Skip to content

About the Series

An unexpected visit to Boogie Records in Nederland, Colorado spawned a new series from cult reporter Be Scofield. The series explores the intersection between cults and music in the 1960s and 70s.

In 1972 the Bee Gees drummer left to join a band dedicated to a cult leader named Maharaj-ji. A few years later George Harrison of the Beatles produced a different band dedicated to the same cult leader. Carlos Santana was given the name Devadip by his abusive guru Sri Chinmoy. Donovan traveled to India with the Beatles studying Transcendental Meditation. Soon the Doors, Mick Jagger and the Grateful Dead would all be practicing TM. The Beach Boys recorded one of Charles Manson's songs. Leonard Cohen dropped out and moved into a Zen Monastery, but his guru would be ousted for sexual abuse. Musician turned cult leader Mel Lyman was dubbed the "East Coast Charles Manson." John Travolta and Frank Stallone recorded a vinyl record made up of Scientology lyrics that went gold.

These are just some of the fascinating stories in the Cult Rock series.