Morning Music: Neil Young

Harvest - Neil YoungI long kind of hated Neil Young’s voice. But he is such an amazingly great musician and songwriter and after a while, the voice sounds kind of great. It’s like being in love and not noticing that, actually, she’s objectively ugly. But obviously, she is beautiful in a more profound way. Ultimately, Neil Young’s voice is lovely for the same reason anything is: because it is comfortable with itself. It doesn’t need fancy arrangements or digital processing.

Here is the first track of his 1972 album Harvest, “Out on the Weekend.” That seems appropriately strange to make up for last Monday when we did I Don’t Like Mondays.

4 thoughts on “Morning Music: Neil Young

  1. In Scorsese’s film “The Last Waltz,” they actually had to use ILM to remove a giant coke booger from Young’s nose.

    Like Merle Haggard, Young had some sympathies for right-wing voters once upon a time, and has 100% come to his senses since.

    I generally hate rock concerts — they’re about sharing one’s love of music with others, and I am not a public person. But a friend got me free tickets to see Young in 1991, and it blew me away. Half the show was an anti-Iraq war screed, noisy feedback guitars mimicking gunshots and artillery fire. I didn’t know much in 1991, but I knew Neil Young was right and the war wrong.

    (It helped that the arena was pretty empty, so I could hide up in the rafters and watch Neil/Crazy Horse blow the stage away. I’m not a public person.)

    • I’m with you. I always wondered why I should pay more to see someone live than it would cost just to buy their album and listen to over and over — alone or with people I actually know.

      But another issue is that I think a lot of musicians put on bad shows. Either put on a show or just play music. But get it together. Tomorrow, we have Charlie Parr — almost 30 minutes of him. A nice thing about “one guy” is that there is no fussing. Play, thank you, play, thank you, play…

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