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Detroit publisher Barry Kramer came in like a lion in March of '69, his hungry pride of cub reporters in tow, and fathered CREEM Magazine. The roar of its populist manifesto stirred the ashes beginning to settle right after the riots: "A rock 'n' roll magazine for the people." Motown and the blues were hometown sounds, but Motor City denizens gunned their engines on rock 'n' roll as well. In some places such music must have amounted to little more than another trivial consumer pursuit, but in Detroit it was (and remains) a lifestyle. A culture.
Barry & Lester Barry & Lester
C'mon, kiss me daddy-o!

In that hotbed of social and musical upheaval Barry and beloved lioness Connie incited the créme de la créme of rock criticism to inhale the tumultuous zeitgeist and render it for their burgeoning readership. They lay waste the stifling conventions of rock journalism with rabid reportage on such chest-pounding backyard bad boys as MC5, Amboy Dukes, Grand Funk Railroad, Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels; as well as the more androgynous (though no less ferocious) offerings of imports like Led Zeppelin, the Stones, David Bowie, and T.Rex. CREEM employed an indelible coterie of writers of broad literary and cultural scope (and a first-rate sense of fun), including Robert Christgau, Dave Marsh, Patti Smith, Greil Marcus, nowhere-near-famous cubby Cameron Crowe, and of course, the muddy-water stream-of-consciousness of Lester Bangs.
Have a cool refreshing Boy Howdy!
As we gingerly begin to stir this beast, or at least its spirit, we do so in recognition bordering on supplication of its immeasurably gifted staff of scribes, editors, photographers, and graphic artists whose work continues to resonate in a wide range of media today; Charles Auringer, Richard Siegel, Tony Reay, Jaan Uhelszki, Robert Duncan, Richard Riegel, Bob Wilson, John Sinclair, Gary Grimshaw, Wayne Robins, John Morthland, Ben Edmonds, Susan Whitall, Michael Marks, Billy Altman, Richard Creamer, Bob Gruen, Patti Smith, Lenny Kaye, John Mendelsshon, Barry Levine, Bob Alford, Robert Matheu, Gregg Turner, Gary Ciccarelli, Linda Barber, Christine Victor, Thomas Weschler, Richard C. Walls, Neal Preston, Jeffrey Morgan, Richard Meltzer, Dave DiMartino, Kate Simon, Paul Natkin, Rick Johnson, Michael Putland, Ebet Roberts, Joann Uhelszki, Mike Saunders, Bill Holdship, Mark Norton, Ross Marino, Dennis Loren, and John Kordosh.

Though we may not be worthy, our cause most certainly is: to roar once again the people's music. To stir the ashes beginning to settle in our own time of upheaval; to rally the faithful to what's real and raucous and riveting about rock 'n' roll; to reawaken an appreciation for the form in a millennium thus far most notably populated by Britneys and Back Street Boys and other studies in sterility whose day of reckoning has come. The sleeping lion has arisen, and stretches his long-slumbering limbs in search of something to scratch.

He wants his CREEM.
Don't you?

Boy Howdy!

Photos: Barry & Lester by John Collier; Peter Townshend by Neal Preston; Ramones, The Clash, The Replacements & The Go-Go's by Robert Matheu; Alice Cooper by Bob Gruen; Rod Stewart by Joe Stevens, Kiss by Charles Auringer