ASPEN, July 27, 2012/ The Aspen Times/ — Most recollections of the ’70s in Aspen come with a caveat: If the person doing the recollecting were truly a part of what was going on in the Aspen of the ’70s, he should have been too stoned, or at least too astonished by what was going on around him, for the memories to be reliable.
But in Kurt Brown, author of the new memoir “Lost Sheep: Aspen’s Counterculture in the 1970s,” we have an apparently trustworthy take on the period. Brown, to be sure, was much like the rest of the flock that ascended to Aspen in time for the ’70s: young, idealistic, looking for a place to hide out from a Vietnam-era America that had become too corporate and too corrupt. In Aspen, he partook of all that the place had to offer, the pot and cocaine, the easy sex, an existence oriented toward pleasure rather than the mundane pursuit of job, family and religion.
But Brown early on positions himself as something of a sober-minded outsider among the wilder wave of Aspen newcomers. “I didn’t consider myself a hippie,” he writes in chapter one, “Prelude to a Journey,” and he continues to describe a middle-class upbringing that left him unimpressed, and distinct from the more radical elements that had transformed San Francisco in the ’60s. . . .
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