Archive for Crosby Stills Nash & Young

Your Sister’s (Record) Rack: Graham Nash & David Crosby

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , on September 12, 2010 by 30daysout

Back to albums after playing all of my sister’s singles over the past few weeks … Let’s start with an easy one, an album you may have heard back in the day but now it’s rather hard to find: Graham Nash David Crosby, from 1972.

By 1970, one of the biggest bands in the world was Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young – comprising David Crosby (formerly of the Byrds), Graham Nash (the Hollies), Stephen Stills and Neil Young (both ex-Buffalo Springfield).  Probably the best example of a “supergroup,” the quartet released the monster hit Déjà Vu in 1970 and mounted a massive tour.  The four then went their separate ways and each cut a solo LP that got a lot of attention.  Then Nash and Crosby decided to team up, each bringing to the table their respective strengths: Crosby’s introspective, moody and (sometimes) dense music and lyrics, and Nash’s knack for catchy pop melodies.

Like they had done when cutting their respective solo LPs, Nash/Crosby invited the cream of L.A.’s session players to join them on the album.  The Section, an aggregate of players that included bass player Leland Sklar, pianist Craig Doerge, guitarist Danny Kortchmar and drummer Russell Kunkel, backed the singers on most of the album.  One song, Crosby’s “The Wall Song,” had backing from the Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia, Bill Kreutzmann and Phil Lesh, while Garcia played pedal steel on “Southbound Train” by Nash.  Guitarist Dave Mason, now solo after his stint in Traffic, played the tasty lead guitar on “Immigration Man,” which was the first single from the album.

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Back To The Garden?

Posted in News with tags , , , on August 8, 2009 by 30daysout
stills2If you didn’t know – or care – this year happens to be the 40th anniversary of Woodstock.  Last year we were kind of kicking around ideas for a family vacation, and when we learned that my wife and daughter would be unavailable to travel in August 2009, I had a flash: “Let’s go to Woodstock!”  So my son and I planned to make a pilgrimage this summer.  We dreamed that maybe some of the old performers would be at a 40th anniversary concert, and maybe some of the dudes who were around in 1969 but didn’t make it Woodstock might even show (Dylan, Led Zeppelin, maybe even a Beatle or two).

But ah, that was just a dream.  Reality is always much uglier: even before Hendrix played his final notes in that farm pasture 40 years ago, promoters sensed something was in the air – and it wasn’t the stench of weed and unwashed bodies.  They smelled money.  And four decades later, the aroma is as powerful and enticing as ever.  Woodstock is a brand, the New York Times tells us, and of course this summer there’s going to be a Woodstock ’09: in San Francisco, in Connecticut, in Germany and possibly even in New York City.

And surely there will be some kind of observance August 15-17 at the original site, which is not in Woodstock, N.Y. at all, but in the town of Bethel.  There’s a big arts center and museum on the original Woodstock festival site and you can bet they’ll observe those three days somehow.  Whichever one you choose, it will certainly cost you (even though the NYC event promoter is promising a “free” show.  Right.)

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Review: “Déjà Vu Live,” Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

Posted in Review with tags , , , , on July 29, 2008 by 30daysout

With the 40th anniversary of Woodstock looming for next year, expect to see some of the original participants (those who are still alive, that is) making themselves a little more high profile.  Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young enter the sweepstakes a year early with Déjà Vu Live, the soundtrack to Neil Young’s documentary movie about a recent CSN&Y tour. 

What made this tour different was that they chose to perform many of their politically and socially relevant tunes, including “Teach Your Children,” “For What It’s Worth” and “Wooden Ships.”  So far, so good – however, more than half the songs on this album are selections from Young’s ultra-political album Living With War, and that effectively turns the rest of the band into his backing group.

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