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70s Folk

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Playlist: 70s Folk

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Relive the greatest moments of '70s folk music, with Cat Stevens, Simon & Garfunkel, Neil Young, Nick Drake, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Joan Baez, Leonard Cohen, Townes Van Zandt... Photo: Cat Stevens

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70s Folk

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Title Artist Album Duration
1
Lady D'Arbanville
Cat Stevens On The Road To Find Out 00:03:43

Paul Samwell-Smith, Producer - Peter Gabriel, Flute, AssociatedPerformer - Cat Stevens, Guitar, Keyboards, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - John Ryan, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Alun Davies, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Michael Bobak, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Harvey Burns, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1970 Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations Limited, Mit freundlicher Genehmigung: Universal Music International Division - a division of Universal Music GmbH

2
El Condor Pasa (If I Could)
Simon & Garfunkel Bridge Over Troubled Water 00:03:08

Simon & Garfunkel, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Paul Simon, Producer - J. MILCHBERG, Composer, Lyricist - Art Garfunkel, Producer - D.A. Robles, Composer, Lyricist - Roy Halee, Producer - P. Simon, Lyricist

Originally released 1970. All rights reserved by Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

3
The Needle and the Damage Done
Neil Young Harvest 00:02:02

NEIL YOUNG, Producer, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Piano, Lead Vocals, Writer, Harmonica, MainArtist - Jack Nitzsche, Piano - Ben Keith, Pedal Steel Guitar - Elliot Mazer, Producer - JAMES TAYLOR, Banjo - Tim Drummond, Bass Guitar - Kenny Buttrey, Drums

2011 © 1972 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2002 Reprise Records

4
Hazey Jane I
Nick Drake Bryter Layter 00:04:28

Joe Boyd, Producer - Dave Mattacks, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Drake, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Pegg, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - John Robert Wood, Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 1970 Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations Limited

5
Jolene
Dolly Parton Jolene 00:02:43

Dolly Parton, Associated Performer, Composer, Lyricist, Main Artist - Bob Ferguson, Producer

(P) 1973 Sony Music Entertainment

6
Big Yellow Taxi
Joni Mitchell Ladies Of The Canyon 00:02:14

Milt Holland, Percussion - Henry Lewy, Engineer - Joni Mitchell, Producer, Arranger, Guitar, Piano, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - Paul Horn, Clarinet, Flute - Teresa Adams, Cello - The Sasaktunes, Chorus - Jim Horn, Baritone Saxophone - Don Bagley, Cello Arranger

© 1970 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 1970 Warner Records Inc.

7
Diamonds And Rust
Joan Baez The Complete A&M Recordings 00:04:45

David Kershenbaum, Producer - Joan Baez, Producer, Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Bernard Gelb, Producer, Executive Producer

℗ 1975 UMG Recordings, Inc.

8
Famous Blue Raincoat
Leonard Cohen Songs Of Love And Hate 00:05:15

Leonard Cohen, Associated Performer, Composer, Lyricist, Main Artist, Associated Performer, Composer, Lyricist - Bob Johnston, Producer

Originally released 1970 All rights reserved by Sony Music Entertainment

9
Tangled up in Blue
Bob Dylan The Essential Bob Dylan 00:05:41

Bob Dylan, Associated Performer, Main Artist, Associated Performer - Unknown, Producer - B. Dylan, Composer, Lyricist - Producer not documented on available sources, Producer - Buddy Cage, Steel Guitar - Phil Ramone, Engineer - Paul Griffin, Organ - Tony Brown, Bass

(P) 1975 Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

10
My Sweet Lord (Remastered 2014)
George Harrison All Things Must Pass 00:04:41

GEORGE HARRISON, Producer, Performer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - PHIL SPECTOR, Producer - Ken Scott, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip McDonald, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2014 G.H. Estate Limited

11
Poncho & Lefty
Townes Van Zandt The Late Great Townes Van Zandt 00:03:39

Jack Clement, Producer - Townes Van Zandt, Composer, MainArtist

℗ 1972 Capitol Records, LLC

12
The Ballad of Sally Rose (2017 Remaster)
Emmylou Harris The Ballad of Sally Rose 00:02:47

Emory Gordy, Jr., Acoustic Guitar, Bass - John Jarvis, Keyboards - Paul Kennerley, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar - Barry Tashian, Acoustic Guitar - Hank DeVito, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Dobro - Ray Flacke, Electric Guitar - Steve Cash, Harmonica - Linda Ronstadt, Background Vocals - Russ Kunkel, Drums - Waylon Jennings, Guitar - Vince Gill, Electric Guitar, Background Vocals - Paul Kennerly, Writer - Albert Lee, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Mandolin - Dolly Parton, Background Vocals - Gail Davies, Background Vocals - Shane Keister, Keyboards - Tom Roady, Percussion - Larrie Londin, Drums, Percussion - BOBBY THOMPSON, Banjo, Acoustic Guitar - EMMYLOU HARRIS, Acoustic Guitar, Writer, Background Vocals, MainArtist - Gary Scruggs, Harmonica - Buddy Spicher, Fiddle - Bessyl Duhon, Accordion - Barbara Cowart, Background Vocals - Phillip Donelly, Electric Guitar

2018, 1985 Warner Records Inc. All Rights Reserved. 1984 Warner Records Inc. 2017 Remastered Rhino Entertainment

13
Cool Change (Remastered)
Little River Band First Under The Wire (2010 Digital Remaster) 00:05:13

Little River Band, Producer, MainArtist - John Boylan, Producer - Glenn Barrie Shorrock, ComposerLyricist - Chris Camillo, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

Artwork (C) 1979 Capitol Records, LLC. ℗ 2010 Capitol Records, LLC

14
She's Got a Way
Billy Joel Cold Spring Harbor 00:02:49

Billy Joel, Composer - Billy Joel, Harmonica - Billy Joel, Harpsichord - Billy Joel, Lyricist - Billy Joel, Organ - Billy Joel, Performer - Billy Joel, Piano - Don Evans, Guitar - Artie Ripp for Just Sunshine Inc. and Family Productions Inc., Producer - Irwin Mazur, Executive Producer - Sal De Troia, Guitar - Sneaky Pete, Steel Guitar - Rhys Clark, Drums - Denny Siewell, Drums - Joe Osborn, Bass - Larry Knechtel, Bass

Originally released 1971. All rights reserved by Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

15
Hammond Song (Album Version)
The Roches The Roches 00:05:45

Jon Smith, Assistant Engineer - Larry Fast, Programmer, Synthesizer - Robert Fripp, Producer, Electric Guitar - Jim Maelen, Triangle, Shaker - Ed Sprigg, Recording Engineer - Tony Levin, Bass - The Roches, MainArtist - Maggie Roche, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals - Margaret A. Roche, Writer - Suzzy Roche, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals - Terre Roche, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals

© 1979 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 1979 Warner Records Inc.

16
Helpless
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young Deja Vu 00:03:39

David Crosby, Producer, Vocals - Dallas Taylor, Drums - NEIL YOUNG, Producer, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Stills, Producer, Vocals - Graham nash, Producer, Vocals - Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, MainArtist - BILL HALVERSON, Engineer - Greg Reeves, Bass Guitar

© 1970 Atlantic Records ℗ 1970 Atlantic Recording Corp.

17
Loving Her Was Easier (Than Anything I'll Ever Do Again) (Album Version)
Kris Kristofferson The Essential Kris Kristofferson 00:03:46

Kris Kristofferson, Vocal - Kris Kristofferson, Performer - Kris Kristofferson, Composer - Kris Kristofferson, Lyricist - Fred Foster, Producer

Originally Released 1971. All rights reserved by SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT

18
Both Sides Now
Joni Mitchell Both Sides Now 00:05:43

Joni Mitchell, Vocals - London Symphony Orchestra - Vince Mendoza, Conductor - Joni Mitchell, Composer - Craig Armstrong, Composer & Orchestration - Vince Mendoza, Arranger - Joni Mitchell, Arranger - Joni Mitchell, Lyricist - Joni Mitchell, Producer - Larry Klein, Producer, Director

© 2000 Joni Mitchell ℗ 2000 Reprise Records

19
Fire and Rain (LP Version)
James Taylor Greatest Hits 00:03:20

Peter Asher, Producer - Danny Kortchmar, Guitar - Carole King, Piano - Russ Kunkel, Drums - JAMES TAYLOR, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - RED RHODES, Guitar - Bobby West, Bass Guitar - Chris Darrow, Violin - JOHN LONDON, Bass Guitar - Darrell Johnson, Masterer - Bill Lazerus, Engineer

© 1988 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 1970 Warner Records Inc.

20
Snowqueen Of Texas
The Mamas & The Papas People Like Us 00:02:37

John Phillips, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Hassinger, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Mamas & The Papas, MainArtist

℗ 1971 UMG Recordings, Inc.

21
Way Out West
Mary McCaslin Way Out West 00:04:13

Jay Ungar, Fiddle, AssociatedPerformer - Abby Newton, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Jim Ringer, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Mary McCaslin, Producer, Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Bill Schubart, Producer, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Martin Grosswendt, Dobro, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Combs, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Doug McClaran, Piano, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1974 Rounder Records

22
Wild World
Cat Stevens Tea For The Tillerman 00:03:20

Paul Samwell-Smith, Producer - Cat Stevens, Guitar, Vocalist, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Del Newman, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1970 Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations Limited

23
Something On Your Mind
Karen Dalton In My Own Time 00:03:23

Karen Dalton, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Light In The Attic Records & Productions (P) 2006 Light In The Attic Records & Productions

24
The Pearl (Remastered LP Version)
Judee Sill Heart Food 00:01:55

Henry Lewy, Producer - Judee Sill, Composer, Conductor, Producer, Arranger, MainArtist

© 2005 Elektra Entertainment. Manufactured & Marketed by Warner Strategic Marketing ℗ 1973 Elektra/Asylum Records for the US and WEA International for the world outside of the United States.

25
Traveling Lady
Rosalie Sorrels My Last Go Round 00:05:04

Rosalie Sorrels, Composer, MainArtist - Grimes Creek Music ASCAP, MusicPublisher

2004 Red House Records 2004 Red House Records

26
Born to the Breed (LP Version)
Judy Collins Judith 00:04:49

Judy Collins, Piano, Writer, MainArtist - Arif Mardin, Producer, Arranger - Tony Levin, Bass Guitar - COLLINS, Writer - Eric Weissberg, Guitar - Stephen Gadd, Drums - Don Brooks, Harmonica - Charlie Brown, Guitar - Pat Rebillot, Organ

© 1975 Elektra/Asylum/Nonesuch Records ℗ 1975 Elektra Asylum Nonesuch Records, A Division of Warner Communications Inc.

Mark Klingman, Keyboards - Buzzy Linhart, Band Member - Carly Simon, Acoustic Guitar, Piano, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - Jimmy Ryan, Guitar - Jimmy Johnson, Guitar - Paul Griffin, Keyboards - JEFF BAXTER, Pedal Steel Guitar - Eddie Kramer, Producer, MixingEngineer - Dave Palmer, MixingEngineer - Tony Levin, Bass - Gerry Jemmott, Bass - David Bromberg, Guitar - Doug Rauch, Bass - Billy Mernit, Keyboards - David Givens, Bass - Ed Freeman, String Arranger, Strings - Frank Steo, Band Member - Harvey Shapiro, Cello - Jim Wilkins, Bass - John Siomos, Drums - Steve Merriman, Band Member - Tom Caulfield, Band Member

© 2014 Rhino Entertainment Company, a Warner Music Group Company ℗ 1971 Elektra/Asylum Records

28
Rocks And Gravel
Ian & Sylvia Ian And Sylvia 00:03:29

Ian Tyson, ComposerLyricist - Sylvia Fricker, ComposerLyricist - Ian & Sylvia, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Vanguard ℗ 2006 Vanguard Records, a Welk Music Group Company

29
Cat's in the Cradle
Various Artists 70 Hits of the 70s 00:03:42

Sandy Chapin, Writer - Don Grolnick, Keyboards - Paul Leka, Producer - Frank Simms, Backing Vocals - John Tropea, Guitar - Don Payne, Bass Guitar - Harry Chapin, Featured Vocalist, Acoustic Guitar, Writer, MainArtist - Steve Chapin, Keyboards - Mike Masters, Cello - Alan Schwartzberg, Drums - Dave Kondziela, Vocals - George Simms, Backing Vocals - Jim Chapin, Drums - ZIzi Roberts, Backing Vocals

© 2016 Rhino UK, a division of Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 1974 Elektra Records for the United States and WEA International for the world outside of the United States.

30
Seven Bridges Road
Matthews' Southern Comfort Rhino Hi-Five: Ian Matthews 00:04:05

Steve Young, Writer - Michael Nesmith, Producer, Guitar - David Lindley, Guitar - Ian Matthews, MainArtist - RED RHODES, Pedal Steel Guitar - Andy Roberts, Guitar - Iain Matthews, Vocals - David Barry, Piano - Lyn Dobson, Saxophone - Richard Greene, Violin

2007 Rhino Entertainment Company, A Warner Music Group Company 1973 Elektra Entertainment Group

31
My Rainbow Race
Pete Seeger The World of Pete Seeger 00:02:53

Pete Seeger, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Bob Johnston, Producer - P. Seeger, Composer, Lyricist

Originally Released 1971. All rights reserved by Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

32
Cecilia
Simon & Garfunkel Bridge Over Troubled Water 00:02:54

Simon & Garfunkel, Associated Performer, Main Artist - Paul Simon, Composer, Lyricist, Producer - Art Garfunkel, Producer - Roy Halee, Producer

Originally released 1970. All rights reserved by Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

33
At Seventeen
Various Artists Love Songs 01 00:04:41

Janis Ian, Composer, Author, Artist, MainArtist

1990 金企鵝唱片音樂帶有限公司 1990 金企鵝唱片音樂帶有限公司

34
Sugar Mountain (2017 Remaster)
Neil Young Decade 00:05:45

NEIL YOUNG, Producer, Guitar, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - John Hausmann, AssistantEngineer - John Nowland, Engineer - TIM MULLIGAN, Digital Editor, MasteringEngineer - Harry Sitam, Technical Engineer

© 1976 Warner Records Inc. for the U.S. and WEA International Inc. for the world outside the U.S. ℗ 1977 Reprise Records

35
Come Tomorrow
Townes Van Zandt Delta Momma Blues 00:02:59

Townes Van Zandt, Composer, Lyricist, MainArtist - Ronald Frangipane, Producer - Silver Dollar Music Inc (ASCAP), MusicPublisher - Bug Music Ltd (PRS), MusicPublisher

2009 Domino Recording Co Ltd 1971 Fat Possum Records under exclusive licence to Domino Recording Co Ltd

36
Summer, Highland Falls (Album Version)
Peter, Paul and Mary Reunion 00:03:50

Peter, Paul and Mary, MainArtist - B. Joel, Writer

© 2004 Warner Records Inc. Manufactured & Marketed by Warner Strategic Marketing ℗ 1978 Warner Records Inc.

37
Eli's Song
John Denver Spirit 00:03:59

Steve Weisberg, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Steel Guitar, Dobro - Dick Kniss, Bass - Jack Williams, Composer, Lyricist - Milton Okun, Producer - Richard Simpson, Mastering Engineer - Hal Blaine, Drums, Percussion - LEE HOLDRIDGE, Conductor, Orchestrator - John Sommers, Banjo, Acoustic Guitar, Fiddle - John Denver, Guitar, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, Vocal - Kris O'Connor, Assistant Producer - Mickey Crofford, Recording Engineer - Artie Torgersen, Assistant Engineer

(P) 1976 RCA Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

38
Yellow River
Various Artists 70s 100 Hits 00:02:46

Jeff Christie, Composer - Jeff Christie, Lyricist - Mike Smith, Producer - Christie, Performer

(P) 1970 Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited

39
Morning Has Broken
Cat Stevens Teaser And The Firecat 00:03:19

Paul Samwell-Smith, Producer - Eleanor Farjeon, ComposerLyricist - Cat Stevens, Arranger, Guitar, Work Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1971 Universal Music Operations Limited

40
A Case of You
Joni Mitchell Blue 00:04:22

Russ Kunkel, Drums - Henry Lewy, Engineer - JAMES TAYLOR, Guitar - Joni Mitchell, Producer, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist

© 1971 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 1971 Warner Records Inc.

41
Vincent
Don McLean Favorites & Rarities 00:04:01

Warren Bernhardt, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Lee Hays, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - DON MCLEAN, Banjo, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Mike Mainieri, Vibraphone, Marimba, AssociatedPerformer - Roy MArkowitz, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Ed Freeman, Producer, String Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Flye, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Ray Colcord, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Robert David Rothstein, Bass Guitar, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - West Forty Fourth Street Rhythm And Noise Choir, Chorus, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 1992 Capitol Records, Inc. ℗ 1971 Capitol Records, LLC, Mit freundlicher Genehmigung der EMI ELECTROLA GMBH & CO. KG

42
Who Knows Where The Time Goes?
Sandy Denny No More Sad Refrains: The Anthology 00:05:10

Joe Boyd, Producer - Richard Thompson, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - John Wood, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Sandy Denny, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Simon Nicol, Producer, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Fairport Convention, Producer, MainArtist - Ashley Hutchings, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Lamble, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1969 Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations Limited

43
Forever Young (Live On Tour / 1975)
Joan Baez From Every Stage 00:03:39

Bob Dylan, ComposerLyricist - David Kershenbaum, Producer - Joan Baez, Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Bernard Gelb, Producer, Executive Producer

℗ 1976 A&M Records

44
Pink Moon
Nick Drake A Treasury 00:02:03

Nick Drake, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - John Robert Wood, Producer

℗ 1972 Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations Limited

45
For No One (2003 Remaster) (Remastered LP Version)
Emmylou Harris Pieces of the Sky 00:03:40

Herb Pedersen, Electric Guitar - Bill Payne, Piano - John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Byron Berline, Mandolin - Brian Ahern, Producer, Engineer, Bass Guitar - EMMYLOU HARRIS, Vocals, Backing Vocals, MainArtist - Amos Garrett, Electric Guitar - Fran Tate, Engineer - Chris Skene, Engineer - Stuart Taylor, Engineer - Fayssoux Starling, Backing Vocals - Paul Skene, Engineer

© 2004 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 1975 Warner Records Inc.

46
California
Joni Mitchell Blue 00:03:51

Russ Kunkel, Drums - Henry Lewy, Engineer - JAMES TAYLOR, Guitar - Joni Mitchell, Producer, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - Sneeky Pete, Pedal Steel Guitar

© 1971 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 1971 Warner Records Inc.

47
The Boxer
Simon & Garfunkel Bridge Over Troubled Water 00:05:12

Simon & Garfunkel, Associated Performer, Main Artist - P. Simon, Composer, Lyricist - Paul Simon, Producer - Art Garfunkel, Producer - B. JOHNSTON, Producer

Originally released 1969. All rights reserved by Columbia Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

48
When She Don't Need Me
Townes Van Zandt Flyin Shoes 00:03:17

Townes Van Zandt, interprète

2009 Domino Recording Co Ltd 1978 Fat Possum Records under exclusive licence to Domino Recording Co Ltd

49
If You Could Read My Mind (Album Version)
Gordon Lightfoot Gord's Gold 00:03:49

Gordon Lightfoot, Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - Nick DeCaro, String Arranger - LENNY WARONKER, Producer - JOE WISSERT, Producer - Red Shea, Guitar - Gary Brandt, Engineer - Rick Haynes, Bass Guitar - Lee Hershberg, Engineer

© 1975 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 1987 Warner Records Inc.

50
Knocking On Heaven's Door (Live At The L.A. Troubadour, 1974)
Fairport Convention Rising For The Moon (Deluxe Edition) 00:04:27

Bob Dylan, ComposerLyricist - Dave Mattacks, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Sandy Denny, Piano, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jerry Donahue, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Fairport Convention, MainArtist - Trevor Lucas, Acoustic Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Pegg, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Swarbrick, Fiddle, AssociatedPerformer - Andrew Batt, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2010 Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations Limited

About Playlist

Relive the greatest moments of '70s folk music, with Cat Stevens, Simon & Garfunkel, Neil Young, Nick Drake, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Joan Baez, Leonard Cohen, Townes Van Zandt...

Photo: Cat Stevens

Neil Young in 10 albums

by Marc Zisman

It’s hard to shout “Rock’n’roll will never die!” without sounding like an idiot. But Neil Young can pull it off. Easily. For over half a century, the Canadian legend has proved himself to be one of the greatest songwriters of his generation, constantly renewing himself and taking rock’n’roll down both rustic and rougher paths. The proof lies in these ten albums.

Tonight's the Night (1975)
In six months, Neil Young lost two close friends to heroin overdoses: his guitarist Danny Whitten and his roadie Bruce Berry. It was only logical that the album he recorded in August and September 1973 (which was not released until June 1975, after On the Beach) took a dark turn... Light years away from Harvest, this sixth album’s introspective journey was influenced by troubles in his personal life that he mixed with the oppressive atmosphere in the United States. Street violence, growing dope consumption, the Vietnam War and a shattered hippie dream fed the record’s dark, sublime and moving score. Even the instrumentation on Tonight’s the Night is staggering, alternating between a wobbly piano and an economic pedal steel. Everything was stripped back to underscore the beautiful melodies of poignant songs such as Tired Eyes, New Mama and Borrowed Time or end-of-the-night blues like Speakin’ Out… After Time fades Away and On the Beach, Tonight’s the Night completes Neil Young’s “ditch trilogy”. At the time, these three albums were met with mixed critical and public opinion, however, they ended up being some of the most important records of the 70s.

Zuma (1975)
Neil Young's seventh studio album (Zuma, released at the end of 1975) is an all-too-often underestimated marvel. It is without a doubt one of his most powerful electric projects. With slow, sometimes heavy rhythms, the Canadian and his henchmen explored oppressive themes, pulled by the steel locomotive of guitars that is Crazy Horse, with Frank Sampedro replacing the late Danny Whitten. In a time when punk rock was about to explode around the globe, Young showed the world that he wasn’t some sleepy, hairy man that stunk of patchouli, but a true, virulent rocker. Barstool Blues, Don’t Cry No Tears or the masterpiece Cortez The Killer (a staggering 7-minute track) are all amazing examples of the dented blues and super-charged folk that Neil Young does best. On Zuma, more so than on any other album, he magnifies his distinctive, rusty sound; a sound that would go on to inspire the 90s grunge scene…

Rust Never Sleeps (1979)
When Rust Never Sleeps was released in June 1979, rock was still being shaken by punk, a genre that made fun of the hippie community – a community that had Neil Young as one of its gurus. Young didn’t care about the jokes (plus, he was one of the few people that were spared by the punks, who knew that their elder Canadian was basically as mad as they were) and preferred to spit out his poison. The ex-Buffalo Springfield member even found a way to slide Johnny Rotten’s name (singer of The Sex Pistols) into the lyrics of the twin songs My My, Hey Hey (Out of the Blue) and Hey Hey, My My (Into The Black)! Young brought out the melancholy of his raging rock’n’roll, sculpted by the distorted, salacious guitar and the sweetness of his rustic lyrics. Drugs, suicide, madness, feminism… everything went into the pot to compose these amazing hymns. Recorded live (the noise of the audience was cancelled out), Rust Never Sleeps came at a time when Young’s schizophrenia was at its peak, echoed by the beauty of the pristine melodies in the first tracks (A side) that he plays alone on acoustic guitar, and the electric savagery of the second part (B side) concocted with Crazy Horse (Frank Sampedro, Billy Talbot and Ralph Molina). As he says himself: “Rock’n’roll will never die!” The double live album released five months later, Rust Live (this time its fans very much audible), is the essential counterpart to Rust Never Sleeps.



Ragged Glory (1990)
In 1990, the Neil Young myth was shattered. After having spent the 80’s annoying his label as well as his fans by releasing mediocre albums (to say the least) spanning every imaginable style (rockabilly, new wave, jazz, country), his reputation bounced back thanks to younger generations revisiting his golden age. From Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain (who slipped some lyrics from Hey Hey, My My into his suicide note) to Black Francis from The Pixies, everyone cited him as the ultimate benchmark for their writing as well as their guitar sound. This was the perfect way of waking up the man who was given the nickname “The Godfather of Grunge”. Young immediately went into the studio with his most faithful accomplices, Crazy Horse. The result was a raw record that Young wanted to deliberately make “not too analytical”. It was a great garage session, bursting with omnipresent guitars. But, as always the case with Neil Young, the most violent and tough sequences (Fuckin’ Up) give way to unstoppable melodies (Over and Over). The critics praised the record and, at 45, the songwriter was able go back on a world tour with Crazy Horse, opening for Pearl Jam (with whom he would record the album Mirror Ball in 1995) and Sonic Youth. Young had never felt so young.

Harvest Moon (1992)
Neil Young
was resurrected thanks to the grunge generation, who cherished and copied his guitar sound. After blowing up the amps with Ragged Glory, he took everyone by surprise for the umpteenth time by recording his most delicate record since Harvest! For Harvest Moon, which came out in the autumn of 1992, he called up most of the people who had helped him make the masterpiece twenty years earlier (Harvest). Supported by the Stray Gators (Kenny Buttrey, Tim Drummond, Ben Keith and Spooner Oldham) and bringing in a few flashy backing singers such as James Taylor, Linda Ronstadt and Nicolette Larson, Young offered up dreamy, often melancholic ballads with great melodic finesse. With a few touches of piano, harmonica and pedal steel, he orchestrated a dreamlike - but never silly - style of folk. And with Harvest Moon, the title track of this 19th studio album, he undoubtedly signed off on one of the most beautiful songs he had ever written.

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