San Francisco's Summer of Love

About This Item

Episode from KRON-TV's Bay Area History series made in 2003 by Executive Producer Jim Swanson which uses original news footage and contemporary interviews to reflect on San Francisco's 'Summer of Love'. This was regarded as a form of social experiment led by the counterculture movement and widely recognized in the popular media by the summer of 1967. This film provides perspective on a cultural phenomenon that was really in effect throughout the mid to late 1960s and focussed in the Haight Ashbury neighborhood. Includes issues relating to: social trends in San Francisco's Haight Ashbury neighborhood; the San Francisco rock scene; Jefferson Airplane; Big Brother and the Holding Company; Janis Joplin; The Grateful Dead; the Monterey Rock Festival; the use of drugs such as marijuana and LSD; Ken Kesey's Acid Tests; the 'Flower' children and how the social experiment was eventually perceived to have failed, leading to widespread disillusionment. Also features interviews with: Michael McClure; Dennis McNally; Alison Osborn; Allen Cohen; Mickey Hart; Dr. David Smith; Carolyn Adams Garcia; Peter Albin and Richard Wilmot. This program was produced and written by Ken Swartz, edited by Stephen Ireland and narrated by Tom Sinkovitz. This Emmy Award winning series traced the rich history of San Francisco from the Gold Rush to the 21st Century. Opening graphic designed by Carrie Hawks.

Type of material
Special program
DVCPro tape
Rights for this video belong to
Young Broadcasting of San Francisco, Inc.
Date aired
Originally aired on
KRON 5819

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I was in the Haight Ashbury from 1966 to 1969 and wrote a book about my wild and crazy psychedelic experiences back then titled; "Autobiography of a Hippie"  This book is mainly about my teenage years as a runaway "flower-child", between the years of 1964 and 1969. I'd become one of the many "Ken Kesey Electric Cool-Aid Acid Test Hippies", experiencing the "turn on, tune in and drop out" culture of the 1960s. Memories of those most amazing times are still quite vivid for me, and I've often felt compelled to write about them over the years. It all began when I ran away from home at the age of 14, leaving a terrifyingly dysfunctional situation; where an insane and violent alcoholic father; almost murdered me! By age 16, I'd become one of the "hardened street youths" who were all experimenting with various powerful "mind altering substances" available back in those days. The crazy and often absurd "misadventures" that I describe in this book, range from wildly ecstatic; to insanely mind bending!

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