SoundCheck hears that Lou Adler — pictured, at left, in his natural habitat, sitting next to Jack Nicholson courtside at a Los Angeles Lakers game — is working on a book about the Monterey International Pop Festival of 1967 with L.A. writer Harvey Kubernik. Adler wrote the afterword for Kubernik’s lavish 2009 book “Canyon of Dreams,” about the Laurel Canyon scene of the ’60s.
Adler, along with John Phillips of the Mamas & the Papas and Alan Pariser, was one of the principals in the Monterey festival, held June 16-18, 1967, on the Monterey County Fairgrounds. The first big rock fest, it mounted famous performances by Jimi Hendrix, the Who, Otis Redding and Big Brother and the Holding Company (fronted by Janis Joplin), and spawned director D.A. Pennebaker’s 1968 documentary. Hey, that’s a good excuse to look at Hendrix incinerating his guitar in Pennebaker’s film:
Back to Adler: The man’s had quite a career, and one that could fill another volume quite easily. He ran Dunhill Records and Ode Records (where Carole King became a star), operated the Sunset Strip’s Whisky A Go Go, Roxy and Rainbow and produced everybody from Sam Cooke to Cheech & Chong. Hopefully the Monterey tome is just a warm-up.