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To read more about Episode 212, visit the main episode page.
Michael Moore [00:00:32] This is Rumble with Michael Moore, and I am Michael Moore. Welcome, everyone, to our episode here. Today, our guest is going to be one of the co-founders of Rage Against the Machine. Tom Morello will join me here, my good friend, Tom Morello. And we will have much to talk about regarding the political situation, what’s going on these days and also music, movies, etc. so please stick around here and join me for this conversation coming up here with Tom Morello.
Michael Moore [00:01:08] Before we get going, let me first of all, thank all of you who have joined my Substack, my platform here, which contains both my writing and my podcast. And it’s free. So it’s a free subscription. If you haven’t subscribed yet, please do. So all you have to do is go to MichaelMoore.com and there’ll be a link here on the podcast platform pager, MichaelMoore.com, and it’ll ask you for your email address. And then a box will come up and you’ll see some options for people who want to become paid members. They can do that. You can do that. Any of you can do that. That helps us with everything we’re doing these days. So thank you for that. But you don’t have to. You can be a free subscriber and you get every single one of my postings, my writings, essays, my letters to you, everything, plus every podcast. Nothing’s behind a paywall regarding whatever I post with my writing and my podcast.
Michael Moore [00:02:09] And thousands of you, I should say, hundreds of thousands of you, tens of thousands of you, a whole bunch of you have done this in the first month of me being on Substack. And I am so appreciative of that. And I hope that you’ve enjoyed it. I hope you’ve enjoyed my writings. At least once a week I’ve been posting something, and this last week I posted some letters, old letters that we found that we posted 20 years ago. And as far as I was concerned, they were lost and Basel found them. And here we are. And so we couldn’t get a flight back home from L.A. to New York on the afternoon of 9/11. We were supposed to fly, but obviously that didn’t happen. So we got a rental car there. So later we hit the road and went off to discover America, as they say. And it was quite a discovery and quite a…each night I would write a letter to you, the American people, to whoever was on my mailing list. And halfway across the country, NPR asked me to come in and record them and they then put them up on public radio. It’s uh they’re very emotional and powerful. I think it’s interesting to read them now some 20 years later.
Michael Moore [00:03:27] But that’s what I’ve been posting on Substack for the last week or ten days. And so I hope that you have enjoyed them. And now we, of course, are looking forward to it. So I will have a new Substack posting up this Sunday and we will have a new podcast which you just got here in your email. If you are already on my list, if you’re not on the list, you have it on Apple, Spotify, that’s Anchor. That’s great. But get it, you can get it on my list. And it’s already embedded right in the email. You just hit play and boom, you start listening to the podcast. It’s very easy. So do that. MichaelMoore.com. And thank you to everybody who has joined. Thank you to everybody that has become a paid member. Oh, my God. We got thousands of people that have done that in the last month. And so you’ll get your, you don’t get a tote bag. You don’t get a coffee mug. You don’t get one of my baseball caps. But we do have a couple of gifts for you. You get to participate in a live online video, Q&A with me every month. And also you get to join me on what I’m calling Mike’s Movie Night. So every now and then, I’m going to pick a movie to watch and I want to share it with you. And you’ll come watch it with me on your computer or on your TV set or whatever. And then some of the time I’ll have the director or some of the actors. The film afterwards will have a nice discussion about the movies. So if you love the movies, you’ll get that as a little gift.
Michael Moore [00:10:40] OK, Tom Morello in the green room. He is best known as the senatorial aide to Senator Alan Cranston, 1987-1988, and then after that, while out of work, founded a band called Rage Against the Machine. And that band, as you know, went on to become one of the most important rock bands of all time. Certainly created a sound in the 1990s and 2000s that I don’t know if I’ve seen anything like it since other than in the form of Mr. Tom Morello himself, who to this day continues on with his latest project, The Atlas Underground, and the new album that’s coming out here in a couple of weeks, The Atlas Underground Fire. But mostly he’s on today’s episode of Rumble because he is my good and dear friend and comrade and brother in arms, Tom Morello. Tom, how are you?
Tom Morello [00:12:01] I’m well. What’s going on, Mike? Good to see you.
Michael Moore [00:12:03] It’s good to see you. And why don’t we just start with the important stuff? What the fuck is going on?
Tom Morello [00:12:12] I think finally, you and I are in over our heads, man.
Michael Moore [00:12:17] We tried.
Tom Morello [00:12:17] We did the best we could under the circumstances.
Michael Moore [00:12:19] Oh, my God. Considering there’s nothing like this that we’ve had to deal with. And now a nation turns its lonely eyes somewhere. But seriously, all kidding aside, I know we’re chuckling but only only to alleviate the pain because, seriously Tom, what the fuck’s going on?
Tom Morello [00:12:45] Well I’ll give you my dime store analysis quickly. And then we can parse that and then talk about rock and roll and whatnot. But my take is that the fertile fields that have led to this just insanity we’re in now were brought about by both Republican and Democratic administrations that turned their back on real people. And that’s not not just in the United States, but it’s also those kind of corporatist parties in the U.K. and in Brazil and in Europe and whatnot that like abandoned, like I come from the town, the town I grew up in is coal miner like it’s Trump country, where it’s like really like good people who always were like union and voted Democrat until they stopped and then voted Republican until they stopped or just got like fucked over by everybody and they got and all those people a lot of those people voted for Obama. And then they were like, well, that guy fucked us over, too.
Tom Morello [00:13:38] And like, there’s no route for them to express themselves. And it’s a fertile field for a grift. It’s a fertile field for a demagogue. It’s a fertile field for using the oldest trick in the book, which is divide and conquer. The problem’s not neoliberalism in this capitalist system, which is keeping you down. The problem is the Muslims. The problem is the Haitians. The problem is the Mexicans. And that that’s the grift that began as the grift, which has sort of led to this quagmire, this Briar patch that we’re in now where there’s really I’m not sure how we fight our way out of this other than with electric guitars and bass and drums.
Michael Moore [00:14:14] Well, you’re not being facetious when you say that, because I have believed and if you study history, it is often the artists, the musicians, the playwrights, the filmmakers, the authors, the people that create are often the ones those in power go after first because people like music, yeah, people like the movies and people like and so best to get rid of us first. Not that I’m going to suggest anything if anyone from the NSA is watching, but I’m just saying that I do believe that that guitar, that that camera know that that paintbrush is a powerful weapon of change, defeating capitalism, you know name anything, protecting this earth. It’s all there. So I admire you so much and have for so long been one of those people not afraid to pick up that instrument, that weapon, that defender of the people of peace, all of that.
Tom Morello [00:15:24] It dawned on me long ago that that that the arts are, the reason why the arts are dangerous is because it’s a way of expressing your humanity during inhumane times and that’s a dangerous thing, you know, like saying like like we’re people and we count and we matter. And when you and when you especially like in the realm of music, which is a, you know, music, rhythm predates spoken language. I mean, there’s something in our reptilian brains that when the tribe gathers in a throng with a feeling of connectedness and togetherness, like the right rhythm and the right rhyme, on top of that can be a very, very dangerous, dangerous thing, as it often has been in the past. There’s never been a successful social movement in our country that hasn’t had a great soundtrack. And I think it’s time for the next one.
Michael Moore [00:16:15] That’s right. And I think I think, too, and maybe this is what gives, I’m not a big believer in hope. I usually refer to it as hopium. It’s that drug we’re looking for. Please tell me it’s going to be better. Please tell me the Coronavirus will be gone in two weeks. But I believe that because of the work that has been done for many years, long before you and I, back to the 30s, back to before that, in this country, and much longer before that. That we’re at a time now where the majority, oddly enough, we’ve come to this point where you and I are not so far out on some limb that you can barely be seen. A majority of our fellow Americans believe that just name the subject. Women should be paid the same as men. Climate change is real. You cannot live on ten or fifteen dollars an hour. Just go down the whole damn thing. And the majority of Americans, Texas should not have a say about what a woman can do with her own body. Yeah, I mean, just name it, the majority, Tom, agree with us. Yeah, that is the truth.
Tom Morello [00:17:30] Yeah, you’ve long harped on that. And it’s an important point that gets kind of obfuscated in the daily news cycle of awfulness that comes down the pike. And it also speaks to the fact that like that, like the one of the cracks in the walls of democracy, is that despite the fact that those things are true, that is not what is manifested in our country.
Michael Moore [00:17:53] Right. So then, in some ways I feel it, maybe I don’t know if you agree with this, and again, it just could be the Catholic upbringing, but I believe that that’s on our shoulders that that’s sort of now on us. If the majority of Americans believe that we must end this bigoted, wrongheaded mass incarceration that the majority now of 18 to 35 year olds believe that capitalism is the enemy, not socialism, if that’s where the country is moving, if this is now, as we just heard from the Census Bureau this last month, for the first time since we took a census in 1790, there has been a drop in the number of white people and a rise in the number of people of color. If this is our America now, yes, not much is happening as a result of it. Yeah. So is it incumbent upon us to sort of figure out what to do, or is it enough that I just make these movies and you make the albums?
Tom Morello [00:18:59] Well, you’re asking a brass tacks, nuts and bolts question, which is, on the one hand, I look at it like I’m kind of cursed with being a guitar player. I didn’t really choose that chose me. And now with that kind of burden like that was my calling. And so I’m kind of stuck. And so I have to do whatever I can within the parameters of being a guitar player to effect, to help, to try to twist the top off of the ketchup bottle, you know, of injustice. But you’re right, like, is it enough? And sometimes, some days it feels like, you know, sometimes it feels like you’re at an apex moment of putting wind in the sails of people who are making a real tangible difference in the world and other days, it’s like we need a whole new way of of fighting the power, because simply making movies, simply making a song, simply kind of banging our foreheads against the titanium wall of the two party system may not be enough to literally save the planet.
Michael Moore [00:19:59] Right. Even though we have tens of millions agreeing with us.
Tom Morello [00:20:03] Yes, that’s right.
Michael Moore [00:20:05] It doesn’t necessarily form itself into a movement that will bring about change.
Tom Morello [00:20:10] That’s correct. Especially when that movement is being pissed upon by the Democratic Party. There’s no greater enemy to progress than it. As someone who worked for two years as the scheduling secretary for a progressive United States senator, Senator Alan Cranston from California, I can tell you, you may have heard about how the sausage is made, but I was standing next to the grinder. And it’s worse than you can ever imagine. And, you know, and that’s from my experience there in the senator’s office. I could be happy to regale you with tales that’ll make you lose sleep there to, you know, when the when the the teachers uprising in Wisconsin, that was when it looked like they were going to be a general strike in Wisconsin that was going to bring down the government and that was completely undermined by the Democratic Party as well. Like the centrist Democratic Party does not want the change those majority of Americans want. It does not want the change that you put in your movies and that I sing about in my songs. They don’t want it.
Michael Moore [00:21:10] No, in fact, I think that the centrist and corporatist wing, they now call them on TV today, the moderates – Joe Biden met with the moderates of the Democratic Party today.
Tom Morello [00:21:20] Oh, dear. What does that mean?
Michael Moore [00:21:23] Well, I know, when you say as soon as you say the words Democratic Party, I thought, Tom, you don’t you don’t mean the Democratic Party whose police agents that are on the Texan border whipping Black people, Haitians. And Tom, they have spent two days trying to explain to us because we’re idiots, of course, that those who aren’t really wimps, just like reigns on the horse. And I’ve taken the footage now and I blew it up and they’re their friggin’ right. They’re not reigns. They are friggin’ whips. Yes, they are whipping. When was the last time we can roll a video that we have footage of Americans, Americans who work for the federal government, whipping Black people and oh, by the way, under a Democratic administration?
Tom Morello [00:22:13] That’s correct. And I guess the question would be like, if you whip, if a white cop whips a Black person with a reign, is he whipping them or is he reigning them? I mean, I guess that would…
Michael Moore [00:22:25] Well, sadly, it could be both because we’re reigning over and whipping. And I think if we went to, whoever the people are that are the Supreme Court of the English language. Probably somewhere in Oxford or Cambridge. Whether you’ve got a belt in your hand.
Tom Morello [00:22:42] That’s right.
Michael Moore [00:22:43] Right. Whether you’ve got a reign in your hand or whether you’ve got in your hand a whip, if you are in the motion and act of whipping a human being, it’s called a whip.
Tom Morello [00:22:57] That’s right.
Michael Moore [00:22:57] It doesn’t matter what the whip is made out of. But they’ve spent two days on the news trying to, no, no, no, no. The Democrats. The White House. No, no, no. It wasn’t what it looked like. It wasn’t a whip. Yes, we were whipping with it. And all of a sudden now I’m in a Devo song. Yes. Yeah, we’re laughing. But actually, the greater truth that you’re speaking here about the Democrats must be heard because otherwise people on our side, shall we say, of the political fence, especially younger people, might get disillusioned and disheartened. Sure. When they see the people that they voted for participating in an act like this. Yes. And then, sadly, too many of them just give up and they say, I don’t want to do it. It’s all horseshit. And it’s like that’s what you and I, we can’t lose them and we’re not going to be monkeys just doing a circus act on a stage. Hey, we come back. We’ve got another song for you. Hey, look at this movie I just made. Yeah, yeah. You and I know that’s not going to do it for us or the country or the world.
Tom Morello [00:24:02] Well, I think I mean, if there’s like this latest record of mine, it’s my twenty first studio album of my career. And if there’s one thread that kind of goes between them, between all of them is I don’t know if it’s necessarily an antidote to what you describe for the young people who get wound up in the disillusion. But it’s certainly a chess piece on the table. And that is the absolute cold, hard fact that the world is not going to change itself. That’s up to you. Like literally you like the person listening now – you. Like not me, not Mike, like you, and the person who’s running the video thing and the like. It’s you. And while that may sound daunting, the good news is when the world has changed in progressive, radical or even revolutionary ways, it has been changed by people who had no more power, influence, courage, connections than anyone listening right now. You know, like it’s that’s how the world changed and the things that seemed immovable in the past. Like in my lifetime there was the Berlin Wall was never going to come down. Apartheid was here to stay, like there were…
Michael Moore [00:25:01] Nelson Mandela would never get out of prison.
Tom Morello [00:25:03] That’s correct. You go back, like women would never get the right to vote. Lunch counters would never be, like there were things that were just like they were absolutely dyed in the wool carved in stone. And those things change not by not by an act of God and not by not by a Supreme Court that led the way, those were changed by people, no different from you who just did nothing other than stand up in their play, in their school, in their place of work, in their community for a more just and humane society society by just using the tools that they had available to them.
Tom Morello [00:25:33] Like Mike picked up a camera, I picked up a guitar. People started an underground newspaper, and someone started a petition. Someone decided to stand on a street corner with a sign. Someone threw a brick through a Starbucks window. But whatever, it’s like the meter. We are agents of history. Everybody, you’re an agent of history. History is not something that happens. History is something that you make. Right. And if you’re or you can opt out and not have your hand on the wheel of history, you stand on the side of the road, you let a bunch of jackasses drive the planet into a ditch. Those are the two options.
Michael Moore [00:26:04] Yeah, but as you say, if you are one of the people that are willing just to go stand on that corner holding the sign, you may not think that you as one individual is important. And of course, that’s the way those in power want you to think. But the fact is, it makes me think about just this past weekend, the man, George Holliday, who heard a ruckus outside of his apartment window some 20 years ago. And he just got a brand new home video camera and went out on the balcony.
Tom Morello [00:26:36] Yeah.
Michael Moore [00:26:36] And filmed the Los Angeles police beating senselessly, beating Rodney King. George Holliday was his name. He was what you would call nobody. And yet, by his one action became somebody. And the reason he was on the news this week and sadly, is that he passed away from Covid.
Tom Morello [00:26:59] Oh, I didn’t say it was from Covid.
Michael Moore [00:27:00] Yeah, he was a plumber. That’s what he was. He was a plumber for really about forty three years of his life. So in other words, just an average person doing an average job, as they would call it, and yet was beyond average in the sense of the impact that he had so that we could see what the L.A. police were doing. If everybody saw that, you don’t have to be Michael Moore as a filmmaker, you can be George Holliday, the plumber. That’s right. Pick up your home movie camera and start filming. And you know what? They’re going to see that you’re doing this and you’re going to feel very scared. Yeah, because they can hurt you and they can kill you. But we are the better off not just because of him or Darnella Frazier, who filmed the tragedy and the murder of George Floyd. A 17 year old, I mean, I just, there’s so many examples of this where people watching or listening to us right now, if they just believed that, yes, everything you’ve been told is wrong, that one person can’t fight city hall. You can’t rock the boat. Yes, you can.
Tom Morello [00:28:04] Yes, you can. Absolutely. And the thing, too, is that courage is contagious. Like if you’re that one person on the street corner, like to hear, for me it was bands and stuff like that. But like to just for someone to drive by and realize they are not alone in an opinion, in a radical opinion, they hold in their heart, you know, like that’s that sort of connectivity and realizing that there’s others out there who feel like that shit’s not right, you know, and to be able to step outside of your door and say, here’s the thing – when you you do things, things happen, and you just don’t know where that road leads. But if you don’t do things, things stay the same.
Michael Moore [00:28:45] That we can guarantee. Yeah. If you do nothing, things will stay the same. That’s right. If you do something, there is no guarantee. That’s right. But there’s a far greater chance of something happening.
Tom Morello [00:28:54] That’s right.
Michael Moore [00:28:55] Than if you just sit there on the couch. So OK, so we’ve got this new album coming out and I’ve listened to it. And this is, I’m not a music critic, so I’m not going to be eloquent in the way that I should be describing this. But I will say this, listening to it and what’s so interesting about this, which I’ll explain in a second, listening to it, Tom, in the way when I first heard Rage Against the Machine at the beginning of the ’90s, where in my head I went, whoah, OK, we haven’t heard this. We’ve had all these various forms of rock which led to punk, which led to the alternative, which led to metal becoming death metal, which had just gone through the whole gamut of everything. I said that we’re, Basel and I were listening to it here the other day.
Michael Moore [00:29:41] And I said, man, this sounds like we’ve entered a new era, a new, well actually we are in a new century, but we haven’t really been listening to something that’s been created for the 21st century yet. We’re still coming out of that last century. And I said this, this sounds like now and whatever is ahead. What you did in the early 90s, taking us to someplace that we haven’t been. And the irony of this album is that this is one of the most incredible versions of one of the most incredible rock songs of all time, Highway to Hell. Originally, AC/DC, that it’s on this album, The Atlas Underground Fire is the name of the album. And it’s not just you. In fact, I don’t even think I hear your voice on it. No. Bruce Springsteen. It’s Eddie Vedder. That’s right. And it’s you there. But also maybe the fourth human, which is your guitar. Your guitar comes alive again in this. And it’s just, so the irony of that, that you take the song that I would say Jeez Highway to Hell, early ’80s.
Tom Morello [00:30:52] ’79.
Michael Moore [00:30:54] ’79 and all the way to this inventive stuff. I mean this album is just it’s got everything in it that’s new or should be new or will be new and just hats off to you for inventing this and all the people you’ve got to collaborate with you on this album.
Tom Morello [00:31:13] Well thanks, Mike. It’s a record that was kind of born out of the pandemic, you know, like from the time I was 17 years old to March of 2020, I’ve been nonstop writing, recording and performing and all that came to a screeching halt. And so when I was in lock down.
Michael Moore [00:31:29] Did you go into lockdown?
Tom Morello [00:31:29] We were absolutely in lockdown, like I mean, I got my mom, ninety seven here and my mother in law, ninety here. I got two kids going crazy on the Zoom school thing. Like people can probably relate and, you know, and I was looking at like, it was the first creative drought of my adult life. And inspiration came from a very unexpected place. I read an interview where Kanye West said that he had recorded the vocals for a couple of his hit albums on the voice memo of his phone. I have a studio in my house, but I don’t know how to work it. There’s an engineer there. like there’s an Aaron or a Basel, who knows how to press the buttons. They only let me touch the volume knob and that rarely. And so I wasn’t able to record.
Tom Morello [00:32:09] But then after reading this article, I just started recording guitar into my phone and then sending it to engineers and producers and artists around the world and began and began sort of forging this kind of global pen pal, rock and roll community, that was with this goal and the whole sort of purpose of the Atlas project is like, I believe firmly the electric guitar is the greatest instrument ever invented by humankind. There’s no instrument that has the nuance of Segovia and the power of Metallica, all sort of in the same same six strings. But I also firmly believe that the guitar is an instrument that has a future and not just a past. And so the idea of having my guitar be kind of like the north star of this record, whether it’s in a song with Chris Stapleton, country star Chris Stapleton or Springsteen and Eddie Vedder with a classic heavy metal song, Highway to Hell, or with Sama’ Abdulhadi, who’s a great young Palestinian DJ, or Mike Posner, who recorded his vocals at twenty five thousand feet in Nepal while summiting Everest to Refused in Sweden to Bring Me the Horizon in Brazil. So it was kind of like a global community. While I was completely alone and anxious and fearful during the plague in my bunker, I was able to have these kind of rock and roll and EDM and hip hop and country and western pen pals to forge this alliance, to make this music. This record was almost less a creative endeavor than it was an antidepressant, you know, in a way of like, I am a man, like I am a musician. I’m not just a guy that’s fixing the plumbing on this on this particular day.
Michael Moore [00:33:44] Wow. Wow. It’s so this says a lot a lot to your own energy, though, in your own consciousness that in this dark moment that we’re all in, in this moment where we’ve been in this lockdown to be able to find ways and I think people listening to this, I want to just say this to you again: you don’t have to be me or Tom. You can be yourself. You have that voice memo on your phone. You know how to write. You can write a short story. That’s one page long, you know, or maybe you can’t do that, maybe it’s a poem. Maybe it’s just, anything that has to do with the arts or any kind of creativity is going to bring you out of whatever down in the dumps you are about what’s going on. But the fact that you were able to, I mean, I know this a little bit for myself, but not to the…I didn’t talk to anybody in the top of Mount Everest. But I did. I live alone and I have a second bedroom here. And I thought, well, no one’s coming to see me. In fact, I don’t know if I want anybody coming to see me. So I’m just going to turn this into a little podcast studio. And I had help from my niece and nephew. My sister helped. Of course Basel. And a couple of other people. If you ever notice that whenever you start to thank people or you list people, your brain is going to forget somebody.
Tom Morello [00:35:08] You know that there’s somebody just at home just going, that fucker.
Michael Moore [00:35:11] Yeah that’s right. That’s the worst thing.
Tom Morello [00:35:19] Thanks a lot, Mike. Thanks, Mike.
Michael Moore [00:35:21] I know.
Michael Moore [00:35:32] Don’t go down that road. I put their credit in the film. Their name is up on the big screen. Yeah. I paid them well. Yes…And I love them.
Tom Morello [00:35:40] Yes, that’s right.
Michael Moore [00:35:41] That’s right. And I saw somebody the other night at the Emmys go, I’m going to forget everybody. That’s why God created IMDB. Go to IMDB. Everyone’s listed.
Tom Morello [00:35:52] I thank all of them, whoever was there.
Michael Moore [00:35:53] I love them and everything. But the fact that you, listen seriously, I mean, I started I did it at four in the morning sometimes, I’d have the, you know, the phone. And that’s how the podcast that people heard was done right here and the people that you named and the people you had as [00:36:13]part of this… [0.2s]
Tom Morello [00:36:39] I want to tell you, like the story of Highway to Hell with Bruce and Eddie, because it’s like a funny story. So I was playing for about six years, I played with the E Street Band, on and off, and we were in Perth, Australia, the home of Bon Scott, the singer of AC/DC. And I went to go pay my respects to his grave. And late at night, it was like 11 o’clock at night in this Perth graveyard. And I can’t find it. You’ll be surprised to hear that Bon Scott’s grave is not marked with an eternal flame. I was surprised. But anyway, it’s hard to find. So out of the darkness comes this motorbike in the middle of the night. And this guy’s wearing like a German World War II and a T-shirt which reads, I don’t give a shit, but if I did, you’re the one I’d give it to.
Tom Morello [00:37:22] And I’m like, that guy is going to know where Bon Scott’s grave is. And sure enough, he does. So I pay my respects, go back to the hotel and I see Bruce. And I’m like, Bruce, do you think that there’s a way that the circle of the E Street Band and the circle of AC/DC might overlap in any way? And he’s like I never have thought about that before, Tom, but I’m going to think about it tonight. So we began rehearsing Highway to Hell at soundchecks over the course of the next couple of days, and we found ourselves in a huge soccer stadium in Melbourne, like eighty thousand people. And Eddie Vedder happened to be there. He was on a solo solo tour at the time. So he came down to the show to see our show and a light bulb went off. So I knock on Bruce’s door. I’m like, Bruce, we are in Australia where AC/DC is king and where the song Highway to Hell is the unofficial national anthem. That’s rock and roll liberation. What if we open the show with AC/DC’s Highway to Hell with Eddie Vedder? And he was like he was like, that sounds like a pretty good idea.
Tom Morello [00:38:21] So we did that. We did that. And if you think you’ve seen an audience go apeshit before, you haven’t unless you were there on that night because it was like, it was like a lightning strike moment of creativity and connection, like the highest height of what a thing can be in a room. Right. And so when I was making this record with a lot of great younger artists like Phem, Protohype, and Grandson and Phantogram and Chris Stapleton, I wanted the last song I did for this record was Highway to Hell. I want to make a song with my rock brothers. And so that we ended up with one of the greatest rock and roll songs of all time, I would have sung by two of the greatest rock and roll singers of all time, Bruce Springsteen and Eddie Vedder.
Michael Moore [00:39:00] Well, and of course, you on the guitar. The way the song ends, I won’t ruin it for people, but I mean, even though we’re just two of us in the living room the other night listening to it, it felt like there were eighty thousand people here because we just, those who have heard it, and if you haven’t, please, I’ll put a link to it on the podcast platform here. But one of the greatest rock and roll performances of all time is Bruce and Tom, Bruce and Tom and the E Street Band doing Bruce’s version of The Ghost of Tom Joad. And when you listen to this incredible song that is essentially based on the story in The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, and then Tom comes into it, Bruce sings a verse and Tom sings. And then Tom’s guitar takes over with this magical thing that you really haven’t heard in the pantheon of listening to rock and roll. Doing it live. It was one of the most important things. I mean, you must feel your contribution to this, you and Bruce together. And I remember at one point you told me the first time that you guys did this, it was like there really wasn’t much rehearsal went into it. And I think you were in one of the arenas out in Southern California.
Tom Morello [00:40:23] It was in Anaheim in 2008. And I’d run into Bruce a few days before in a studio and he’d said, I’m a huge fan. It’s impossible to sort of consider Bruce, even though we know each other a long time, because he’s the only friend of mine that I subscribe to a fanzine about. You know what I mean? So it’s like it’s always weird, like we’re just texting. I’m like why is Bruce Springsteen typing? So anyway, so I ran into him and he said, let’s play Ghost of Tom Joad and the two versions that existed at the time where the acoustic version on his 1995 record, which is like a plaintive, minor key Woody Guthrie ballad and The Rage Against the Machine cover of it from 1997, which is like this kind of Black Sabbath, the heavy metal version. He said, bring your electric guitar, bring the acoustic guitar, I’ll figure it out with the E Street Band and you come like a half hour later.
Tom Morello [00:41:13] So I’m like, great. So I practice, I’m nervous. But ‘ve got it. I know the chords. I can sing it, but I’m at soundcheck, I’m in catering, I can hear the band practicing upstairs and they’ve raised the key of the song by eight steps. Now as you can hear from my rich milk chocolate baritone voice, I don’t have an American Idol range and all of a sudden it feels like it’s like I can’t sing it. And now I have to transpose these chords, which I’ve got like about 90 seconds to do. I’m called up on stage, we’re rehearsing the song. We’re gonna’ play it that night. And I don’t know how to play the fucking thing and I don’t know how to sing the fucking thing. And I’m like, this is my chance to play with the E Street Band. And it’s an absolute disaster. I’m miserable, miserable. Little Steven feels my heat and my pain. And he comes over and he’s like, baby, baby. I’m like, baby, I’m bad, baby. There’s no good, I’m a bad baby.
Tom Morello [00:42:06] And so Bruce, they don’t call him the boss for nothing. He comes over, puts his hand on my shoulder, steadies my nerves, looks me in the eye. And he says, Tommy, first of all, it’s awesome. He calls me Tommy, which is like, Tommy, we’re going to play it in this key and it’s going to be great. I’m like, first of all, thanks, Jedi Master Yoda. I still don’t know how to play or sing anything, but it did calm my nerves enough so that I was able to reflect. I was like there’s fifteen people in the E Street Band. They know the chords. I don’t need to play the chords. Can I sing a song of social justice like I mean? Yes I can. Can I play a guitar solo? I sure as hell can. So then it was my turn at that soundcheck to pull a little fast one on the E Street Band. So I don’t during the solo section, I don’t give anything away. I just sort of Chuck Berry my way through and just kind of vanilla, super vanilla it through the guitar solo. So it comes time that night. The song’s about in the middle of the set. I’m half a bottle of Jameson in because I’ve never been more nervous in my life.
Tom Morello [00:43:02] I get called up there and we play the song and it’s, you know, and something happened that none of us expected. None of us expected it. It was like, no one in the crowd, Bruce, me, the band…the song kept building and building. I started playing this guitar solo and Bruce was like, keep going, keep going. It’s like I keep going. Like I didn’t have anything planned. And all of a sudden there’s this world of, you know, it almost felt like this kind of I don’t know. I mean, I don’t know what Coltrane felt like when he was just loose, but it felt like maybe like that where there’s you know, there’s no note that could be wrong. And it’s like it’s astral and it’s like channeling these ghosts of heroes, past and whatnot. And it comes to this roaring conclusion. And Bruce and I look at each other and go, hey, Bruce, that was the right key after all. And then we played it. We played another hundred times.
Michael Moore [00:43:59] What did he think that after that first time? He must have been so gobsmacked.
Tom Morello [00:44:03] Well, I mean, you can see the video, the video’s out there and you see the look on both of our faces. And we just can’t believe it. It’s like one plus one plus one equals nine hundred and seventy four. Like it really speaks to the testament of chemistry. And that’s one thing. The one thing sort of in the artistic process that sort of bears mentioning is like I love solo artists because of the purity of vision that you get in their work and whether it’s an early Dylan album or what or even on my solo records, I like to be the one that chooses the album cover and to have like my voice and curation be the guiding star. But in a band you get chemistry and you create something that is unexpected, that none of the individuals could have predicted or could have done on their own. And that was certainly the case with The Ghost of Tom Joad on that night. And it’s kind of the case on this record, too. Like this is a record where…
Michael Moore [00:44:47] I thought the other night, when this Highway to Hell came on not knowing what was going to happen. Yeah. By the end of it, we’re just like just floored by that. Did we just hear what we just heard? Yes. It’s just with all due respect, of course the AC/DC and I’ll tell you a little story about them here. But again, it was like not since you and Bruce in the band doing that version of The Ghost of Tom Joad had I heard anything like this until the other night when we put on Bruce and Eddie and you doing Highway to Hell?
Tom Morello [00:45:22] Well, that’s awesome, Mike, thank you.
Michael Moore [00:45:24] No, thank you. But what I was going to say about AC/DC is there was this great D.J. in Michigan. His name is Peter C. Cavanaugh. He just passed away a month or so ago. But he was the North Star in Michigan of bringing new bands, new everything, all that sound that came out of Michigan, all the rock, you know, nobody would have heard of Bob Seeger, nobody would have heard of you. Just go down the list to Michigan bands at that time. And he was known as the first D.J. in North America to play The Who. And somehow, I don’t know, he discovered this man, this album that was just in Australia, this group, AC/DC. And he put it on the station, they picked it up in Detroit, it became this huge thing. And they were so grateful to him. And when he finally had this contact with him in Australia, they said there’s anything we can do. And he said, well, actually, there’s this guy in Flint, who has started this alternative newspaper called The Flint Voice. If there’s any when you come to the U.S. or whatever, if you could do a benefit to help out the small paper, I’d be very grateful. When they came for the first time, they decided to do their first concert in Flint, Michigan.
Tom Morello [00:47:10] Oh, my God.
Michael Moore [00:47:11] And they weren’t as big here yet. So they opened for another big name that I can’t even remember now. But they offered to come and do this at the Capitol Theater in downtown Flint for our little paper. And that was my first introduction to Bon Scott and the whole gang.
Tom Morello [00:47:28] Wow. That’s amazing.
Michael Moore [00:47:30] Yes. And it was and it was in the late ’70s and again, maybe ’80, I can’t remember. But it was whatever you said it was. I’m so glad that you honor them with this. And that story from Melbourne, Jeez. So this will be out. What’s the date for the album?
Tom Morello [00:47:51] October 15th the record comes out. There’s three songs out now. A song with Bring Me the Horizon, a great young rock band out of Brazil and the UK. We’ve got a song out about sort of a modern day heavy metal pandemic blues called Let’s Get the Party Started. There’s a great song with the young band called Phantogram, who are from L.A. which is a ghost story called Driving to Texas…
Michael Moore [00:48:14] A powerful, incredible song, different from anything you’ve done.
Tom Morello [00:48:18] Yep, yep, yep, very spooky and then there’s Highway to Hell with Bruce.
Michael Moore [00:48:23] OK, so Tom, what the fuck are we going to do?
Tom Morello [00:48:30] What’s a poor boy to do except playing in a rock and roll band? Like I got to tell you, I mean. Well, well thank goodness. I mean you can continue to like one thing I’m hoping for is that somebody listening to this damn podcast comes up with a new idea. I mean, like you’ve had thirty five thousand great ideas in your career. I’ve had thirty five, you know, I mean, like, let’s get somebody out there, somebody out there’s got to come up with one like spark it off man. It’s like, you know, we continue to, you know, to be links in the chain of this battle for a more just and just and decent world. But we need something to overturn the table right now. Yeah. We have to save the planet like racism is horrible and economic inequality. But we’re going to lose the fucking planet.
Michael Moore [00:49:16] Right. If we haven’t yet. But I want to believe we haven’t yet. Or the planet will survive, but the species will be gone.
Tom Morello [00:49:23] Yeah. Civilization in the way that you’re comfortable with it will be gone.
Michael Moore [00:49:28] Yes. This is also important. And I do believe there is that one person listening to this right now, you know, that let’s say on any given episode, either could be one hundred and fifty thousand or more listening to this. And one of them just had that next idea or had that or called up three friends and said, you know what we should do.
Tom Morello [00:49:54] Yeah, or maybe if all one hundred and fifty thousand of you do that.
Michael Moore [00:50:01] Well, if all of you listening right now do that…
Tom Morello [00:50:03] That’s the buckshot approach,
Michael Moore [00:50:04] That essentially is called the revolution and it will be at least podcast-ised. That’s right. That’s right. But it will, I think that there’s a chance that will have stopped before we go here, what’, we’ve known each other for a long, long time, and maybe if each of us shared a story that was good, especially the podcast listeners…
Tom Morello [00:50:33] Sure, I get to go first.
Michael Moore [00:50:35] So you pick the one that you want to tell. Yeah. And then I’ll do mine and OK.
Tom Morello [00:50:42] Well I’m going to pick the one that I pick. I forget, I dunno if you remember this, but this was some year where you were winning, you were winning so many awards that you didn’t have the time and the bandwidth to go collect all of them. So you sent me as your proxy to like, I forget, I had to go pick up an Emmy or Grammy or whatever it was somewhere.
Michael Moore [00:51:01] You know, it was a big award, out in L.A.
Tom Morello [00:51:04] It was like Directors Guild or something like that.
Michael Moore [00:51:08] For Fahrenheit 9/11, it was one of the big awards. That’s right. And so I couldn’t come because I was…
Tom Morello [00:51:14] Picking up some other award.
Michael Moore [00:51:17] An award in France.
Tom Morello [00:51:19] And so I’m like, sure, Mike, I’ll go there and pick up your award, but I hope I finally got it to you. I’m not sure. So anyway, I think I gave it to your sister. Yeah. So this is what happened. This is the story that I told on that night. And I’ll tell it to your listeners. I was a big fan of Michael Moore’s television programs, TV Nation, and whatever the other one was…
Michael Moore [00:51:36] The Awful Truth.
Tom Morello [00:51:37] And Awful Truth. I loved those shows. And I just, it was a brand new idea on the planet to be kind of that ballsy. It was like sort of part punkt and sort of like part pranking, but with like what with a overturn the system, determined over the system while doing it. Just like my favorite kind of satire and humor and politics all rolled into one. It was one part Yippies and one part Che Guevara. It was fantastic. Anyway. So Rage Against the Machine hired Michael Moore to make a video for our song Sleep Now in the Fire. I could not wait to meet Mike, and I had one question that I could not wait to ask him. The second that he shows up in the trailer, I’m like, Mike, big fan of yours, man. I’ve seen all the crazy stuff you do, like the balls you’ve got on you. How many times have you been arrested? And he laughed like that. He’s like, oh, I’ve never I’ve never been arrested. And I was like, I and I jokingly say, well, you’ve never worked with Rage Against the Machine before. So anyway, cut to, we’re making a video. And now the premise of the video is that the band is going to play the song on the federal building steps down in Wall Street. We’re right like Kitty Corner from…
Michael Moore [00:52:46] Where George Washington took his oath of office for president of the United States.
Tom Morello [00:52:49] That’s right. That statue is in the video. We have a permit to play on the federal steps. The New York Stock Exchange is there. We do not have a permit to play on the city sidewalk. And Mike, as a director, is a man of few words. So he says to the band, he says, this is what we’re going to do. You’re going to perform on the steps. I’m going to give you some instructions no matter what happens. No matter what happens, don’t stop playing. Now, this little caveat may burst the bubble of some of your listeners who may not understand it, because when a band is making a video, they’re not actually playing the song. They’re miming to playback.
Tom Morello [00:53:27] So we have a CD of the song Sleeping on the Fire that’s somewhere over there in a truck. It’s coming through the speakers and we play it again and again. We pretend we’re playing it again and again and again. Again on the steps. It’s going great. There’s some placards, the day traders are walking by. One of them, incredibly, says Trump for President, 2000. But that’s in the video as well. So we play on the federal steps. And then Mike says, he gives his second directorial edict of the afternoon, he says now we’re going to play on the city sidewalk, the unpermitted city sidewalk. So we go down there, they hit play on the CD player again, Sleeping on the Fire.
Michael Moore [00:54:05] We gotta’ get another angle.
Tom Morello [00:54:06] Yeah, got to get another angle. So we’re down the sidewalk and when we arrive on the sidewalk and start playing, the New York City police sergeant comes up to me and the volume is loud and he comes and he says, hey you, hey, buddy, you got to get back on the back on the steps. You don’t have a permit for the sidewalk. And it’s at this point where I remember what Mike said to begin the day. Whatever happens, whatever happens, keep playing. So I’m with my man Mike. I keep playing. And I know..And the cops, like, get back on the steps.
Tom Morello [00:54:38] And now I don’t know if any of you have ever been in trouble with the law, but for those of you who may have, there’s a thing, it’s called I call it like the cop vein. There’s a vein in cops necks and it begins like sort of pulsing when, like, shit’s about to go down and his vein is pulsing, he’s like, get back on the fucking steps right now. And I’m playing and he’s so mad and his vein is so pulsing that he unplugs my guitar. And the music does not stop. And the look on his face is one of like religious terror. It’s like there’s nothing that could add up to this happening. The music couldn’t be playing. He unplugs Timmy’s bass, and it doesn’t turn off. He takes the mic, he’s got the drums. He doesn’t understand how this could possibly happen. It’s like a group of warlocks or something. So anyway, he looks at us and he does, he’s furious. He does the only thing that he can possibly do, which is arrest Michael Moore.
Michael Moore [00:55:43] Yeah. Not arrest you.
Tom Morello [00:55:44] Because we were Warlock’s dude. He’s terrified. This is all in the video, so they put Mike in handcuffs. And as they’re leading him away, we get the third directorial edict of the afternoon, which is to take the New York Stock Exchange. At this point, we’re in for a penny, in for a pound. So we set the guitars down on the stands where they continue to play and we go. Now, the film crew is wholly unprepared for this. This is all extemporaneous. So I’m the first one through the door. The film crew is not there. I’m through the door. There’s a guy like in a frumpy security guy and a frumpy jacket. I’m like, hi, I’m Tom Morello from Rage Against Machine. I’m here to take the New York Stock Exchange. Is that a left or right? And he hits like a panic button and like, the sirens go off and the cops come and the riot police call and they pull down like the riot doors and they expel us from metal doors. They expel us from the building. And for the first time in the 150 year history of the New York Stock Exchange, Capitalism came to a halt on a Tuesday afternoon, thanks to Michael Moore and Rage Against the Machine.
Michael Moore [00:56:57] And still you guys, as those metal things were coming down that metal grate to essentially in tune the stock exchange. You guys slip out. Slip out under the iron gate. And they still don’t arrest you.
Tom Morello [00:57:14] No, they didn’t arrest us. They didn’t arrest us.
Michael Moore [00:57:17] They brought me inside to the police room inside this federal building. And fortunately, I talked my way out of it to the head captain who was there explaining, you know, and I showed him the permit and he didn’t want to get into the weeds of whether we were on the steps or the sidewalk. He was like, this is a federal permit. We’re the federal government. Let him go.
Tom Morello [00:57:41] And somehow we finished the video later that night. But I remember we were all like, we didn’t know if you were like in Attica by that point. We were like, there was a second half of the shoot where we were in suits playing in front of like…
Michael Moore [00:57:57] Like our game show.
Tom Morello [00:57:59] Game show.
Michael Moore [00:57:59] But you’re handing out all of capitalism’s booty.
Tom Morello [00:58:02] Yeah. All right. So that’s my story. What do you got? Can you top that?
Michael Moore [00:58:04] That’s a no. But I will tell you what I thought all through that hassle being handcuffed, everything we went through to make that video that I, I would end up, again, getting an award because I was known.
Tom Morello [00:58:21] Oh, jeez.
Michael Moore [00:58:23] So we are nominated. The band and me. For the MTV Music Video Awards. For the best, one of the best rock videos.
Michael Moore [00:58:36] Who else was there? Limp Bizkit?
Tom Morello [00:58:39] And some other ones.
Tom Morello [00:58:43] Nine Inch Nails maybe.
Michael Moore [00:58:49] So that’s the category. So we went there to Radio City Music Hall that night as one of the five nominees. They sit us really right there in the fifth row. We were close to the stage. Yeah. But then comes the kind of police that I know from my experience, I do not want to have to deal with. And it’s called the Secret Service. Yes. And it’s like, whoah, OK, this is what’s going on here. And in come the Gore daughters. To sit in the front row with the Secret Service who are now just like four rows from us. And I’m thinking, OK, all right. Just we’re all on our P’s and Q’s and with Rage Against the Machine. What could happen? Yeah. What could possibly go wrong?
Tom Morello [00:59:31] What could possibly go wrong?
Michael Moore [00:59:34] So it comes time for our category. And I think, you know, I mean you know, how we all are about these awards. It’s nice, but it’s also a lot of…
Tom Morello [00:59:45] It’s an MTV award.
Tom Morello [00:59:47] It’s MTV. It’s empty. Lots of empty calories in there. Yeah. So they read off the nominees, open up the envelope and I believe it’s Limp Bizkit.
Tom Morello [00:59:57] Yes. Break Stuff. Yeah. Yes.
Michael Moore [01:00:01] Break Stuff. Not us. Tim, the bass player. I’m sitting in between him and Tom. And Tim is upset, instantly ballistic, upset that we did not win and and we’re all like, Timmy, it’s OK, it’s OK, the cameras are on us, keep smiling. And he says, I’m going up to that stage right now. And you said, Tim, that no, that is a bad idea. Brad, too. Usually fairly quiet. No. Everybody, no.
Tom Morello [01:00:42] And then what did you say, Mike?
Michael Moore [01:00:45] I didn’t say anything. I’m not in the band now?
Tom Morello [01:00:47] No.
Michael Moore [01:00:47] He turns to me.
Tom Morello [01:00:47] Yeah, I remember what you said.
Michael Moore [01:00:49] Yeah. He says, Mike. I’ll do whatever you say. You’re the director. I said, you know, it’s not really for me to decide. In Tim’s mind that is a yes.
Tom Morello [01:01:04] No, you said follow your heart, Tim. You said follow your heart.
Michael Moore [01:01:10] What is wrong with that? What is wrong with following your heart? What is the crime I’ve committed here?
Michael Moore [01:01:16] It depends on what’s in your heart.
Michael Moore [01:01:19] Yes. Well, that to him was a yes. And he flew out of his seat. He stepped on the tops of the seats of the next four rows.
Tom Morello [01:01:26] Like a mountain goat,
Michael Moore [01:01:28] Like a mountain goat, not hurting anybody. Boom, boom, boom. All of a sudden, he leaps to the stage.
Tom Morello [01:01:35] In flip flops. And he was wearing flip flops. He was just incredibly agile.
Michael Moore [01:01:42] He may be the most athletic of all rock stars.
Michael Moore [01:01:47] Anyways, he’s on the stage. And there is this giant tower that is there where the microphone is in the podium where you accept your award. And Limp Bizkit is now, they don’t know what’s going on, they made their way to the stage. He is there before them and he has climbed this tower rung by rung by rung. But it’s not a real tower, you know, remember, this is a show.
Tom Morello [01:02:12] Yeah. It’s like Oscar scaffolding.
Michael Moore [01:02:15] There’s nothing behind it. And there’s nothing really holding it up. Yeah. And he is now. My God, Tom, he was at the top
Tom Morello [01:02:22] Like a gargoyle.
Michael Moore [01:02:23] Yes, perched up there, literally perched. That’s right. And yet you can see the tower. Yeah, a little bit of sway to it.
Tom Morello [01:02:32] Unbeknownst to the band.
Michael Moore [01:02:36] So like Limp Bizkit is thinking we’re going to be more than limp in about three seconds here. And everybody’s clearing away, the Secret Service now because that tower could fall on the girls so they now are leaping into action. Yes. And the whole show, they have to switch. It’s a live show. They got to switch to the other side of that. It’s a horrible thing. And finally, enough police, NYPD, state cops, sheriff’s, secret service, the Army National Guard, I don’t know. Everybody was there and they’re ordering him down. He decides that he’s outnumbered as strong as he is. After about a half hour, he goes, oh, yeah, this one in 20 seconds later.
Tom Morello [01:03:18] It was a hostage situation.
Michael Moore [01:03:20] It was a hostage situation. They couldn’t do the show on that side of the stage. That’s right. Finally, he comes down. Oh, boy, when he comes down, those police, knowing the cameras are not on them, went to town for Timmy and dragged him off in a brutal fashion. Yes, you guys did not perform again for many, many, many years. And it was on me because I didn’t tell Timmy no, you cannot go up there, that the band essentially sort of broke up and didn’t play again for…When’s the first time you guys got back together?
Tom Morello [01:04:03] Yeah, it was in 2007. But I wouldn’t blame you for that, Mike. There were a couple of shows after that, but it was, I mean, it was quite, it was quite an enchanted evening.
Michael Moore [01:04:12] Yeah that’s my story of feeling this horrible guilt and responsibility, which I sort of heard in the tone of your voice in the last sentence, that maybe now maybe I finally have been forgiven.
Tom Morello [01:04:26] No, you always implicated yourself. You’re absolved.
Michael Moore [01:04:34] I’m absolved. Oh, my God.
Tom Morello [01:04:35] Timmy was climbing scaffolds like five days a week that just wasn’t on TV. You know, I’m saying like he was always expressing himself.
Michael Moore [01:04:44] Obviously, I must be absolved because just before the pandemic, you guys were going on this incredible tour. It was announced.
Tom Morello [01:04:54] We were about fifteen days away from the first Rage shows in about ten years. And, you know, fingers crossed, pandemic notwithstanding, it’s rebooked for March 2022. So it is. Yeah, it is. I’m hopeful.
Tom Morello [01:05:08] We’ll see how the world is.
Michael Moore [01:05:10] 2022 you mean?
Tom Morello [01:05:11] Sorry, yeah, March 2022.
Michael Moore [01:05:14] We are all still in 2020 by the way. Yes. I understand what you meant.
Tom Morello [01:05:19] We may forever be in 2020.
Michael Moore [01:05:22] Don’t say that but right now at least. Well, March of 2022. Will it be the same kind of tour you were planning?
Tom Morello [01:05:30] Yeah, it’s the same. If we basically sort of moved, we moved it one year then we moved it another year.
Michael Moore [01:05:34] So hopefully that tour we may have a chance to see. If we get everybody vaccinated.
Tom Morello [01:05:41] Yeah well yeah. I mean that my hope is, you know, hope that we’re able to do it. Like, I love playing rock and roll shows and I love the joy of them and the celebration of resistance or the rock power. But I want it to be something where you play a show and somebody goes home and kills their grandparents because of what somebody coughed Covid in their mouth. You know, I mean, it just feels weird to me. So I just want to do it at such a time where it feels safe and for everybody. Band, crew and fans. Right.
Michael Moore [01:06:14] Well, I hope that’s the case. I hope everybody’s listening. I hope you can convince the people you love and that, you know, you work with whatever to get this [01:06:23]vaccine. Well, [0.1s] I hope people enjoyed those stories. We have many more that we could tell. Some of it, in fact, I’m going to come on your podcast…
Tom Morello [01:07:17] Yeah, yeah,
Michael Moore [01:07:19] When am I scheduled for that?
Tom Morello [01:07:20] I think maybe later this week. I’m not even sure. But my podcast is called Maximum Firepower and we may replay one or two of these stories on there, but we’ll also talk about some fresh material as well.
Michael Moore [01:07:30] Yeah. So Maximum Firepower is Tom’s podcast. And look for me sometime in the next week to 10 days, I’m thinking, yeah.
Tom Morello [01:07:38] We’re going to record it, then, it may come out later,
Michael Moore [01:07:42] OK, so sometime in the near future. Yeah. You can hear me on Maximum Firepower with Tom Morello. You know, Tom, if I can say this, it’s personally it’s great, it’s a great thing that you’re in this world. You really have been an inspiration to me. You are a good soul. We didn’t even get into, so we’ll do this again some of the time…but the fact that your father, your grandfather, your great, your great uncle. These were people who were part of the revolution that created a free Kenya. And it’s such a great story to talk about some time, how your father was the first ambassador to the United Nations. Right. From Kenya.
Tom Morello [01:08:29] And then he was the ambassador to England for eight years.
Michael Moore [01:08:33] And Kenyatta, who’s the first president and considered one of the obviously critical founders of the country, was your great, great uncle. Great uncle.
Tom Morello [01:08:43] My dad’s uncle.
Michael Moore [01:08:44] On your dad’s side, yes. Oh, that’s so incredible. You have such good people in your family from that. But also your mom. Your mom is so great. And, you know, I hope I get to see her again sometime soon. The fact that you would have both your mother and your mother in law living there. I’ve never met Denise’s mother, but I’m assuming she’s Denise 1.0.
Tom Morello [01:09:10] That might not be. Sometimes the apple falls a little further away from the tree.
Michael Moore [01:09:13] OK, so. So we won’t get into that. We’ll leave that for Dr. Phil. Yes. But no, but of course, I mean, if you do not know, he has Denise and his two wonderful sons. But this is just an incredible family. So much love. You walk into that house and hats off to you again, Tom, for who you are, how you’ve lived your life, and how you have not given up in terms of the literal rebellion that we all must be part of to save this democracy, to make the country what it never was. I’ve said on this podcast many times that my mission is to save the America we’ve never had.
Tom Morello [01:09:59] Yeah, exactly.
Michael Moore [01:10:00] Exactly. And you have been doing that for so many years. And my love and my thanks to you for doing that.
Tom Morello [01:10:08] Well, same back Mike. I appreciate you and our friendship and all of your great work through the years. And I hope we get to hang out in person again soon, whether I’m in New York or Michigan.
Michael Moore [01:10:20] Likewise. It’s got to happen because I, you know, at least you have people there with you.
Tom Morello [01:10:27] I know. I mean I mean any time you want to Face Time like the gang, though. We’re here. I’ll introduce you to my wife’s mom. Grandmother Ellie. She’s a fireplug, she’d like to meet you.
Michael Moore [01:10:37] Oh, well. And I will send a video to you and to Timmy of me climbing the walls here in this apartment.
Tom Morello [01:10:43] Oh my gosh. I feel for you, man.
Michael Moore [01:10:48] I’ve had it. I’ve absolutely had it.
Tom Morello [01:10:50] I understand.
Michael Moore [01:10:50] All right, everybody, you’ve been here on this episode with one of my good friends and one of the great people in this country, Tom Morello, one of the co-founders of Rage Against the Machine, The Night Watchman, Audioslave. But this is a great new album, The Atlas Underground Fire. Give it a listen as soon as it’s out in October. And listen to the ones that I’m going to play for you here on this podcast page tomorrow. I love you. I love Denise and Brad and Timmy and Zach and everybody. Thanks for being here.
Tom Morello [01:11:50] Love you too, buddy. Thanks very much.
Michael Moore [01:11:52] All right. Take care.
Tom Morello [01:11:53] Cheers.
Michael Moore [01:11:54] All right, Tom Morello. Well, that’s our episode here on Rumble with Michael Moore. Thank you, everybody, for listening. Thanks to my executive producer, Basel Hamdan, our editor and sound engineer, Nick Kwas, everybody who gives me a hand in in making this podcast what it is, and all of you who listen to it, my gratitude. [01:12:15]And [0.0s] sign up for my Substack, it’s free. That way, I will email you this podcast every week and you can just click the play button and boom, you’re on. So please do that. Just go to MichaelMoore.com. Put your email address. Mark, the free box. And it’s all [01:12:33]yours. OK, [0.0s] we’re done for this week, man. So much still going on in this country, in the world. So I’m just not going to get into it again because that just drives me crazy listening to the news media talk about Biden and how he botched the Afghanistan evacuation. And he’s not getting the Democrats together. That’s the Democrats fault. That’s those so-called moderates in the House, in the Senate, if you’re listening, if your staff is listening, come on, we, the American people, you have to pass both of these infrastructure bills, both of them.
Michael Moore [01:13:19] You have to take the money from the rich and the money from the Pentagon and pay for this damn stuff because this country is falling apart. Quit messing around. Let’s get this legislation passed. Everybody, listening to this, let your members of Congress and your Senators know you will not tolerate anything other than the passage of both infrastructure bills at the amount that the president has said this is what’s going to fix this country. Come on, everybody.
Michael Moore [01:13:50] All right. We’ll talk to you next week here on Rumble with Michael Moore. Be well.