All posts by Michael Goldberg

About Michael Goldberg

Michael Goldberg is a distinguished pioneer in the online music space; Newsweek magazine called him an ‘Internet visionary.’ In 1994 he founded Addicted To Noise (ATN), the highly influential music web site. He was a senior vice-president and editor in chief at SonicNet from March 1997 through May 2000. In 1997, Addicted To Noise won Webby awards for best music site in 1998 and 1999, and also won Yahoo Internet Life! awards for three years running as best music site in 1998, 1999 and 2000. Prior to starting Addicted To Noise, Goldberg was an editor and senior writer at Rolling Stone magazine for 10 years. His writing has also appeared in Wired, Esquire, Vibe, Details, Downbeat, NME and numerous other publications. Michael recently completed his first novel, Days of the Crazy-Wild, and is currently writing a second novel.

The Failure of Prop 2 Animal Protection Law in California


By Michael Goldberg

When California’s unprecedented animal welfare legislation, Proposition 2, passed in 2008, animal activists cheered. Many residents who voted for the law believed the result would be “cage-free” hens thanks to how the proposition was marketed.

Sure, the law wouldn’t take effect until January 2015, but when it did we all assumed that the millions of California laying hens would finally be freed from the horrible confinement of the small battery cages – which provide each bird with as little as 67 square inches, substantially less than an 8 1/2 by 11 sheet of paper – in which most birds who lay eggs live out their short two-year lives.

Among those celebrating the victory was Princeton’s Peter Singer, author of the landmark book “Animal Liberation.” Newsweek magazine published an essay by Singer who wrote in 2008 that the new law might signal the beginning of a major societal shift in the public’s attitudes toward animals.

Yet slightly more than a year after Prop 2 took effect in January 2015, the law is a failure, and its promise “has turned out to be more fiction than reality,” according to the international animal rights network Direct Action Everywhere (DxE), who during 2015 found “crowded, filthy conditions” and “hundreds of diseased animals, some dying or already dead” at one of the states largest and most well-known egg suppliers, JS West of Modesto, CA – a company that has received an AA rating from the USDA.

Additionally, DxE found that the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act (Prop 2) requires no inspection of farms where laying hens live, and that there was no enforcement of the law during 2015 despite evidence that the law was violated by at least three farms in the state including the one with the AA rating, JS West, which houses 1.5 million hens. According to a 2015 California Shell Egg Food Safety (SEFS ) inspection report, JS West was “not compliant” in providing the SEFS minimal space requirement of 116 square inches per bird, even less than what is required by Prop 2.

A high-ranking California animal services officer who viewed the DxE video of conditions at JS West said during a recent interview that she believes Prop 2 is “virtually unenforceable.”

“The crowding is so severe that most of the birds will never have a moment where they have sufficient free space,” veterinarian Dr. Sherstin Rosenberg wrote in a statement provided to DxE after viewing the DxE footage.

“Putting hens in 116 square inches of space – that is beyond hell,” the animal services officer said. “You get these birds that are just psychotic out of their minds. They resort to cannibalism, they’re stressed, they’re mad, they’re diseased.” 

In a statement to the Modesto Bee, JS West denied that they are in violation of Prop 2, without explaining the “not compliant” Shell Egg Food Safety inspection rating one of its barns got last year.

DxE investigative report.


Read the rest of this story at The Daily Pitchfork.

– A Days of the Crazy-Wild blog post –

Bob Dylan 18-Disc Electric Years Official Bootleg Due

For some, Bob Dylan’s trio of mid-to-late ’60s albums are three of the best albums ever recorded. 

On Nov. 6, 2015 we will have the opportunity to hear the numerous recordings that were made as Dylan created those epic albums when The Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series Vol. 12 is released.

The new Bootleg series set was announced on Bob Dylan’s website today.

Here is an unofficial track listing for the six-disc version.

Disc 1

1.Love Minus Zero / No Limit (Take 1, Breakdown)

2.Love Minus Zero / No Limit (Take 2, Acoustic)

3.Love Minus Zero / No Limit (Take 3 Remake, Compl…

4.Love Minus Zero / No Limit (Take 1 Remake, Compl…

5.I’ll Keep It with Mine (Take 1, Piano Demo)

6.It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue (Take 1)

7.Bob Dylan’s 115th Dream (Take 1, Fragment)

8.Bob Dylan’s 115th Dream (Take 2, Complete)

9.She Belongs to Me (Take 1, Solo Acoustic)

10.She Belongs to Me (Take 2 Remake, Complete)

11.She Belongs to Me (Take 1 Remake, Complete)

12.Subterranean Homesick Blues (Take 1)

13.Subterranean Homesick Blues (Take 1, Alternate T…

14.Outlaw Blues (Take 1, Complete)

15.Outlaw Blues (Take 2, Alternate Take)

16.On the Road Again (Take 1, Complete)

17.On the Road Again (Take 4, Alternate Take)

18.On the Road Again (Take 1 Remake, Complete)

19.On the Road Again (Take 7 Remake, Complete)

20.Farewell, Angelina (Take 1, Solo Acoustic)

21.If You Gotta Go, Go Now (Take 1, Complete)

22.If You Gotta Go, Go Now (Take 2, Alternate Take)

23.You Don’t Have to Do That (Take 1, Solo Acoustic)

Disc 2

1.California (Take 1, Solo Acoustic)

2.It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding) (Take 1, False Start)

3.Mr. Tambourine Man (Takes 1-2, False Starts)

4.Mr. Tambourine Man (Take 3 with Band, Incomplete)

5.It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry (Take 1)

6.It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry (Take 8)

7.It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry (Take 3)

8.It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry (Take 3 Remake)

9.Sitting On a Barbed Wire Fence (Take 2)

10.Tombstone Blues (Take 1, Alternate Take)

11.Tombstone Blues (Take 9)

12.Positively 4th Street (Takes 1-3, False Starts)

13.Positively 4th Street (Take 4, Complete)

14.Positively 4th Street (Take 5, Alternate Take)

15.Desolation Row (Take 1, Alternate Take)

16.Desolation Row (Take 2, Piano Demo)

17.Desolation Row (Take 5 Remake, Complete)

18.From a Buick 6 (Take 1, False Start)

19.From a Buick 6 (Take 4)

Disc 3

1.Like a Rolling Stone (Takes 1-3, Rehearsal)

2.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 4, Rehearsal)

3.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 5, Rehearsal)

4.Like a Rolling Stone (Rehearsal Remake)

5.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 1 Remake, Rehearsal)

6.Like a Rolling Stone (Takes 2-3 Remake, False Start)

7.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 4 Remake)

8.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 5 Remake, Rehearsal)

9.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 6 Remake, False Start)

10.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 8 Remake, Breakdown)

11.Like a Rolling Stone (Takes 9-10 Remake, False Start)

12.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 11, Alternate Take)

13.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 12 Remake, False Start)

14.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 13 Remake, Breakdown)

15.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 14 Remake, False Start)

16.Like a Rolling Stone (Take 15 Remake, Breakdown)

17.Like a Rolling Stone (Master Take, Guitar)

18.Like a Rolling Stone (Master Take, Vocals, Guitar)

19.Like a Rolling Stone (Master Take, Piano, Bass)

20.Like a Rolling Stone (Master Take, Drums, Organ)

Disc 4

1.Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window? (Take 1)

2.Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window? (Take 17)

3.Highway 61 Revisited (Take 3, Alternate Take)

4.Highway 61 Revisited (Take 5, Complete)

5.Highway 61 Revisited (Take 7, False Start)

6.Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues (Take 1, Breakdown)

7.Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues (Take 3, Rehearsal)

8.Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues (Take 13, Complete)

9.Queen Jane Approximately (Take 2, Complete)

10.Queen Jane Approximately (Take 5, Alternate Take)

11.Ballad of a Thin Man (Take 2, Breakdown)

12.Medicine Sunday (Take 1)

13.Jet Pilot (Take 1)

14.I Wanna Be Your Lover (Take 1, Fragment)

15.I Wanna Be Your Lover (Take 6, Complete)

16.Instrumental (Take 2, Complete)

17.Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window? (Take 6)

18.Visions of Johanna (Take 1, Rehearsal)

19.Visions of Johanna (Take 5, Rehearsal)

Disc 5

1.Visions of Johanna (Take 7, Complete)

2.Visions of Johanna (Take 8)

3.Visions of Johanna (Take 14, Complete)

4.She’s Your Lover Now (Take 1, Breakdown)

5.She’s Your Lover Now (Take 6, Rehearsal)

6.She’s Your Lover Now (Take 15)

7.She’s Your Lover Now (Take 16, Complete)

8.One of Us Must Know (Sooner or Later) (Take 2)

9.One of Us Must Know (Sooner or Later) (Take 4)…

10.One of Us Must Know (Sooner or Later) (Take 19)

11.Lunatic Princess (Take 1)

12.Fourth Time Around (Take 11, Complete)

13.Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat (Take 3, Complete)

14.Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat (Take 8, Alternate Take)

15.Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 (Take 1, Rehearsal)

Disc 6

1.Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again (Take 1)

2.Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again (Rehearsal)

3.Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again (Take 5)

4.Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again (Take 13, Alternate take)

5.Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again (Take 14, complete)

6.Absolutely Sweet Marie (Take 1, Alternate Take)

7.Just Like a Woman (Take 1, Complete)

8.Just Like a Woman (Take 4, Alternate Take)

9.Just Like a Woman (Take 8, Complete)

10.Pledging My Time (Take 1, Alternate Take)

11.Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I’ll Go Mine) (Take 1)

12.Temporary Like Achilles (Take 3, Complete)

13.Obviously Five Believers (Take 3, Complete)

14.I Want You (Take 4, Alternate Take)

15.Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands (Take 1, Complete)

Read the story here.

Robert Hunter On Writing With Jerry Garcia, Junk, & Much More

This week Rolling Stone ran a fascinating interview in two parts with Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Huntrr, who also collaborated on songs with Bob Dylan.

Here’s writer David Browne talking to Hunter about the drugs.

When Jerry was busted in 1985, was it all catching up with him?
We all went over once to his house and confronted him, and he opened the door and saw what was going on and said, “Get out of here!” He was trying to shut the door and we all filed in and did the confrontation you could do. And he said he’d do something about it. That’s about all you can do, isn’t it? All I can say is that it more or less ruined everything, having Jerry be a junkie. I remember a time when “junkie” was the nastiest thing Garcia could call anybody. You had such contempt for anybody that would get involved in that.

But what are you going to do when you’re elevated the way he was? He once said, “They’re trying to crucify me, man.” And I said, “Jerry, never mistake yourself for Jesus Christ.” And he really took that advice. He took it hard and well. You’ve got to understand the whole weight of the Grateful Dead scene was on Jerry’s shoulders, to support all the families and everything as well as the audience’s expectations. There were times when I just drove him through the wall.

Then Jerry had his coma in 1986.
Jerry was diabetic, and before he had a coma, he was guzzling down fruit juice. It would’ve been better if he was guzzling down brandy. I believe that sugar put Jerry where he was. He was in terrible health — diabetic and taking immense amounts of sugar, and it did what sugar will do to a diabetic and overloaded him into a coma. I remember going in to see him when he was coming out of it, and he was saying, “Am I insane?” And I said, “No, man, you’ve been very, very ill, but you’re fine, you know, you’re coming out of it.” And he said, “I’ve seen the most amazing thing.” He’d been somewhere.

Read all of part two of the interview here.

There is great stuff in part one as well.

Let’s talk about how you became the Dead’s primary lyricist in 1967.
I got pretty deeply into speed and meth and came close to messin’ myself up. The scene I was in, I had to get out of that scene entirely, because as long as it was around I would be tempted, so I went off to New Mexico. And while I was there I had been writing some songs, mostly before I left Palo Alto. I had written “St. Stephen” and “China Cat Sunflower,” and I sent those — and “Alligator” — off to Jerry, and he uncharacteristically wrote back [laughs]. He said they were going to use the songs and why didn’t I come out and be their lyricist? Which I did.

How would you write songs with Garcia?

Jerry didn’t like sitting down by himself and writing songs. He said, “I would rather toss cards in a hat than write songs,” and this was very true. There were situations where he would come over and have melodies and we’d see what we could get out of that. More often I would give him a stack of songs and he’d say, “Oh, God, Hunter! Not again!” He’d throw away what he didn’t like. I’d like to have some of the stuff he tossed out! I don’t know where it went. I wrote once about “cue balls made of Styrofoam” — that line from “Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo.” Jerry took objection to the word Styrofoam. He said, “This is so uncharacteristic of your work, to put something as time dated” — or whatever that word would be — “as Styrofoam into it.” I’ve never sung that song without regretting I put that line in. Jerry also didn’t like songs that had political themes to them, and in retrospect I think this was wise, because a lot of the stuff with political themes from those days sounds pretty callow these days.

Read the entire part one here.

– A Days Of The Crazy-Wild blog post –

Bob Dylan To Daniel Lanois: ‘I’m gonna pay homage to what shook me as a young boy’

Producer/artist Daniel Lanois, who produced two Bob Dylan albums, 1989’s Oh Mercy, and 1997’s Time Out Of Mind, told the Vancouver Sun in a story published today, February 25, 2015, that Bob Dylan visited him last year and spent an hour and a half talking to Lanois about how mysterious recording artists were to Dylan when he was a kid.

“He came to my house eight or six months ago and spent a few hours,” Lanois said. “We listened to 21 songs — because he’s made two records of this (Sinatra project). And he said, ‘Let me tell you, Dan: If you have the time, can I tell you how I grew up?’ So we sat in the kitchen. I hadn’t heard a note.

“He spoke for an hour and a half on how, as a kid, you couldn’t even get pictures of anybody. You might get a record but you didn’t know what they looked like. So there was a lot of mystery associated with the work at the time. As far as hearing live music, he only heard a couple of shows a year, like the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra might come through.

“But the music he did hear really touched him and he felt that a lot of that music was written not only by great professional songwriters at the time, but a lot of it was written from the heart, from the wartime, and people just pining for a lover. He felt there was a lot of spirit in that music. He felt there was a kind of beauty, a sacred ground for him.

“After having said all that, we then listened to the music and I felt everything that he talked about. For one of America’s great writers to say, ‘I’m not gonna write a song. I’m gonna pay homage to what shook me as young boy,’ I thought was very graceful and dignified.”

– A Days Of The Crazy-Wild blog post –