12 episodes

There aren’t very many original Beatniks left on planet earth and as of this writing, Wavy Gravy is one of the last original Beatnik poets standing. But Wavy isn’t just an original Beatnik poet - he's also a improv comedy trailblazer and international comedic activist who’s antics included running a pig for president. This series travels from Wavy’s childhood to the Gaslight Café Beatnik years to San Francisco where the convergence of psychedelic and comedy history collided, steering Wavy to Hollywood where his comedy career soared, propelling him to the famed Acid Tests and the birth of his Hog Farm commune, bringing Wavy to the Woodstock Peace and Music Festival’s stage enshrining him as a global symbol for peace, love and Rock’n’Roll.
Wavy’s historic and hilarious adventures include his involvement in countless cultural watershed moments in American history… like the fabrication of snapping for applause, the introduction of granola to hippies and in fact, the actual creation of the ethos of the hippie.
American Prankster is a chronological deep dive with Wavy, unfolding never-before-heard stories about his life that even he had forgotten until interviews with Rainbow Valentine from Disorganized Crime: Smuggler’s Daughter, retrieved them.
Stories about Wavy’s psychedelic shenanigans with countless icons like: Lenny Bruce, Groucho Marx, BB King, Janis Joplin, Tiny Tim, Del Close, Ken Kesey, Neal Cassady, Margo St. James, Thelonius Monk, Bob Dylan, Ram Dass, Albert Einstein, Peter, Paul & Mary, Marlene Dietrich, Severin Darden, Joan Baez, Martha Graham, Alice Cooper, David Crosby, Jackson Brown, Abbie Hoffman, Bob Weir, Mama Cass, John Coltrane, Grace Slick, Jerry Garcia, Paul Krassner, Bill Graham, Tim Harden, Robin Williams, Viola Spolin, Pink Floyd and many more.
Guests on this series include members of the Hog Farm, the Merry Pranksters, Grateful Dead Family, KMPX, The Committee, the Family Dog, the Medicine Ball Caravan, the Yippies and other counter culture institutions.
Produced by Rainbow Valentine Studios, American Prankster is a proud part of Pantheon Podcasts
www.rainbowvalentine.com

American Prankster Rainbow Valentine

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 32 Ratings

There aren’t very many original Beatniks left on planet earth and as of this writing, Wavy Gravy is one of the last original Beatnik poets standing. But Wavy isn’t just an original Beatnik poet - he's also a improv comedy trailblazer and international comedic activist who’s antics included running a pig for president. This series travels from Wavy’s childhood to the Gaslight Café Beatnik years to San Francisco where the convergence of psychedelic and comedy history collided, steering Wavy to Hollywood where his comedy career soared, propelling him to the famed Acid Tests and the birth of his Hog Farm commune, bringing Wavy to the Woodstock Peace and Music Festival’s stage enshrining him as a global symbol for peace, love and Rock’n’Roll.
Wavy’s historic and hilarious adventures include his involvement in countless cultural watershed moments in American history… like the fabrication of snapping for applause, the introduction of granola to hippies and in fact, the actual creation of the ethos of the hippie.
American Prankster is a chronological deep dive with Wavy, unfolding never-before-heard stories about his life that even he had forgotten until interviews with Rainbow Valentine from Disorganized Crime: Smuggler’s Daughter, retrieved them.
Stories about Wavy’s psychedelic shenanigans with countless icons like: Lenny Bruce, Groucho Marx, BB King, Janis Joplin, Tiny Tim, Del Close, Ken Kesey, Neal Cassady, Margo St. James, Thelonius Monk, Bob Dylan, Ram Dass, Albert Einstein, Peter, Paul & Mary, Marlene Dietrich, Severin Darden, Joan Baez, Martha Graham, Alice Cooper, David Crosby, Jackson Brown, Abbie Hoffman, Bob Weir, Mama Cass, John Coltrane, Grace Slick, Jerry Garcia, Paul Krassner, Bill Graham, Tim Harden, Robin Williams, Viola Spolin, Pink Floyd and many more.
Guests on this series include members of the Hog Farm, the Merry Pranksters, Grateful Dead Family, KMPX, The Committee, the Family Dog, the Medicine Ball Caravan, the Yippies and other counter culture institutions.
Produced by Rainbow Valentine Studios, American Prankster is a proud part of Pantheon Podcasts
www.rainbowvalentine.com

    American Prankster 01: More Than an Ice Cream

    American Prankster 01: More Than an Ice Cream

    Who is Wavy Gravy? Episode 1 introduces listeners to the hippie icon who introduced hippies to granola and provides an overview of his inspiring, historic and hilarious life using humor as a weapon to change the world for the better. Wavy Gravy, best known from the Woodstock Peace & Music Festival in 1969 and as a Ben and Jerry’s ice cream flavor, is an original Beatnik poet from NYC’s Gaslight Café, an improv comedy trailblazer and a pioneering activist, along with being an iconic figure who helped form the ethos of the counter culture. More Than an Ice Cream is for the Wavy novice, friend and fan, sharing highlights from Wavy’s life, including Beatnik history, why police called Wavy “Too Weird To Arrest”, how he became an Acid Test shaman, ice cream flavor and the Rock’n’Roll origin of his name.
    Part of Pantheon Podcasts

    • 47 min
    American Prankster 02: Baby Wavy the Bebop Boy

    American Prankster 02: Baby Wavy the Bebop Boy

    Episode 2 dives into Wavy’s childhood, youth and teen years with stories of his parents, brothers, childhood BFF & neighbor, Albert Einstein. Wavy tells us about his obsession with bebop, jazz, radio comedy and how they influenced his life. Plus, Wavy’s Army stint, where his earliest outside-the-box-behavior, thinking and public pranksterism emerged and he gets into his college years, when he encountered marijuana, Martha Graham, improvisation and started beatnik jazz & poetry shows on the East Coast. Ep 2: Baby Wavy the Bebop Boy, includes Dr. Larry Brilliant & historian, Dennis McNally. Part of Pantheon Podcasts.

    • 54 min
    American Prankster 03: Only Love - The Beatnik Poet

    American Prankster 03: Only Love - The Beatnik Poet

    Following his blackballed university theater teachers, Hugh Romney moves to New York City in the early 1960’s where he blossoms into a Beatnik poet comedian in Greenwich Village at the Gaslight Café when his career takes off beside chums like Bob Dylan, Peter, Paul & Mary, Tiny Tim and fans like Lenny Bruce and Marlene Dietrich. These formative years include truth-is-stranger-than-fiction stories about the invention of snapping for applause, the Mafia, a wild kangaroo, Wavy’s first marriage and leads to Hugh Romney’s stand-up comedy-poet career opening for his jazz heroes and more. Special guest includes historian Dennis McNally. Part of Pantheon Podcasts.

    • 52 min
    American Prankster 04: Goon King Brothers Dimensional Creamo

    American Prankster 04: Goon King Brothers Dimensional Creamo

    Comedy and psychedelic history converge in 1964 when Hugh Romney moves to San Francisco to join The Committee Improv Theater in North Beach, where Wavy’s performance meat suit precluded Lady Gaga’s by 45 years. In this episode we unpack Wavy’s best friend and biggest influence, John Brent, a little-known comedy genius who’s feet John Belushi literally kissed and Wavy shares psychedelic stories from the transformative mid 60’s when the SF’s North Beach neighborhood birthed the world-famous counter-culture. Amazing tales about DMT, San Francisco’s most famous brothel, Tibetan magic and a secret society fueled by historic Owlsley LSD.... Episode guests include members of The Committee, Merry Pranksters, Hog Farm and more. Part of Pantheon Podcasts

    • 56 min
    American Prankster 05: Can You Pass the Acid Test?

    American Prankster 05: Can You Pass the Acid Test?

    Hollywood and Psychedelic history collide when comedian Hugh Romney, moves to LA where Lenny Bruce becomes his manager, improv icon Del Close becomes his roommate and writer-LSD-enthusiast Ken Kesey, becomes his fan! Wavy tells stories of Lenny’s tragic demise plus theatrical psychedelic shows and shenanigans with Del introducing history’s early laser light displays. Find out why The Byrds were involved in Hugh’s courtship of his lifelong love, Bonnie Jean aka Jahanarah and how the infamous Acid Tests (accompanied by house band, The Grateful Dead) evolved when 40 Merry Pranksters appeared unannounced on Hugh and Bonnie Jean’s doorstep, ushering in the memorable question, “Can You Pass the Acid Test?”. Guests include Sunshine Kesey, original Merry Pranksters Denise Kaufman and Laura Foster Corbin, historian, Dennis McNally and more.
    Part of Pantheon Podcasts

    • 58 min
    American Prankster 06: Hog Farm High-Jinks

    American Prankster 06: Hog Farm High-Jinks

    40 psychedelic houseguests in Hugh and Bonnie Jean’s 1 bedroom apartment leads to eviction, propelling Wavy and the Merry Pranksters to a literal hog farm as they morph from Beatniks into a new subculture the media calls “Hippies”. Starting with Hugh and Bonnie Jean’s 1966 wedding and honeymoon, Wavy unfolds origin stories of the Hog Farm commune and their groundbreaking theatrical parties, which attract attention from the media, movie stars and murderers. Hollywood windfall launches The Hog Farm and Friends Open Celebration, a traveling college roadshow tour PLUS Wavy joins forces with Abbie Hoffman and the Yippies, challenging the core of American politics when they run America’s first black and white candidate for president: Pigasus the Immortal! Episode guests include Abbie Hoffman’s archivist, Adrian Marin, Hog Farmers Dorje Bond, Laura Foster Corbin and Jahanarah Romney. Part of Pantheon Podcasts.

    • 57 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
32 Ratings

32 Ratings

Spayspay ,

Thank you!!!

I am loving this so much. It improves my mood so much!

Matt McCroskey ,

Bravo Rainbow Valentine!

I really enjoyed this series. As one of the children of Camp Winnarainbow, and as a kid who grew up in the SF Bay Area I had heard bits and pieces of so many of these stories but without context or chronology. Listening to this podcast connected so many dots as well as told me many new tales I was fascinated to hear. Wavy, Jah and the whole Hog Farm fam are such inspiring beautiful souls and it was such a pleasure to get to know them this much more.

patallbee ,

An Icon Worthy of the Label

Both of our children went to Camp Winnarainbow from the time they were 11 and 8 well into adulthood. We knew very little about Wavy and Jah but the kids were enthusiastic so we kept sending them. Little did we know the incredible, life affirming, positive impact the Camp would have on all our lives. Still, we knew so little about this amazing man and his history. We are VERY grateful to Thessaly for bringing this podcast to life. It completes a picture that we previously only knew a bit of the outline. While some of the audio was difficult for our old ears to hear, the love shines through every episode. Well done, Rainbow Valentine
Pat and Dave Allbee (parents of Allie and Max)

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