Sunday, May 10, 2009

Nola Neil

Today is Something Else Sunday.

Every week, usually at least twice, sometimes even three times in a week, I post "something else" in the form of an album that I used for running. So then what's the big deal that I'm posting something else? Well, those are just albums.

Live music 'round these parts comes in the form of The Good Ol' Grateful Dead or something within the immediate GD Family. Right? Far and away, way above everything else, that's what I love most in this world.
Ya with me so far? Well, methinks I want to make a real effort, once a week, to post up some other live music. Sugarmag is helping in a huge way to collect a ton of other stuff and when she's not too busy with Grad school, in addition to the regular GD postings, she might put up a post or two to help spread some of these other tunes around, as well.

Originally I wanted this to be Something Else Saturday -- for whatever reason, alliteration aside, Saturday seems like a good time for that, for posting something else -- but at the last minute I got another source (a better one) for this show. Making the switch from posting the inferior source to posting the better source proved an impossible task for Saturday... but here we go today, on Sunday... and posting this today actually makes more sense since the show was one week ago this afternoon!


Neil Young 5/3/09 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival [copyright Eliot Kamenitz]

Neil Young and His Electric Band -- Sunday, May 3, 2009
Fair Grounds Race Course
New Orleans, Louisiana

"New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival"

Love And Only Love
Hey Hey, My My (Into The Black)
Are You Ready For The Country?
Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
Change Your Mind
Cinnamon Girl
Mother Earth
The Needle And The Damage Done
Light A Candle
Heart Of Gold
Old Man
Speakin' Out
Down By The River
Get Behind The Wheel
Rockin' In The Free World
A Day In The Life

I really dig Neil Young and I've definitely got to get more of his music into my listening diet. Getting this into my ears a whole bunch of times in the past few days has been wonderful.

The fact that I have no idea how to review live is perhaps a good thing. All's I can say is -- I love this show! This is great stuff. He is energized! At times this is the grungy Neil and then a song later it can be almost countrified Neil and then mellow reflective solo acoustic Neil before delving into nearly-psychedelic GD-like improv Neil. Change Your Mind and Down By The River are each over 15 minutes and they give the band two great opportunities to use that space to open up and jam. For the encore, The Beatles' A Day In The Life is excellent to hear.

The source I'm posting is an improvement over the Schoeps mk-41 source that I first got and was ready to post. That wasn't bad sounding, it was okay, perhaps . This source has some wind noise and crowd noise (clapping at times, yelling and talking between songs) but overall it is a lot clearer, a lot sharper in presentation of the music; the vocals and instruments are nicely and equally right up front; it's definitely better:

Maybe in a couple years Sugarmag and I will hop on the City Of New Orleans and head on down for the great music that takes place every Spring. My mom's from there but I've never been to Jazz & Heritage Festival. Hopefully one day!

by Keith Spera
The Times-Picayune
Sunday May 03, 2009, 6:26 PM

What do Neil Young and Bon Jovi have in common?

Not much, except that within 24 hours, they both ended their Jazz Fest sets for huge Acura Stage crowds with a song recorded by The Beatles.

Jon Bon Jovi and company knocked off "Twist and Shout" on Saturday. On Sunday, Young and his band absolutely smoked "A Day in the Life," an exclamation point ending to a two hour tour de force.

Much of the massive crowd, even among the chair and blanket set far from the stage, stood as Young announced himself with a squall of feedback and "Love and Only Love." Young wrestled with his Les Paul as if trying to subdue it. He succeeded, as old masters such as he tend to.

Moreso than usual, position on the field affected perceptions of the show. The wind wreaked havoc with the remote speakers back on the field; audio waves were blown away, dampening the music's impact. Closer up, however, a full-bore Neil Young had its full impact. He and his band stomped through "Hey Hey My My" and affixed an epic ending to "Cinnamon Girl." They briefly lost their way in "Change Your Mind," but recovered.

Neil Young 5/3/09 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival [copyright Eliot Kamenitz]

He accompanied himself on organ and harmonica for the green themed "Mother Earth." A solo acoustic "Needle and the Damage Done" included the lines, "Every junkie's like a setting sun." "I'm not depressing you, am I?" he asked. "We don't want that. I'm just not used to seeing anything. It's always dark when I play."

A country-tinged "Heart of Gold," with Young on harmonica and acoustic guitar, preceded "Old Man" and its banjo. He switched to saloon piano for "Speakin' Out."

"Down By the River" ran for a full 18 minutes; the brawny chorus punctuated long improvisatory sections of muscular guitar heroics. As Young refused to let go, banging and pressing his Les Paul's strings, his drummer appeared to be hanging on for dear life. It finally melted away.

In the set's only false start, Young halted the band after someone apparently misread the set list. "That was two songs at once," Young cracked. "That was amazing."

With everyone on the same page, he bore down on his guitar's whammy bar for an epic "Keep on Rockin' in the Free World." He grinned at the other musicians before calling for a bonus chorus.

The encore of "A Day In the Life" was a monster. At the end, he sacrificed his guitar. He shook it against an amplifier, tore off the strings and dragged it across the stage. He then hustled over to a xylophone and plunked one final note to close the set. Minutes later, the gray clouds opened and a hard rain fell, clearing out much of the crowd before the Neville Brothers.

It took 40 years to get Neil Young to Jazz Fest. He was worth the wait.

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival logo

Download The Show Here

"Taped" by: Amdewstu
from the 1st row of the VIP section, dead center stage;
Zoom H4 Digital Recorder > Sandisk 2G Soundcard > PC

Neil Young 5/3/09 - Part 1(320 kbps)Part 2 - 5/3/09 Neil Young


jointathan said...

Thank you for another fine post! Neil has always been great and it seems as though he always will be.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Zoooma for another happening download. I was into Neal before I got into the Dead. My first favorite album (when I was about 7) was After the Gold Rush - from my older sister's collection. Great that he is still out there shaking the walls. Can't wait to listen to what he is up to. Peace. Torc

Zoooma!! said...

Thanks for both your comments! And good to hear from you, Torc! There's a good amount of live Neil out there, I'll have to try to get something else up from time to time. This most recent show is really good, sound quality and performance.

I hope you guys dig it!!
Thanks again for your comments!!

one says one number and the other another
but they were set at the same time. Hmmm...

Calvin and Hobbes in the snow -- animated