Richard Goldstein can pinpoint the very minute his rock 'n' roll writing career lost its pulse.
Caleb Ferguson for the Village Voice Richard Goldstein at home in Manhattan
It was back in 1970, six years after he'd started contributing to the Village Voice as its first rock critic. Having amassed a small library of conversations, ruminations, and eyewitness accounts regarding some of the Sixties' most pivotal moments in popular music under his byline, Goldstein was hardly in a position to be turning away from his work, but an event rocked him so deeply that he found it difficult — no, impossible — to pick up the pen and do the job he basically created. Janis Joplin, whom Goldstein had come to know and befriend following her and her soaring — albeit brief — run with Big Brother and the Holding Company, was found dead of an apparent heroin overdose in her Los Angeles hotel room at the age of 27. For him, that's when the music — or, specifically, writing about music — died.More »