Jack Kerouac published his book, On The Road in 1957
“I read On the Road in maybe 1959. It changed my life like it changed everyone else’s”
– Bob Dylan
On the Road is a novel by American writer Jack Kerouac, based on the travels of Kerouac and his friends across America. It is considered a defining work of the postwar Beat and Counterculture generations, with its protagonists living life against a backdrop of jazz, poetry, and drug use. The novel, published in 1957, is a roman à clef, with many key figures in the Beat movement, such as William S. Burroughs (Old Bull Lee) and Allen Ginsberg (Carlo Marx) represented by characters in the book, including Kerouac himself as the narrator Sal Paradise.
Ginsberg and Dylan visiting Kerouac’s grave:
“It was Jack Kerouac, Ginsberg, Corso, Felinghetti , I got in at the tail end of that and it was magic. It had just as big an impact on me as Elvis Presley.”
– Bob Dylan (1985)