Americana
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Americana

Young Neil & Crazy Horse

Neil Young & Crazy Horse release a very special album titled Americana. It is the first album from Neil Young & Crazy Horse in nearly nine years. Crazy Horse is: Billy Talbot, Ralph Molina, Poncho Sampedro, and Neil Young. Americana is collection of classic, American folk songs. In their day, some of these may have been referred to as “protest songs,” “murder ballads,” or campfire-type songs passed down with universal, relatable tales for everyman. Some of these compositions such as Tom Dooley and Oh Susannah, were written in the 1800s, while others, like This Land Is Your Land (utilizing the original, widely misinterpreted “deleted verses”) and Get A Job, are mid-20th-century folk classics. It’s also interesting to note that God Save The Queen, Britain’s national anthem, also became the de facto national anthem of sorts before the establishment of The Union as we know it until we came to adopt The Star Spangled Banner, which has been recognized for use as early as 1889 and became America’s official national anthem in 1931. Each of these compositions is very much part of the fabric of American heritage; the roots of what we they think of as “Americana” in cultural terms, using songs as a way of passing along information and documenting their past. What ties these songs together is the fact that while they may represent an America that may no longer exist, the emotions and scenarios behind these songs still resonate with what’s going on in the country today with equal, if not greater impact nearly 200 years later. The lyrics reflect the same concerns and are still remarkably meaningful to a society going through economic and cultural upheaval, especially during an election year. They are just as poignant and powerful today as the day they were written. Americana was produced by Neil and John Hanlon along with Mark Humphreys, and engineered by John Hanlon with John Hausmann and Jeff Pinn. It was recorded at Audio Casa Blanca by John Hanlon.

  1. “Oh Susannah”
  2. “Clementine
”
  3. “Tom Dooley”
  4. “
Gallows Pole
”
  5. “Get A Job
”
  6. “Travel On
”
  7. “High Flyin’ Bird
”
  8. “She’ll Be Comin ’Round The Mountain”
  9. “This Land Is Your Land
”
  10. “Wayfarin’ Stranger
”
  11. “God Save The Queen”

Review

It’s been a long wait for us Neil fans for his reunion with the phenomenal Crazy Horse. Almost a decade after their last album together, they bring you Americana, their take on American folk songs a la ‘Gallows Pole’, ‘This Land is Your Land’, ‘Wayfarin’ Stranger’ etc. Of course, it’s far more than a mere covers album, as they take each song and work it into something all its own, proving along the way how relevant these classics remain today. Excellent stuff!

Melissa Whebell is from Readings Hawthorn

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