Neil Young (born Neil Percival Young, 12.11.1945) Neil Young is a Canadian, internationally-renowned singer and songwriter who rose to fame in the 1960s as part of the groups Buffalo Springfield and Crosby Stills Nash & Young.
Biography: Neil Young was born in Toronto. His father, Scott Young was a novelist and sportswriter. His mother, Edna Ragland (Rassy) was also an aspiring sports journalist.
Neil Young walks with a slight limp, as a result of having polio as a child. When he was 12, his parents divorced and he moved with his mother to Winnipeg. It was here that he formed his first band, The Jades. He later met Ken Koblun, who encouraged him to join The Squires. The Squires had a hit, locally, entitled 'The Sultan'. Whilst they were in Thunder Bay, Neil Young met Stephen Stills and Randy Bachman for the first time.
Young wrote some of his early folk tracks after leaving The Squires, such as 'Sugar Mountain'. Joni Mitchell wrote 'The Circle Game' as a response to the track.
In 1966, Young joined the Mynah Birds, fronted by Rick James. They signed to Motown briefly, before James was arrested for being AWOL for the US Army.
Buffalo Springfield: In Los Angeles, Neil Young formed Buffalo Springfield with Stephen Stills, Bruce Palmer, Richie Furay and Dewey Martin. Their mix of psychedelia, folk and country led to them becoming very popular, especially after the release of 'For What It's Worth'.
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young / Solo Career
When Buffalo Springfield disbanded, Neil Young signed a solo deal with Reprise Records, sharing his manager, Elliot Roberts, with Joni Mitchell. Young's eponymous debut album was released in 1968, to mixed reviews.
For his second album, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, Young recruited Ralph Molina, Danny Whitten and Billy Talbot to be his backing band. The band took on the name Crazy Horse. The album featured the iconic songs 'Cinnamon Girl' and 'Down by the River'.
Following the release of the album, Neil Young re-joined Stephen Stills, as well as David Crosby and Graham Nash, who had already recorded as a trio. The quartet performed at 1969's Woodstock festival. They recorded an album, Déjà Vu, but Young and Stills fought for control and argued often. They wrote the song 'Ohio' following the Kent State massacre in May 1970.
1970 also saw Neil Young release his third solo album, After the Gold Rush, featuring Nils Lofgren. Crazy Horse left the Neil Young stable and landed their own record deal, so Young recruited a new group of session musicians, called The Stray Gators.
His next album, Harvest was a global hit, with 'Heart of Gold' becoming his first US number one single. 'The Needle and the Damage Done', an account of the damage of heroin use, is another popular song from Harvest.
Time Fades Away was written after Danny Whitten's death from a heroin overdose. He toured the album with Linda Ronstadt as the opener. This was followed by the highly acclaimed Tonight's The Night and On the Beach.
Neil Young's next acoustic album was Homegrown, a highly personal album that reflected on his break-up from Carrie Snodgress.
For Zuma, Young was reunited with Crazy Horse, with Frank Sampedro on guitar. The album featured 'Cortez the Killer'
In 1976, Neil Young starred in The Last Waltz, the concert footage produced by Martin Scorsese. The concert also featured The Band, Eric Clapton and Van Morrison.
The song 'Like A Hurricane' was one of the most popular songs from Young's 1977 album American Stars 'N Bars. The following year, he released Comes A Time, featuring Nicolette Larson and Crazy Horse.
The 'Rust Never Sleeps' tour was recorded and released in audio and video format as Live Rust. The Album Rust Never Sleeps was Rolling Stone magazine's Album of the Year in 1979.
Though Neil Young's influence never waned during the 1980s, his own career wavered somewhat as he experimented with synthesizers, vocoders and electronic music. It took many years for Re-ac-tor and Trans to be recognized with any degree of acclaim. The release of Trans, coupled with an album of rockabilly covers entitled Everybody's Rockin' caused David Geffen (the head of Young's record label at the time) to sue Neil Young for making music that was 'unrepresentative' of himself.
It wasn't until 1989 with the release of 'Rockin in the Free World' (taken from the album Freedom) that Young's career began to hit its stride once more. An album released the same year highlighted Young's influence over younger musicians, especially in the emerging grunge scene. The Bridge: A Tribute To Neil Young featured covers of his music performed by Dinosaur Jr., Nick Cave, The Pixies and Sonic Youth. Kurt Cobain of Nirvana was also vocal in appreciation of Young's music. In 1990, Young toured his Ragged Glory with the punk bands Social Distortion and Sonic Youth in support. A later album, Sleeps With Angels was inspired by the death of Cobain. Then, in 1995, Young recorded the album Mirror Ball with Pearl Jam.
Young returned to country and folk with 1992's Harvest Moon, which featured Linda Ronstadt and James Taylor. In 1995, following the death of Young's longtime producer, David Briggs, Young and Crazy Horse reconvened and recorded Broken Arrow. Jim Jarmusch directed the accompanying film, Year of the Horse.
2000 onwards has seen Neil Young's music career go through peaks and troughs. In 2005, he was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm whilst he worked on his Prairie Wind album.
In 2006, Young released an overtly political album criticizing George W. Bush. The album was entitled Living With War and featured the track 'Let's Impeach the President'.
Yes you read it right, apparently Bono once thought he had some songwriting wisdom to impart on Neil Young.
You might have felt angry last month when Bono gave you his new album without asking if you'd wanted it first. But imagine how Neil Young felt when the U2 frontman offered him some unsolicited songwriting advice?
During an appearance on the Howard Stern Show yesterday (October 14th) the legendary singer recalled the time that Bono gave him advice about how to write a hit song.
Neil Young and Pegi Young are to divorce.
Legendary singer-songwriter Neil Young and his wife Pegi Young are to divorce after 36 years of marriage. Documents were filed at the Superior Court of San Mateo County on July 29.
Pegi Young and Neil Young are to divorce [Getty/Larry Bussaca]
The pair have lived in their home in La Honda, northern California, for years though Neil has toured the world extensively.
Continue reading: Don't Let It Bring You Down: Neil Young and Pegi Young to Divorce
Neil and Pegi Young have separated after 36 years of married. A divorce petition was filed in July and a hearing is set for the end of this year.
Neil Young and his wife of 36 years Pegi Young have separated and Neil has filed for divorce, according to numerous media outlets.
Neil and Pegi Young have split up after 36 years of marriage.
Continue reading: Neil & Pegi Young Separate After 36 Years - Divorce Papers Filed
The cancelled festival is the perfect example of the potential pitfalls of crowdfunding campaigns.
Crowdfunding has altered the landscape of contemporary culture, overwhelmingly for the better. No longer are fans subject to the whims of record labels and their increasingly focussed budget. For fans, the power is in their hands and they can directly contribute to ventures of their favourite acts bands, fund the continuation of their best-loved shows and play their part in the investment of innovative technologies. The successes are widespread- from Amanda Palmer’s well reported project to fund a new record, tour and book to the Veronica Mars movie project and Neil Young’s Pono high quality music player, crowdfunding is increasingly the source of cultural revolution.
Marilyn Manson pulled out of the event after cancellation rumours took hold.
But for every project that far exceeds its stated aims, there’s one that fall flat on its face. Former teen TV star Melissa Joan Hart raised a paltry $51,000 out of her stated aim of $2 million for a romantic comedy called Darci’s Walk Of Shame. In contrast, Kristen Bell’s Veronica Mars project reached its $2 million target in just 12 hours. And now another aborted project can be added to the list of abject crowdfunding failures. The three day event, which was due take place on August 15-17th in Kettering, sold a not too shabby amount of tickets- 7,500- but this was far from enough to make the event financially viable. What’s more, only £61,000 of a projected £1.2 million was raised through Kickstarter, far from enough to pay for headliners Marilyn Manson and Gary Numan. The problems that befell the event highlight the very facts that drive a crowdfunding project into the ground.
Continue reading: Where Did It All Go Wrong For Alt-Fest's Crowdfunding Campaign?
Neil Young obliterated his PonoPlayer Kickstarter target this week.
Neil Young was only looking for $800,000 to launch his new Pono Player, but his Kickstarter goal was obliterated in less than 24 hours this week, pulling in $6.2 million. Young's music player - which promises higher-quality sound than any of its competitors - is now the third biggest Kickstarter campaign in history.
Neil Young Is Launching the PonoPlayer
"You have helped to set the stage for a revolution in music listening," Young wrote on the campaign's homepage on Tuesday, "Finally, quality enters the listening space so that we can all hear and feel what the artists created, the way they heard and felt it."
Continue reading: Neil Young's Pono Player Raises $6.2 Million, But Will We Buy It?
Hear the electric 'High Ball Stepper' from Jack White's upcoming record.
Jack White has released the first track from his upcoming second solo album, Lazaretto, which will be released this June. The instrumental new song, titled 'High Ball Stepper,' is undeniably Jack White in its screeching guitar riff and rock groove and forecasts more exciting sounds for the record's summer release.
Jack White Has Shared 'High Ball Stepper' From His New Album, 'Lazaretto.'
White hasn't specified whether Lazaretto will be purely an instrumental album. Instead, he told Rolling Stone last year that "[The new album's] not one sound, it's definitely several. I don't pick my style and then write a song. I just write whatever comes out of me."
Continue reading: Jack White Releases First Track From New Album, 'Lazaretto' [Video]
Will we all be moving for Ipods to Pono players in the future?
Yesterday Neil Young launched his Pono player on crowd funding platform, Kickstarter, and well it didn't take long before the musician managed to surpass his monetary goal. Less than 10 hours after unveiling his ‘Pono player’, Young's campaign raised the $800,000 they needed , that’s some pretty fast work. But can the player really rival the mighty iPod or is Young just cashing in on his musical credibility to make a few extra bucks?
Neil Young, he's got a new toy that could replace the Ipod
The ‘Pono player’ campaign video looks pretty impressive. Alongside Young himself there’s many other famous faces gushing about how great the sound quality is, especially in their cars. Bruce Springsteen, Jack White, Dave Grohl and the Arcade Fire, are just some of the names enlisted by Young to talk about his new venture. But, hey, if Neil Young asks you to do something you pretty much have to.
Continue reading: Can Neil Young's Pono Player Really Rival The iPod?
Neil Young is taking on the Apple iPod with his Pono Player.
Nope, we promise we haven't formed a news story from a selection of random rock legends, and musical devices. Neil Young has launched his first 'Pono' music player - an alternative to the iPod - via crowdfunding website Kickstarter.
Neil Young Is Taking On Apple
Young posted a video featuring fans like Jack White, Arcade Fire and Mumford & Sons, promising a high-fidelity alternative to Apple's music player and promising that it helps convey "the feeling, spirit, and emotion that the artists put in their original studio recordings".
Continue reading: Neil Young Crowdfunding Alernative to the iPod. Think About That.
Neil Young and The National on the same bill? We're sold.
Neil Young Is Heading to London's Hyde Park
The veteran Canadian singer-songwriter will headline the gig on July 12, with support provided by The National, Tom Odell, Caitlin Rose, Phosphorescent and Flyte. Tickets were will be on pre-sale for Barclaycard customers at 9am on December 11, while a further pre-sale will go ahead on December 12. Tickets will be on general release from 9am on December 13.
Continue reading: Neil Young To Play London Shows with The National. Permission to Drool.
Sting, Alabama Shakes, Neil Young, Elton John Mumford & Sons and John Legend all paid tribute to Bruce Springsteen as he was named Musicares Person of the Year for 2013 at last night's pre-Grammy award show.
The event recognises a star's philanthropic work as well as their efforts as an artist, something that "The Boss" - as Springsteen has become known - can't separate. "Whatever philanthropy I've ever done usually involved playing the guitar," he said. "I was going to play the guitar anyway." In attendance were some previous honourees: Natalie Cole, Tony Bennett and Bonnie Raitt. Springsteen is a deserving honoree "because he lives his life in such an exemplary way," Raitt said before the gala. "He's committed to his art. He's a good family man. He's a real inspiration for how to give back. I couldn't fault him in any aspect of his life."
Springsteen said of receiving the award, "It's kind of a freaky experience. This is the huge Italian wedding Patti and I never had. I had one of the loveliest nights of my life ...John Legend made me sound like Gershwin. Neil Young made me sound like the Sex Pistols. What a night." He also talked about the power and magic of music, adding, "The Taliban will never win, not now or ever, by banning music and dancing. The minute you do that, you label yourself a tyrant and your cruel days are numbered."