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Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

In which we try to make sense of the CSNY story. Feel free to reuse with attribution. Subscribe at LyndalCairns.com for more.
by

Lyndal Cairns

on 6 February 2014

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Transcript of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

LyndalCairns.com
GRAHAM NASH
Was a guitarist, vocalist and songwriter with
The Hollies.
1967. The Byrds ditch
DAVID CROSBY
.
Buffalo Springfield calls it quits.
So
STILLS
and
CROSBY
start jamming.
The awkward story of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
Had performed rhythm guitar, vocals and songwriting with folk-rock group
The Byrds.
INSTANT SUCCESS
NASH
says he has reservations because he doesn't know
YOUNG
.





STILLS
has reservations because he does.
JULY, 1968
DAVID CROSBY
LyndalCairns.com
STEPHEN STILLS
Had been a guitarist, vocalist and songwriter in the band Buffalo Springfield.
(Which also featured Neil Young.)
Yes, you know The Hollies.
OUT!
OUT!
OUT!
Jerks...
STILLS
and
CROSBY
sing at

a party for Joni Mitchell.
NASH
improvises in harmony. He soon leaves The Hollies to form the trio Crosby, Stills & Nash.
They release a self-titled album, which hits the Top 30. They start looking for a new member. Their record executive suggests
NEIL YOUNG
.
Their second gig ... is Woodstock.
GREG REEVES
, 19, joins on bass.
He lasts just five months.

This is where things get tense.


In 1970 and 1971, all four singers release solo records.

CROSBY
and
NASH
go on a national tour, then release an album together in 1972.

All four meet to record new material but can't get along and go their separate ways.


Jerks...
OUT!
In 1974, they're finally convinced to reunite and they play a national stadium tour.
Vin Miles, UKRockFestivals.com
STILLS
starts wearing army uniform and pretending to be a CIA operative.
YOUNG
refuses to travel with the rest of the band and rents his own trailer.
Unfortunately for
CROSBY
and the whole entourage, his two girlfriends don't get on.
He brought two warring lovers on tour.
(As you do.)
CROSBY
and
NASH
again split off into a duo, releasing two records and touring throughout the late 1970s.



STILLS
and
YOUNG
form their own duo, releasing just one album - ironically called
Long May You Run
.
They record an album in shifts to avoid each other but
STILLS
and
YOUNG
wipe the other pair's voices off the master tape after a row.
In 1976, after a show mid-tour,
YOUNG
's van drives off in the wrong direction.

Waiting backstage before their next gig,
STILLS
receives this extraordinary telegram.
Dear Stephen,

funny how things that start spontaneously end that way.

Eat a peach.

Neil.
Now with
YOUNG
out of the picture,
STILLS
approaches
CROSBY
and
NASH
for a reunion.

Their new record
CSN
peaks at 2 on the Billboard chart.
But trouble is not far for
CROSBY
, who is arrested for drugs and weapons charges. He would serve eight months in jail.
Teach Your Children Well
, indeed.
Then
YOUNG
returns. He and
CROSBY
had made a pact:
If he cleaned himself up,
YOUNG
would swallow his pride and return to the band
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young release several records in the 1990s but none reach the success of earlier efforts.

The Rock n Roll Hall of Fame inducts Crosby, Stills & Nash in 1997. Interestingly,
YOUNG
was left off the pavement star.
New York Times
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for more
LyndalCairns.com
(But there's trouble brewing.)
Houston Press
Vin Miles, The Archive
Captains Dead
The Smoking Gun
Thanks to Atlantic, Barney Hoskyns, CSNY and Wikipedia for the info.

And the unbelievably sweet
Our House
.
They wrote new folk classic
Teach Your Children Well
.
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young are American folk rock's Godfathers.

They have influenced generations of musicians.
Four musicians, each brilliant in their own right.

Who just can't seem to get along.
(I hope they filled his dressing room with peaches.)
coredump CC
That's gotta hurt.
Full transcript