12 Things We Learned From Howard Stern’s Interview With Neil Young

Howard Stern's long-anticipated interview with Neil Young was full of amazing revelations. Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/12-things-we-learned-from-howard-sterns-interview-with-neil-young-20141014#ixzz3GADorywW Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

Howard Stern’s long-anticipated interview with Neil Young was full of amazing revelations. 

By Rolling Stone

Howard Stern has been asked many times over the years to name his number one dream guest and his answer has never changed: Neil Young. His dream finally came true Tuesday morning when Young entered his studio at SiriusXM headquarters in midtown Manhattan for a 90-minute interview promoting his new book Special Deluxe: A Memoir of Life & Cars, his new digital music service Pono and his upcoming album Storytone. Here are 12 things we learned from the incredible interview.


1. Young was understandably nervous about appearing on the show for the first time. “I woke up this morning at 4:30,” he said. “I was thinking to myself, ‘God, what’s he going to ask me about?’ I couldn’t go back to sleep. Some of the thing we got into in a very kind and nice way could have upset my family and my kids. We didn’t do that, which I really appreciate. People say things without understanding the depth of damage they do to people’s lives.”

2. He’s smoking weed again, occasionally. “I do it every once in a while,” he said. “Just a little tiny bit.” Stern gave it up years ago because it makes him paranoid, but Young had the solution. “Try black pepper balls if you get paranoid,” he said. “Just chew two or three pieces. I just found this out myself. Try it.”

3. He wasn’t kidding last week when he said he’s never going to perform with Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young ever again. “Playing with Stills and Nash in that band was really great,” he said, intentionally leaving out a certain other member. “I wish [Crosby] the best with his life. There’s love there. There’s just nothing else there. [A reunion] will never happen. Never happen, no, not in a million years….You have to think about things before you do them. If you make a mistake, you have to fix it right away. [A reunion] will never happen. You don’t have to worry about it. It’s easy to say ‘no.'”

4. His relationship with Crosby remains strained, though he didn’t get into specifics. “There’s nothing to apologize for,” Young said. “It was fixable, but it didn’t get fixed.” Stern asked if it was Young’s fault it didn’t get fixed. “Absolutely not,” said Young. “I did everything I could to make sure it got fixed…We were together for a long time. We did some good work. Why should we get together and celebrate how great we were? What difference does it make? It’s not for the audience. It’s not for money, either. When you play music, you have to come from a certain place to do it and everything has to be clear and you don’t want to disturb that. I like to keep the love there, and if the love isn’t there, you don’t want to do it.”

5. Even 45 years later, he’s still pissed about all the cameras onstage at Woodstock. “They didn’t have to be right there on the stage,” he said. “They’re cameras, hello! Use zoom, dickhead. We were playing music and there’s some jerk standing there in black clothes. We’re playing music, get out of there.”

6. He finds it difficult to tell stories about the old days without saying the name of a certain person. “I love the Woodstock movie,” he said. “If you listen to when they introduce Crosby, Stills and Nash, you can tell…Wait a minute, did I say the full name of the band there? Okay, when the guy says, uh…I have to get this right…When he says, uh…Stills, Nash and Young, you can tell he cut. They had to take my name out.” Later in the interview, he referred to Crosby’s 1971 album If I Could Only Remember My Name as a work by “whatshisname.” Stern joked that Crosby wouldn’t like Pono and Young facetiously said, “This Pono player is poisonous. It’s going to kill something? Isn’t that what he said?”

Stern didn’t understand what he was referring to there, but it was clearly these recent comments that Crosby gave to The Idaho Statesmen: “I happen to know that [Neil is] hanging out with somebody that’s a purely poisonous predator now. And that’s karma. He’s gonna get hurt.” Crosby isn’t backing down, telling a fan recently on Twitter that he has “no regrets.”

7. Bono gave him advice about how to write more commercial music. “I sung all the songs in Greendale,” Young said. “And Bono commented that the songs needed hooks that went over and over again and more people could hear them.” Young didn’t take him up on the advice.

8. He’s tremendously disappointed in President Obama. “He just opened up the Gulf of Mexico to fracking,” he said. “Like the Gulf of Mexico didn’t need a break…Politicians are empowered by the system to do nothing but take money from the corporations that control them. Obama campaigned on change and hope, and they’re fracking in the Gulf of Mexico. Barack, hello! Wake up, buddy.”

9. The first batch of Pono players are sold out. “We’re going to try and make more in January,” he said. “We’re starting to build and scale up, but the demand for them was awesome…We’re making this for people that want it. We’re not making it for people that don’t want it, but they may not know then want it until they hear it. It’s a gentle revolution. We’re not trying to bowl over the world. We don’t think success is anything you can tangibly see. It’s a smile.”

10. His newest hobby is paddleboarding. “I’m going out paddleboarding with my girlfriend tomorrow morning,” he said. “It’s a beautiful thing…I can’t worry about the paparazzi. You can’t see them anyway. They are taking pictures from behind trees. You can’t think about that.”

11. He’s psyched about his upcoming album Storytone. “It was a great experience,” he says. “I was in a room with all these musicians. We did it all at once. There’s no overdubs. Be great or be gone. That’s what my producer David Briggs always said. You only have one shot at a time and you can’t go fix it. I knew where I wanted to go with the songs, and the orchestra had charts and an arranger and everything…It was done with up to a 90-piece orchestra. We did it live in the room like Sinatra.”

12. Sharing a Toronto apartment with Rick James in 1966 was nonstop fun. “We did some wild things,” he said. “It’s all very hazy to me now. I’m glad I made it through that stage. It got a little dicey. There were some drugs going on. I remember singing one song for about a day and a half.”

Violence in Gaza and Israel Threatens Lady Gaga, Lana Del Rey and Backstreet Boys Concerts

Neil Young and Crazy Horse will still appear in Tel Aviv next week...for now. (Photo : Getty Images/Darren Hauck)

Neil Young and Crazy Horse will still appear in Tel Aviv next week…for now. (Photo : Getty Images/Darren Hauck)

For the time being, no act has opted to pull out of its dates in Israel. The Neil Young and Crazy Horse concert scheduled for next week “will happen as planned” according to the promoter, and a show headlined by the Brian Jonestown Massacre will also continue.

Some performers, including Stevie Wonder, Talib Kweli and Jello Biafra have all vowed not to play Israel, more so out of solidarity than safety issues.

The first event during 2014 that inspired a wave of concert cancellations was the government coup in the Ukraine that put the fascists and Neo-nazis in the new government supported by the United States. The coup forced the Russian ethnic people of Crimea to self-determination with a 92% of the people opting to join the Russian Federation.

The current strife in Israel began when the bodies of three kidnapped Jewish bodies were found near Hebron, resulting in military strikes from the Israeli army in the Gaza Strip, followed by the kidnapping of a 16 year old Palestinian boy that was burnt alive by a group of jewish terrorists. Palestinian forces responded with rockets attacks to Israel. Social unrest over the deaths of four young boys, and the horrific beating of another Palestinian-American boy age 15 by the Israeli police, has led to more violence by both sides.

Neil Young with Crazy Horse: Walk Like A Giant (extended version)



Published on Nov 6, 2012

© 2012 WMG “Walk Like A Giant” – from Neil Young & Crazy Horse’s double-CD of NEW music “Psychedelic Pill” – out now. Get the 2CDs at http://amzn.com/B0097L29L6 and the vinyl at http://amzn.com/B0097L29KM and the Blu-Ray at http://smarturl.it/psychpillbluray

Neil Young, ‘A Letter Home’


Originally released on vinyl for Third Man Records on Record Store Day, the 12-track lo-fi covers album from the Canadian singer-songwriter features songs from such artists as Bob Dylan, The Everly Brothers, Bert Jansch, Willie Nelson, Phil Ochs, and Bruce Springsteen.

Its gloom is potent and pervasive, and, while you’re mired in it, A Letter Home doesn’t seem like a baffling act of wilful perversity. It makes perfect sense, as it presumably does to the man who recorded it.

Without any studio trickery to distract from the songs, versions of Bert Jansch’s Needle of Death and Gordon Lightfoot’s If You Could Read My Mind sound particularly affecting.

Accompanied by Jack White, at whose studio he recorded on the Voice-O-Graph, Young sings with a perspective and appreciation that his 68 years undoubtedly bring.

For an album recorded primitively inside a Nashville box, there are some stunning performances on A Letter Home…. Occasionally, though, the recording quality distracts from the album’s content.

Watch Neil recording Needle Of Death here:

Neil Young and Jack White to perform together on ‘The Tonight Show’ next week

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Jack White will perform together on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon next week.

The pair will chat to Fallon and perform a song from Young’s new covers album ‘A Letter Home’ on Monday (May 12). Comedian Louis CK will also appear on the episode.

Earlier this year Young released ‘A Letter Home’ on Jack White’s Third Man Records. It features covers of tracks Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, The Everly Brothers and more. Young recorded the album in a refurbished 1947 Voice-o-Graph vinyl recording booth at the Third Man shop in Nashville, Tennessee.

A statement on Young’s website describes the record as: “an unheard collection of rediscovered songs from the past recorded on ancient electro-mechanical technology captures and unleashes the essence of something that could have been gone forever”.

The ‘A Letter Home’ tracklisting is as follows:

‘Changes’ (Phil Ochs)
‘Girl From The North Country’ (Bob Dylan)
‘Needle of Death’ (Bert Jansch)
‘Early Morning Rain’ (Gordon Lightfoot)
‘Crazy’ (Willie Nelson)
‘Reason To Believe’ (Tim Hardin)
‘On The Road Again’ (Willie Nelson)
‘If You Could Read My Mind’ (Gordon Lightfoot)
‘Since I Met You Baby’ (Ivory Joe Hunter)
‘My Hometown’ (Bruce Springsteen)
‘I Wonder If I Care As Much’ (Everly Brothers)

The Controversy Surrounding Neil Young Carnegie Hall Concert Taping – Interview with Tom Adams

Neil Young. Photo Village Voice

Neil Young. Photo Village Voice

The Village Voice

When Tom Adams brought his camera to Neil Young’s performance at Carnegie Hall earlier this month, he didn’t capture it on an iPhone or a piece of machinery that’s worth more than three months’ rent. He grabbed a camera before he left the house, double-checked to make sure the batteries were charged, and brought it along with him knowing full well that he might not be able to bring it into the venue. He did, and he didn’t spend the show–Young’s first at the storied concert hall in 41 years–becoming the flash-popping enemy of the people sitting next to him. He put the camera on the floor, trained its lens to shoot in between the bannisters in the railing before him, and hit record. And he wasn’t alone.

[UPDATE: Warner Bros has now taken Tom Adam’s Neil Young concert video removed from Youtube.] Adams’ statement:

“While Warner Brothers certainly has the legal right to remove the video I produced, I am frustrated that no one from the company contacted me directly. Sure, I’m just a small fish in a gigantic pond, but I obviously touched on a nerve here. I simply received a standard email from YouTube noting the copyright infringement. I see the viral nature of this video as an opportunity for Warner Brothers to make a progressive move towards a more modern way of dealing with fan-produced media. I wish they would have seen this as a chance to taking a leading role in the rapidly changing world of online distribution … especially when dealing with one of the world’s most respected and prolific entertainers who, after 40+ years of performing, still has an amazingly solid connection with his fans. I wish they would have considered an alternative way to preserve and present this magical event to his fans instead of just removing it. So if anyone out there in Warner Brothers-land is reading this, I’m all ears and just a click away.”

[Tickets to Neil Young Show at Carnegie Hall were Selling For $3,000]

Adams, who runs a documentary and promotional film production company in Western Massachusetts, made waves last week when he uploaded a nearly two-hour tape of Young’s Carnegie Hall performance to YouTube. The tape is unusual in that it isn’t just a solitary cut from Adams’ camera: it also incorporates footage uploaded by other concert attendees, who shot from their own cameras or cell phones, as well as audio provided by an anonymous taper going by Mr Railing. (The Wall Street Journal reported that this kind of activity and taping isn’t encouraged by Young and his management, and that they find it “rude toward both the audience and the artist.”)

Considering his decades-long hiatus from the venue and the fact that some were willing to fork over $3,000 to see him there, Young’s Carnegie Hall performances were historical events that justified the breach in concert etiquette, as far as Adams and his serendipitous collaborators are concerned. Though it wasn’t intentional, the multi-camera approach to documenting Young at Carnegie Hall was one that worked for Adams, and one that could signal the dawn of a new time in taping. We spoke to Adams about just that.

This Neil Young concert tape is a serious endeavor!
Yeah, well, it’s my profession. I do this stuff for a living, but I’ve always been a huge Neil fan, so I thought I’d put my skills to good use here. [Documentary filmmaking] is what I went to school for. Most of what I do is informational and educational videos for clients, so a lot of it ends up being quasi-promotional type stuff. It depends. When the right thing comes along and there’s funding for it, that’s what I do.

This Neil Young concert tape was a labor of love, then.
Oh yeah. The whole point of this was just to share the experience and get the good word out about Neil.

We’re looking at two hours of tape here, at a very intimate show, and it seems like you’ve compiled a ton of footage posted to YouTube that people captured on their iPhones at Carnegie Hall. That’s nuts.
I think there was only one cell phone that was used; the others were more camera-type devices, I guess. It’s amazing how much controversy comes up because of it. It’s certainly not the first time it’s been done. I kind of find myself defending the fact that I’m not the typical person that sticks the iPhone up in the air with the glow annoying everyone around them and all that stuff.

What compelled you to put together this concert video in the first place? You’ve already mentioned that you’re a fan, but this isn’t a typical approach and one that appears to have taken quite a bit of time, especially when it involves splicing in additional footage.
This show was such a historic event at Carnegie Hall. The place has got so much history to it and everything. I was going to it regardless as to whether I had my camera or not. I made sure I was going to go, and I wound up going by myself. It was important for me to be there. Whether or not I could get in with the camera was almost secondary. I’ve been to shows before where I didn’t shoot, but I felt like this was a historic occasion. He hadn’t been there since 1973, so I thought of it almost as a bookend to his career. He was in his early twenties when he [played Carnegie] the first time and he hadn’t been back since then. Not to say he’s nearing the end of his career, but he’s no spring chicken, you know?

Sure. How much of this video is you shooting? And how much the video is crowdsourced material?
Probably 70% is my camera and the remaining footage is from other people. There were holes in the footage, I wasn’t able to record all of it, so after a couple of days, I went and looked online to see what was uploaded. Some of the songs I was missing were up there, so I went and got permission. It was a haphazard thing. There was no plan to do this before. As I was leaving my apartment to go to the show, I grabbed the camera and made sure the batteries were charged, but I hadn’t been planning to pursue this.

Stylistically, do you think this was an effective approach? You’re a filmmaker, but people shooting Neil on their iPhone, they don’t necessarily have the eye that you have.

I should mention the extreme importance of the audio. Without good audio, the video is nothing. That was the first thing I did, make sure there was a complete show that was able to be downloaded and shareable and all that stuff. When I heard the audio from the source, he calls himself Mr. Railing, I was floored by the quality of it. Once I found that audio, it was really just a matter of matching up the video with the audio and putting in touches along the way. I was just lucky to find that almost all the video that I needed from other sources was from that night. Some of the video is from a different night [of Young’s Carnegie run], because there was no from the night that I needed when I was there. [Neil] wore the same thing for every show. I assumed he did that because his team was recording, too, but I didn’t see any professional cameras.

What’s the benefit of watching the concert through the phone of someone else as opposed to the trained lens of a professional?
I’m certainly not the only one who has good, quality video out there. iPhones can’t really zoom in or get close; it depends on where you’re sitting for the quality and the closeness of the video. If someone else uses an optical zoom camera that’s small enough to fit in a pocket, there can be some great quality video. That has to do with the amount of people out there today that have access to good quality digital equipment that isn’t expensive, and they have the wherewithal to get good shots.

What you’re describing hearkens back to a time when people would sneak cassette recorders into shows and hide them under their t-shirts when they’d go to concerts. Do you recognize any parallels between what you do and the taping?
Oh yeah, totally. It’s an extension of it. It’s the next phase of the recording world. I wasn’t much of a recorder myself; I was more of a collector of other peoples’ recordings, which I guess goes in line with how all this came about. That’s perfectly aligned with this.

Neil Young @ Carnegie Hall – Awesome concert film!

Neil Young

Neil Young

Neil Young will return in March with his new studio album A Letter Home, but what are fans to do until then? As Slate points out, a crowd-sourced concert film of Young’s recent stint at New York’s Carnegie Hall has made its way online.

Using video captured by four different fans and audio recorded with mics set up in the mezzanine level, Tony Adams pieced together footage of Young’s January 7th performance into a 2-hour concert film. The setlist stretched 30 songs and included Young solo classics such as “Heart of Gold” and “Harvest Moon”, Buffalo Springfield songs, and covers of Phil Ochs and Bert Jansch, which could end up finding their way onto his upcoming album.

The Wall Street Journal caught up with Adams, who revealed more details about the project:

On Tuesday, Mr. Adams uploaded to YouTube a video of the entire two-hour show, which he had stitched together from footage captured by fellow concertgoers seated around the theater. Most of the video was shot by Mr. Adams, a video producer from Williamsburg, Mass., on a compact Canon camera perched on the railing in front of his $150 mezzanine seat (102, Row AA). All the videos were edited to match a single audio recording made at the concert, which Mr. Adams downloaded from an anonymous source on an online-sharing site…

At home, he found fan-made videos of songs he was missing or wanted to supplement, then sent the users messages through YouTube asking their permission to borrow them. Then he wove the various clips into his own with editing software, making do with some glitches. During an anecdote by Mr. Young about a guitar with a bullet hole in it, the image is blurry and an on-screen message reads, “Stay tuned…video will return shortly.”

It’s worth noting that Young did not approve the recording and has previously chastized bootleg as “incredibly rude toward both the audience and the artist.” However, Adams told The Wall Street Journal that he has no plans to profit off the film. Rather, he put it together for the fans who could not attend Young’s sold-out Carnegie Hall residency, which is already being hearlded as featuring some of his greatest performances.