Elsewhere Art . . . Richard Fariña

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Elsewhere Art . . .  Richard Fariña

The New York-based folk singer Richard Fariña was an interesting figure: right up until he got on a motorcycle in '66 and crashed.

He'd been around the boho folk scene with the Baez sister Joan and Mimi (he married Mimi when she was 17, Thomas Pynchon was his best man) and released a couple of very decent albums and a fanciful autobiography.

Joan Baez described him as "my sister Mimi's crazy husband, a mystical child of darkness – blatantly ambitious, lovable, impossible, charming, obnoxious, tirelessly active – a bright, talented, sheepish, tricky, curly-haired, man-child of darkness”.

The figure in the shadows but who rapidly outstripped him was his peer Bob Dylan: they may have been friends, they may have been rivals and sometimes they were both.

Without stating the obvious there was one major difference. When Dylan came off his motorcycle in '66 he survived, Fariña didn't.

This art -- which deliberately diminishes Dylan and Joan Baez because the story was about Richard -- was used to illustrate a lengthy piece about him.

You can read it here. His is a good story, and he embellished his life in the same way Dylan did.

Those folkies, huh?


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