Friday, 9 August 2013

Neil Young - Heart Of Gold

A sunny and warm eve inside a tent on a worn out office chair that has certainly been at a festival more times than I, the site is Boneyard in Slottskogen Gothenburg. It's day 6½ of the Way Out West Festival, Show Day 2. Has been a really good time with unusually good weather, where rain has only said hello to us for short times and given us more sun than usual, which one would like to thank very sincerely to. Working out in the rain is certainly not funny.

Yesterdays headline was going to be Neil Young, one of my must to see in this years line up, but sadly he had to cancel his show. The press release said following:

"Due to an accident involving Crazy Horse, the remaining dates on the Neil Young and Crazy Horse tour of Europe and the British isles have been cancelled. We are sorry for any inconvenience this causes to our fans or the Festivals where we were scheduled to appear. As you must be, we too are disappointed at this unfortunate turn of events. - Neil Young and Crazy Horse."

According a Rolling Stone source, the pull-out was caused by guitarist Frank "Poncho" Sampedro breaking his hand.

"It's a mild fracture," the source reportedly said. "He's expected to make a complete recovery in time for the North American tour."

So today, we pick a song from his incredible vault of music history.
"Heart of Gold" is a song by Canadian singer-songwriter Neil Young. Released from the 1972 album Harvest, it is so far Young's only U.S. #1 single.

The song, which features backup vocals of James Taylor and Linda Ronstadt, is one of a series of soft acoustic pieces which were written partly as a result of a back injury. Unable to stand for long periods of time, Young could not play his electric guitar and so returned to his acoustic guitar, which he could play sitting down. He also played his harmonica during the three instrumental portions, including the Introduction to the song.

"Heart of Gold" was taped during the initial sessions for Harvest in early 1971 at Quadrafonic Sound Studios in Nashville, Tennessee.Ronstadt (who herself would later cover Young's song "Love is a Rose") and Taylor were in Nashville at the time for an appearance on Johnny Cash's television program, and the album's producer Elliot Mazer arranged for them to sing backup for Young in the studio.

Originally this song was meant to segue with "A Man Needs a Maid", and was therefore played on piano. It was played in this manner during Young's solo shows in 1971, but he abandoned this approach midway through the tour and began to play it on guitar as it is now known. Additionally, one line that was cut when the two songs became separate entities was "Afraid/A man feels afraid"[8] An example of the segued version appears on Young's 2007 release Live at Massey Hall 1971.

Young wrote in the liner notes of his 1977 compilation album Decade: "This song put me in the middle of the road. Traveling there soon became a bore so I headed for the ditch. A rougher ride but I saw more interesting people there." This statement was in response to the mainstream popularity that he gained as a result of the number-one status of "Heart of Gold".

In 1985, Bob Dylan admitted that he disliked hearing this song, despite always liking Neil Young:

The only time it bothered me that someone sounded like me was when I was living in Phoenix, Arizona, in about '72 and the big song at the time was "Heart of Gold." I used to hate it when it came on the radio. I always liked Neil Young, but it bothered me every time I listened to "Heart of Gold." I think it was up at number one for a long time, and I'd say, "Shit, that's me. If it sounds like me, it should as well be me."

"Heart of Gold" has been covered by Tanya Donelly, Matchbox Twenty, Tori Amos, Free Dominguez, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Richard Lloyd, Bettye Lavette, Birds and Batteries, Zakk Wylde (with Black Label Society), Boney M, Carla Cook, Lawrence Gowan, Stereophonics, Rockapella, Roxette, Kiki Dee, The Polyphonic Spree, Backburner, Hanah, Ossifar, the James Last Orchestra, Five for Five, Sally Dworsky, Channeling Owen, Stoney LaRue, The Bad Plus, Dave Matthews, Jimmy Buffett (with the Coral Reefer Band), Tavi Gevinson, Charles Bradley, and as a Karaoke backing track. It is also heard briefly in the 1984 film Iceman.

Todays clip is a filmed Live, 1971. Neil digs around in his pockets trying to find the right harp and then plays a the tune ...Heart of Gold.

More info @

Official Neil Young Web

spotifyListen to ”Neil Young - Heart Of Gold" on Spotify here!

spotifyFollow on Spotify here!

No comments: