Harry Reasoner’s Hippie Temptation: Jerry Garcia Week Continues

GAP0017-03-FPIn 1967, Harry Reasoner narrated a TV doc titled “The Hippie Temptation.” At the center of that frightened little doc was a band called the Grateful Dead. Footage includes the Dead and friends interviewed at their now famous 710 Ashbury Street apartment, as well as performing a free concert in Golden Gate Park.

The Media Center at Moffitt Library, UC Berkeley Propaganda and Misinformation page describes the doc like this:

Hippie Temptation is a study of the lifestyle of hippies in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district (narrated by Harry Reasoner looking like he’s about to explode!). Explores the reasons why young people become hippies and the great dependence of the hippie culture on drugs, especially their experimentation with LSD. Includes an interview and performance with a young, obscure rock group, the Grateful Dead.

Here’s a terrific snippet from that documentary:

Harry Reasoner’s Hippie Temptation: Jerry Garcia Week Continues

3 thoughts on “Harry Reasoner’s Hippie Temptation: Jerry Garcia Week Continues

  1. Rob says:


    No big deal, I suppose, but in your blog page

    THE HAL BLOG, subtitled “Film. Grateful Dead. Politics and Other Miscellany”



    it twice gives the address of the Grateful Dead House as “710 Haight.” Once you even call it “the now FAMOUS 710 Haight Street apartment.”

    Well, if the Dead did ever have an apartment on Haight Street, I confess my ignorance. The “Grateful Dead House” that I was familiar with when I was in SF was their house at 710 ASHBURY. Did they ALSO have an “apartment” with the same number (710) on Haight? What a coincidence, and “news to me.”

    My hunch is that it’s a boo boo, especially since you refer to it as the “FAMOUS” Grateful Dead place. I DO know that the “FAMOUS” Dead House was at 710 ASHBURY.

    Just to double-check before mailing you, I Googled the matter, and found out that, Wow! “710 Haight” comes up 2,300 times with “Grateful Dead.”

    However, make Google not include references to the Harry Reasoner CBS Dead interview and hippie documentary, and guess what? The Google hits of “710 Haight” drop to only 480.

    Therefore I suspect that the “710 Haight” thing got started by someone who was speaking about that interview video wrongly citing “710 Haight,” and then the vid going on YouTube and going viral, carrying that same mistake right along with it.

    The way things explode on the Internet, I think the genie is out of the bottle now, and “710 Haight” will now be forever carved in stone, and will end up in history books, etc.

    But, hey, who knows, as I said, I could be wrong. Maybe you folks are correct, and the Dead also had a domicile on Haight. Who knew?

    Best regards,


    No reply is necessary.

    1. halmasonberg says:

      Wow, Rob, a simple notification of a mistake would have been nice. Not sure why the sarcastic nasty tone. I’ll make the correction. But next time feel free to leave the holier-than-thou attitude at the door. It really serves no purpose that I know of. Thanks.

  2. albert geiser says:

    I had been watching the video before I came to your blog link. Reasoner is so terribly mean. Also telling. “Saints who run in groups are inclined to be ludicrous” he said here. A year later Reasoner founded 60 Minutes. I always loathed 60 Minutes. It was a fraud from the start. What has resulted since the 60s is the media we have now… and in this video we see the beginning of the long slide of American journalism… think of what had happened before.. of Mencken and Will Rogers and Mark Twain and Dorothy Parker.. here is where American journalism began to fail… now we Tom Brokaw and Matt Lauer…

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