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Representing The Bay
Best Seen with "Explorer"
...Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young: They came, they
rocked at the sold-out Oakland Arena on Thursday. The legendary quartet offered
several decades worth of great songs and a few clinkers. They threw themselves
into ragged but passionate performances informed by off-key singing and
rip-roaring guitar jousting. For anyone who appreciated the change-the-world
bent of the collected works of David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash and
Neil Young, from Buffalo Springfield's "For What It's Worth" to
CSNY's "Ohio". ..........A pair of
post-Sept. 11 tributes, Young's "Let's Roll" and Nash's "Half
Your Angels"sank beneath the weight of their lyrical and sonic
clichés (Nash's loungy electric keyboards, Young's hackneyed guitar
riff). But Young's "Going' Home" upheld his legacy for raging,
"Hurricane"-style epics, its big guitar chords pounding through the
drone of Booker T. Jones' Hammond organ.
|Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
also unveiled some soul numbers from his forthcoming solo album, including
"You're My Girl" and "Two Old Friends." The straw-haired
guitarist's presence energized everyone on stage, particularly Stills. If
Young's solos tend to unwind with a similar slow-burn patience, Stills remains
a master of many voices: a fusion of raga-rock and flamenco on "Suite:
Judy Blue Eyes," a gleaming blade slicing through Young's jagged
barbed-wire tone on "Woodstock," a jazz bassist on Crosby's
"Dream for Him." Crosby and Nash never found a comfortable vocal
range for the demanding, quirkily brilliant "Genevieve," but Crosby
brought fire to "Almost Cut My Hair" and "Long Time Gone."
.......Nash played cheerleader for the guitar
solos, and his nursery-rhyme facility in "Our House" and "Teach
Your Children" remains quaintly inescapable. The foursome buckled down
hardest for "Rocking in the Free World." "Don't feel like Satan,
but I am to them," Young sang, a line that cut to the heart of the matter.
It used to be a black and white world for the socially conscious rock 'n'
rollers of the '60s.
plenty of power from the backing of organist Booker T. Jones, his MG's bassist
Donald "Duck" Dunn and drummer Steve Potts. Throughout the show,
Crosby beamed a beatific, Wilford Brimley-like smile, Stills played and sang
with rare passion, and Nash lent his sweet, high voice to several songs of his
own and to the always scintillating CSNY harmonic and Neil Young led the
quartet-perhaps the late '60s and early '70s' quintessential conglomeration of
socially relevant hippie musicians-to numerous peaks during a 3-hour
.....They are the answer of music that makes you
forget life's problems for the time your with them.
By Randy Cohen
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All photos and written material courtesy of Rock Publication
.Copyright © 2002