“The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway …

Written by on February 20, 2018

“The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There’s also a negative side.”

Those words were written by Hunter S. Thompson. Thompson was an American writer and journalist, who is considered to be the founder of the ‘gonzo journalism’—a style of reporting incidents that involve the narrators to an extent where they become the primary characters of the narrative. Thompson was known to have poetic and literary talents since childhood. He nurtured this interest and took it up as a career later in life. He was also popular for his radical thinking and strong disregard for authority. His writings were described as colourful, witty and often overstated in order to be more appealing. Hunter S Thompson was a supporter of drug legalization and had served on the advisory board of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws for thirty years till his death.

At 5:42 p.m. on February 20, 2005 Thompson died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head at Owl Farm, his “fortified compound” in Woody Creek, Colorado. His son Juan, daughter-in-law Jennifer, and grandson were visiting for the weekend. His wife Anita, who was at the Aspen Club, was on the phone with him as he cocked the gun. According to the Aspen Daily News, Thompson asked her to come home to help him write his ESPN column, then set the receiver on the counter. Anita said she mistook the cocking of the gun for the sound of his typewriter keys and hung up as he fired.

Thompson’s inner circle told the press that he had been depressed and always found February a “gloomy” month, with football season over and the harsh Colorado winter weather. He was also upset over his advancing age and chronic medical problems, including a hip replacement; he would frequently mutter “This kid is getting old.” Rolling Stone published what Doug Brinkley described as a suicide note written by Thompson to his wife, titled “Football Season Is Over”. It read: “No More Games. No More Bombs. No More Walking. No More Fun. No More Swimming. 67. That is 17 years past 50. 17 more than I needed or wanted. Boring. I am always bitchy. No Fun — for anybody. 67. You are getting Greedy. Act your (old) age. Relax — This won’t hurt.”

On August 20, 2005, in a private funeral, Thompson’s ashes were fired from a cannon. This was accompanied by red, white, blue and green fireworks—all to the tune of Norman Greenbaum’s “Spirit in the Sky” and Bob Dylan’s “Mr. Tambourine Man”.

Hunter S. Thompson, a true American treasure left us 13 years ago today.

RIP Dear Sir.

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