Episode 45: John Perry Barlow’s Mother American Night

In the latest episode of Across The Margin’s podcast, host Michael Shields, with the help of recurring guest George Guidotti, explores the recently released memoir of the late, great John Perry Barlow. As exhibited by his memoir, Mother America Night: My Life In Crazy Times, John Perry Barlow was an extraordinary human, who throughout his remarkable life was entirely and wonderfully multifaceted. He was a poet and essayist, a cattle rancher, a political activist, a freedom fighter who championed an independent internet, a lyricist for the Grateful Dead, and a founding member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Freedom of the Press Foundation. There are few individuals in the last fifty years whose life has been at the center of so many cultural and political touchstones as Barlow has, and Mother America Night, and thus this episode, acts as a window into the life of a steadfast American icon.

In this episode, Michael and George delve into Mother America Night, which will forever stand as an essential text for understanding the historic, far-reaching, and influential life of John Perry Barlow. Expanding upon his remarkable experiences and unique encounters, from his early days as a cattle rancher in Wyoming, to clubbing with Andy Warhol in New York, to hanging with the Dead on Haight-Ashbury and beyond, this episode pulls you deep into the riveting life and journeys of Barlow and offers a glimpse of the remarkable memoir he left behind. To finish off the podcast, Barlow’s songwriting is enthusiastically digested, and his profound and much-celebrated list of The 25 Principles of Adult Behavior is examined and praised. So join in on an ode to a true original, and one of the most interesting people to ever walk the planet.