Book Club Discussion #3
Ed Sanders, "The Family", Pages 43-66
Sanders devotes the first four pages of this section, convincing us (or trying anyway), that by the spring of ’68, the family was heavily influenced by several satanic-style sources/groups. He calls these influnces “sleazo inputs”.
I won’t get too deep into this, except to say, the words “devil worship”, “occult”, “circe group”, “black magic”, “black arts”, “reincarnation”, “rituals”, “blood”, “rite”… etc. etc, are all used ad-nauseum. Well… Circumstance warned us. LOL
From there… Sharon Tate is introduced. A brief bio of Sharon’s childhood, and education is coverd, as well as her budding career as an actress.
Jay Sebring is introduced… “hairdresser to the stars”, etc, etc. Sharon and Jay’s relationship is covered. From here Roman enters the picture, and meets Sharon. The next several pages cover several of Polanski and/or Sharon’s more notable films. This part was interesting: “Polanski acquired a new-fangled video camera (camcorder basically), that he used to shoot instantly analyzable preliminary takes on the set. Fun indeed, perhaps the beginning of Polanski’s purported talent for gathering a collection of strange, humorous and even erotic videotapes”. Sharon and Roman marry… etc.
Next… we get into Manson’s music. Wilson and Melcher are covered quite extensively.
In the summer of ’68, Manson records music at the studio, located in the home of Beach Boy Brian Wilson (Dennis’ brother). Manson blows it all, by wielding a knife several times, while in the studio. Stephen Despar, who built the studio, and the engineer in-charge of recording Manson, called the Beach Boy’s manager after witnessing this… and further sessions were called-off. Way to go Charlie!
Also of note: Sanders mentions that Manson has said…”I was at the Cielo Drive house about 5 times, and used to wheel around in Melcher’s jaguar”. Sanders also mentions: Rudi Altobelli (Melchers landlord) testified at Manson’s trial, that “Terry (Melcher) and Gregg Jakobson, were always talking about Manson, and his philosophy”.
According to Sanders, Melcher and Wilson would call John Phillips (Mamas and Papas) several times, to “come on over” and listen to Manson’s music… describing it as “incredible”. Phillips explains he would “shudder every time” and “take a pass”. This chunk of the book closes with Sanders explaining that the Beach Boys recorded Charlie’s song “Cease To Exist” on 9-11-68, under the title, “Never Learn To Love”… for their album 20/20. They also changed the lyrics significantly.