During the first month in L.A. he had his first grand mal epileptic seizure...He was put on daily medication, but disliked the side-effects so much that he often chose not to take it, comforting himself with the belief that keeping himself on an even keel was the best way of preventing further seizures.
The press had taken to calling the moody-looking guitar player "Neil The Indian" -- something he didn't discourage, having spent his childhood devouring TV westerns and claiming a drop or two of Native American blood. The first thing Young bought with his Whisky earnings was a fringed jacket. And when he saw a Comanche war-shirt in a shop on Santa Monica Boulevard, he bought it and had two more made.
Despite Young's protestations that he had never "schemed" for a solo career, it was clear to anyone connected with Buffalo Springfield that this was where he was headed. Before joining the group, he had worked briefly as a solo performer around the folk clubs and coffee-houses on Ontario, where he had first met Stephen Stills.
In the decades that followed, Neil Young would become world-famous as the craggy, cavern-browed hippie in the buckskin jacket, his electric guitar chugging along like a steam engine, his acoustic guitar chopping like paddle strokes in a lake. But for every idea of Neil Young, there is a counter, for every persona or role, a contradiction. He's the Nixon-bashing hippie and the country singer praising Ronald Regan.
Organized by musician Neil Young and his wife, Pegi, the Bridge School Benefit Concert is an annual, all acoustic, non-profit charity event held every October at Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California. All proceeds directly benefit the operations of The Bridge School.
Young's work is characterized by his distinctive guitar work, deeply personal lyrics and signature alto or high tenor singing voice. Although he accompanies himself on several different instruments, including piano and harmonica, his idiosyncratic electric and clawhammer acoustic guitar playing are the defining characteristics of a varyingly ragged and melodic sound.
The same year, he played his first concert with David Crosby, Graham Nash and former bandmate Stills. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young released the hit album, Deja Vu in 1970. Although Young would continue to occasionally record and tour with Crosby, Stills and Nash, he continued his solo work with After the Goldrush. Several tracks on the 1970 album emphasized an acoustic sound, including Young's version of "Oh Lonesome Me," a song written by Country Music Hall of Fame member Don Gibson.
Neil Young is right: Those songs on your iPhone do sound like crap, and it’s time we demand better-sounding alternatives for our digital music. Speaking at the D: Dive Into Media conference Tuesday, the outspoken musician expressed his deep dissatisfaction with the MP3 format and called for an end-to-end reboot of the consumer digital audio ecosystem, from file formats to playback devices. Young’s big beef: Digital music files download quickly, but suffer a significant loss in quality.
In early 2005, Young was diagnosed with a potentially deadly brain aneurysm. Undergoing treatment didn't slow him down, however, as he continued to write and record his next project. The acoustically based Prairie Wind appeared in the fall, with the concert film Heart of Gold, based around the album and directed by Jonathan Demme, released in 2006.
Surprise is one of the central themes in Neil Young reception. This single word indicates a range of complicated factors: the nature of stylistic norms, the creation of expectation, and the construction of relatively stable or unstable authorial personas, among others. Surprise has in one way or another been associated with Young's work from the outset.