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Wednesday, March 03, 2021

Comment of the Moment: INTERVIEW: Frank “Poncho” Sampedro - Neil Young, Crazy Horse Guitarist | Rolling Stone

 Frank “Poncho” Sampedro w/ Crazy Horse
Cleveland, Ohio - Oct. 8
Alchemy Tour 2012
Photos by TW
(Click photo to enlarge)


The recently published interview with Frank “Poncho” Sampedro of Crazy Horse in Rolling Stone, provided many answers to questions that fans have been asking for several years now.

Frank "Poncho" Sampedro
Neil Young & Crazy Horse Concert: Liverpool, England - July 13, 2014
Photo by David Fallon
(Click photo to enlarge)


Our Comment of the Moment is from the post INTERVIEW: Frank “Poncho” Sampedro - Neil Young, Crazy Horse Guitarist | Rolling Stone by Dan:

Just now finished reading the whole interview and I’m amazed that Rolling Stone Magazine actually got Poncho to be interviewed at all. 

This is the interview I’ve been waiting for since Poncho left the Horse. 

What a relaxed and friendly person he seems to be, and it doesn’t surprise me at all. He truly was the glue that held the music together for so many years, as he is such a gifted rhythm guitarist. Much like Bob Weir, their gift is so easily missed because it’s so incredibly subtle and articulate at the same time. Any musician can hear it instantly, but for the layperson who listens to music but doesn’t play wouldn’t notice it as quickly. It’s a feel thing, and that is hard to understand until it’s not there. If you were to sit at a mixing board with any Crazy Horse song playing, and you were to turn the track that Poncho is on all the way off, you would not only hear what’s missing, but you would feel it even more. His contributions to Neil’s music is irreplaceable. 

He has the gift that only few musicians have, and that’s why we all miss him so much.

This was a great interview with interesting facts and information that have answered a lot of questions I’ve had over the years. Poncho was so open and kind. I’m so glad he knew when to stop, and for the right reasons, with no regrets. Thank you Poncho for all the amazing music you have given us over the years. Generations of music fans will enjoy and appreciate your legacy long after we’re all gone. 

Your integrity, honesty and sense of humor all illustrate the wonderful person you are, and I wish you a long and happy life.

Peace 🙏

Thanks so much Dan!  We could not have said it any better.  This interview by Poncho really puts to rest much of the idle speculation on "so, whatever happened to Poncho and Crazy Horse?"

So it really is essential reading for any Horse aficionado -- which we know are out there roaming about in very large herds.

Billy, Poncho, Ralph & Neil
Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Albuquerque, NM, Aug 3, 2012
Photo by Steve Snowden/Getty Images North America

Also, here's an interview from 2013, A Horse with a Name: Frank Sampedro Tells the Crazy Horse Story by John Swenson.


Crazy Horse
Ralph Molina, Billy Talbot & Frank "Poncho" Sampedro

MusiCares Honors Neil Young - Los Angeles, CA - 1/29/10
Photo by Joni Milken-Noah

Neil Young & Crazy Horse
(L-R Billy Talbot, Frank "Poncho" Sampedro, Neil Young, and Ralph Molina w/ Elliot Roberts)
Spectrum in Philadelphia,PA on September 17,1986
©1986 Ebet Roberts
(Click photo to enlarge)


Crazy Horse 2012 - Los Angeles, CA
 Billy Talbot, Frank Sampedro, Neil Young & Ralph Molina
(See Photo of the Moment: Crazy Horse 2012)
Photo via Ralph Molina | Facebook

Poncho & Neil Young
Melbourne, AUS 13 March 2013 (reviews)
Photo Gallery by Sten Thorborg | Flickr
(Click photo to enlarge)

Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse
Mansfield, MA - 8-8-1997

Photo by Steve "Babs" Babineau via TW Archives Collection (#8 0f 300)

Also, Photo of the Moment: "SMELL THE HORSE" - Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse, Mansfield, MA - 8-8-1997 by Steve "Babs" Babineau.


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


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At 3/04/2021 12:33:00 AM, Blogger tomatron said...

His absence on Greendale was certainly noticeable, which is why I so prefer the new Return record. His keys on that version really light up the space in those songs.

At 3/04/2021 09:59:00 AM, Blogger Andy said...

Why was he CGIed out of the movie, though? Pretty strange thing. I wish the interviewer asked him that.

At 3/04/2021 11:54:00 AM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 3/04/2021 12:03:00 PM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

We finally got the time to watch the DVD of Way Down in the Rust Bucket last night. The songs that were featured on NYA last year every Friday did nothing to prepare us for what we experienced last night. By the time we got to the encore, my wife was absolutely spent. She said that each set could have been a whole concert on its own.

Listening to the albums was (for me) a sonic revelation. Watching the entire concert was a totally physical revelation. The old cliche “ it was like being there” is an understatement. This was the most fun I’ve ever had at a concert without actually being there. I love the fact that the video was left as is, rough around the edges and grainy; ragged glory as it were. It felt like experiencing an historical event that had been lost to the ages, and somehow, unexpectedly discovered by an archeologist. This concert is the musical equivalent of discovering dead sea scrolls.

Anyone with kids who have an interest in music, either playing it or just listening asks “what it was like going to a concert back in the day” should have the opportunity to witness this film......LOUD!!! It will answer many questions they may have. Like “why is it so important to play in the moment”, or “What does it mean, “being in the zone”. What is the value to “play with feeling over technique? “Why are mistakes just as important as accuracy”? “Why is the joy of playing more valuable than the money you can make”? All this and more is openly on display in this one performance.

This document is an extraordinary example of the power of rock and roll, and its value to the heart, mind, and soul. One doesn’t even need to like Neil Young and Crazy Horse to see the glory of the “group mind” playing music. There’s intensity, humor, musicality, heartfelt and emotional lyrics. There is the simplicity of T. Bone creating an opportunity to just jam for the sake of jamming, the cinematic Cortez the Killer, the anthemic Love and Only Love. The provocative Bite the Bullet, and Farmer John. This show covers a lot of ground, and it takes its sweet time doing it.

The pure joy on stage I felt listening to the 4 LP’s, was in plain view on the DVD. A great band playing in a great venue for a great audience, and no one was holding anything back. This was a concert for the ages, and it should be witnessed by as many people as possible, but be prepared to be completely exhausted after seeing it. I can’t wait to experience it again, and again and.........

Peace 🙏

At 3/04/2021 03:54:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Couldn't have said it any better myself, Dan...Neil never loses his energy level and the soaring tone he gets on these classics is classic! The spirit was strong and there for the moment. Wish I was at that show but seeing it on film documented is the next best thing! ~Union Train

At 3/04/2021 08:22:00 PM, Blogger tomatron said...

The DVD is an excellent companion to the LP set. It has those fun breaks between tunes with the guys just relaxing and joking on their hometown stage. Plus it’s a continuous experience that could never happen on vinyl, including the zaniness of CitS’s middle snafu, and the whole videotapey quality feels just so garage. It’s an experience. The four records though function quite differently; broken into distinct song tracks and so few per side, one could enjoy the sides in almost any order, in small bites or as a whole 160 minute session. Both versions truly embody everything rock n roll!


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