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Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: Looking Back Through The Years

Joni Mitchell + Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
Wembley Stadium, London - September 14, 1974
(Click photo to enlarge)

We look back as we look forward to the release of the Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young's Live 1974 Box Set next month. (Now #20 #19 on Bestseller Listing.)

Here are a few highlight's from the Thrasher's Wheat Archives in the meantime:

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
Wembley Stadium, London, 1974-09-14
Photo by smartsetpix | Flickr
(click photo to enlarge)

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At 6/12/2014 10:30:00 AM, Blogger Raincheck said...

CSN and sometimes Y is the ultimate It Might Have Been story.

But for egos, drugs, insanity, personal ambition, lack of ambition and a careless attitude toward the band, CSN actually could have been the American Beatles and we would have possibly have been spared the Eagles being so big. Together they were capable of putting out a very good to great album every year in the seventies.

Neil could have come and gone and been in both the American Rolling Stones and the American Beatles and been a solo artist.

But the first two letters in the band were just too unstable, it was not destined to work out, there is some nice music spread over the group, solo and duo albums from 69-77, but the impact would have been much greater had they, CSN, done their best material together. And sometimes had the incredible addition of Y.

After 77 it was over and they became an instant nostalgia act. But what might have been....

I hope CSNY 74 is a taste of that. Remembering how much of this was new material back then, and how recent the war horses were,it was a hell of a set list. Like drinking from a fire hose.

At 6/12/2014 10:45:00 AM, Blogger Lloyd Walton said...

Once in a while, some thirty or so years later, a certain spirit could be summoned to guide them through some extraordinary performances.
Wow, when they were ON, they were ON.

At 6/12/2014 12:31:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...

@Raincheck - yes, what might have been. If CSNY had managed to record couple of more studio albums in the 70s. If CSNY had managed to play a few more concert tours in the 70s.

If so, yes, CSNY might have been a N American Beatles/Stones.

But if they had, it is highly doubtful that NY would be what he is today. That is, NY survived all for the better it would seem.

But maybe it would have turned out better for the CSN guys?

At 6/12/2014 01:45:00 PM, Blogger Dan1 said...

In fairness, almost no band survived the 60s-70s unscathed and surely no band that reached the pinnacle of success that CSNY did ... maybe the Stones aged best but the stones were more of an original band while CSN/(Y) was always a supergroup putting together already famous stars under one umbrella ... the Beatles imploded and never came back ... look at Led Zepplin they can't even do a reunion tour ... the Stones (who I love) were always unabashedly willing to milk fans for cash with the periodic oldies tour ... I would argue the Stones music happens to be more timeless while CSN's music was more in the period ... but overall the CSNY flameout experience seems consistent with their peers ... Neil is a rare bird in that he at his core was only about the music and probably disdained the fame as opposed to reveling in it and hence he wasn't consumed by the fame like most of his peers ... and Neil stayed doggedly focused on writing new material throughout ... barely ever taking his eye off the ball except perhaps in the 80s period when he was dealing with that heartbreaking program to help his sons ... plus Neil was/is a standout songwriting talent heads and tails above most of his peers ... as such its sad to see the CSNY flameout that happened but its not surprising and it was the rule, Neil was clearly the exception ...

At 6/13/2014 11:49:00 AM, Blogger Raincheck said...

Thrasher, I was unclear. CSNY was the Beatles, Crazy Horse the Stones. Neil could have made a couple of CSNY albums and done a couple of tours and still been Neil.

Dan1, I would argue CSN implodes waaaaaaay before doing what the Beatles, Stones, Zeppelin, et al did. They imploded, really, in 1970.

At 6/13/2014 06:56:00 PM, Blogger Dan1 said...

I'm basically in agreement ... my point is not to suggest CSNY's output or longevity matched that of those other bands (thats a whole nother discussion and also somewhat subjective), but rather that almost everyone and every band who reached that pinnacle of fame proceeded to combust from it ... and so in that respect CSNY was typical and Neil was somewhat atypical ... and the reason why CSNY flamed out so quickly is because they became big so quickly ...


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