About the Acid Test Chronicles and About Me - Project Objectives - Page 31
About the "Acid Test Chronicles" :
I decided to develop this 'public' section of my database site for several reasons. The main reason is that I have a passion for these items and collecting them and it makes up the main focus of my collecting hobby. Friends are always telling, "Dude, you have to put that stuff in a museum so people can see it", or "How about a Poster show or something?"
Well, needless to say I do not share these items with many people, and I have them safetly stored away. So, sharing them is not so easy, and in many ways I wish I could show them to people and help people connect with the energy that these items have and still emit. I realized that when I see pictures on the internet, in some real way, I still connect with the item. So, people can get a sense of what the times were all about, the energy, the "electricity" in the air, and in the ears, and in the minds of the people involved in the Acid Tests. I decided to put something together that needed to be done.
As I collected items along the way in life, and I have been collecting since I was 19, I had a real difficult time gathering information on Acid Test posters and handbills. The info was readily available for Bill Graham Posters and Family Dog, but being a part of a series really turned me off, and knowing many were printed, not too difficult to obtain, etc., basically "common", it bored me to death to think about collecting the stuff. What challenge is there in that?
Well, getting into niches, and those niches being Acid Test collectables, the INFORMATION was SCARCER than the posters and handbills! Well, the reason I put POSTERTRIP together was because I wanted to "level the playing field" so to speak. I don't think information should be hoarded. I think it should be shared freely. Now, I do pay for hosting and costs of running the site, that's why it's not free, and the thousands of hours of work I put into the site itself, for my database, but I do believe when it comes to details that are very hard to come by, and they are NEEDED, they should be shared. Unfortunately, not everyone in the poster collecting community feels the same, especially many of the dealers. That is why they have the advantage and we don't, as collectors, and that is also the reason they usually end up with all the best stuff, and the collectors do not. Well, I am sick and tired of the lack of information and the hoarding of information among Acid Test collectors these days. The people I talk to claim to keep the information to themselves so others do not counterfeit items, however, from my experience, very few Acid Test items have ever been attempted to be forged in any way, and if you have a real one, which the serious collectors usually do, then you don't have to worry about it yourself, unless you intend to snatch up everything in sight, and you already have one to compare any potential forgery to, anyways. The people who already have something, are already protected, in that sense, if they know it's real. So, it's baloney to keep the information hoarded, using that excuse, and all it serves to do, is keep the person with the info informed and everyone else in the dark. It's a way to keep "control" and like I said, unfortunately, too many people want this to be the status quo in the Acid Test collecting world. But, no more!
I also thought it would be cool to bring all the info out there into one place. I contemplated creating a book, which i'm still considering, but I am always learning and changes would need to be made too often, and this allows me to add pics, make changes, and create with more flexibility. I figured a page for each Test, with items of interest to show a new perspective on each of the events would be a great way to help people learn about the Acid Tests.
What I found, while putting this project together, is that there is lots of conflicting information on certain events, but bringing all the quotes from all sources together and comparing them, I found many quotes are only partial quotes, taken from larger quotes which give more depth and meaning to the subject when read in their entirely. I also found that some people had flat out misinformation or had bad memory or recall. Sometimes a person was talking about an even, but actually they were recalling the wrong location or the wrong actual Test. I think in one case, the writer may have made the mistake by thinking the interviewee was dicussing one event when in fact they were discussing another, or perhaps it was the interviewee who was mistaken. So what happened was many quotes that were redundant were removed. Now, as it stands a much clearer picture emerges and one can see a real progression of events in a way that makes sense more than ever before.
I hope everyone enjoys it!
What i'm looking for, to purchase, and what I will never sell.
(What is and what will never be)
BTW, if you have any Acid Test items that are not featured on this site, even alternate venues or dates for the same items, but different in substantial ways, and you want to share them on here, contact me with the pics and i'll post them. You can include a watermark or not, I will put one on to protect the integrity of the image either way.
Also, if you have any Acid Test items you would like to sell, especially if it's something you do NOT see on here, please contact me, as I would be interested and I pay Top Dollar. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I am also requesting information as well. if you were at any of the events, or if you have a friend who was, if you can get me an essay, or if you have any news articles, or local announcements about the events, any and all original photographs, or any information or items related to the events, the Acid Tests, Trips festivals or "Happenings" in La Honda, I would be interested. Especially looking for Neal Cassady items, letters, photos, etc.
I am not "rich" like some people in the collecting field, and I can only save a small amount each month. Many items on the site here I either own, or owned at one time, or have aquired pics from friends that own them. Just because you see something on here, do not assume I already own it, or I currently have it in my collection.
Please do NOT ask me to purchase anything listed on this site, in this section, the answer will be a firm, NO! - Athough you may submit a list to me, of what it is you are looking for, and if I happen upon an "extra" one, and I know I can place it in your hands, you may have a chance to pick something up, if I pick up a collection, and there is something I do not need and already have. Occasionally I upgrade when I find something cleaner and in better shape, and then I sell off or trade off, preferably, for something I do not own yet. I am open to trades, but only if I have 2 of the item. This happens sometimes. I do not collect anything else really, so sometimes I pick up "extras" just to have trading or sellable items, if something happens my way.
Even if I do own something on here, it is NOT FOR SALE, sorry. I am building a collection, not dealing in these items.
I got started down this road when I was 15. When I took my very first trip, I distinctly remember hearing, and feeling and seeing an eggshell cracking open and imagining sticking my head out of the egg, and seeing the world for the first time, like being born and having my eyes opened. I remember walking down the road, and seeing all the cars lined up perfectly, all shiny-like plastic and material. Matter, and lots of it. Form, and structure. I remember seeing all the mailboxes lined up in rows, all the front lawns perfectly mowed, all the cars in the driveways, the streetlights perfectly arranged, spaced out evenly and each the same exact distance from each other. All this seemed too,....what was the right word? "Perfect". TOO PERFECT though. So much so, that I smelled a rat, something was fishy, something was "up", and I started to get paranoid slightly, I realized something in one instance as it hit me, I saw a vision of the world, perfectly ordered, not by chaos but intelligent design. I sensed a conspiracy of some kind. I realized right then that the world was not created by people doing what they did naturally, and "forming" the world collectively, in the sense that we all do it with our own free-will. I realized that society was not created by chance, naturally, as we each went about our days and work and lived out our lives. I realized that the world was ordered, secretly behind the scenes, by someone, or I dare to think, something, intelligent guiding humanity behind the scenes, and I was not referring to "the almighty God", but instead I was tapping into the essence of the "all seeing eye", the third eye, the Eye of Horus.
I had already read "Acid Dreams: LSD, the CIA and the Sixties" and so I had an understanding of the CIA, but not secret societies or, dare I say it, the Masons or the Illuminati, even. But boy oh boy, after this trip, I started to learn RIGHT AWAY. I was working for Greenpeace and a lady approached me who I worked with, an old grandmother and grandmother spirit, and she shared a couple tapes by Bill Cooper and John Lear with me. Well, off I went into the study of the Illuminati and Conspiracies and UFOs and everything else consciousness had to offer in the way of learning "what is being covered up from us?" "Who is secretly in control?" Soon I found out that the founding date of the Illuminati in 1776 is May 1, my birthday, and it was all fun learning from here on out. I actually enjoyed it, and what I found happening, is my mind expanding at an accelerated rate. I was taking LSD now by 17, going to Dead shows as often as I could starting in 1987, when the LSD couldn't teach me anything more, I would read and read and read, and study and learn about the world, then when I would take my next LSD trip, it was like all that information stored up in my subconscious from reading, but not readily available on my conscious level, all of the sudden got compacted and jelled together, in a strange and fantastic way. I was getting wholistic images and visions of reality, and the world was actually starting to make complete sense to me.
So, here I was first getting into the Dead, and my friend brings over a tape of Ken Kesey and the dead doing an Acid Test at San Fran state. This was the really poor quality tape that used to surface before Kesey remastered it. It was really hard to hear, but I remember wanting to "take the test". So, 6 friends and I were on acid one day at my house after school, and I announced we were all going to be taking an Acid Test. Some friends who didn't have a clue yet, much like myself, asked what that was. I told them we would all be listening to a real weird psychedelic tape and if we could handle it, we passed and if we couldn't handle it, we would fail.
I had no idea what to expect except for a small clue. The day I got the tape from my friend, I put it on for a second. I heard someone say "the head is getting fat...the head is getting fat...now what do you thi-i-i-nk of that?" - and I turned the tape off right away. I realized, "this is something I HAVE to listen to for the first time, stoned on acid!", so I put it away till my friends and I all tripped together again. This was a regular occasion for our high school group.
So, here we are, 6 of us, listening to a tape we have never heard before and didn't know what to expect. We had to listen real real hard to get what was being said, and I think that strain added to the overall effect, even, causing us to really "tune in" instead of being tuned out. We are all tuned in together. Literally! - What happened next is actually something many people would refuse to believe -- Kesey is saying something like, "get it up, get it up, get it off the ground! , move ahead on up, move ahead on up.....get it up, get it up, get it off the ground...we're going higher! Here's Jerry he'll come through...and Jerry brings on this sound like a freightttrain from his guitar, HONK HONK!!! -- And I swear we were all laughing so hard at this point...that each of us opened our eyes at the same time, to see each other sitting across from each other, cross-legged, but 6 INCHES OFF THE GROUND!!!!
We had all had a group collective out of body experience, from doing nothing but LISTENING TO THE ACID TEST!!!! -- All of the sudden, before anyone could blink twice, we were all back in our bodies, and a couple of people jumped up off the ground right away, and one friend runs out of the room completely freaked out from what just happened. -- he is allright a few minutes later, the Test is now over, he failed obviously, and we all made it a point to remind him of that fact. I put on Octopus by Syd Barret, my favorite at the time, and stiil to this day, even, Syd's at the top. And I put on Octopus, and my friend walks back into the room sits down on the floor in the middle of my room, and says "I'm so lost right now", and Syd comes back in timely reply, "isn't it good to be lost in the woods, isn't it bad so quiet there, ...in the woods, twenty even less to me than I thought, with a honey plough of yellow prickly seeds, only cloverpots and mystic shining feed....well the madcap laughed at the man on the border, hey ho, half the talbot, cheetah he cried shouted kangaroo so through the tree they cried, please leave us here, close our eyes to the Octopus ride".......
And then he looked at me and we both cracked up uncontrollably. "Let the Universe sing!"
That was my introduction to the Acid Tests and Ken Kesey. And from that day on, Ken Kesey was my favorite hero. I learned all I could about him, and I was one of the first people, Zane tells me, to have ordered the Video back in 1987 or 1988 when he started Key-Z productions. I still have my Original Hand-Made Psychedelic Label Video. before the covers were issued.
Then one day, in 1989, about two years later, I was walking around the parking lot at Shoreline at the Dead show and I noticed a guy selling two displayed and framed posters. One caught my eye right away even though I had never seen the image before. It jumped out at me, ACID TEST GRADUATION in bright Day-Glo Orange-Red, with Shazam blazoned on it, wearing a Graduation cap. I practically ran over to, as I realized what it "could be". I had no idea. It was Original and Real, and standing next to it, was a FD-26 Skull and Roses that I barely noticed at all. I was so used to that image, the poster did not matter to me in the least, and I wanted that Graduation poster. how much I asked? "$400" he replied. I didn't have quite that much, so I talked him down to $50 and I walked off with it.
I held onto it for 10 years, like it was the greatest thing I ever could own, and I loved and appreciated it more than anything I ever owned in my life. Then one day, I was getting into lots of serious financial troubles and I had to sell it. I practically cried over it. But then, a year or two later, I had moved and I was doing allright and decided to get back into it, but way more seriously, and to build a collection. Not just any collection, but to try to acquire a complete collection of Acid Test stuff, and I knew it would be impossible, but I also knew that financially, if one had a million dollars, one could find every Bill Graham and Family Dog poster, but with $10 Million dollars, you still won't find many more Acid Test posters than you would with a few thousand. In other words I wanted a bigger challenge. One that would be next to impossible, but if it was possibel, I would be the one who could pull it off. And I knew that being two steps from poverty would not make it any easier, but I pour all my funds into my hobby, so that makes it even more fun and challenging and if I was rich, what challenge would it be to buy up everything anyways? Collecting is more fun when its a challenge.
The people I know that collect this stuff, are usually well off, and they tend to feel "privileged" and expect to own this kind of stuff because they can afford to, but I expect to own it because I deserve to because I appreciate it, not because I can afford it.
One could offer me a million dollars or a hundred million dollars, and it's not the money or the value, it's the fact that it's spiritual, it's beyond materialism, or commercialism, or anything plastic. The items are priceless, and that's why they NEVER hardly EVER, come up for sale. Because they mean too much to the people who own them. They mean too much and they are usually irreplacable. People just don't sell off these things very often, and when they do, they are usually snatched up like nitrous ballons in the parking lot, fast and with cash in hand.
It took me 10 years to save $50,000 worth of Grateful Dead posters I collected along the way. I recently had to sell them all off in order to afford to focus on my Acid Test collection. Now, much of that is reinvested, so on and on it goes. If it was easy, it would hardly be a challenge and it would be no more fun. I collect this stuff because it's important to preserve the items, to caretake the masterpieces, the Picassos of the Psychedelic Art World. It's also a passion of mine, with my connections going back to the Tests in my teenage years, and it's a hobby and a challange.
I fear, as many do, that the day when an average person can find this stuff and still afford it, is almost done with. Pretty soon, the Acid Test stuff will be in the hands of the big boys only, and hopefully a few of us can prevent that from happening.
I don't think there's anything more important in this field than keeping this stuff out of the hands of the Hard Rock Cafe and the Bill Sagans of the world. Because if they control it all, nobody will ever enjoy it, because it will sit in a warehouse for centuries like the Ark of the Covenant in Indiana Jones. At least now, they can be shared online, with people who want to connect with them, and who appreciate them as well.
I hope you've enjoyed the Chronicles. More Info and Pics will be added as it becomes available.