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Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Archives Vol.01 1963-1972: Let The Speculation Continue


Over the years, many Neil Young fans have cursed: The Archives Be Damned.

Still, the question has always remained: "When -- if ever -- will the Archives be released?"

It looks like Neil fans are another step closer with a new Archives page on the Reprise Records website. The site features a tantalizing trailer for the 8 CD, 2 DVD, and 150 page booklet for The Archives Volume #1: 1963 - 1972.

Over the years there has been a tremendous amount of speculation over what exactly will be on the Archives. Various theories abound like that it will be similar to the Buffalo Springfield box set or that it will be all unreleased material or that it will be all live or even re-mastered released albums. But no one seems to really know. But we have lots of clues...

In discussing the vision for the Archives, Neil said in a 2005 interview on Prairie Wind Companion CD:
NEIL YOUNG: It, there's I think four or five volumes. And Volume One is an eight-disk set from 1963 to 1973. You know, it has film of performances. It has my earliest recordings, um, released and unreleased recordings from 1963 on. It has, uh, uh, a performance series and now they may be sold separately, one or two of them, but, uh, there is a spot for them in the box, and you can just slip them in there.

So and, uh, it, it's coming out on CD and it's coming out on DVD. And I recommend the DVD because it has got much better sound and it has of course it has film. It has, it has an actual filing cabinet you can go into and, and get all of the documentation of all of these. The original lyric sheets, all the original stuff that goes with everything. It's kind of like a museum. That's a, it's a virtual, uh, museum filing, filing system.

And you just go through the, open up the door and file through it. Find a song, lift it out, read everything about it. You can read newspapers that were at that time, reviews of it when it came out, the original manuscript, pictures, all this stuff. If there's any film or video from those, from that era, chronologically, it's all chronological. Everything is in order. You can find anything you want.

And see how songs that were, uh, released on albums years later were actually recorded at a different time. And so it, it gives you another slant on the way things were. It tells you what albums these things came out on. It gives you the full picture of what happened from chronologically, rather than the records I produced.

JODY DENBERG: And the films, like, uh, Human Highway or Muddy Track, would they be a part of it?

NEIL YOUNG: They'll all be part of it.

From Rolling Stone interview on the Archives:
"It starts with my earliest recordings in 1963,' says Young. 'Then several recordings with a group called the Squires, into the earliest Buffalo Springfield stuff. Then there's a live record culled from a week's worth of performances at the Riverboat in Toronto."

So what else can we expect from The Archives? Apparently, Easter Eggs, Virtual Bongs, & BlueRay DVDs?!
"Young says he has been working on the project constantly, but "I wanted to wait until the right technology was around to make it the way I saw it. With BlueRay DVD technology, I've created this time line on the discs that will take you through the entire story, putting everything on there that's relevant."

Included, says Young, are "I Wonder," cut with the Squires and later retooled as "Don't Cry No Tears" for his album "Zuma"; demos he cut for Elektra records in 1965; outtakes from his classic "After the Goldrush" LP; and "a 16-minute live version of 'Cowgirl in the Sand' that's pretty cool."

Asked by director Jonathan Demme if there will be any "Easter eggs," the term given to hidden material on the DVD, Young says, "We're trying to figure out how you hit on something from about 1967 and get a virtual bong. To enhance your listening pleasure."

From Peter Hund's Good New Music:
"[Live at the Fillmore East 1970] is also a clue to how the archival material Young’s been promising for 16 years will shape up: Good New Music has it from a reliable source that the Performance Series will not supplant the much-anticipated archival box set series Young has mentioned, contrary to speculation on fan websites and blogs. The Neil Young Archives multibox set is still in the works, with the first of four boxes slated for fall 2007.

Each of the four boxes will be a chronological volume of previously released and unreleased live and studio songs (including some that have never been on record), according to the source. As Young has said, all the songs will be presented in the order they were recorded, but listeners also will be able to hear unreleased albums such as “Homegrown” in their entirety.

Installments in the Performance Series will be chronologically numbered, some released individually, others as bonus discs in the archival box sets. “Fillmore” is Disc 02 in the series. Only Young knows what Disc 01 will be, the source said, “and he ain’t talking!”"

In an interview with Spin Magazine (11/95), Young says of The Archives: "From the worst piece of shit to the best thing I ever did--you make the choice." Which reminds us of comments made in Shakey biography by Jimmy McDonough:
"Y'know, I don't give a shit whether anybody BUYS it or not. I just wanna do it. And there may only be two hundred copies, signed by me. But it's gonna fuckin' exist. When it's done, people can do whatever the fuck they want, make any fuckin' order they want out of it. But they're gonna have the whole fuckin' thing to choose from. They're not gonna get part of it. Everything-the good, the bad, the ugly.

So you know the difference. Some of it is good, some of it is crap that wasn't released-there's a reason. Take a look, see what it is. That's what a fuckin' archive is about, not "Here's Neil Young in all his wonderfulness-the great, phenomenal fucking wonderfulness." That's not what I want.

I want people to know how fuckin' terrible I was. How scared I was and how great I was. The real picture-that's what I'm looking for. Not a product. And I think that's what the die-hard fans want - the whole fuckin' thing."


Also, see:
- Archives Announcement at Sun JavaOne Conference Keynote with Neil Young

- The Archives Turns Fans Blu

- Coverage of Archives Announcement at JavaOne Conference


At 3/11/2007 02:27:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think this will be like the Buffalo Springfield box set. A chronological order of the songs - live and studio. But I'm probably wrong.

At 3/11/2007 02:50:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It has, uh, uh, a performance series and now they may be sold separately, one or two of them, but, uh, there is a spot for them in the box, and you can just slip them in there."

I hope this is true, for I will be rather upset since I paid around $50 bucks for Fillmore East and Massey Hall and then may have to pay for them again in the box set.

Anyways! This is fucking great! I'm only 16 and I'm so excited all this is coming out!

"JODY DENBERG: And the films, like, uh, Human Highway or Muddy Track, would they be a part of it?

NEIL YOUNG: They'll all be part of it."

Journey Through The Past also? FUCKIN' A'!

"I think that's what the die-hard fans want - the whole fuckin' thing."

Amen, Neil!

At 3/11/2007 03:21:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I can't figure out is how the Live stuff like Fillmore and Massey Hall relate to the Archives? Are the Performance series a subset or a standalone?

At 3/11/2007 07:51:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to see theres another young Young fan on this site, Simpson. Seems like the whole project here is pretty organized. I still remember reading in Shakey about how Neil was gonna give us the whole f'''ing thing. The truth is, the bad stuff may be more inspiring that the good stuff. All you get today from artists is over dubbed synthesized computer music. Even todays old rockers. Breaking out the raw bad stuff is good to show the hardship and battles up and coming stars have to face. The world isn't a Disney Movie (And I just got back from performing in Beauty and the Beast at my high school an hour ago...haha)... Can hardly wait. This is what Neil fans live for!

At 3/11/2007 08:00:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i really do hope there are more than 200 copies..i mean,there's no chance in hell that i would be able to get a copy,you know?that really would suck...that comment by neil is what's stopping me from being totally fucking excited about this trailer

At 3/11/2007 10:03:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait a minute. Fillmore and Massey ARE part of his personal archives.

Don't you peeps remember the marketing success with LOTR; first the DVD, then the extended version?

If you've already got Fillmore, Massey, then you'll probably buy the Arch. Vol.1, too, especially if it has "new" songs, additional concert footage, interviews, etc. (Is anybody counting exactly how many songs he as actually written?)

P.s. You can take every single Neil Young quote out of JimmyMacD+/- book and rewrite an entirely different book based on how you feel that day. The book was never about Neil Young, it was about Jimmy's personal infatuation with himself as NY's biographer. The book was crap, really.

At 3/11/2007 10:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

PS There are so many young people who really dig this guy's music, too.

Why? Because it is a message in the bottle for them and they need hope. He gives them that touch of reality they need to get through the day; just like he did for their parents. : )

"Ohio" was our national anthem and still is. We turned the corner in Viet Nam in the 70s with this song.

No, he's not God; he's just a messanger using his art to spread a good message and fortunately, his music is really good, too.

At 3/11/2007 10:49:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

if I want a touch of reality, NEIL is that last place I go...and that's OK...didn't think the book was that bad...and as I've said before, I fear the cost of the Box will be high...but I'll burn that bridge when I come to it...


At 3/12/2007 08:08:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What with the reality today ... we can only hope our children find what we found in Neil's songs. Even today, he writes and sings about tolerance, injustice, love, and making the world a better place through change.

Yes, the box will be high no doubt; probably the cost of a concert these days, right?

P.s Inre JimmyMc+/- The first thing he does in the interview is insult the artist. Would you say to ... let's say ... Picasso, "Oh that early stuff you did is crap so let's talk about what I like."

The book was never about Neil the artist or the contribution he continues to make or the generations that continue to reach out to his work.


At 3/12/2007 09:07:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I don't get what you mean when you say "NEIL is that last place I go." When I had a crappy day at school growing up and my parents were bugging me, the first thing I'd do is put on my headphones & LP and listen to music.

Didn't you ever get personal validation from the music you listened to when you were young especially when you felt nobody was listening to you?

Our children are growing up in a time where tolerance is not highly regarded especially when it comes to religion, respect for the environment, human rights, & free speech.

We can't wash away what young people are feeling today. They find validation through their music. It is part of their journey to adulthood.

Artists are always the first to tap into the psyche of history in progress saying something is not quite right here with this "reality." This is what expressionism is all about. This is fuel for the creative processes. (The politicians/bureaucrats are the first to hide it.)

The beauty of any artist's archive is that it tells a history from a completely different perspective in the same way we observe our own progression/digressions as a "civilization" through art history.


At 3/12/2007 12:23:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"That's what a fuckin' archive is about, not "Here's Neil Young in all his wonderfulness-the great, phenomenal fucking wonderfulness." That's not what I want."

This quote reminds of Michael Palin's "testimonial" for George Harrison during the "Concert for George:" "We are gathered to celebrate the greatness of someone so hugely great that our smallness only makes his greatness greater..."

After I heard about the "Archives" project a couple years ago, I wondered how Neil would handle the vanity issue. It sounds like he'll handle it just fine.

Over the past couple years, thanks to the internets, my collection of NY shows has grown to include examples of almost every year he's been performing. Listening to the '71 solo shows (where songs like "Old Man," "Maid/Heart of Gold," and "Tell Me Why" debuted)is striking for what we now know was yet to come-"ROITFW," "My My Hey Hey," "Like a Hurricane."

These archives will be so valuable for watching the artist evolve-not just onstage, but at home, in the recording studio.

It's so hard to wait.

At 3/12/2007 12:26:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To all you Rusties, I believe that quote from JimmyMacD/+/-/- is less about the archives and more about an artists frustration with being treated like a vodoo doll.

Here's a guy who was under a record contract and told to manufacture songs that will sell instead of songs that flowed from his heart. No wonder he sounds so pissed off in that quote.

The JimmyMacDude/=/-/-/- missed the whole point and printed some assinine gibberish ...

At 3/12/2007 01:01:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Massey Hall is at #2 on Amazon on the eve of its release. Lots of Rusties looking forward to it.

At 3/12/2007 09:38:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

what didn't come through was this idea: Neil, and (Music in general) helps me escape FROM Reality, which for me nowadays sucks...I think I could listen to MR. SOUL and/or WHEN YOU DANCE until the Sun burns out (or fades away)...perhaps criticizing someone while writing his bio IS a bit unusual...I think if any Neil fan likes EVERYTHING he's ever done, they're either lying or they're crazier than me (or NEIL)...I'm trying to put money aside, but something always comes up...


At 3/12/2007 11:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just watched the trailer and came in my pants.

That's alls I gots to say.

At 3/13/2007 08:04:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Neil, and (Music in general) helps me escape FROM Reality,"

I hear you. Although my reality is what I create each day; maybe the reality you're speaking of is the one created for you by other people which is why people still reach out to his music. New and old.

What was that line from "Greendale" about seeing the future from an 78 rpm, 8 track? Sometimes we all have to go back a few steps to move forward.


At 3/13/2007 10:55:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

would LOVE to be more in control of my Reality, but for now I'm not...just give me access to recordings of WORDS,WHEN YOU DANCE, MR.SOUL(if nothing else) and I'll be fine...

At 3/13/2007 05:10:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

no way, this is gonna be great. footage from the barn studio at Broken Arrow. way.

At 3/13/2007 06:20:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

if by "no way" you mean there's "no way" you're gonna NOT get a copy of the Box, I'm in agreement...TOTALLY...I'm just afraid I won't have the Money when (IF) it is released...


At 3/14/2007 10:03:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can anyone comment on the question..

Are Fillmore and Massey Hall going to be included in the Archives?

I'm thrifty and don't want to buy duplicate copies...but knowing Neil, I should probably buy whats available now...
Thanks, Anyone?

At 3/14/2007 05:15:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

haha, yeah I meant no way I'm not gonna get this. HELL YEAH!

At 3/14/2007 05:45:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"call me clueless" but we just rec'vd Massey Hall (performance #3)...the 1st one we got says performance # 2....where/what is #1 in the series??

At 3/14/2007 06:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Performance Series #1 will be released with the box set. Nobody knows for sure what it is and Neil isn't talking.

Don't know if it will be released separate or only in the box set...and I really hope Fillmore East and Massey Hall aren't in the box...I would be rather upset knowing I paid for two of each.

At 3/14/2007 08:19:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just pciked up Massey Hall...Neil rarely lets me down...This one is top-ten. Too bad it took 36-years to hear it.

Keep it up Neil

At 3/14/2007 10:51:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

yeah Lonn, I'm with ya...I figure if Reprise wants to move the most copies (Neil apparently couldn't care less about THAT) they'll be reasonable about the price...still, "reasonable" could be $120, I don't expect them to give it away...well, we'll see, whatever happens is gonna be whatever happens


At 3/15/2007 03:58:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have been following a lot the comments from Neil over the last 10 years on the archives. On a few occasions he has mentioned that there is a single cd compilation of a week of solo shows done at the Riverboat cafe in 66-67 that will be in the archives. There is DVD content , but not actual live footage, more a montage or similar to fillmore dvd.My best guess is this will be Perf Series #1 and will be released as part of vol 1 archievs, as time wise it makes sense. Probably would have songs like The Loner, Mr Soul, Old Laughing Lady if it was form that era. I have also heard that none of the buffalo springfield live tapes were really good enough quality.



At 3/15/2007 10:41:00 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Just listening to and seeing Crosby and Stills singing with Neil on Alabama, I want this realllll bad.

At 3/15/2007 02:18:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

'we go UP on 'windows'"...


At 3/16/2007 12:01:00 PM, Blogger Greg McGarvey said...

Reprise blog: "Only Young knows what Disc 01 will be, the source said, “and he ain’t talking!”"

Neil was "talkin'" when he told Rolling Stone a year or two ago that he's releasing a live disc taken from a week's worth of tapes at the Riverboat in Toronto.

At 3/17/2007 01:38:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So the Archives will cost $$$. Let's do a bit of math: March 2007... 3 Starbucks at $4/each a week= $12.... Let's say the Archives are released in October (in time for Holiday shoppers, as the smart records guys would bank on)...roughly 28 weeks...equals $336 saved.
Yup, I'll down grade Starbuck intake for Neil any day, any week, any year...


(glad to see under 40 yr old fans!)

At 3/20/2007 09:28:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the great job Neil and his archives staff did on Massey Hall is any indication, the Archives will be mind blowing. Lots of nice surprises, and the presentation is excellent. Be sure to check out the DVD extras. Just one example ... I had no idea "Long Walk Home" from Life (1987) was a song that dates from 1970, as shown in his notebook from Dec 1970.

The DVD isn't always flattering to Neil, and the honesty of this release is pretty exciting. Any doubts that I had that I could afford to buy this set is replaced by the thought that I can't afford not to get it.

At 3/21/2007 10:18:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that part of NYAPS01 is shown on the Archives Trailer. You see a live version of "The Loner" and then a shot walking into some sort of Coffee House with a sign saying "Folk Music in the Back"...then a few photos of Neil. My guess is that will be on the Riverboat DVD and this will be NYAPS Disk 01. LRR.

The real question is: What will be NYAPS Disk 4????? I predict it will be Tonight's The Night live at the Rainbow in London. Any takers??????

At 3/22/2007 06:14:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Been digging through old NY interviews and articlesI've read about the archives and here are bits and pieces
" Vol 1 - A second DVD features the "documentary" movie, Journey Through the Past. "

"The album recorded as the follow up to ATGR, but scrapped in favour of Harvest which includes Wonderin' and It Might Have Been."
A 1973 session with Joni Mitchell which includes Sweet Joni

and for Vol 2 or perhaps PS #4

"One live performance, the rock vet is convinced, trumps the original recording: the entirety of Tonight's the Night, recorded live at London's Rainbow Theatre. Says Young, "It's better than the record." "

At 5/04/2007 08:10:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i'm excited about this box - but i would really love to hear the "unheard" stuff in good quality - for example something with "the ducks"

At 6/20/2007 09:25:00 AM, Blogger Harm said...

Well... now it's been delayed even further this allows me to save up some more... I reckon it will be about $250 (or maybe even 250 euro; I'm Dutch you see). It's gonna be well worth it... the only thing I'm worried about is that he'll release the volumes to quickly after one another... I might not be able to afford that, even tho I already have some money put aside.

The thing is... I'm more interested in Vol.2, now THAT has compelling stuff! TFA, TTN, OTB, Zuma, Chrome Dreams, alternate comes a time, Human Highway, homegrown, RNS, Boarding house... lots happened from 73-82. Hell maybe we'll even see some original old ways... AND the Island in the sun sessions... I prefer that over Squires and BS anytime!

I'm wondering tho... those performances at Fillmore East 1970 Young used in JTTP... will they be in it too? I'm guessing yes... the thing is; he prob won't include much of the CSN stuff, which is a bit of a pity, since SEEING 4 way street is better than HEARING it, eh?

Ah well... my birthday is Januray 22nd 1985; I guess *I know what I'm gonna be asking...

At 7/06/2007 10:49:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm really starting to get antsy about this "Archive Series."

Maybe Vol. 2 will include the full remastered "Time Fades Away" album. That would be so great!

At 7/11/2007 10:51:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Secret insider tip: The next release may be Osaka 1976 in both CD/DVD

At 10/13/2007 02:12:00 AM, Blogger Ben said...

Am I the only one who's worried that 8 discs might not be enough? I mean, everything he did in 10 years is going to be summed up in 8 discs? That would only cover like 3 whole concerts. I thought the point of the archives was to include everything, but 8 discs will require some major cherry-picking, won't it?

At 10/27/2007 01:05:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well all i know is that ive been waitin on the NY ARCHIVES im not holdin my breath...since im a smoker & a joker & i just might pass out & never regain conchussnus (<--speld rong--<<<) and end up missin the whole thing...& that would suck BIG TIME...HOPEFULLY HE'LL PUT ALL THE NY ARCHIVES OUT B4 MY LORD & SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST COMES BACK TO TAKE ME TO MY NEW HOME IN HEAVEN...& i wonder if we all we have to wait just as long for the other NY ARCHIVES to come out...ive already bot the FILLMORE EAST & MASSEY HALL CDs earler this year & again it will suck BIG TIME to have them again... oh well theres always EBAY...huh??? But when it all gets real i do hope he puts VOL. 1 out next year & that it will sell at a halfway decent price! ! ! Oh well i always say "KEEP ON ROCKIN IN THE FREE WORLD...till next time... PEACE LOVE ROCK N ROLL & NEIL YOUNG...especially NEIL YOUNG!!!

At 12/25/2007 08:27:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds good but so far we've got FILLMORE and MASSEY HALL. this seems to be, as Neil states: "Here's Neil Young in all his wonderfulness-the great, phenomenal fucking wonderfulness."

What am I missing here?

At 2/23/2008 06:02:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

feb 18 what happened

At 3/17/2008 04:51:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

One more word.

At 5/01/2008 07:28:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hopefully the Archives will be previewed at that JavaOne thing in May, which means we might see the box set soon.

At 8/04/2008 11:20:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

03.November 2008 according to releaseschedule for Europe.
Joe Yankeey

At 8/10/2008 10:48:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where did you get that news Joe? I can't find a release schedule. I wonder why there hasn't been an announcement anywhere else. If the Archives are coming out on November the 3rd then I'm not going to get excited though. Only when I hold the box in my hands will I allow myself to get excited.


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Civic Duty Is Not Terrorism

The Achilles Heel
Orwell (and Grandpa) Was Right
“Emancipate yourself from mental slavery.”
~~ Bob Marley

The Essence of "The Doubters"

Yes, There's Definitely A Hole in The Sky

Even Though The Music Died 50+ Years Ago
Open Up the "Tired Eyes" & Wake up!
"consciousness is near"
What's So Funny About
Peace, Love, & Understanding & Music?


Show Me A Sign

"Who is John Galt?"
To ask the question is to know the answer

"Whosoever shall give up his liberty for a temporary security
deserves neither liberty nor safety."

~~ Benjamin Franklin


(Between the lines of age)

And in the end, the love you take
Is equal to the love you make

~~ John & Paul

the zen of neil
the power of rust
the karma of the wheat