}, "Blackbird" {McCartney telling Black people to seize the moment and throw off their chains} and "Piggies" {Harrison noting that the establishment needed a good whacking ~ what did that actually entail ?}.
As ever, nuance reigns supreme.

grimtraveller said...

Mon Durphy said...

Why on Earth would Paul McCartney feel any responsibility for TLB?

He wouldn't and he shouldn't.
However, it really comes down to whether one is prepared to embrace the nuances of a subject.
Ever since popular music really got popular among record buying, cinema going teens the question has arisen of to how much influence popular artists and those in the public eye have on those that listen to/watch/follow them. And that leads to questions of responsibility. It's rarely a simple relationship or one as straightforward as demonstrable cause and effect, but while many have denied it all their professional lives, others have been very aware of the notion and possibility. I think of a great line in the Rush song "Natural Science" in which Neil Peart noted "our causes can't see their effects."
Very perceptive line.
Paul McCartney was well aware by 1968 of the influence he, his bandmates and much of his generation of artists were having on their societies. He recognized for example, in some of the lyrics to "A day in the life" that he and John Lennon were writing a turn onto drug song. He has been explicit about that. He didn't want the papers broadcasting about his experiments with LSD because was keenly aware that he would be having an influence on many young people who might go and take it because he did and was extolling its virtues. He wasn't wrong.
Interestingly, many in the public eye were quite happy to take credit for things that were seen as good by the prevailing society. Even today, we have celebs coming out and making the general populace aware of the importance of, for example, getting checked out for breast and prostate cancer. If their words had no effect, then why would they bother ?
Sometimes, influence can be measured, even anecdotally. Tamla Motown artists had never had hits in the UK in the first few years the label in its various guises had released singles here. Then in late '63 when the Beatles were the biggest musical phenomena to hit the UK in the 20th century, they were asked what music they liked. Among their likes was stuff from the Motown stable and on their "With the Beatles" LP were 3 Motown covers. That album was released in Nov '63 and from '64 onwards, Motown songs were regular hits in the UK and Motown artists were hugely popular and influential. Similarly, with the blues, many artists are quite happy to take the credit for turning a significant number onto the blues.
The countercultural values of the 60s were spread more through music than any other medium {although this was always in concert with other mediums} so it follows that things people said or sung or filmed had resonance ~ both the good and questionable. The thing is, in being so in thrall to one's right to express a view, many did not forsee where some of their views might lead, neither would they acknowledge that there might be an important point being made when it was pointed out. So Paul Mac is not responsible for what happened to the TLB victims. But in a general sense he can't escape a measure of responsibility when he'd say things like people should put their own meanings on the words of the Beatles songs.