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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Comment of the Moment: Encountering Neil Young

Neil Young at Broken Arrow Ranch
June 28, 1971
Photo by Henry Diltz

The Neil Young Comment of the Moment is from Neil Encounters by astrololee:
I first heard "For What It's Worth" when I was only around 13 years old not knowing who Neil Young really was until he teamed up with CSNY. I was into "Marakesh" at the time and started to wonder about the Y bit, later on when I was into "Woodstock".

Nearly the best thing about the Archives is it's history. Wow there is nothing that this man has not had a go at doing and the Archives really puts all of his different genres into one neat package and so far ,we’ve only got the first few years of his career. Up until now and listening to the many albums I have of Neil, I have only observed that it was Neil singing and no matter what he sang, I seemed to like it, could relate to, could sing along too and generally look forward to what NY was gunna come up with next.

Everyone so far on reviewing the Archives has mentioned the technology, the sound, the vast amount of songs, his guitar style and technique.. but.. little has been said about the feelings that the Archives evokes. Since I have received the Archives and watched it, replayed it, had fun with it, cursed it, marvelled at its technology and appreciated it etc I have also never laughed so hard in my life (audience expectations interview), I have cried like a baby and cursed Neil for making himself more vulnerable than ever to the public and for letting the audience see a glimpse of his soul and for that alone, I feel very privileged to own Archives 1.

Remember this is a man whom is suppose to not give a shit about the rest of the world and how it thinks about him...but here in the Archives is living proof of a man, whom has been vulnerable to life, its catastrophic experiences which have shaped his life and sometimes veered him into totally different directions and he’s had the audacity to put it into film and let us see him warts and all and then shock and horror he’s even let us have an opinion of it all. This man named Neil Young whom supposedly doesn’t give a F!@#K about what even his fans think of him shows that he really cares and for that alone he will get my undying loyalty and support for whatever he decides to do for the rest of his life.

In my opinion only, the Archives has given us the gift of Neil himself in such an intangible way that I feel beholden to him for giving us nearly too much himself. It’s like the Archives has affected the viewer so personally that I can feel empathy oozing out of my being for this restless soul whom will keeping revealing his beliefs through his music. Sometimes whilst watching the Archives I have this feeling that I’m nothing but a I am getting a disgusting amount of pleasure out of pawing over each disc. Gee I’m not even game to let my friends come and watch it with me ‘caus they’ll think I’m stranger than usual!

The Archives has not only taken a lot of time to produce a chronological sequence of events on film but it has also been done with courage and conviction and I therefore believe its Neil's gift to us that we must accept unconditionally as a thank you from him to his fans, friends and family. It’s his autobiography told in a way that no amount of written words could express.

Thanks astrololee!

More on what fans really think of the Neil Young Archives. No, what they really think.

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At 9/10/2009 06:47:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW!.. you hit the nail on the head.

I too believe and put my trust in all that he does.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts astrolee, you've put me in a nice place right now.


"keep on bloggin', til the lights go out"

At 9/10/2009 07:44:00 AM, Blogger doc said...

Nicely put Astrololee!Hopefully my appreciation of your comments will be passed on and not deleted like the rest of my supporting comments or input are!

Luv dip

At 9/10/2009 08:01:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey Thrashers, d`you hear about this?

looks like neil`s pulled out of his appearance at the TIFF for undisclosed reasons.

hopefully not a health scare!

-Marc C

At 9/10/2009 09:50:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Astrolelee; whoops got the name wrong. B E A U tiful post. You said lots of things I've felt and known about the man NY. He cares- albeit on his own terms. So I guess it's F U and join me or F U don't join me or let's get together and feel al...nope! Gotta Love Neil.

At 9/10/2009 10:03:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonderful thoughts wrapped up nicely.

At 9/11/2009 10:42:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought you might enjoy this link:

pretty cool article on Neil with some great quotes.


At 9/11/2009 12:15:00 PM, Anonymous Shittyhorse said...

Awesome Comment Astrolee, I agree whole-heartedly on your feelings about the Archives and the man himself. I believe it may take a few years after the man himself expires or retires (hope neither for a REALLY REALLY LONG TIME) for the world at large to really and truly understand and appreciate this great artist and human.
What Neil was able to do so well in his career and with the Archives is let us into his soul- not into the intimate details of his personal life (as this is not important to their art nor their sanity), and not by planting stories in the press but though his art, his writing, his singing, guitar playing and even his movies. And Neil Young does this really, really, well.
When Neil sings we listen because he can sing about his life and world better than anyone. Neil’s best material is the personal stuff. This is not self-indulgence; this is his heart and soul laid out on the table, which only the greatest artists were able to do well.
Neil Young is a solo artist...could it have been any other way? Neil is writing his story, and its true he will never need to write an autobiography because he has and continues to tell us his life through the best and most direct medium possible- music. Neil’s best music cuts though the bullshit and speaks to our soul- directly. This man has given so much of himself to us, and I think few of us really realize this today. Afterwards, when the story is written, the monuments built and the archive boxes are placed side by side on the shelf the world will know what Neil was accomplished. And I believe he will be placed above his so-called “contemporaries” in rock, except, along side with (I’m sure some may disagree here and that’s okay) Lennon, Dylan, and Cobain. But also with Picasso, Kerouac, and a few others- fearless in their art of baring their soul and appearing so vulnerable because of it. Neil has created his own genre of music…. Soul Rock, Neil has more soul than Motown. Neil is on his spirit road he lets us read his travel logs.

Rock on Neil!

At 9/11/2009 09:02:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think other than Bob Dylan, Neil is the preeminent singer-songwriter of our generation.

and other than Dylan, who can move so seamlessly between electric guitar epics and soft acoustic ballads?

But as great as Neil is, he lags behind Mr. Zimmerman. For an intimate look at Mr. Dylan, pick up a copy of his latest Bootleg Series - Tell Tale Signs - so many great, relatively unknown songs from the last 20 years.

At 9/11/2009 11:13:00 PM, Blogger astrololee said...

Hey Thanks Doc, BBB, Shittyhorse and everyone whom has reread the article and commented.
It was a great thrill to see the repost jump up on my facebook page.
Neil has influenced many people over his lifetime both musically, physically and spiritually by just being himself...He certainly changed my life at a time in my teenage years when I was going through one crisis after another. His music helped me believe in myself again and basically gave me the courage to say "F@#$K" the world this is who I am, take it or leave it.
I love Arcives 1 and all the 32 Vinyl records I own along with CD's and DVD's. Whenever you're going through a rough patch in life, go and get out your Neil Young records and really sit and listen to the words, the music, experience the feelings he evokes and know that you are a person of value only because you have come to know yourself through his's a life changing experience not to be denied.

At 9/12/2009 07:47:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Listening to Rust Radio right now, and a great show kicked off - Neil and the Bluenotes, Live in Toronto, 1988.

What a great, swinging band.....these shows had ENERGY!

Cough Up The Bucks!

Johnny Rocket!

PS - We can't sit down, cuz we got a job to do!

At 9/13/2009 08:23:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neil Young is the best therapy I've discovered yet....and I've run the gauntlet. What I love about his latest recordings is the simple truth about life, love, politics, that now permeate his songs. Back in the day he was the dark, mysterious, troubadour that really made you think and feel the emotions of coming of age and questioning everything. Neil has matured and his music with it....and its a beautiful thing. Some have grownup with Neil, and they are now growing older with Neil. I hope he really does "still have a long way to go"

At 9/13/2009 09:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sadly, i don't think Neil is half the song-writer he was 30 and 40 years ago. His lyrics oftentimes are corn-ball and cotton candy.

That's not to say he still doesnt write a winner from time to time....he does.

But i haven't been impressed with a lot of his latter releases.

Oh well....such is life. I was better 30 yrs ago, too.


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