Neil Young over the decades has proven that he can play just about any style of music from Country, Grunge, Heavy Metal, Blues and yes, Folk. He has also proven that he can play the guitar like no other with his famous dropped down D tuning. He plays piano, organ, harmonica and yes, banjo.
It’s no surprise that 1972’s release “Harvest” was one of his best records. After his successful debut in 1968 and then again with Crazy Horse in 1969, what would you expect Neil Young to do with his fourth release? “Harvest” was the answer.
“Harvest” is a collection of Folk and Country Rock songs. This album features a string of hits that are among Neil Young’s best from the title track “Harvest”, to “Heart of Gold”, “Old Man” and “The Needle and the Damage Done” which was written about Crazy Horse front man Danny Whitten who died from a heroin overdose.
This album is also holds part two of two swings at the American South. In 1970, Young wrote the song “Southern Man” which dealt with the issues of Slavery and Racism. On this record the song “Alabama” was released dealing with the state that Alabama was in. In 1974, Lynyrd Skynyrd answered Neil Young with their hit song “Sweet Home Alabama.”
Musically, this album is among one of Neil Young’s all-time best. He is a great performer and the mixture of music that was produced on this record is fantastic. It contains a little bit of everything. Mild to upbeat tempos, great song structures that are not overdone. “Words (Between the Lines of Age)” features a great guitar jam session that Neil Young has always been known for. The musicianship behind the backing band the Stray Gators is very tight. All of the musicians work so well with one another. no wonder this record is among the top all time best.
1. “Out on the Weekend” 4:35
2. “Harvest” 3:11
3. “A Man Needs a Maid” 4:05
4. “Heart of Gold” 3:07
5. “Are You Ready for the Country?” 3:33
1. “Old Man” 3:24
2. “There’s a World” 2:59
3. “Alabama” 4:02
4. “The Needle and the Damage Done” (recorded in concert January 30, 1971) 2:03
5. “Words (Between the Lines of Age)” 6:40