A Memoir of Love and Music in the 60s

Larry J. Dunlap


(Published June 15, 2015) FIFTY YEARS AGO, a young singer from the Midwest finds himself unexpectedly thrust into the chaos of San Francisco’s historical musical and cultural revolution with his three vocalist friends. He leads the group’s struggle to form a band, then to survive the rough east bay dive bars, though not without personal sacrifice—Larry loses his wife, the girl he’s loved since high school, and two young sons in a family power struggle. The band achieves success in a year-long contract at a mob-operated nightclub at the pinnacle of San Francisco’s North Beach nightlife, and learn professionalism—at the point of a gun. Larry meets a Chicana girl who eases his loss and will become his lover and companion over the next three years.

In Hollywood, celebrity managers discover the band, and they appear in star-studded clubs and record in Hollywood studios. They are chosen to open mega-casino, Caesars Palace’s newest showroom/lounge–the first rock band to play in a major Las Vegas hotel. As the band prepares for their first record release, crises arise as Larry is suddenly inducted into the army with what seems to be a sure ticket to Vietnam, the band nearly starves when engagements fall through and agents let them down. They grapple with finding the right mix of band members, but the original four vocalists from the Midwest always stick together through the difficulties. Though the band’s success seems assured, Larry’s romantic relationship is ending, as their next record, Look Back in Love, is already picked to hit the top of the Billboard charts. When the band returns from their engagement in Hawaii, it seems inevitable that Stark Naked and the Car Thieves will soon take its place in the pantheon of nationally famous recording artists.




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(AVAILABLE NOW!) Honolulu is a war town, the Viet Nam Waris at it’s most violent and it’s being staged from Oahu, Hawaii. During their engagement in Waikiki, Larry discovers that beneath the exotic beauties of the island of Oahu lurks danger at every turn. A near-death drowning experience and a dramatic night of love and romance immersed in island magic are burned into memory. He must confront sex traffickers to protect an innocent girl as nightly, he and his friends learn firsthand of the horrors of the deadly conflict he barely avoided. As the band returns to the mainland, expectations for a new hit record guaranteed, the band returns to its roots in Indianapolis for the first time. It’s not the homecoming he expected. As the band seeks elusive fame in their recording career, success continues as they begin long-term contracts at new dance-showrooms built for them at the Flamingo and Stark Naked and the Car Thieves at the Flamingo Sky Room 1969International Hotels in Las Vegas, where they are surrounded by celebrity and success. Larry’s chance at a forever-love with his new wife blooms with the birth of their young son. When a chance to record the theme of a new major movie, it seems Stark Naked and the Car Thieves’ will finally achieve ascent to national recording fame. But, when everything changes, he must find a way to save his dream marriage, his band, even his life and sanity—before the music ends.

– Larry J. Dunlap


  1. CV   •  

    Any info on The Boogie Kings, a Louisiana based blue eyed soul band that played at Pussycat A Go Go in the 60’s?

    • Larry J Dunlap   •  

      Sorry CV, don’t recall the band. Do you have any more specific information about the band or the timing?

  2. shirley naso   •  

    Larry – I usually take books out of the library because I’m too broke to pay for them. I find the summations of your book(s) compelling. Do you know of a place where they could loan it to me and I would return it? My library tried going out of the county where I live (New Jersey) and they don’t have it. I would appreciate hearing from you. Thanks.

    • Larry J Dunlap   •  

      Shirley, how about I make you a deal? I’ll send you an autographed copy of NIGHT PEOPLE, and you see if you can donate it to your library. I’ll include a copy of Foreword Review Magazine (distributed to nearly all libraries in the US) published last fall where Night People was featured in their Memoir section you can show them. This is an excerpt from their review:

      “Dunlap relates much of the story through conversations, and his California journey features a number of memorable characters. [Night People] … is an enjoyable hangout book, a chance to spend time with witty characters at that point in their lives when success feels so close, but the path to get there isn’t quite clear.” – Jeff Fleischer, Foreword Reviews Magazine, Fall Issue 2015, Memoir ForeSight section

      And I wouldn’t mind an Amazon review. 🙂 If you’d like to do this, send me a street address where I can mail Night People to you via

      • Larry J Dunlap   •  

        Currently various libraries around Southern California that I am aware of are shelving NIGHT PEOPLE, especially in the Inland Empire and Orange County areas south and east of Los Angeles. There may be others since Night People was featured on both NetGalley and Foreword Review Magazine, places where libraries often look for books. If, like Shirley, your library doesn’t have NIGHT PEOPLE in their stacks yet, ask them to contact or go to the website, where they will find help in getting copies. Thanks!

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