Required Reading: Neil Young, Joe Rogan, and the Politics of Streaming

Neil Young performs in Baltimore on April 28, 2011. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

Neil Young, Contrarian

Neil Young has long been a contrarian. His restless relationship with Buffalo Springfield’s other members and management led to repeated band break-ups in the late 1960s. His partnership with Crosby Stills Nash and Young (CSNY) has been an on and off again affair for decades. During the 1974 “reunion” tour Neil traveled from gig to gig on his own bus, eschewing his band mates’ company. The ill-fated 1976 Stills-Young tour ended after only a few dates when Neil left the tour sending a telegram to Stephen Stills that read, “Funny how some things that start spontaneously end that way. Eat a peach, Neil.” If one peruses Neil Young’s Wikipedia page, his tendency to jump abruptly from one project to the next becomes abundantly obvious. Even his newsletter, published on the Neil Young Archives website (, is named The NYA Times-Contrarian.

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My Favorite Artist: Neil Young

Neil Young and Crazy Horse perform at the James L. Knight Center, Miami, Florida, on Oct. 29, 1986. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)

Editor’s Note: Parklife DC asked its contributors to write essays about their favorite bands. These essays appear in an occasional series, My Favorite Artist, and provide our readers with insights into our bloggers, their motivations, and their approach to covering concerts.  

“It sucks! It’s just a fucking racket. I get totally lost when I’m playing guitar. I’ll just play a melody over and over again and change the tone, bend a string, do all that. But I’m totally engrossed in what I’m doing. At one with it. But I suck! I have melodies, and I have a sense of rhythm and drive. But it’s not about me, anyway — it’s about the whole band. It’s about everybody being there at once. When I play I’m listening for everything, trying to drive it all with my guitar. My guitar is the whole fucking band.” — Neil Young, Guitar World, October 2009

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