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Cameron Crowe’s 1975 Rolling Stone Interview – revisited

The Rebellious Neil Young: Cameron Crowe’s 1975 Rolling Stone Interview

‘Everybody in that group was a fucking genius at what they did. There’ll never be another Buffalo Springfield’

Nearing 30, Neil Young is the most enigmatic of all the superstars to emerge from Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. His often cryptic studies of lonely desperation and shaky-voiced antiheroics have led many to brand him a loner and a recluse. Harvest was the last time that he struck the delicate balance between critical and commercial acceptance, and his subsequent albums have grown increasingly inaccessible to a mass audience.

Young’s first comprehensive interview comes at a seeming turning point in his life and career. After an amicable breakup with actress Carrie Snodgrass, he’s moved from his Northern California ranch to the relative hustle and bustle of Malibu. In the words of a close friend, he seems “frisky…in an incredible mood.” Young has unwound to the point where he can approach a story about his career as potentially “a lot of fun.”

The interview was held while cruising down Sunset Boulevard in a rented red Mercedes and on the back porch of his Malibu beach house. Cooperative throughout, Young only made a single request: “Just keep one thing in mind,” he said as soon as the tape recorder had been turned off for the last time. “I may remember it all differently tomorrow.” This article appears in the August 14, 1975 issue of Rolling Stone.

The issue is available in the RS online archive here.

[Including the famous quote: “I’m really turned on by the new music I’m making now, back with Crazy Horse. Today, even as I’m talking, the songs are running through my head. I’m excited. I think everything I’ve done is valid or else I wouldn’t have released it, but I do realize the last three albums have been a certain way. I know I’ve gotten a lot of bad publicity for them. Somehow I feel like I’ve surfaced out of some kind of murk. And the proof will be in my next album. Tonight’s the Night, I would say, is the final chapter of a period I went through.” ]

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