OK, admittedly, this article ain't for everybody. But there are a couple of old freaks who hang out here.
Owsley "Bear" Stanley, a 1960s counterculture figure who flooded the flower power scene with LSD and was an early benefactor of the Grateful Dead, died in a car crash in his adopted home country of Australia on Sunday, his family said. He was 76.
The renegade grandson of a former governor of Kentucky, Stanley helped lay the foundation for the psychedelic era by producing more than a million doses of LSD at his labs in San Francisco's Bay Area.
"He made acid so pure and wonderful that people like Jimi Hendrix wrote hit songs about it and others named their band in its honor," former rock 'n' roll tour manager Sam Cutler wrote in his 2008 memoirs "You Can't Always Get What You Want."
Hendrix's song "Purple Haze" was reputedly inspired by a batch of Stanley's product, though the guitarist denied any drug link. (as did Bear, schteveo) The ear-splitting psychedelic-blues combo Blue Cheer took its named from another batch.
Stanley briefly managed the Grateful Dead, and oversaw every aspect of their live sound at a time when little thought was given to amplification in public venues. His tape recordings of Dead concerts were turned into live albums, providing him with a healthy income in later life.
Cutler, speaking on behalf of the family, said in an interview that Stanley and his wife, Sheila, were driving to their home near the city of Cairns along a dangerous stretch of highway when he evidently lost control during a storm. He died instantly; his wife broke her collar bone.
Stanley is also survived by four children, eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
I got a buzz just reading this one. Godspeed Bear.