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Sunday, September 09, 2007

Farm Aid 2007

Neil & Pegi Young - photo by David Atlas (via Rolling Stone)

Neil Young - photo by Paul Natkin/Photo Reserve Inc.

Neil Young, Pegi Young & Willie Nelson - photo by Paul Natkin/Photo Reserve Inc.

From Sugar Mountain Set Lists: Human Highway / Silver And Gold / Beautiful Bluebird / Too Far Gone / Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere / Heart Of Gold / Homegrown / Four Strong Winds

From Rolling Stone:
Neil Young, as usual, completely walked away with the show. Joined only by his wife Pegi on acoustic guitar and pedal steel guitarist Ben Keith, Young did an eight song set of hits (”Heart of Gold”), obscurities (”Human Highway”) and Farm Aid staples (”Homegrown”). It was his first set in nearly a year but he sounded like he had been perfecting his show on the road for months. Young also debuted the first track from the forthcoming Chrome Dreams II, a tender ballad called “Bluebird” that sounded more like a track from Prairie Wind than the lost 1976 album Chrome Dreams. Before launching into “Homegrown,” Young slyly said the song “used to be about one thing now it’s about another.” Translation: the song was written about the glory of growing your own marijuana, but it’s now about the glory of organic food grown on family farms. Willie Nelson — who who knows a thing or two about both subjects — sat in on guitar. Both he and Young beamed from ear to ear as they tried to in vain to get the crowd to sing “Homegrown, it’s a good thing, plant that bell and make it ring.”

Press Conference - photo by Paul Natkin/Photo Reserve Inc.

Video of Neil Young speaking at Farm Aid Press Conference.

Illustration by Fred Harper

Farm Aid 2007 starts today at 12:15. Here's the lineup:

Jesse Lenat
Titty Bingo
Pauline Reese
40 Points
Jimmy Sturr
The Ditty Bops
Danielle Evin
Billy Joe Shaver
Montgomery Gentry
The Derek Trucks Band
Warren Haynes
Counting Crows
Gregg Allman
The Allman Brothers Band
Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds
John Mellencamp
Neil Young
Willie Nelson & Family with Calhoun Twins and Paula Nelson
Finale @ 10:36pm

Advance word is that Neil played "Silver & Gold" during soundcheck solo. No word on a band.

Also, see Farm Aid: Around the Kitchen Table blog for updates.


More on last year's Farm Aid 2006.



At 9/09/2007 01:19:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Is there a live TV broadcast of Farm Aid, or a webcast? I'd really like to see it, but I can't be there in person.

At 9/09/2007 02:20:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

it is not on tv but there will be a webcast on Thursday. I dont know If it is going to have everything but it will have some stuff at least. The webcast will be free for the first week after that you have to be a member of fardyard to watch.

At 9/10/2007 12:30:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heres the setlist
Neil Young

* Human Highway
* Silver and Gold
* Beautiful Bluebird
* Too Far Gone
* Everybody Knows
* Heart of Gold
* Homegrown
* Strong Winds

At 9/10/2007 08:58:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whio was the band

At 9/10/2007 12:01:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting to watch a once great artist slowly self-destruct. Listening on XM without the modifier of video just amplifies how lousy it was. It is about the sound, right? Not anymore. Sloppy would be kind.
Ever since his re-emergence in - was it late 04?- for the benefit series Bay area, Victoria, and Seattle Farm Aid, he's been like a shell of himself. And adding Pegi in, he's just imploding. Last night sounded like a guitar lesson for Pegi in public. The tempos were leaden, like he didn't want to throw her off by being natural.
He butchered the lyrics on Four Strong Winds. Silver and Gold was wretchedly off-key. Pegi and Ben singing harmony was a nightmare. What a mess, even considering that sloppy is his new standard for benefit shows. How respectful of the cause is that? I kept getting the image of a scout leader trying to introduce musicality to his pack.
Neil's over the hill. Since those 04? benefits, he's been like a clingy 4 year-old who won't go to kindergarden without mommy and Ben Keith. But mommy sho ain't musical and Ben is so predictable. Makes for a dull, dull Neil.
I'm predicting more sloppy lyrics on the new album, with more boring Ben. If Pegi's singing too, it's a guaranteed dungheap. I love Ben's sound, but not on every album. And Pegi, well, bull in a china shop. She takes his fragile beauty and turns it into a twisted pile of trash.
That's why I think it's over for him. He's no longer aware that his musical choices are bad. His need for security has trumped his natural talent. But that's probably how it is as you get old.
Touring with Pegi's gonna split his focus. I guarantee this won't begin to approach the stellar '99
solo tour. He's too busy making some kind of statement instead of great music. Neil, we get the fact that you're a married man who appreciates his wife. Don't you have some trusted friends who can also make you feel safe who are more musical?

At 9/10/2007 02:08:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well done Neil, thanks. Keep on rocking in the free world.

At 9/10/2007 05:19:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the anonymous ranter:

SHUT THE FUCK UP! Neil's one of the greatest musicians out there...and one of the few still going. LWW wasn't my favorite album, but Prarie Wind and the Heart Of Gold film were amazing. How can you say he's drying out. Neil tours and records with whoever he wants. I wouldn't buy Pegi's album, but hey she's been singing backup with him for years. I'm sorry you saw a shitty show...maybe go to an ALL-NEIL concert and not a benefit if you want more. Anyways.

Here are the tour dates for the new Chrome Dream album:

October 18 Boise, ID Morrison Center
October 20 Spokane, WA Opera House
October 22 Portland, OR Keller Theater
October 23 Seattle, WA WaMu Center
October 30 Los Angeles, CA Nokia Live
November 5 Denver, CO Wells Fargo Theatre
November 8 Minneapolis, MO Northrop Auditorium
November 10 Detroit, MI Fox Theater
November 12 Chicago, IL Chicago Theater
November 13 Chicago, IL Chicago Theater
November 15 Washington, DC Constitution Hall
November 18 St. Louis, MO Fox Theater
November 26 Toronto, ON Massey Hall
November 27 Toronto, ON Massey Hall
December 2 Boston, MA Orpheum Theatre
December 3 Boston, MA Orpheum Theatre
December 5 Wallingford, CT Oakdale Theater
December 9 Philadelphia, PA Tower Theater
December 12 New York, NY United Palace
December 13 New York, NY United Palace

I must say, I'm rather disappointed he's not coming to Pittsburgh. Philly's too far and my dad won't take us there just for a concert...JUST FOR A CONCERT he says! I can't believe him!

At 9/10/2007 07:41:00 PM, Blogger Ben said...

THANK YOU SIMPSON for the tour dates. Although I must say, the cheapest seats are like 70 dollars, and that's bull shit. Whatever, I'll still go.

At 9/10/2007 11:09:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We want The Horse! We want The Horse! Man, what I wouldn't give to see a Neil and Crazy Horse live show right about now. Maybe after this tour he'll bring the boys back???

At 9/11/2007 04:46:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

These venues are so small that they will sell out in seconds.Why is Neil doing this to his fans that wait for him to go on tour.I tried to get a ticket to Dylan at the ryman and it sold out in 5 seconds and thats 2600 people.Chicago theatre is 3600

At 9/11/2007 10:55:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The CKII Tour -Citizen Kane II- is official. Let's see, we've got Kot in Chicago for 2 nights, Pareles in New York for 2 nights, any old no name in Toronto for 2 nights, all quivering to kiss ass. That'll do. No dates for the ingrates in northern California. Even Selvin had the cheek to end his Pegi interview with her hilarious line "He doesn't hire me just because I'm his wife". Does that jerk at the Mercury News still have his job, daring to say Susan should be playing open mikes instead of releasing an album on Warner? Did I say Susan? Silly me. I mean Pegi. Where is the reverence for a declining old rich guy who just wants to buy his wife a career before he kicks it?
Okay, we've got a month here to make a silk purse. Time's a-wastin'.

At 9/11/2007 04:21:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Most of you are familiar with my comments... I've been willing to defend Neil, and Pegi's startup career, until now...

I have to agree with the ranters to some extent on this one. While I'm sure Neil, Ralph and Rick will be able to pull off some real rockers on the upcoming album and tour, I tend to agree about Ben and Pegi.

Ben Keith is one of the greatest living steel/dobro players in the world, no argument from me. His sound is amazing and remarkably minimalist. But unfortunately that sound can't encompass all genres (and I know Neil doesn't assume it to). The fact is Neil seems to be trying to find stability in the twilight of his career, and so it is likely barring a Crazy Horse reunion he will continue to show up.

Rick Rosas' completely unexplained comeback into Neil's career seems evident of this. Ben Keith hadn't recorded with Neil since Harvest Moon when Silver And Gold was released, a 7 year hiatus. And while his presence has been limited to Prairie Wind and CSNY Freedom of Speech tour, his appearance on Pegi's mini-tour seemed more a friendly favor than an active interest. As part of Neil's first creative, natural work really since Greendale (Prairie Wind was more of a forced creation, even if it was a great one), I think we'll see more Ben Keith as the years go on.

I really have no problem with the album's lineup, it's a good group and I expect another great album from Neil, hopefully it's not too middle-of-the-road.

But when it comes to taking Pegi on this tour... Sorry guys, I have to draw the line. Yes, she's his and wife and he very much wants her to be happy and feel loved, but unfortunately this isn't the way to do it. Pegi can sing, yes, but she's not a professional, she's not made a career of it, and she certainly wouldn't have this opportunity without Neil.

I assume her presence at Farm-Aid is indicative of her being part of the tour. Seeing her in a small environment and play an hour or so of her folksy little ballads was fine and all, but she's not a skilled musician... As a backup vocalist for the Crazy Horse '01/'03/'04 tours, she was reaching the limits of her capacity, and frankly, usefulness as a member of Neil's band.

I thought Neil got this nostalgia out with the '00 Friends And Family tour. I guess not. The lack of Northern California shows upsets me to the extreme, I don't know what the reason Neil has for skipping over his largest fan base outside of Canada is but it sure isn't going to fucking convince me he's right for doing it.

Concert ticket prices... well we saw that coming, I really wouldn't mind if I had a show to go to besides the Bridge School Benefit, which if you want a decent seat is outrageously expensive, even if it is for a good cause. Hope you all enjoy the Kronos Quartet there this year, they're really something else.

I'm sorry to hear about the lackluster, simple performance Neil gave at Farm Aid, and believe me people, it was because Pegi was there, Neil isn't going to go off on an improvised solo or start mixing riffs when Pegi's trying to keep rhythm, and you all know it. The set list seems pretty uninspired, besides the obligatory Human Highway and Homegrown, it seems very... nostalgic. Silver and Gold? come on Neil, you can do better than that. And Heart of Gold, bleh, I hope he doesn't pull that old cat out of the bag for every show on the tour, it's against everything he stands for as a touring musician and relevant artist.

As far as making statements, Neil Young has always been about being a little socially, politically, or economically vocal, and I have no problems with that, Living With War was wonderful, as was Greendale. I hope Ordinary People bites just as hard today as it did during the Bluenotes tour.

All in all, I hope we get a good album, and I think we will. But the tour looks entirely less than promising. If Pegi's going to be a permanent fixture in all of Neil's groups from now on, I'm disappointed. We all say "give her a chance" or "let's see how it goes" and I think we've waited and heard enough at this point... If it turns out to be a solid tour I'll rescind my doubts, but the moment they play one of Pegi's songs or start singing duets is the moment I give up on this tour.

At 9/11/2007 04:46:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've already given up on this tour.
The Greedy Hand won't be getting any cash out of me for this one. I'll be damned if I'm going to pay good money to listen to Pegi.

At 9/11/2007 04:59:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pegi was NEVER useful to Neil as far as enhancing the quality of the music. I'm just disgusted by the whole thing. My hero is disintegrating in front of my eyes.
He's only giving out the cd with tickets because people called him on his audacity to sing Ordinary People while reaming his audience. Now another thing we all know is that this tour is all about getting Pegi going on a solo career. Heaven help us. Small venues so she can claim partial credit in later press releases for being a part of a sold out tour. Did you read that release by Neil's people about Pegi's soldout tour in N Cal and NY. What a bunch of freaking hype! Three shows of what,150 people, mostly friends and family and the rest people who wanted to see Neil. Give me a freaking break. They're playing us for a bunch of stooges and we're swallowing it. The Bush team doesn't have anything on Neil's hype and spin machine.

At 9/11/2007 05:43:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is a whole new generation getting in to Neil,out of my whole crew Im the only one who has even seen him and that was with csny. He needs to play songs like heart of gold everyonce in a while because there are people who hasnt seen shit like that. Pegi will be a good opener but she needs to only sing backup on his set or ill be pissed.Neil,please bring the horse back and play "Revolution Blues" or "Danger Bird"

At 9/11/2007 05:45:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This album is definitely going to be mediocre. He doesn't have it anymore. The Pegi infiltration and old age killed his fire.
I saw this coming on Friends and Family and it's been a slow decline since. She ruined Road Rock Vol 1. And she's been dragging him lower ever since. Not happy with Neil's recent output? Ir's no coincidence that it directly parallels Pegi's ascent. His last great work was S@G, just before she crept in. God, I'd like to wring his neck. What a fucking waste of his talent.
Neil doesn't give a flip about the music anymore. He doesn't have to. The lemmings will take whatever he tosses their way.
They aren't going to play more CA dates because they'll play most of their stuff at Bridge and because Pegi didn't get an acquiescent press there. Remember, this is Pegi's tour. I fully expect duet encores.
Neil's Farm Aid set was totally geared to Pegi. Same old songs they've been performing. And Pegi couldn't play guitar to save her life, despite all the publicity hype recently, even from Neil, about how she was a performer before they even met. This is totally Neil's creation. The scary thing is that he seems to think she sounds good. And you know how he is. The more he hears about how she stinks, the more he's going to stick her in our faces. I doubt we'll ever see many Neil performances from here on out without Pegi onstage. He truly is becoming a nostalgia act, with half of this album being oldies.
And CDII is just a vehicle for Pegi to get associated with a successful tour. Evidently he didn't even bother to rerecord OP. What I can't understand is why people keep expecting him to put out something great. NOT going to happen, people! Not unless something MAJOR changes in his life.

At 9/11/2007 07:16:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ya'll are pitiful, would you rather Neil just stay on his ranch and not tour, not release and just farm? He doesn't owe you nuttin. What makes you think you know what he thinks or what he should do. Just enjoy what you can and if you can't, then go listen to your old 70's bootlegs on YouTube and live in your perpetual journey through the past.
He could be dead right now and you wouldn't have anything to look forward to, nor complain about.

At 9/11/2007 09:06:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nah, I'd rather Neil just get his untalented wife off the stage and make some real music instead of all of this treacly loving glances at each other over a pile of muck. No interest here in living in the past. That seems to be Neil's trip at the moment. Archives, "new" album of old songs, singing songs to the wife about their ancient history. Yawn.

At 9/11/2007 09:16:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why do the critics of Neils critics always say, go live in the past. Or, be happy with what you get. I want new stuff. But I want good new stuff. Neil's publicity is always hyping his stuff as if he's next to God. Well, I haven't seen any evidence of that in some time. Put up, Neil, or shut your machine up.

At 9/12/2007 12:06:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fuck you,you little bitches

At 9/12/2007 12:59:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ooh, eloquent.

At 9/12/2007 08:19:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've had a lot of new stuff and I always go back to something old. It makes me feel good. Comfortable. Warm. Content. I do this for myself and my friends anyway, so if you like it,like a lot of my fans do, then you understand, but if you don't, don't matter to me none anyhow.

At 9/14/2007 10:58:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

neil young can not go on forever.i was at farm aid and that truth hit me hard.the great thing about being a neil fan is all the songs,we will hear new stuff for years after hes gone.try to imagine doing what he has done for 40 years,it really is mind twisting.i know he'll do more great things, but am always saddened by the thought of this world without neil young

At 9/14/2007 10:59:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

neil young can not go on forever.i was at farm aid and that truth hit me hard.the great thing about being a neil fan is all the songs,we will hear new stuff for years after hes gone.try to imagine doing what he has done for 40 years,it really is mind twisting.i know he'll do more great things, but am always saddened by the thought of this world without neil young

At 9/21/2007 08:15:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neil owes no one nothing but many are ever so grateful he still blesses with his talent everytime he speaks/sings out.


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