Graham Nash was on Howard Stern‘s SiriusXM show yesterday, and basically gave a rock history lesson about why he left The Hollies, how Crosby, Stills, and Nash came together at Joni Mitchell‘s house, Neil Young joining the group, and discusses his new book Wild Tales: A Rock And Roll Life. It’s an absolutely brilliant interview by Stern, in which Nash shares story after story, including his friendship with Mama Cass from the Mamas & the Papas, how CSN had an “audition” for George Harrison to sign onto Apple Records, and how Harrison didn’t actually like it. Another group that didn’t like CSN at first….Simon & Garfunkel. Some of the stories that Nash tells are just unbelievable, and so amazing to hear for any rock historian.
The interview is just about an hour long, and Nash performs “Chicago,” “Teach Your Children,” and “Our House.” Howard prods Nash about the relationship that Neil Young had with the members of CSN, asking how it must have been difficult to deal with him constantly leaving and returning to the band. Nash simply states that “he was concentrating on his career….which is the way it should be,” and tells of how Young even played with them at Woodstock (which many people don’t know), but told every cameraman there that if they even took one shot of him playing he would kill them.
The most poignant part of the interview is after Nash plays “Chicago”; Howard and Nash go into a discussion about how music used to have meaning, and could be used as a political force, and that these days it’s just not prevalent in music anymore. This goes into how Neil Young came to write “Ohio” (one of the most important song’s in rock history), what the motivation was behind the song, and Nash goes on to tune his guitar and play the track.
These are the types of interview that you can only dream of. You have to listen to the interview for yourselves. Check it out: