On December 4th at 8 p.m., a 25-year-old Neil Young took the stage at the famed Carnegie Hall for the very first time. Nearly 50 years later, audiences will be able to hear audio of that concert for the first time since it occurred, as the singer-songwriter announced last week that the show will be the first official bootleg release from the Neil Young Archives.
Young returned to Carnegie Hall later that night at midnight, a show that was taped from the audience and has seen a wide bootleg circulation since then. In a post to the Neil Young Archives, Young confidently stated that nobody had captured the early show, which he considers to be the best of the two, and that he plans to release it.
The concert itself came at the tail end of a breakout year for Young, who only months before had released After The Gold Rush and Déjà Vu with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. In order to prepare for the honor of playing Carnegie Hall, Young played a six-night residency at The Cellar Door in Washington, D.C., 13 tracks from which were released in 2013 as Live at The Cellar Door. Those concerts saw the live debut of such classics as “Old Man”, “See the Sky About To Rain”, and “Bad Fog Of Loneliness”.
Young said of the release on the Neil Young Archives,
Change happens fast. As I have gone through these early bootlegs, Carnegie Hall, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Royce Hall, and other, they each show a change, something you can hear – an evolution. My first time playing harmonica – Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, is heard as well as what the harmonica replaced – heard on the earlier shows. That was interesting to me because I didn’t remember exactly when I started playing harp until I heard that.
At Carnegie Hall, I hear myself doing a new song, one about my ranch I had just moved to – ‘Old Man.’ Time flies.
Given the references to other bootleg recordings, it’s quite possible more releases are on the horizon. Young gave no specific release date for the Carnegie Hall show, so keep up to date on the Neil Young Archives Times Contrarian for any updates. Read the full post here.