There are precious few excellent books about the so-called Hippie era of B.C. and Apple Bay is one of them. This first-hand account of a failed commune in Desolation Sound during the early 1970s was written by pioneering music journalist Paul Williams who published Crawdaddy, the first important critical publication about American rock 'n' roll and pop music, and the forerunner to Rolling Stone magazine. At Woodstock in 1969, Williams met a girl who was planning on hitchhiking to San Francisco. He quit being editor of Crawdaddy and accompanied her westward, only to discover the Haight-Ashbury scene was chaotic and unappealing. They heard about an idyllic commune in Canada and came to Desolation Sound, only to eventually document the reasons why the Utopian experiment was not sustainable: "Sex, territory, restlessness, stubborn egotism, the need for privacy, the need for togetherness, the need for moral leadership, it all adds up to ceaseless pain, an end to dreams, ad someday, somedays, the beginning of real work, order out of chaos, the hardest job any of us ever imagined facing."


Apple Bay, or Life on the Planet (New York: Warner, 1976).