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Michael McClure is a novelist, musician, playwright and poet who came to prominence in the 1950s as a central figure of the beat generation. McClure’s recent books are Of Indigo and Saffron: New and Selected Poems (University of California Press, 2010) and Mysteriosos and Other Poems (New Directions, 2010). He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Guggenheim Fellowship, an Obie Award for Best New American Play, a Rockefeller Grant for Playwriting, the Josephine Miles Literary Award and the Alfred Jarry Award. He has written more than twenty plays, which are regularly performed in the United States and abroad. The notorious The Beard became a touchstone for anti-censorship lobbyists when its first performances in San Francisco and Los Angeles in 1965 were raided by police and the actors charged with obscenity.
Michael McClure often performs his poetry with Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek accompanying on piano. The pair have worked together on several albums. McClure has also collaborated with composer Terry Riley; their recent album is I Like Your Eyes Liberty. McClure wrote the pop song “Mercedes Benz” with Janis Joplin and beat poet Bob Neuwirth. He is married to the sculptor Amy Evans McClure.
QUOTES OF NOTESpecks
“McClure’s poetry is a blob of protoplasmic energy.”
“McClure’s poetry and prose is one of the more remarkable achievements in recent American literature.”
—Times Literary Supplement
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