Monday, 20 May 2019


Needless to say, 1960s California was full of weird and wonderful individuals. One such was the late Lewis Beach Marvin III.

Wealthy and well-connected, he was espousing hippie values (in particular vegetarianism) well ahead of the curve, and as of 1957 he occupied a peculiar temple / menagerie / home named Moonfire (the moon apparently being a symbol of death and fire of life) high up in Tuna Canyon, where he hosted numerous 'happenings' as of the mid-60s.

In 1966 he published a manifesto called Moonfire: Ancient Life & Death Symbols, which outlined his passionately held 'live and let live' philosophy.

He was featured in the Mondo Hollywood documentary (from which the image above is taken) the following year, and made a documentary himself in 1968, entitled Moonfire, which was released that June; he screened it inside a tent on Sunset Boulevard, with the Common People performing before and after.

He was a familiar figure at rock festivals, protest marches and other counter-cultural gatherings in the late 60s, typically holding a placard bearing slogans such as 'LOVE YOUR ANIMAL FRIENDS, DON'T EAT THEM' (that one was at Woodstock); he also handed a lamb to Jim Morrison backstage in Miami in 1969 (there's a well-known photo of Morrison holding it).

He was intermittently covered in the local media, but little is known of him as of the mid-70s.

Here's what I have found.

Los Angeles Times, Sunday September 19th 1965

Los Angeles Times, Sunday June 12th 1966

Mondo Hollywood review, Los Angeles Times, Sunday October 1st 1967

Los Angeles Free Press, June 14th 1968

Los Angeles Free Press, June 14th 1968

Los Angeles Free Press, June 21st 1968

World Countdown, July 1968

The Los Angeles Times, Thursday June 27th 1968

Los Angeles Free Press, July 12th 1968

The Province (Montreal), Monday October 7th 1968

The Miami News, Saturday October 4th 1969

The Independent, Friday July 23rd 1971

Los Angeles Times, Sunday June 24th 1973 (i)

Los Angeles Times, Sunday June 24th 1973 (ii)

Los Angeles Times, Sunday October 28th 1973 

The Delta Democrat Times, Thursday November 1st 1973

Los Angeles Times, Friday November 9th 1973 

Los Angeles Times, Monday January 24th 1977

Los Angeles Times, Thursday October 15th 1992

Friday, 8 March 2019

GALACTIC RAMBLE - revised and expanded edition

Ten years after the first edition of Galactic Ramble came and went, I'm delighted to say that a revised and hugely expanded second edition is now exclusively available HERE as a limited hardback costing £100 (plus p&p). 

It completely supersedes the first edition, being more than twice as long (well over a million words) and containing a massive amount of new information and imagery. 

They will not not be reprinted; when they're gone, they're gone!