Thursday, November 12, 2020

"Shakey" Ground: Neil Young 75

It's Thursday and time for a pretty obvious milestone birthday post.

Reading the myriad tributes around the web, it's difficult to really add much.

What can be said? This guy is in the Hall of Fame in Cleveland like 12 times over.

Some folks think he's the single greatest songwriter of all time.

That's a bold statement, but in this case it's not an exaggeration by any means.

In 55 years at it, he's maintained a level of quality and commitment few performers ever approach.

So many great records, it's equally as difficult to pick one above all the rest... especially when there's so many styles and flavors to choose from.

If anyone can name a music person more accomplished and respected than Neil Young -- born this day in 1945 -- I'd love to hear who it might be.
To celebrate his 75th correctly, we have got the definitive dub of one of the greatest bootlegs of all time.
This one circulated for years from a somewhat noisy, digitally artifactual tape on many boot LPs and CDs since the 1970s, but our esteemed colleagues at the JEMS project dug out the source tape -- from which all iterations of it appear to have sprung -- a few years back and trust me, you won't be needing another version until Neil himself kicks it down as part of his Archive series.

Neil Young & Crazy Horse 
Auditorium Theatre
Chicago, IL 

01 Heart of Gold 
02 The Old Laughing Lady 
03 Journey Through the Past 
04 Too Far Gone 
05 Give Me Strength 
06 The Needle and the Damage Done 
07 A Man Needs a Maid 
08 Tell Me Why 
09 Sugar Mountain 
10 Country Home 
11 Don't Cry No Tears 
12 Peace of Mind 
13 Lotta Love 
14 Like a Hurricane 
15 After the Gold Rush 
16 Are You Ready for the Country?

Total time: 1:24:17
disc break goes after Track 09

Neil Young - vocals, guitar, piano, organ, banjo & harmonica 
Frank Sampedro - guitar, keyboards & vocals 
Billy Talbot - bass & vocals 
Ralph Molina - drums & vocals

JEMS edition of the classic soundboard-sourced bootleg; 
possibly the master or 1st gen cassette from which all copies have flowed
track markers moved to begin with actual music by EN, November 2020

I know the JEMS lads hate when you alter their stuff, but I couldn't resist moving the track markers in this one so that they'd begin with actual music and not 90 seconds of stoned stage banter every tune.

Other than that, nothing was changed except titling and tagging the files and making that cool thumbnail above the tracklist there.

I shall return in a few days with more November rain, falling like platinum petals on your eardrums.
For now, things are not Too Far Gone to wish Neil Young the best 75th b'day possible, are they?--J.