Neil Young gets back to nature


Neil Young has been sounding the alarm about environmental issues for more than 40 years.

He sang about “mother nature on the run” on 1970’s After The Gold Rush. Two decades later, he warned that pollution and deforestation would “trade away our children’s days” on Mother Earth.

The latter is reprised on his new album, Earth, an environmentally-themed live album that – unusually – overdubs his performances with the sounds of the animal kingdom, from bees to buzzards; and cows to cockerels.

It sounds like folly, but the effect is strangely mesmerising – as if the stage is slowly being invaded and overrun by the natural world.

“It’s about the connectivity of everything,” Young tells the BBC. “Trying to be cognisant of how living things are affected by what we do.”

“This is something that matters to me. The more people that pay attention to activism and environmentalism, the better off we’re going to be.

“I mean, we’re in kind of dire straits as far as the governments go. It’s really down to the people.”

Young’s frustrations with government are far from secret, of course. He publicly remonstrated Donald Trump for using his music on the campaign trail – saying he would never “endorse hate, bigotry, childish name calling, the superficiality of celebrity or ignorance”.

But his dissatisfaction runs deeper than one candidate. He is disillusioned with the entire political process.

“If corporate money and television advertising [are] the only way to really get elected, then you have a way where democracy can be corrupted by power – and that’s what we have in the United States,” he says.

“That results in decisions being made that are written by corporations, that the legislators pass as law. Things like the anti-labelling campaigns of the GMO (genetically modified organism) manufacturers. Things like that.”

The star’s anger at agribusiness – and patented, genetically-modified seeds in particular – fuelled his last album, The Monsanto Years.

“The seeds of life are not what they once were / Mother Nature and God don’t own them anymore,” he sang on the title track; while Big Box took aim at big business in general – “Too big to fail / Too rich for jail”.

Both songs are revived on Earth, with Young’s fury fuelling the gritty live performances. Several of the songs have subsequently been augmented in the studio, with Young adding a chorus of perfectly-harmonised singers to emphasise key lyrics. They represent the sound of “corporate harmony”, he says.

“Aren’t they perfect and beautiful? It’s a little bit disturbing how good they are.

“You know as soon as you hear them, that you can’t believe it – but you need to listen to them over and over again because they’ve hooked you.”

And those animal sounds? Young largely recorded them himself.

“I do listen a lot to nature,” he says. “Where I live, the birds are very vocal.”

The star’s connection to nature runs deeper still. Since the late 1970s, he has only recorded music in the week leading up to a full moon (although, being a live album, Earth is an exception).

“It’s kind of paganistic [but] it is productive,” he says. “As I look back over the archives, the dates coincide.

“A lot of people on Earth go by the moon, whether they know it or not. Planting seeds or cutting your hair – do things at the right time and there’s a difference.”

But Young isn’t deluded about his abilities. Inspiration is “like a flame that burns and then goes out”, he says.

“I look at it like there’s an energy that floats around. Sometimes some people have it, and sometimes other people have it.

“Like, Adele had it for a period of time and really held it in her hand and was doing great things with it. I hope she gets to hold onto it – but no-one can hold onto it for long.

“It’s just kind of a crapshoot, really.”

Nonetheless, since his beginnings with Buffalo Springfield 50 years ago, Young has carved out one of the longest and most vital careers in rock. His writing is perhaps more uncompromising now than it was in his most commercially-successful period, with After The Gold Rush and Harvest in the early 1970s.

Later this year, he will take the stage with five other rock legends – including Bob Dylan and Sir Paul McCartney – at the Desert Trip festival in California.

The event is expected to have the biggest box-office takings in concert history, but Young (who turned down $1m to headline Woodstock in 1994) plays down the significance of the show.

“I know nothing about it really. I’ve been asked to do a gig, and I’m going to do it,” he says.

“It’s great they asked me to play with all those artists. That’s wonderful, it’s a great honour to play with all of them. But aside from that, it’s just another gig.”

Earth is released on 24 June by Warner Bros Records. Neil Young was speaking to BBC Breakfast; and Cerys Matthews for BBC 6 Music.


  1. Kayaddy on 28th August 2021 at 2:20 pm

  2. immeveDit on 29th August 2021 at 10:13 pm

  3. Kafchonna on 30th August 2021 at 2:47 am

  4. frarcarry on 5th September 2021 at 8:01 pm – buy stromectol online

  5. Propecia on 6th September 2021 at 3:54 am

    cialis australia

  6. Thopriero on 6th September 2021 at 11:11 am

  7. gyboagecy on 6th September 2021 at 11:26 pm

  8. Glabess on 7th September 2021 at 12:52 pm

  9. Yfilmsin on 10th September 2021 at 5:59 pm

  10. Qdffkxic on 11th September 2021 at 9:18 pm

  11. Gzsoqhbz on 11th September 2021 at 11:21 pm

  12. Ipuaruyo on 12th September 2021 at 9:17 pm

  13. Qgmovanq on 13th September 2021 at 1:31 am

  14. Lwwkmlhm on 13th September 2021 at 2:37 am

  15. смотреть фильм on 13th September 2021 at 10:42 pm

  16. этот фильм on 14th September 2021 at 12:49 am

  17. Pymnfally on 15th September 2021 at 4:48 pm

  18. chinese adult sex games on 5th December 2021 at 1:38 pm

    tinkerbell sex games

  19. most trusted online casino on 10th December 2021 at 9:03 pm

    stake online casino

  20. online casino vegas on 11th December 2021 at 10:15 am

    golden nugget online casino promo code

  21. online casino with sign up bonus on 13th December 2021 at 12:12 am

  22. win real money online casino for free on 13th December 2021 at 11:24 am

    golden casino online

  23. online casino real money no deposit on 13th December 2021 at 3:11 pm

    best online casino real money

  24. play casino online on 13th December 2021 at 10:12 pm

    best online nj casino

  25. golden nugget casino online on 14th December 2021 at 1:09 am

    casino online games real money

  26. keto beef stroganoff on 14th December 2021 at 5:43 pm

  27. keto fasting on 15th December 2021 at 2:04 pm

  28. are lentils keto on 15th December 2021 at 4:42 pm

  29. writing essays in college on 16th December 2021 at 4:01 am

    write essays for money online

  30. essay writing website on 16th December 2021 at 7:54 pm

    what to write a college essay about

  31. writing a cause and effect essay on 17th December 2021 at 7:50 am

    where can i buy an essay

  32. custom writing essays on 17th December 2021 at 11:35 am

    write a five paragraph essay

  33. white for black dating gay on 17th December 2021 at 3:20 pm

    dating a virgo gay man

  34. austin tx gay dating sties on 17th December 2021 at 5:08 pm

    gay bdsm dating sites

  35. jewish gay dating in maine on 17th December 2021 at 7:58 pm

    gay dating games online

  36. critical thinking book on 19th December 2021 at 3:36 pm

    critical thinking skills in nursing

  37. bell hooks critical thinking on 19th December 2021 at 5:26 pm

    levels of critical thinking in nursing

  38. critical thinking assessments on 19th December 2021 at 6:35 pm

    8 steps critical thinking

  39. critical thinking in writing on 19th December 2021 at 9:27 pm

    critical thinking questions examples

  40. introduce yourself essay on 19th December 2021 at 11:45 pm

    pro choice argumentative essay

  41. essay word changer on 20th December 2021 at 1:24 am

    financial need scholarship essay examples

  42. cheap essay on 20th December 2021 at 3:34 am

    essay about myself

  43. college admission essay example on 20th December 2021 at 5:08 am

  44. topics for an opinion essay on 20th December 2021 at 7:27 am

    colege essay

  45. essay editor free on 20th December 2021 at 10:19 am

    essay writing help

  46. essay writing website on 20th December 2021 at 2:00 pm

    persuasive essay topics

  47. 3purpose on 31st December 2021 at 9:56 am


  48. gay dating denver, co on 2nd January 2022 at 2:48 pm

    palm springs ca mature gay bisexuak dating

  49. chub mature gay bisexual dating on 2nd January 2022 at 3:48 pm

    gay dating sights

  50. black gay men dating sites on 2nd January 2022 at 5:35 pm

    which of the following statements about dating in gay male and lesbian youth is true?

  51. google zoom gay chat rooms on 14th January 2022 at 10:24 am

    snap chat gay boy dick

  52. gay dating east tennessee on 14th January 2022 at 1:19 pm

    gay dating for ftm’s

  53. gay chat room in my area on 14th January 2022 at 6:59 pm

    gay chat free

  54. chat with a gay stranger on 14th January 2022 at 7:53 pm

    gay chat roulette

  55. free slots video poker on 28th January 2022 at 8:34 pm

    caesars slots free casino

  56. free online casino slots on 28th January 2022 at 11:37 pm

    aristocrat slots free play

  57. sharknado slots in vegas on 29th January 2022 at 3:12 am

  58. free slots cleopatra on 29th January 2022 at 7:08 am

    interactive slots

  59. baba wild slots casino on 3rd February 2022 at 4:08 pm

  60. house of fun slots on 3rd February 2022 at 8:16 pm

    konami slots riches

  61. carnival in rio slots on 4th February 2022 at 1:16 am

    free buffalo slots

  62. jackpotjoy slots on 4th February 2022 at 2:34 am

  63. house of fun slots on 4th February 2022 at 6:40 am

  64. mirror ball slots on 4th February 2022 at 9:46 am

  65. caesar slots free download on 4th February 2022 at 3:16 pm

    free kronos slots for fun

  66. dissertation outline example on 10th February 2022 at 7:12 pm

    masters dissertation writing help

  67. dissertation writing fellowship on 11th February 2022 at 6:52 pm

    dissertation in practice

  68. how long is a dissertation on 12th February 2022 at 12:09 am

  69. best dissertation editing service on 12th February 2022 at 2:16 am

  70. proposal and dissertation help geography on 12th February 2022 at 5:11 am

    economics dissertation help

  71. 2ringtone on 17th June 2022 at 5:40 pm