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Saturday, November 05, 2022

HARVEST Outtakes by Neil Young: "Journey Through The Past"

HARVEST Outtakes by Neil Young
(Click photo to enlarge)

An unreleased studio outtake from the recording of Neil Young's album ‘HARVEST’ is now streaming on Neil Young Archives.

There are multiple versions of "Journey Through The Past" on NYA, including the original on the 'Time Fades Away'  album.  But now there are 2 versions of "Journey Through The Pastrecorded on April 4, 1971 with The Stray Gators @ Quadrafonic Sound Studios, Nashville.



Previously released on NYA Volume #1, "Journey Through The Past" running time is 2:22 and an outtake running 10 seconds longer @ 2:32.


After listening, clearly these are two different performance versions and not simply a shorter edit or different mix.

As Tomatron comments:

The laidback Stray Gators take on JTTP became my go-to version when Vol 1 presented it; this new take by them may even top it. 

You don’t hear that guy on piano with Neil too much, so it’s refreshing to feel the space he’s given in this mix with no harmonica. The balance in headphones is pretty sweet too, with the snare more centered and increased clarity to the low end. 

Although the Archives book does not cite multiple takes of this tune, I think they missed it on that tape list. Other songs from the same sessions like Alabama show at least three distinct takes. I do hear some differences here to indicate it’s a separate run through. This kind of thing is such a goodie for us Neil nerds. 

Yes I will be there in the movie theater for Harvest Time just like I was for Year of the Horse, Trunk Show, and Journeys.

Thanks for comment Tomatron. Yes, the new JTTP outtake does have a real laid back groove to it. The slower pace does sort of reinforce the imagery conveyed.

And yeah, we too will be in the theater as well to take in the big sound and screen of Harvest Time --  a documentary shot in 1971.

Harvest Time ... perhaps the ultimate journey through the past of all time?

Harvest 50th Anniversary Edition Deluxe LP Box Set
Release Date: 12/02/2022
 (Click photo to enlarge)
Harvest by Neil Young - Released on February 1, 1972

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At 11/05/2022 11:25:00 AM, Blogger eddie77 said...

It's an absolutely gorgeous version of a wonderful song. What's not to like?...:) What a red-hot streak he was on then!

At 11/05/2022 03:00:00 PM, Blogger The Metamorphic Rocker said...

Both Stray Gators studio takes of JTTP are quite good. I give the edge to this newly released version, owing mostly to the piano and guitar interplay. Would have fit right in on Harvest. The piano is used similarly on the title track.

I'm most strongly partial, though, to the Massey Hall '71 recording. It's cleaner than TFA but still captures the honest vulnerability of the song. All the piano recordings from that show (JTTP, Love in Mind, See the Sky, A Man Needs a Maid/Heart of Gold suite) are some of my favorite Neil performances ever. For me, it's classic case where less is more.

JTTP is such a simple song, yet simultaneously with such strong melancholy undertones. The full band arrangement feels a bit leaden compared with the sparse, sensitive setting for just piano and voice.

At 11/06/2022 12:12:00 AM, Blogger Alan said...

Thanks all for your words and thoughts. As I listened to the Stray Gators take on Journey Through the Past, I could see why it didn’t make the cut. Fascinating to hear Ben Keith do a weird (Hawaiian style?) recording. I like it. It enriches the Neil Young experience .. a tapestry richly woven, with utmost care taken to channel the muse and deliver to his fans… we in the Rusty TW community love our volumes of NYA Library music / video / content…. “Don’t Take Your Love Away From Me”

@ Thrasher : Thank you so much for keeping TW burning brightly. Your efforts are much appreciated, my friend.

Your Brother Alan in Seattle. (Be the Rain) (& snow!).

At 11/06/2022 12:50:00 PM, Blogger Nimrod said...

I like the varying studio versions of JTTP, but none of them come close to the Massey Hall recording (TFA comes close). He should have replaced There's a World with the Massey JTTP IMHO; it's the definitive rendition of the song.

At 11/07/2022 11:52:00 AM, Blogger thrasher said...

@ eddie77 - the decade streak that Neil had was magic. so glad so much was captured and now coming out of vaults finally.

@ Meta Rocker - there seems to be some consensus on the Massey Hall '71 recording.

need to go back and re-listen. been awhile.

@ YBAiS - we're definitely trying to keep TW burning brightly. always appreciate the reminders from folks. keeps us going.

@ Nimrod - another Massey Hall fan.

definitely need to re-visit.


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