On Tuesday, Neil Young released a special live recording of “The Losing End (When You’re On)”. The tune was taped live during Young’s three-night stint at The Roxy Theatre in West Hollywood on September 20th-22nd, 1973, which was eventually released as the live album Roxy: Tonight’s the Night. This vintage recording is set to be included in Young’s upcoming archival collection, Archives Volume 2: 1972-1976, due out on November 20th.
The recording in question occurred during Young’s finale at The Roxy on September 22nd. These concerts from Young and his backing band Santa Monica Flyers marked the first-ever concerts at the now-famous Los Angeles venue, and even served as the grand opening.
In accordance with the historic date of the recording, the video accompanying the song features a slideshow of archival photos from that place and time in music history. Among the many patrons and fans photographed is none other than concert promoter Bill Graham, who didn’t have any ownership in the club, but nonetheless came out to show his support.
“The Losing End (When You’re On)” takes on a honky-tonk feel with some classic 1970s Young overtones. The Canadian rock singer-songwriter hits his sweet spot of dejected lyrics as the down-and-out storyteller. The 6:30 minute track is bolstered at the end by a slide guitar solo that amplifies the Country-Western vibe before the vintage roar of the audience takes over when the song ends.
Listen to “The Losing End (When You’re On)” by Neil Young, recorded live at The Roxy in 1973. The Archives Volume 2: 1972-1976 10-disc box set is currently sold out.
Neil Young – “The Losing End (When You’re On)” – West Hollywood, CA – 9/22/73
[H/T Rolling Stone]