SAM CUTLER: YOU CAN’T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANTeller: APROPOS JACK KEROUAC – SNART 100 ÅR!

Af Lars Movin

Et sidste spin-off på de seneste dages Stones-opslag.

Som nævnt i opslagene lørdag og søndag med relation til The Rolling Stones og filmen “Gimme Shelter” om Altamont-koncerten i 1969 har jeg på det seneste haft forskellige Stones-bøger ude af reolen. Og en af dem, som jeg ikke har nævnt i de forgående opslag, var Sam Cutlers ganske underholdende erindringsbog “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” (2008). Sam Cutler, som i dag er 79 år gammel, har levet det meste af sit liv bag kulisserne i rockens verden og har blandt andet været tour-manager for både The Grateful Dead og The Rolling Stones – for sidstnævnte i perioden omkring Altamont-koncerten.

Om alle de oplevelser, iagttagelser og mere eller mindre krydrede anekdoter, som de jobs har kastet af sig, kunne man citere op og ned ad stolper. Men så faldt jeg over en passage i af de indledende kapitler i Cutlers bog, som mindede mig om, at vi om ganske få uger jo rent faktisk kan markere intet mindre 100-året for forfatteren Jack Kerouacs fødsel (12. marts). Og som en opvarmning til denne storslåede mærkedag vil jeg tillade mig at citere et stykke, hvor Cutler skriver om den betydning, det havde for ham, da en ven engang i teenageårene – altså sandsynligvis omkring 1960 – stak ham et eksemplar af Kerouacs “On the Road” (1957).

Tusinder af unge har haft lignende oplevelser med “On the Road”. Hundredvis har skrevet om det. Men få har formuleret det bedre end Sam Cutler:

“I made my way back home and settled down in my bedroom to read. It was an absolute revelation. For the very first time I read a book that described movement, that rejoiced in leaving and traveling, the very things I had wanted to do ver since I was a small child. It talked of jazz, sex, dope, and in its restless romanticism I felt sure that I found a template for my future. I loved the book with a great and unbridled enthusiasm and thought it magnificent. / ‘On the Road’ was the first book I read that described getting high, and I was comforted by the fact that others were doing what I was doing and writing books about it. I could tell that the book’s narrator, Sal Paradise, an author, loved the flawed but magical Dean Moriarty. The book made me ache to find a man of such magical qualities in my own life. After making Dean Moriarty my hero, no man and no thing that subsequently happened to me ever really surprised me. Everything, simply, became possible. / This book made me want to stand on the edge of America travel cost-to-coast head west as far as one could go until the pacific ocean lapped at the ankles it made me ache to be in low bars get high with wild people move wherever whim took me wander without finite purpose simply experience sheer joy grooving on all I might discover and see – it made me want to drive to Mexico City. Here in this book the external journey, stumbling at great speed across America, became the metaphor for the journey within. / It remains to this day one of the only novels I have read from beginning to end, paused, and then read again – three times. After that I knew that I was a ‘Beat.’ Or, more accurately, I set out to become a Beat, guided by the book.”