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Brian Hassett Interviews and Such

July 31st, 2018 · 8 Comments · Hitchhiker's Guide to Jack Kerouac, Interviews, Kerouac and The Beats, Weird Things About Me


Here are a few different print, radio & video interviews and stories and such . . .


Here’s a March 2024 fun rollicking positive upBeat interview just published on Michael Liminos’s great Blues & Culture site.

We riff on happiness and the keys to life, creativity, music, fun, art collectives, kindred spirits, the kindness of strangers, connectivity, empowerment, the counterculture, festival culture . . .

and Kerouac & the Beats, Jerry & the Dead, Kesey & the Pranksters, The Beatles, Taylor Swift, chamber music, ragtime, acid tests, Winnipeg, Manhattan, and all sorts of other people, places and ideas.


Here’s a fun December 2023 radio interview with the CBC Radio in Winnipeg about the time I wrote a song with Guess Who founder Chad Allan at the age of 15 . . .…in-1977.


Here’s another December 2023 riff — this one in Simon Warner’s “Rock & The Beat Generation” series — about favorite Beats moments of 2023 . . .


Here’s a rollicking interview on WCAP in Lowell about the “Jack on Film: Take 2” show and Jack’s enduring legacy, including nearly 100 photos illuminating the story . . . 


Here’s a wide-ranging jam from March 2023 with British Beat & music writer Simon Warner on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of writing The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jack Kerouac — including riffing on writing prose as music, the birth of the internet, the eternal nature of art, being an outsider in America, and shining the light, carrying the baton and passing the torch.


Here’s a lively April 2022 interview by British pop culture chronicler Simon Warner about the connections between the Beat writers and music, and the Beat influences on life itself.

“My whole life’s been a Beat experience.  And then I write about it.  Real Life Adventure Tales.  Five books in five years.  That’s Beat personified.  I love writing fast and making language sing.  I love jazz joints in basements, and jazz cigarettes on rooftops.  I love falling in love with a stranger’s stories, and zapping an audience from a stage with electric words.  . . .  Do as the Beats did – be part of an extended family of like-minded practitioners of magic and shenanigans – and get into good trouble together whenever you can.”

x    x    x    x    x    x    x    x    x

Probably the best interview I ever did was done via video conversation halfway around the world with the Michaelangelian publisher / author / editor David Wills for his special March 2022 “Kerouac at 100” Beatdom book.  It runs 20 pages and covers everything from how to write to how to live.

“I have this great analogy – that writing a book is like building a house.  The first draft is when you lay the foundation and put up the wooden structure of the whole house – the framework.  And then the next draft, you go through and fill in the walls.  And then the next time you go through it, you’re putting in the windows.  And then on later read-throughs, you’re doing the detail work like painting the windowsills.  The whole thing is like a house being built – first you put up the frame.  Lots of people make the mistake in writing of obsessing over making the first room perfect without even a roof over their head.  This applies to writing anything, short or long. In fact, in the new Beatles: Get Back documentary George Harrison mentions following John’s advice about songwriting – ‘As soon as you start ‘em, finish ‘em.'”

You can order a copy of the book that’s also got a great piece by Gerald Nicosia about Kerouac’s French roots and influence here:

Or you can read the interview here.

On the Road with Brian Hassett


Here’s a wide-ranging podcast interview on the Subjective Perspective show from April 2020, that covers the new Blissfully Ravaged in Democracybook, as well as tales fromThe Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jack Kerouac and lots of other Road Adventures  — >

Or here’s a nice excerpt from it about Carolyn & John Cassady and the closeness of family and work ethics.

Here’s a March 2020 podcast interview with Democrats Abroad following the New Hampshire primaries talking about Blissfully Ravaged in Democracy  —>


Here’s the front page above-the-fold story in the hometown paper Jack used to write for on occasion, the Lowell Sun, that we were all happily surprised to discover when we pulled into town for the Lowell Celebrates Kerouac festival (Oct. 3rd, 2018).

“Hassett’s performances — a mix of scripted dramatizations and pure improvisation — capture Kerouac’s wild, untamed spirit and bring him back to life.”


Or here’s what the Woodstock Times had to say of the show & books in the town that spawned the festival . . . 


Here’s a Sept. 15th 2018 interview with Mike Flynn at WUML in Lowell about the upcoming LCK (Lowell Celebrates Kerouac) and the meaning of life and tips n tricks for writing and all things Beat & Prankster and such . . .


Here’s an August 2018 interview from the very cool AMFM Magazine about how The Hitchhiker’s Guide … got written, plus Kesey & Kerouac & the Pranksters & all that jazz . . .


Here’s a really fun lively wide-ranging optimistic laugh-filled radio interview on The Jake Feinberg show in 2015 about the Grateful Dead, Red Rocks, Jack and jazz and the impact of On The Road, the Beats, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady, Phil Lesh, Bill Graham, Ken Kesey, Neil Young, born leaders, consciousness expansion, love, community, smoking marijuana in the ’40s & ’50s . . . it’s a helluva riff . . .  🙂


Here’s a 2018 interview for the Cleveland Scene magazine about the writing process, Kerouac’s writing process, the live show process, the Sept. 2018 On The Road With Cassadys book, working with Bill Graham and all sorts of other stuff . . .


Here’s a print interview with Michael Limnios at the great Blues – Greece magazine & website about the most important life lessons & advice, life-changing moments, the meaning of ‘Beat,’ its impact on culture, its connection to rock n roll, and lots more . . .


Here’s the Kevin Pennington interview for The Sunflower Collective about the mindset behind On The Road and the Beat Generation, and how it manifests today, and the Merry Pranksters and the Acid Tests, and the Beat Museum’s big Beat Shindig and a whole lot more  . . .


Here’s Lance Simmens’ piece in The Huffington Post . . . 


Here’s a review of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jack Kerouac in Beat Scene magazine (#75, Early Summer 2015) . . .



Here’s the new book On The Road with Cassadys in Beatdom.


Here’s a piece about George & my tour in The Oakville Beaver in Canada . . .


Or here’s this from the Woodstock Times when I first appeared there with the first book . . .


Here’s where the founding owner of the historic Bitter End club on Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village New York City wrote about me and my shows in his autobiography . . .


Here’s where I interview Beat legend Gerd Stern at The Beat Museum’s Shindig in San Francisco in 2015 about the Joan Anderson letter that He Did Not Lose, and Allen Ginsberg & Jack Kerouac & Neal Cassady, and the whole San Francisco scene back in the ’50s and ’60s, and his pioneering multimedia art . . . . . .


Here’s the lively & funny Cassady panel discussion at The Beat Museum’s big Beat Shindig in 2015 with Al Hinkle, Jami Cassady, & myself, moderated by Levi Asher (now Marc Stein) . . .


Here’s a funny wild crazy Adventure Tale video interview response for filmmaker Noemie Sornet’s On The Road film project . . .

here’s part 2 —


Here’s the August 2009 Kelvin / Winnipeg Reunion Breakfast Television show on CITY-TV with Linda Ranson in Winnipeg . . .


And here’s Shaw TV’s segment from the same event when they showed up at the tour of Kelvin — and I forgot they were coming!

About keeping friends:  “Foster them, water the plants, enjoy the flowers, and tend to your garden of friends, because that’s where you’re going to be living the rest of your life. They’re gonna be with you, and you with them.”


More’ll be added as I do them or find them in the archives or get around to converting the old TV interviews on VHS tapes and radio riffs on cassette.  😉



= * = * = * = * = * = * = * = * =


Here’s a bunch of live video performances in various media.

Here’s a wave of reviews and comments on The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jack Kerouac.

Here’s the next wave including a bunch of original Merry Pranksters.

Here’s some author / performer background.


= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

by Brian Hassett  —   —

Or here’s my Facebook account if you wanna join in there —


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8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 John Cassady // Jul 31, 2018 at 3:11 PM

    Good idea making this. You should run my web site ha ha.

  • 2 Bill Simon // Jul 31, 2018 at 5:50 PM

    Thanks for doing this, Brian.

  • 3 Michael Limnios // Aug 1, 2018 at 5:28 AM

    Keep on Truckin’

  • 4 Kevin R Pennington // Aug 1, 2018 at 12:57 PM

    Thanks for posting my interview with you, Brian.

  • 5 Brian // Aug 1, 2018 at 2:04 PM

    You’re welcome. Thank YOU, Kevin! You were on it right outta the gate! 🙂

    “Do you consider the Beat Generation a specific literary and artistic movement or do you think it’s a state of mind?”

  • 6 Kevin R Pennington // Aug 1, 2018 at 4:02 PM

    I am proud of that question. 🙂

  • 7 Jerry Cimino // Aug 2, 2018 at 1:37 AM

    Nice job. Keep it up.

  • 8 Dave Olson // May 18, 2022 at 11:57 PM

    Great interview between you & David Wills.

    I interrupted the hockey game to read this completely through and through. So fantastic to be part of this world. For so many years in the late ’80s and early ’90s, when I was rambling around far-flung countries, I would rarely meet anyone else who cared about the Beats — and then the last couple years, my whole world is filled up with you fellow beat renegades.

    Reading your hitchhiking to Kerouac book was like hearing my own stories remixed from a decade before by a cool uncle —and thrown back at me in some glorious freeform narrative. Completely fantastic, aspirational, inspirational and enjoyable.

    Really hoping we can meet up in real life one of these months/years, but patience and time are our allies, and in the meantime, we all just keep living Beat from Japan to Lowell to the ‘Peg to Toronto to Germany to Cambodia. The universe is open time travelers!

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