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Old 03-06-2018, 01:47 PM
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How rich is Neil Young?


Like, rich enough to buy a yacht? To buy a small country? How rich is Crazy Horse? For that matter, who is Crazy Horse?

In other words, did Neil Young manage to make commercial success from his very rampant fandom?
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Old 03-06-2018, 01:49 PM
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$65 million according to this site, which may or may not be accurate.

I would have thought more, but what do I know?
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Old 03-06-2018, 03:40 PM
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$65 million according to this site, which may or may not be accurate...
For what it's worth.


mmm
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Old 03-06-2018, 04:02 PM
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Starting in 1995 Young owned 20% of Lionel trains since he is a big fan of model trains. Lionel went through a bankruptcy starting in 2004 and as a result he is no longer a part owner. I assume that means the share he owned went way down, maybe to $0. They came out of bankruptcy in 2008. He is now a consultant for the company.
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Old 03-06-2018, 04:03 PM
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For what it's worth.
*claps*
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Old 03-06-2018, 04:15 PM
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How rich is Crazy Horse? For that matter, who is Crazy Horse?
A band which has frequently collaborated with Young as his backup band, though they've done a fair amount without Young, as well (including, it appears, six original albums). They've been around since the late 1960s under that name (and earlier under other names, with different lineups).

The band consists of three guys: Billy Talbot and Ralph Molina (both of whom have been with the band since '68), and Frank "Poncho" Sampedro, who joined in '75. There've been others in the band, particularly in the early 1970s, but it looks like it's largely been those three for decades.

They've been longtime working musicians, and likely get some amount of residuals from their discography (particularly their work with Young). Assuming that they haven't been stupid with their money, I'd guess that their wealth is somewhere north of "scraping by," but almost undoubtedly somewhere south of Young's.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crazy_Horse_(band)

Last edited by kenobi 65; 03-06-2018 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 03-06-2018, 05:21 PM
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The truth is, most working musicians make very little money. Courtney Love said that when Hole's album sold 1 million copies, the band members made about $50,000 each from it. If you don't have songwriting credits, it's hard to make real money unless you are constantly working your ass off or if you get into a very popular band.

Even top musicians in large symphonies don't get paid that much. Berklee did a survey that found symphony musicians get paid between $28,000 and $108,000 per year, with the higher end of the range being featured performers in large, popular symphonies.

Crazy Horse does not sell millions of copies of their albums. My guess would be that they probably did ok while touring with Young, but as Crazy Horse they are probably not making all that much, and may even have to do other work to get by. I just looked them up and they aren't even touring right now, and when they last did they were playing 2,000 seat venues. In those circumstances, the band probably makes most of its money from Merchandise sales like T-shirts. To supplement their income, some bands are getting deals where they can buy a block of tickets to their own shows, then re-sell them through scalpers for a profit. That's one of the reasons why it can be so hard to get tickets when a show first goes on sale - most are already being held back for the artist or others.

Bottom line is that no one is getting rich touring 2,000 seat venues. If it's a solo act or duo, the money might be substantial. But a 5 piece band? Not so much.
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Old 03-06-2018, 06:21 PM
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Thanks, Sam Stone. That is really an eye-opener.

I really wonder for artists like these how much is them and how much is their backing band, and how much they can bring in a place like Malaysia, where I am now.
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Old 03-06-2018, 06:30 PM
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For what it's worth.


mmm


*TWEET*

Flag on the play. Mis-attributed song credit. 15 yards, replay the down.





I don't think Neil has enough to be The Emperor of Wyoming, but there's plenty of Silver & Gold Down By the River that flows beneath his Mansion on the Hill. He certainly has found his own El Dorado, as evidenced by his Heart of Gold.
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Old 03-06-2018, 09:44 PM
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*TWEET*

Flag on the play. Mis-attributed song credit. 15 yards, replay the down.





I don't think Neil has enough to be The Emperor of Wyoming, but there's plenty of Silver & Gold Down By the River that flows beneath his Mansion on the Hill. He certainly has found his own El Dorado, as evidenced by his Heart of Gold.
I know, but I couldn't resist.


mmm
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Old 03-06-2018, 10:11 PM
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Did his iPod like player ever get off the ground?
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Old 03-07-2018, 12:38 AM
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The truth is, most working musicians make very little money. Courtney Love said that when Hole's album sold 1 million copies, the band members made about $50,000 each from it. If you don't have songwriting credits, it's hard to make real money unless you are constantly working your ass off or if you get into a very popular band.
Iím sure your post is addressing Crazy Horse specifically and I agree.
But Neil Young does have songwriting credits and is not a ďworking musicianĒ. I donít know how rich he is but Iíd be skeptical of internet estimates. I have more than a passing association with Graham Nash and heís doing OK.
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Old 03-07-2018, 08:23 AM
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There was a programme on TV here a while ago that looked at who made the money out of popular music. The outstanding winners were the writers, especially if they did it on their own. This is because they not only get paid for the original song, but also they get a percentage every time someone covers it. If you can write a Christmas special, you may have an income for life (and beyond). Irving Berlin made a lot more out of White Christmas than Bing Crosby.
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Old 03-07-2018, 08:31 AM
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From my (very limited) knowledge of How To Make A Living As A Songwriter*, my understanding is that the best one can do is to get a tune played on a TV show or in a movie. That's how someone like Mark E. Smith was able to scrape along. I also understand that Neil Young has declined such usage for his tunes, so there's that.

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Old 03-07-2018, 08:45 AM
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Like, rich enough to buy a yacht?
How rich do you think you need to be to "buy a yacht"? Without even looking anything up, I'd be shocked to find out that Young could not "buy a yacht".
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Old 03-07-2018, 08:46 AM
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There was a programme on TV here a while ago that looked at who made the money out of popular music. The outstanding winners were the writers, especially if they did it on their own. This is because they not only get paid for the original song, but also they get a percentage every time someone covers it.
If you ask me, that's exactly how it should be. The people who write the songs are making a far greater and more lasting contribution than the ones who sing them.
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Old 03-07-2018, 10:51 AM
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I'm guessing he can finally afford a maid.
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Old 03-07-2018, 11:53 AM
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....

Bottom line is that no one is getting rich touring 2,000 seat venues. If it's a solo act or duo, the money might be substantial. But a 5 piece band? Not so much.
I think it shows the audience becoming more selective.

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Old 03-07-2018, 12:29 PM
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The truth is, most working musicians make very little money.
Right - Neil Young is enormously wealthy, but most are not. Back several years ago in some interview Young took a benign stance on online piracy, saying it didn't hurt him any and he sort of saw it as the "new radio." Johnny Hickman, the guitarist for Cracker, made a very heated response - piracy may not hurt established millionaires like Young, but "hundredaires" like Hickman lose real revenue which they do kinda need.
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Old 03-07-2018, 06:38 PM
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Say Neil wanted to make a million dollars (after expenses).

All he would have to do is call Crazy Horse or another group and head out for a concert tour.

How many nights would he have to play at mid size venues in large cities in the US to make this kind of money?
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Old 03-07-2018, 06:48 PM
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A band which has frequently collaborated with Young as his backup band, though they've done a fair amount without Young, as well (including, it appears, six original albums). ..
Crazy Horse HAS NOT done a fair amount of anything without Neil Young, let alone releasing albums.

They were Danny and the Memories before Neil Young
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53CSOJZ1bIs
and they've been Neil's tried and true rocking band since Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53CSOJZ1bIs
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:08 PM
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I'm guessing he can finally afford a maid.
If he ever found that heart of gold, that would set him up nicely!
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:19 PM
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Crazy Horse HAS NOT done a fair amount of anything without Neil Young, let alone releasing albums.

They were Danny and the Memories before Neil Young
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53CSOJZ1bIs
and they've been Neil's tried and true rocking band since Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53CSOJZ1bIs
I fucked up that 2nd link. Here's another one from the same time period. (Always contingent upon Mr. Young allowing it to stay on Youtube.)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WaclLeX9yaA
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:36 PM
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Crazy Horse HAS NOT done a fair amount of anything without Neil Young, let alone releasing albums.

They were Danny and the Memories before Neil Young
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53CSOJZ1bIs
and they've been Neil's tried and true rocking band since Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53CSOJZ1bIs
OK, I am by no means an expert on Neil Young, nor Crazy Horse, but their Wikipedia entry shows six original albums (and two collections) that, as far as I can tell, weren't collaborations with Young (but were recorded after they began working with Young). Of course, they did much more *with* Young.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 03-07-2018 at 07:41 PM.
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Old 03-07-2018, 08:53 PM
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Neil Young has lately been touring with Promise of the Real which is Lukas Nelson's band. Lukas is Willie's son. Promise of the Real tours a lot on their own but they play smaller clubs. It's a fantastic band and Lukas is a very good songwriter on his own. He recently recorded a single with his very famous girlfriend Lady Gaga.
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Old 03-07-2018, 11:27 PM
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Neil Young don't want no cash. Don't need no money. Ain't got no stash
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Old 03-07-2018, 11:53 PM
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all he would have to do is ... head out for a concert tour.
How many nights would he have to play at mid size venues in large cities in the US to make this kind of money?
I don't know about N.Young, but recently I've been watching Billy Joel on youtube clips. There are a lot of youtube videos of Joel on stage in small, intimate halls with only a few hundred people, usually on college campuses, where he chats with the audience informally, answering their questions and telling funny stories.

In one of those chats, somebody asked him about doing a tour....and Joel said that it's a HUGE, very complex undertaking.
I think he said it takes a full year. There is lots of advance planning, and then the first 2 months of shows just to cover the costs, before he can start making a profit.

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Old 03-08-2018, 02:03 AM
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...
In one of those chats, somebody asked him about doing a tour....and Joel said that it's a HUGE, very complex undertaking.
I think he said it takes a full year. There is lots of advance planning, and then the first 2 months of shows just to cover the costs, before he can start making a profit.
Would Billy take on the organising and financial risk of running a tour rather than letting someone else do it and just turning up each night, singing and getting paid?

I mean, I'm guessing he does, as he said so, but is the way these things work?

Last edited by Dahu; 03-08-2018 at 02:04 AM.
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Old 03-08-2018, 02:23 AM
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I'm guessing he can finally afford a maid.
Everybody ought to have one.
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Old 03-08-2018, 06:51 AM
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Well, he's recently divorced and gave his ex-wife the Broken Arrow Ranch, so he's less rich than he used to be.
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Old 03-08-2018, 08:54 AM
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Watching an episode of Hill Street Blues last night (S07EE04) when Joyce and the ADA bald guy walk by a pillar with some signs plastered on it. One has Crazy Horse on it and some fuzzy print under it.

Checking the fuzzy print, expecting a date or venue, instead turns up "de Paris". Oops, wrong Crazy Horse. Dang.

Why is a poster for a Paris cabaret on a pillar in the city of ... of ... ....?

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Old 03-08-2018, 11:29 AM
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The truth is, most working musicians make very little money. Courtney Love said that when Hole's album sold 1 million copies, the band members made about $50,000 each from it. If you don't have songwriting credits, it's hard to make real money
I read that same article. Also one by Steve Albini where he was discussing basically the same idea, band sells a million copies and members get very little or can even still be in debt.
So, at what point in album sales DO they actually start to see real money?

Take Nirvana for example. Kurt Cobain had songwriting credits, so it's no surprise his estate is worth a fortune now. But what about Krist Noveselic? Nirvana wasn't around long enough as an arena band for him to have made a ton from touring, so it must have been mostly from album sales. I'm pretty sure he's not working day jobs these days. If we take the "Hole" example and he got $50k per million records sold, and Nirvana sold 20 million, that's only $1 million. So at SOME point, the percentage of album sales for the band members must start going up. Granted, the odds of finding yourself in a band that successful is probably about the odds of becoming the next Tom Brady.

Also, i've heard that nowadays bands release albums to promote a tour, whereas it used to be bands toured to promote the album. But the artist getting ripped off on record sales seems to have ALWAYS been the case. So hasn't it always been about touring as far as the bands financial interests are concerned?

Last edited by Quintas; 03-08-2018 at 11:32 AM. Reason: addition
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:41 AM
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$65 million according to this site, which may or may not be accurate.

I would have thought more, but what do I know?
I heard a mid- level comic talk about that site. He said basically itís was a good estimate of the total amount of money he earned. It doesnít take into account paying managers and agents, taxes, ex-wives, and other expenses. It was close to what he earned but no where close to what he is worth.

I have no idea if that is true across the board with all their calculations but it seems reasonable.
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Old 03-08-2018, 01:45 PM
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How rich do you think you need to be to "buy a yacht"? Without even looking anything up, I'd be shocked to find out that Young could not "buy a yacht".
It depends on what you mean by a Yacht. A yacht is generally thought of as a large pleasure craft. A new 45 ft sail boat can be had for around $500,000. As some one who rents sail boats a 45 foot boat is a large boat. I would personally go down to 35 foot and not laugh at anyone who called that a yacht. But nobody I know really refers to their sailboats in this class as yachts as it is kind of pretentious.

Then there are boats that are big enough that the owners generally hire a crew to sail and take care of the boat for them. I have not really looked at how much those cost but basically there is no limit to how much you can spend. Pall Allan's boat was docked near a cruise ship I was on and it was probably about 1/4 of the size of the cruise ship.
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Old 03-08-2018, 03:01 PM
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If you ask me, that's exactly how it should be. The people who write the songs are making a far greater and more lasting contribution than the ones who sing them.
Yes and no.

Since the advent of recorded music, the singer's voice or the musician's instrument playing often is as much a distinctive contribution to a song as is the melody and lyrics. After all, Neil Young songs by anyone else would not sound the same. (Just as Jimi Hendrix playing guitar does not compare to a cover band in a pub).

However, yes, the biggest contribution by far is the songwriter.

As someone commented about Paul McCartney, every time someone played one of his songs, he got one quarter of the take, Yoko got one quarter, and Michael Jackson got half...
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Old 03-08-2018, 04:05 PM
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he has 2 children with cerebral palsy and another with epilepsy. Those conditions can cause a lot of money to be spent for health care.
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Old 03-08-2018, 04:43 PM
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Would Billy take on the organising and financial risk of running a tour rather than letting someone else do it and just turning up each night, singing and getting paid?

I mean, I'm guessing he does, as he said so, but is the way these things work?
Without knowing, or much caring about Billy Joel, early in his career his (first) wifeís brother managed him and basically stole $90 million from him. Joel sued but apparently only recovered $8 million, if this source is right.

https://financesonline.com/10-celebr...lost-millions/

Joel has said his advice to young musicians is to hire a good lawyer and then hire another good lawyer to watch the first. I can see why he would watch closely who was running a tour, despite all the money he has made since.
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Old 03-08-2018, 05:54 PM
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Well, he's recently divorced and gave his ex-wife the Broken Arrow Ranch, so he's less rich than he used to be.
This is heartbreaking to read. I thought he and his wife were still quite tight. Very sad - and with his three high-needs kids, that much more complex.

Damn. In the early 1970's, he would speak about this new farm he'd bought from a coupla lawyers. That was the Ranch.
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Old 03-09-2018, 10:16 AM
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This is heartbreaking to read. I thought he and his wife were still quite tight. Very sad - and with his three high-needs kids, that much more complex.
Speaking from experience, raising one special needs child is incredibly stressful on a marriage. Raising two (he only has the two, one with CP and one with both CP and epilepsy) mus be off the charts. Having tons of money might help some (no fighting for funding for services), but still...
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Old 03-09-2018, 10:47 AM
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Yes and no.

Since the advent of recorded music, the singer's voice or the musician's instrument playing often is as much a distinctive contribution to a song as is the melody and lyrics. After all, Neil Young songs by anyone else would not sound the same. (Just as Jimi Hendrix playing guitar does not compare to a cover band in a pub).

However, yes, the biggest contribution by far is the songwriter.

As someone commented about Paul McCartney, every time someone played one of his songs, he got one quarter of the take, Yoko got one quarter, and Michael Jackson got half...
The melody and lyrics are the song. The singer and the instrument are the color. How often does a "song" get covered vs how often does a "voice or instrument" get covered?
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Old 03-09-2018, 11:57 AM
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Hmmm. Interesting, regarding Broken arrow. I knew he no longer owned it, but I didn't know why. I hike in El Corte Madera Creek OSP sometimes, which very close to it. If I was with people and we were over at that end of the preserve, I had to quit joking "Hey, let's go over that way and visit Neil".
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Old 03-09-2018, 12:26 PM
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The melody and lyrics are the song. The singer and the instrument are the color. How often does a "song" get covered vs how often does a "voice or instrument" get covered?
That may be the technical definition... but. There are some songs where we don't care about who is singing or playing. But for many songs, the original hit as recorded in the studio is how the song is fixed in our minds. For singers with very distinctive voices (like Neil whasisname comes to mind) that is as much part of the song to me as the melody or lyrics.

Note that in covers, there are two types - the singer tries to sound exactly like the original, or they change things drastically to put their own spin on it. Sometimes this works - the version of "Bang Bang" by Nancy Sinatra from Kill Bill comes to mind. More often, it does not work well.

IMHO.

Of course, there are those old standards that everyone covered and we don't have a specific singer fixed in our mind.
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Old 03-09-2018, 02:14 PM
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This is heartbreaking to read. I thought he and his wife were still quite tight. Very sad - and with his three high-needs kids, that much more complex.

Damn. In the early 1970's, he would speak about this new farm he'd bought from a coupla lawyers. That was the Ranch.
He left her for Daryl Hannah. That also led to the final breakup of CSN with David Crosby tearing into Neal Young in public about it. No one is tight any more.
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Old 03-09-2018, 02:31 PM
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15 or so yrs old by now, but as I recall, the LOONG bio "Shakey" went into a lot of detail about NY's finances, investments, etc. I remember them talking of his special needs kids, the Lionel investment, real estate, and financial aspects of various tours/reuniting.

As I recall, he went from periods of pretty stupefying wealth, to periods where he had to sell stuff off - but was still not missing any meals. I suspect his royalties should be enough to keep him - and some ex-wives and special needs kids - relatively comfortable.

Long book, but I found it quite interesting, especially about his early days in Canada, and moving to LA and the years w/ CSNY. Did you know Rick James was the singer in one of his first bands?
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Old 03-16-2018, 07:53 AM
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Interesting. I didnít read Shakey, but I sure did read ďWaging Heavy PeaceĒ, by Neil Young. A rather non-linear effort and detailing his life and work and loves and interests.

By the end, Neil makes it pretty clear that he believes himself to be suffering from a slow-onset neurological problem. Dementia, Alzheimerís, etc. He wants to get his story out in his own words before the more blurry periods increase. Itís not a dominant theme but itís there and a thin but bright thread throughout.

It was a decent read, immensely rambling and self-indulgent. Clearly a book in need of an editor- but then again, itís Neil Young. Let the guy ramble.
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Old 06-11-2019, 12:26 PM
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Unrelated question: How is Neil Young perceived among the intelligentsia these days? Can still play, or his time has passed? At his peak, what was his evaluation? A better singer/songwriter or a better guitarist, or performer?
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Old 06-11-2019, 12:40 PM
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There was a programme on TV here a while ago that looked at who made the money out of popular music. The outstanding winners were the writers, especially if they did it on their own. This is because they not only get paid for the original song, but also they get a percentage every time someone covers it. If you can write a Christmas special, you may have an income for life (and beyond). Irving Berlin made a lot more out of White Christmas than Bing Crosby.
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From my (very limited) knowledge of How To Make A Living As A Songwriter*, my understanding is that the best one can do is to get a tune played on a TV show or in a movie. That's how someone like Mark E. Smith was able to scrape along. I also understand that Neil Young has declined such usage for his tunes, so there's that.

*"You're better off playing the lottery."
Musical theatre has "grand rights." Any musical has to pay the lyricist and composer every time they use their song. At 8 times a week, it adds up. There is no escaping this rule. If you do not pay the grand rights to the right people, your show will be closed down.

Someone needs to do a jukebox musical based on Neil's songs.
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Old 06-11-2019, 01:14 PM
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At his peak, what was his evaluation? A better singer/songwriter or a better guitarist, or performer?
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.

Last edited by Tamerlane; 06-11-2019 at 01:15 PM.
  #49  
Old 06-11-2019, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Tamerlane View Post
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.
If they do, remind them that Neil Young doesn't.

Last edited by Snowboarder Bo; 06-11-2019 at 01:30 PM.
  #50  
Old 06-11-2019, 02:51 PM
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But what about Krist Noveselic? Nirvana wasn't around long enough as an arena band for him to have made a ton from touring, so it must have been mostly from album sales. I'm pretty sure he's not working day jobs these days. If we take the "Hole" example and he got $50k per million records sold, and Nirvana sold 20 million, that's only $1 million. So at SOME point, the percentage of album sales for the band members must start going up. Granted, the odds of finding yourself in a band that successful is probably about the odds of becoming the next Tom Brady.
Net worth around 50 million so he doin' aight.
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