Friday, May 29, 2009

Number 391 - Neil Young


Number 391

Neil Young

"The Loner"

(1968)
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Genre: Rock
the loner by Sayuri-Mae
Here is something that might be of interest to all Neil Young fans ... The 4 things you didn't know [well, might not know] about Neil Young ~ Enjoy.
1. He owns Hank Williams' guitar. Neil Young is, quite obviously, a Hank Williams fan, and he's owned one of Hank Williams' guitars for about thirty years. Young told Guitar Player Magazine, " It's an old Martin D-28. I bought it from Tut Taylor. It's always great when someone understands what this is that they're holding, who understands the effect Hank Williams had on all of us. They are sort of awestruck by being in the presence of anything that he touched---to the point that to actually play his instrument elevates them to another level. It's a wonderful thing to have a guitar for that reason. A lot of people who should have played it, have played it. I'm careful about it, but I use it all the time. It's not on a wall in a museum."
It's my guitar buddy
2. He's a train freak. Model trains, that is, to the point of owning part of the Lionel Train company, at least until the company was dissolved. According to Wikipedia , his current status with the company is unknown, but Young is certainly a dedicated fan of the pastime.
3. Neil Young's sons have cerebral palsy. Neil Young himself is a fairly private individual, which is why this fact receives little focus in his music or in interviews, nor should it, but Young's albums Reactor and Trans were written when his son Ben was in a rigorous training program to help with his condition, as Young told Village Voice . Young said, "People completely misunderstood Trans. They put me down for fuckin' around with things I shouldn't have been involved with. Well, fuck them. But it hurt, because this was for my kid."
4. In 2005, Young had a brain aneurysm. He had to be rushed to the hospital, and had to undergo serious surgery to correct the issue. Young told Reader's Digest , "I had to sit down because the room wasn't easy to deal with. The left-hand side was getting bigger, the right-hand side was getting smaller, and I was not able to see much." After surgery to correct the aneurysm, Young wrote his album "Prairie Wind." ~ [Source: http://www.associatedcontent.com/]
art by AaronO
On his songs for Buffalo Springfield, Neil Young had demonstrated an eclecticism that ranged from the rock of "Mr. Soul" to the complicated, multi-part arrangement of "Broken Arrow." On his debut solo album, he continued to work with composer/arranger Jack Nitzsche, with whom he had made "Expecting to Fly" on the Buffalo Springfield Again album, and together the two recorded a restrained effort on which the folk-rock instrumentation, most of which was by Young, overdubbing himself, was augmented by discreet string parts. The country & western elements that had tinged the Springfield's sound were also present, notably on the leadoff track, "The Emperor of Wyoming," an instrumental that recalled the Springfield song "A Child's Claim to Fame." Still unsure of his voice, Young sang in a becalmed high tenor that could be haunting as often as it was listless and whining. He was at his least appealing on the nine-and-a-half-minute closing track, "The Last Trip to Tulsa," on which he accompanied himself with acoustic guitar, singing an impressionistic set of lyrics seemingly derived from Bob Dylan's Highway 61 Revisited. But double-tracking and the addition of a female backup chorus improved the singing elsewhere, and on "The Loner," the album's most memorable track, Young displayed some of the noisy electric guitar work that would characterize his recordings with Crazy Horse and reminded listeners of his ability to turn a phrase. Still, Neil Young made for an uneven, low-key introduction to Young's solo career, and when released it was a commercial flop, his only album not to make the charts. (Several months after the album's release, Young remixed it to bring out his vocals more and added some overdubs. This second version replaced the first in the U.S. from then on, though the original mix remained available overseas.) ~ [William Ruhlmann, All Music Guide]
For more Neil Young see Number 417, #479, #677 & #938
For Bob Dylan see Number 491, #841 & #929
What does RS think about [again] Mr young?
This album by Neil Young (formerly of the Buffalo Springfield) and various friends is a flowing tributary from the over-all Springfield river of twangs, breathless vocals and slim yet stout instrumentation. Especially vivid is Young's sense of melancholy and the ingenious clusters of images he employs in his lyrics (printed in full). In particular, one could very easily view this disc as an extension of Young's work on the Buffalo Springfield Again album, especially his compositions "Expecting to Fly" and the gaping "Broken Arrow." which closes the album.
the loner in life
"The Loner" is a contemporary lament that features a nice blending of Neil's guitar with strings in non-obtrusive fashion, allowing Young's balanced ice-pick vocal to chip effectively at the listener. The stance and imagery are much the same as in the earlier "Expecting to Fly." "The Last Trip to Tulsa" closes the album. It is nine minutes long and is the most stylistic, anti-Springfield piece on the album. Here we have only Young's chameleon voice and guitar—no strings, drums or piano. It proceeds to build from verse to verse—the vocal gets wider, the guitar more abandoned, more wanton. An innovative close to, in many ways, a delightful reprise of that Springfield sound done a new way. ~ [Source: Rolling Stone 1969]
Rolling Stone magazine deemed their '391st Song of all Time' was "Band of Gold" by Freda Payne. Freda Payne has not appeared in The Definitive 1000 of All Time.
Other songs with reference to Neil Young #398, #413, #421, #440, #495, #537, #558, #573, #589, #610, #616, #617, #650, #655, #660, #665, #703, #728, #738, #770, #797, #827, #828, #858, #899, #975, #980
Rolling Stone Top 500 Songs ranked this song at Number (We like him, doesn't mean we are pissing in his pocket) and the Album ranked at Number (Well OK, just a little bit)
This song has a total Definitive rating of 79.2 out of 108

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