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-   -   How rich is Neil Young? (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=850634)

SayTwo 06-11-2019 02:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tamerlane (Post 21692692)
Great songwriter, good performer, competent( at best )guitarist. The last will get the most challenge I imagine - I'm not sure anyone is going to claim that he is a particularly skilled or versatile guitarist. His old Buffalo Springfield and CSN&Y band mate Stephen Stills is rather less famous as a player, but considerably more talented in that area. But Young does have a distinct style/tone, which absolutely counts for something.

I'm wondering, then, what it boils down to, his fame.

Saintly Loser 06-11-2019 03:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tamerlane (Post 21692692)
Great songwriter, good performer, competent( at best )guitarist. The last will get the most challenge I imagine - I'm not sure anyone is going to claim that he is a particularly skilled or versatile guitarist. His old Buffalo Springfield and CSN&Y band mate Stephen Stills is rather less famous as a player, but considerably more talented in that area. But Young does have a distinct style/tone, which absolutely counts for something.

Agreed. Neil does have a unique guitar sound, especially when playing accoustic guitar. He has a very heavy right hand. But his guitar playing isn't what he's known for. He's an OK player.

Stills, on the other hand, is (at least in my opinion) a brilliant player, especially on accoustic guitar.

Tamerlane 06-11-2019 03:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SayTwo (Post 21692901)
I'm wondering, then, what it boils down to, his fame.

Great songwriting, good performances and a distinctive sound? Y'know, at a guess ;).

I'm not sure what seems inexplicable about it. There is no magic formula as to one why person succeeds massively and another doesn't. I think Robyn Hitchcock is tremendously talented, but he is to the best of my knowledge not a staggeringly wealthy individual, despite decades of critically acclaimed output and one( quirky )concert film by a major director( Demme ). Or for another example Big Star's brilliant #1 Record sold ~10,000 copies despite being massively lauded.

Wealth in the entertainment field rides on a number of shifting factors. Luck is a big part of it, not just of shifting tastes and the vagaries of airplay, but even the era you perform in. The REMs and Blondies that burst out of a scene to make major bank are almost always the exceptions, not the rule and it is probably relatively harder to accomplish these days.

md2000 06-12-2019 10:45 AM

Neil was IIRC one of those guys (plenty of them in the history of popular music) who was told "stick to playing, your voice sounds too weird" but his distinctive voice is what makes his past catalog stand out. His past catalog is especially popular here in Canada, so I don't think he's fading away any time soon. As a Canadian, he's regarded as one of our musical greats, right up there with Joni Mitchell, Burton Cummings and the Guess Who, Gordon Lightfoot, etc.

Mean Mr. Mustard 06-12-2019 01:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by md2000 (Post 21694270)
Neil was IIRC one of those guys (plenty of them in the history of popular music) who was told "stick to playing, your voice sounds too weird" but his distinctive voice is what makes his past catalog stand out. His past catalog is especially popular here in Canada, so I don't think he's fading away any time soon. As a Canadian, he's regarded as one of our musical greats, right up there with Joni Mitchell, Burton Cummings and the Guess Who, Gordon Lightfoot, etc.

Nothing against any of the folks you mentioned, but I think most would agree that Neil is generally regarded as being at a level or two above each of those*.


mmm


*(although I would not immediately dismiss an argument about Joni being at his level)

Cartooniverse 06-12-2019 08:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mean Mr. Mustard (Post 21694671)
Nothing against any of the folks you mentioned, but I think most would agree that Neil is generally regarded as being at a level or two above each of those*.


mmm


*(although I would not immediately dismiss an argument about Joni being at his level)

For a period of time, she was either just above him or just beneath him.

Topanga Canyon days...........

Royal Nonesutch 06-13-2019 05:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mean Mr. Mustard (Post 21694671)
Nothing against any of the folks you mentioned, but I think most would agree that Neil is generally regarded as being at a level or two above each of those*

I might be biased, as I have had the privilege of seeing Neil Young play live some 20 or so times over the years, in several different pairings, solo, with Crazy Horse, with Crosby Stills and Nash (for free, in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park then he sat in with the Grateful Dead later that same afternoon) with Bob Dylan & Bruce Springsteen in New York City's iconic Roseland Ballroom, at Denver's magnificent Red Rocks Ampitheater, at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in a relentless deluge of truly Biblical proportions, etc., etc., etc., and I don't think that there is any question that Neil Young is the most well-known Canadian musician on Earth, unless you perhaps count Justin Bieber, who I suppose might be more FAMOUS internationally, although I would argue that he is certainly not respected by people who are serious about music.

(In a couple of weeks I am flying to Munich to see Neil Young with Promise of the Real, something that should be worth hoisting a stein or two to)

CarnalK 06-13-2019 08:18 AM

As far as fame goes, Celine Dion is probably up there.

D18 06-13-2019 08:54 AM

Before this evolves into a thread about where Neil Young fits in the Canadian musical pantheon, we recently had this thread over in CS. Neil Young certainly was a popular choice, but I was surprised how well Rush did. Typo Negative supplied some pretty objective evidence supporting them in Post 84. (Apologies, I never figured out how to do a link directly to a specific post.)

md2000 06-13-2019 08:59 AM

I thought of Celine Dion, but the ones I mentioned are songwriters as well as singers.

Plus - the point I was making is that with studio recording, the singular sound of a song has been fixed in time and tends to be the one version we hear over and over; and a very distinctive very recognizable voice is a characteristic of a lot of those songs, as much as the melody and lyrics. (No doubt Neil's singing voice is distinctive) Indeed, the instrumentation and arrangement are also distinctive, to the point where we can instantly recognize a song from the opening bars... And copyright covers those - even the two-note "ta-TUM" arrangement from Law and Order is apparently copyright.

Cartooniverse 06-13-2019 02:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Royal Nonesutch (Post 21695673)
I might be biased, as I have had the privilege of seeing Neil Young play live some 20 or so times over the years, in several different pairings, solo, with Crazy Horse, with Crosby Stills and Nash (for free, in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park then he sat in with the Grateful Dead later that same afternoon) with Bob Dylan & Bruce Springsteen in New York City's iconic Roseland Ballroom, at Denver's magnificent Red Rocks Ampitheater, at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in a relentless deluge of truly Biblical proportions, etc., etc., etc., and I don't think that there is any question that Neil Young is the most well-known Canadian musician on Earth, unless you perhaps count Justin Bieber, who I suppose might be more FAMOUS internationally, although I would argue that he is certainly not respected by people who are serious about music.

(In a couple of weeks I am flying to Munich to see Neil Young with Promise of the Real, something that should be worth hoisting a stein or two to)

Well damn, man. :)

40below 06-13-2019 06:28 PM

As far as Neil goes, I met him in 2006 or so at his dad's funeral in Ontario, Neil and Pegi and their oldest son flew in to Toronto and rented a full-size van with a lift because he was in a heavy duty motorized chair to attend the funeral of Scott. Anyway, it was amazing because Neil was too choked to talk but not too choked to sing a bit, and he and Pegi sang a few duets in this tiny funeral chapel that seated maybe 100. Still makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up, it was beautiful. But they did the 3+ hour drive alone, no driver, no nurses, not even a personal care aide to help them with this massive chair that weighed several hundred pounds. They didn't even ask for help and Neil parked his own car. He could have afforded to hire a nurse to come with him, hell he's Neil Young, he could pack that van full of RNs for free by pulling up to any hospital in Canada and offering anybody with a nursing degree the chance to take a road trip with Neil friggin' YOUNG, but he didn't. Usually when you meet a celebrity, they're less than you imagined. Neil was surprisingly more, and a chill guy in person.

md2000 06-14-2019 11:13 AM

You're not the only one impressed by him...

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manit...-tour-1.755913


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