Neil Young's new release ""World Record" w/ Crazy Horse is now available for pre-order. Order here
(Please shop locally & independently. But if you can't, we appreciate your supporting Thrasher's Wheat by clicking this link or YOUR COUNTRY's FLAG. Thank you!!!)
<-Older Posts Blog Home Newer Posts->

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Comment of the Moment: Some Thoughts on Americana Songs

With two songs from Americana by Neil Young & Crazy Horse out now ("Oh Susannah" and "Jesus' Chariot" (She’ll Be Coming Round The Mountain), the opinions are starting to roll in.

From a comment on Some Thoughts on New Video "Oh Susannah" by D. I. Kertis:
Judging from that video footage, Neil is not romanticizing the past here--which, you know, does fit with the whole concept he mentioned about highlighting the similarities between America's problems when these songs were first played and the ones we're facing now. I have to admit that the smoking kid makes me squirm a bit, but it's definitely best not whitewashed over.

Musically, I have only good things to say about the songs I've heard so far from 'Americana', though I'm actually even more interested to hear Neil and the Horse's takes on 'Gallows Pole', 'This Land is Your Land', and 'Tom Dula'. After hearing 'Jesus' Chariot', I suspect 'Clementine' should be interesting as well, and 'God Save the Queen', especially after all the (in my opinion) unwarranted brouhaha about its appearance on the track list.

I've actually gotten to be more and more interested in folk music as time goes on. When I say folk music, I don't just mean the American, either. I think it has a lot to do with the notion of it having been created by people in a pre-mass media age, trying to amuse themselves. So they had to be more creative themselves, because they couldn't just access other people's art and entertainment so easily like we can today.

If you listen to folk songs not just from America but from European history as well, they have their unique conventions and forms, signs that they were originated by every day people, not "artists" in the sense that we often think of them today. My fascination is also partly because this is music of the people: commonly owned art. Many of the songs on 'Americana' we all take for granted the right to perform again and again, to come up with our own variations/evolutions of per the folk process. It is lovely to think there is art and music that a whole community (the whole human community, really) can own and have creative domain over, that we can share and each take our own angle on.

Folk music, at some level, seems to represent such a free spirit of art and creativity, and can be incredibly culturally and historically rich. Because these were often songs written by or from the perspectives of everyday people, they tend still to resonate with the common man even today.

Especially in songs with universally applicable ideals or messages, there is a great potential for music (or art of any kind) to bring people together, bring about sharing, cooperation, potentially sparking even more creativity and art.

Thanks D. I.! Yes, music & art bringing people together is something we need more of right now.

More on Americana by Neil Young & Crazy Horse and the music videos for the songs ("Oh Susannah" and "Jesus' Chariot" (She’ll Be Coming Round The Mountain).


At 5/13/2012 05:58:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Premier Guitar magazine's review of 'Americana':

At 5/13/2012 06:59:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

R.I.P Duck Dunn

At 5/13/2012 09:21:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll be the first to say that I was skeptical about the Americana concept, perhaps mostly out of frustration that we're not receiving original songs from NY & CH. But I have to say that what I've heard so far is pretty remarkable. At bottom, it's all about the Crazy Horse sound. Put these guys all together and they just catch fire. There is something so raw and primal in their sound, yet ultimately very engaging and accessible. They make these two songs sound effortlessly rocking, irresistibly so. I can only pray that they all get together and crank out some new tunes -- because right now they sound better than ever.

And I'm a notorious crank when it comes to these things!

-Big Old Rig

At 5/13/2012 11:42:00 PM, Blogger Mr Henry said...

"I like music that's more offensive. I like it to sound like nails on a blackboard, get me wild."
--Iggy Pop

At 5/14/2012 03:48:00 AM, Blogger peter d. said...

Part of the concept behind 'Americana' is that it's the counterpart of all these 'The Voice of ...(whatever country)' and '(another country) has talent' SHIT that has been pouring out from all media these days.

There's a whole generation growing up watching or participating in these shows and being taught this is what music is all about: trying to copy somebody else and in the meantime show off your skills, only to become a star, and eventually while time flies by fall down and die... For the turnstiles...

And here's Neil using his voice and his media to remember us it's completely different.

So everybody: go and make your own version and participate in a REAL musical contest! Bet my head off Neil's gonna vote for purity and nothing else.

Great musician. Great man. The real thing. All we need is love.

At 5/14/2012 01:15:00 PM, Blogger MARIAN M. said...


In the age of cover bands, albums of covers of classic songs, etc., how wonderful that Neil is making this wonderful music totally new and fresh and putting his wonderful "stamp" on it.

After hearing these two (2) songs, I just can't wait for the album...but I have to!

Music is love!

Marian M.

At 5/14/2012 04:40:00 PM, Blogger Mr Henry said...

...and with the Horse he's also putting his wonderul Stomp on the music as well. The American and World Standard Song Book is a huge and wonderful work, with chapter upon chapter to explore or ignore. We all have the chance to make them our own by giving them to others. Thanks Neil for the remembering!

To do then now would be Retro. To do then then was very Nowtro....
--Mark Shubb (Michael McKean)
A Mighty Wind

At 5/15/2012 06:33:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boy, I just don't know. Been listening to Neil and The Horse as long as anybody, and I was really looking forward to this, but it just isn't working for me. Yep, it's the grungy Horse - just the way I like 'em - but the choice of songs ends up sounding like a parody to me. Coupled with the fact that I haven't LOVED a Neil album since Silver & Gold...I'm keeping hope alive. That's all I can do.

At 5/16/2012 10:08:00 AM, Blogger Tweck9 said...

I loved Oh Susannah. I thought it was way cool.

But Jesus' Chariot takes it to a whole other level. It's a work of unbridled fury and unparalleled genius. It transcends even the average Neil Young song. It amazes me that a reinterpreted Americana song could be the one that finally sweeps me off my feet and takes me on a harrowing sonic cruise through time and space.

It's the best single performance I've heard from Neil Young & Crazy Horse since ... I don't know, maybe something off Sleeps with Angels. Maybe even as far back as Ragged Glory. Maybe further back than that.

I really wasn't expecting my hair to stand on end and eyes to bug out when I heard this new song. I WAS expecting to dig it, but this is something else entirely.


Post a Comment

<< Home

<-Older Posts Blog Home Newer Posts->

Willie for a Nobel!

Willie Nelson for Nobel Peace Prize
for Farm Aid and his work on
alternative fuels, and world peace initiatives.

Farm Aid

Go Farmers Markets!

"In the >field< of opportunity
It's plowin' time again."

Silverline Communications

(Home of the FarmAidians)
Tecumseh, Ontario, Canada
(519) 737-7979

This blog supports free speech!

Demand justice for Aaron:
Support "Aaron's Law" and inquiry into his prosecution

(... he didn't kill himself either...) #AaronDidntKillHimself

Induct Neil Young & Crazy Horse
Into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Please Help Support Independent Media &
Non-Corporate Advertising
This Blog's For You!

The Hypocrisy of the Mainstream Media

It's Been Called The
"Missing Link" in the Ditch Trilogy


Sign the Release "Time Fades Away" Petition
Join The 10,000+ Who Have Already Signed


Neil Young Appreciation Society

Sugar Mountain

Neil Young Setlists
Rust Radio


Bands Covering Neil Young songs


Official Neil Young News Site

The Bridge School

The Bridge School Concerts
25th Anniversary Edition

**100% of Proceeds to Benefit Bridge School***

The Essential Neil Young

Fans Favorite Neil Albums

Top 50 MP3
Neil Young Song Downloads

Top 10 Best Selling Neil Albums Today
Support Thrasher's Wheat
via Purchases from:
United States - us.gif
Canada - canada.gif
United Kingdom - gb.gif
Germany - de.gif

Neil Young Songbook Project

In the fields of wheat

"Children of Destiny" will NOT be harvested
However, the chaff will be burned by unquenchable fire

Neil Young + Promise of the Real

Europe 2016 Tour Dates

2015 Rebel Content Tour

Neil Young & Crazy Horse
Alchemy Concert Tour Reviews

Fall 2012 N. America Tour
Spring 2013 Australia/New Zealand Tour
Summer 2013 Europe Tour

Europe Summer 2014 Concert Tour
Neil Young & Crazy Horse

Thrasher's Wheat Radio Supporters Go To Europe

Neil Young Films

2010 MusiCares Honors Neil Young

Features Elvis Costello, Crosby Stills & Nash, Sheryl Crow, Josh Groban, Ben Harper, Elton John, Norah Jones, Lady Antebellum, Dave Matthews, James Taylor, Keith Urban, and others.
Proceeds from sales go to MusiCares,
which helps musicians in need of
financial and medical assistance.


"There's more to the picture
Than meets the eye"



Neil Young FAQ:
Everything Left to Know About the Iconic and Mercurial Rocker
"an indispensable reference"

Paul McCartney and Neil Young


"You can make a difference
If you really a try"

John Lennon and Neil Young

"hailed by fans as a wonderful read"

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young:
The Supergroup of the 20th Century

Director Jonathan Demme's Exquisite film "Heart of Gold"

eddie & neil
Eddie Vedder and Neil Young

Revisiting The Significance of
The Buffalo Springfield

"The revolution will not be televised"
... it will be blogged, streamed,
tweeted, shared and liked
The Embarrassment of Mainstream Media

Turn Off Your TV & Have A Life

"Everything Is Bullshit" +
"Turn Off The News"
Turn Off the News (Build a Garden)

Neil Young 2016 Year in Review:
The Year of The Wheat

Kurt Cobain
Kurt Cobain and Neil Young

Neil Young's Feedback:
An Acquired Taste?

Young Neil: The Sugar Mountain Years
by Rustie Sharry "Keepin' Jive Alive in T.O." Wilson

"the definitive source of Neil Young's formative childhood years in Canada"

neil & joni
Joni Mitchell & Neil Young

europe 1987.jpg

Bob and Neil

So Who Really Was "The Godfather of Grunge"?

Four Dead in Ohio
kent state
So What Really Happened at Kent State?

The Four Dead in Ohio

May The FOUR Be With You #MayThe4thBeWithYou


dissent is not treason
Dissent is the highest form of patriotism

Rockin' In The Free World

Sing Truth to Power!
When Neil Young Speaks Truth To Power,
The World Listens

Emmylou Harris and Neil Young

Wilco and Neil Young


Bruce Springsteen and Neil Young


Elton John and Neil Young

Lynyrd Skynyrd and Neil Young


The Meaning of "Sweet Home Alabama" Lyrics

Neil Young Nation -
"The definitive Neil Young fan book"

What does the song mean?

Random Neil Young Link of the Moment

Bonnie Raitt and Neil Young

I'm Proud to Be A Union Man


When Neil Young is Playing,
You Shut the Fuck Up

Class War:
They Started It and We'll Finish It...

A battle raged on the open page...
No Fear, No Surrender. Courage

"What if Al Qaeda blew up the levees?"
Full Disclousre Now

"I've Got The Revolution Blues"

Willie Nelson & Neil Young
Willie Nelson for Nobel Peace Prize

John Mellencamp:
Why Willie Deserves a Nobel



Love and Only Love

"Thinking about what a friend had said,
I was hoping it was a lie"

We're All On
A Journey Through the Past

Neil Young's Moon Songs
Tell Us The F'n TRUTH
(we can handle it... try us)

Does Anything Else Really Matter?

"Nobody's free until everybody's free."
~~ Fannie Lou Hamer

Here Comes "The Big Shift"

Maybe everything you think you know is wrong? NOTHING IS AS IT SEEMS
"It's all illusion anyway."

Propaganda = Mind Control
Guess what?
"Symbols Rule the World, not Words or Laws."
... and symbolism will be their downfall...

Brighter Planet's 350 Challenge
Be The Rain, Be The Change

the truth will set you free
This Machine Kills Fascists

"Children of Destiny" - THE Part of THE Solution

(Frame from Official Music Video)

war is not the answer
yet we are
Still Living With War

"greed is NOT good"
Hey Big Brother!
Stop Spying On Us!
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