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unclassified - 18 05 2001 - 10:00 - katatonik

On wakelessness

“Naturally, those who suffer most from wakelessness are those who least need to get up. This is why ageing rock stars are so often wakeless. Why should Elvis get up before sunset if he’s not playing Caesar’s till seven? Not only Elvis, but John Lennon was plagued by wakelessness through much of the late seventies, according to his biographer Albert Goldman. By late 1978, Goldman tells us, Lennon was bed-ridden 24 hours a day. ‘Totally prostrate, John couldn’t even raise his head to look at the television screen; instead, he employed a pair of trick glasses with prism lenses that enabled him to watch while lying flat on his back. In that strange periscopic state, John Lennon passes the winter.’

Around the same time, Beach Boy-in-chief Brian Wilson hired a $10,000-a-week therapist for the chief purpose, as far as I can tell, of getting him out of bed in the morning. And in 1980, Marvin Gaye was rescued from his bed in London by a Belgian concert promoter. The Belgian took him to Ostend to live with his family like an exchange student, while Marvin worked on overcoming his drug addiction – and getting up at a reasonable hour.”

Louis, Theroux: Bed Lieutenant; in The Idler.

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