Skip to content

Crosby, Stills & Nash – Crosby, Stills & Nash (1969)

unnamed

Splendid Artist of the Week logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

.

[Album 519/1001].

There’s something to be said for making a debut album eponymous.

If it’s self-titled, confusion should be minimized.220px-crosbystillsandnash

Though curiously with Crosby, Stills & Nash’s album Crosby, Stills & Nash (CSN), on the album cover, looking left to right, they are arranged as Nash, Stills, and Crosby.

Which I gather was unintentional but nonetheless, it got me thinking: does the order matter?

And if so, which order best reflects the trio’s actual contributions on CSN?

On the cover, are they visually sorted by descending order of importance? By ascending order of excellence?

Only one way to find out: a thorough, graphical analysis.

.

song-writing

1. Based on song-writing credits

If song-writing is paramount, the album really should be named “Stills, Nash & Crosby (with a collaboration between Stills/Crosby/Kantner)” – think of the marketing opportunities!

.

lead-vocal

2. Based on lead vocal credits

With 3 individual credits, it would appear that Nash deserves to be on the marquee. But with 3 lead credits (as supported by the others), Stills may also be deserving. Whatever the group/album is called, the font size on Nash & Stills should be somewhat larger.

.

nash

3. Based on most frequent vocal appearances

Crosby and Stills each make 5 appearances in some sort of lead vocal capacity. Compared with Nash’s 7, they would be tied for second billing (Nash, with Crosby & Stills / Nash, with Stills & Crosby).

.

csn

4. Based on quality of individual performances

Which is probably best left to individual listeners.

So consider this final visual a ‘fill-in-the-blank’ graph, as I’ve struggled to assign a specific performance score to each member.

In this album’s penultimate song, Long Time Gone, there’s the lyric, “you got to speak your mind, if you dare.” So I suppose, this week, I’m not all that daring as my mind doesn’t have any strong opinions to share on the subject.

In a typically/disappointingly Canadian way, I’d say all 3 performers made valuable contributions on the decidedly non-disappointing CSN.

Or NCS. Or NSC, SNC, SCN, CNS.

I think that covers all the permutations.

…..

Verbalize the Positive

Cheers to all my fellow bloggers who have encouraged me to use charts & graphs in my reviews, I appreciate that my nerd-enthusiasm for excel is becoming increasingly socially acceptable!

Top 5 Last-Named Band Names

unnamed

Splendid logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

.

With the Artist of the Week Series, I’m hoping to do at least a Top 5 with each Artist.

In honour of CSNY’s band name consisting entirely of the band members’ last names, I give you the Top 5 ‘Last-named Band Names’

Enjoy!

.

5. Wilson Phillips
Though I suppose technically 2 Wilsons/1 Phillips. Either way, I enjoyed the cameo in Bridesmaids!

.

4. Emerson, Lake, and Palmer
Will likely be featured as an Artist of the Week later this year.

.

3. Crosby, Stills, Nash, and (sometimes) Young
With Ol’ Neil in this case.

.

2. Hall & Oates
The video fashion may be dated but the tunes hold up nicely.

.

1. Simon & Garfunkel
Here’s to you gents.

…..

Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that when I make a Top 5, many readers suggest (quite politely too!) other artists that I’ve overlooked.

Which is half the fun for me: I get to come up with my list but also learn about many other artists, so my thanks!

Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young – Déjà Vu (1970)

unnamed

Magnificent logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

.

[Album 518/1001]

Déjà Vu.

Already seen.

When you experience something familiar that shouldn’t be familiar.

Sort of like me wih Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young (CSNY)’s Déjà Vu.

In theory, it should be new-to-me: I didn’t grow up with it, I just bought the record semi-recently.

But from the first spin, it was as if I’d heard it before.

Which I can only assume means that there is a glitch in The Matrix.

.

.

If you haven’t seen the original film, or haven’t seen it in the 18(!) years since its release, a brief description courtesy of imdb:

“A computer hacker learns from mysterious rebels about the true nature of his reality and his role in the war against its controllers.”

Almost two decades later, I’m still processing many of the ideas presented in the film, but I think I’ve at least got the gist of the film’s title.

“The Matrix” is the name of the artificial reality, created and controlled by machines, where choice is only an illusion of choice.

When someone experiences a feeling of Déjà Vu? As explained by Carrie-Anne Moss in the clip above, it means the controllers of reality have “changed something.”

.


My sentiments exactly, when trying to process the film

.

With CSNY, something’s certainly changed here for me.

A few years ago? I don’t think I’d have had any use for CSNY’s Déjà Vu.

But now I quite enjoy it.crosby_stills_nash__young_-_deja_vu

I just can’t tell if it’s a case of free will or fate.

Did I intentionally leave this album to review #518, somehow knowing I wouldn’t have been ready to appreciate it until now?

Am I conciously choosing to enjoy this record or was I destined to like it all along?

Is it due to Déjà Vu (a glitch in my perceived reality) that I now enjoy Déjà Vu (the album)?

Or perhaps Keanu’s reaction above is relevant here, both to express my bewilderment in arriving at this level of CSNY album appreciation, while also summarizing how impressed I was with the record?

…..

Verbalize the Positive

I love that although my love for Keanu has subjected me to plenty of ridicule over the years, critics are starting to appreciate the “stillness” in his performances.

He’s earning praise at every turn for giving up his seat on public transit, for being generous, and for generally being a decent dude. Cheers Keanu!

 

Artist of the Week – Quiz #7

unnamed

Magnificent logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

Artists of the week (so far): Brian Eno, U2, Stevie Wonder, Everything But The Girl, Elvis Costello, Tom Waits

.

My thanks to all who have participated in the “Artist of the Week” quizzes so far.

Congrats to all those who correctly identified Tom Waits last week.

Here are the results after 6 quizzes:

.

week-6

.

Ready for Quiz #7?

Y’all ready for this?

Quiz Rules/Format
(feel free to skip to the quiz if you know the rules already)

Your Task: Name the mystery Artist, ideally with as few clues as possible.

Correctly guess the artist on the first clue? 500 points.

After scrolling down to the second clue? 400 points.

Still don’t know after the fifth clue? 0 points, but a crisp high-five for participating.

I’ll use google translate to put the correct answer at the bottom in Arabic (if you read Arabic, that’s fantastic, but no cheating by reading ahead!) and you can translate it back to the language of your choice to confirm your answer.

In the comments, please enter your POINTS earned (not the artist name) and I’ll keep track of the running totals in a spreadsheet.

In addition to eternal bragging rights, the winner at the end of the year may even get something as prestigious as a digital certificate.

Here goes!

.

Artist of the Week #7
Record POINTS Earned (Not Artist Name) in the comments
(scroll down for additional clues)

For:

500 points………………..A folk-rock supergroup whose eponymous debut album was released in 1969

.

.

.

.

.

400 points………………..Much like vowels in the alphabet (A,E,I,O,U, and sometimes Y), this group can be shortened to a few letters (and sometimes Y)

.

.

.

.

.

300 points…………………As a nod to this music trio, a possible Team Canada forward line combination at the 2010 Winter Olympics was Sidney, Eric, and Rick.

.

.

.

.

.

200 points………………….All group members have been inducted to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, both for their contributions to this trio and also to The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, and The Hollies.

.

.

.

.

.

100 points………………..The initials are C___ S____ N____ (and sometimes Y_____)

.

.

.

.

.

Answer: كروسبي، اللقطات، ناش (ويونغ)
(Please post your points earned in the comments section)

Thanks for playing!

…..

Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that many bloggers do specific day of the week posts – on each site, it’s a nice tradition that I look forward to each week!

Top 5 “Thomas” Musicians

unnamed

Magnificent logo by Sarca @caughtmegaming

.

With the Artist of the Week Series, I’m hoping to do at least a Top 5 with each Artist.

With Mr. Waits, is he the Top Musical Thomas?

 

.

5. Thomas Cochrane
CanCon!

.

4. Thomas Morello
Would be #1 on a “Top Thomas Guitar Tones” list

.

3. Thomas Waits
Though there’s no Thomas quite like him.

.

2. Thomas Petty
Heartbreakingly in the #2 spot for the second week in a row!

.

1. Thomas Yorke
Every Thom in its right place.

…..

Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that my friend Thomas is one of those friends that I may only see once a year but it’s back to business as usual every time!

Tom Waits – Swordfishtrombones (1983)

unnamed

Stellar logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

.

[Album 517/1001]

There’s only one Tom Waits.

My high school principal agrees.

When I was chatting with him during the recent exam period, it was clear he was battling a cold.

So, naturally, I observed, “you’ve got a nice Tom Waits rasp today.”

To which he chuckled, and promptly disagreed, saying there’s actually something really beautiful about Waits’s delivery.

Can’t argue with that. There’s only one Tom Waits.

.

Within the next few days, battling a cold of my own, I was chatting with some other colleagues at school.

One remarked/asked the rhetorical question, “you’ve got a cold?”

I, rather immodestly, replied, “yeah I’ve got a bit of a Tom Waits raspiness today.”

To which my friend Emily immediately disagreed, “actually, you sound like a post-pubescent Kermit.”

Sadly, I couldn’t argue with that.

There’s only one Tom Waits (quantity of post-pubescent Kermits unknown).

.

.

With Swordfishtrombones, Waits sounds like Tom Waits, as evidently, only he can.

Of the quintet of records on the 1001 (Nighthawks, Heartattack, this, Rain Dogs, and Bone Machine), it may be my favourite.

But it may not matter.

With Elvis Costello, I had trouble distinguishing between what made for a decent/good/very good Costello recording, as I was left with similar impressions from each.220px-tomwaitsswordfishtrombones

I suppose the same could be said for Tom Waits, in that I’m not sure how easy it is to tell a career peak from a valley.

The big difference?

I think I could play a Costello record at any time, in any context, and have similar listening experience.

If I was in the unenviable situation of being in a Costello mood but somehow without access to any Costello records, there are several artists that would likely qualify as decent substitutes.

But with Waits, as I’ve learned this week, the context matters.

For maximum enjoyment, I’ve got to be in the mood.

But if I’m in the mood for Waits, absolutely nothing else will suffice.

There’s only one of him, after all.

He may sound like Cookie Monster…but at least he doesn’t sound like a post-pubescent Kermit.

…..

Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that many people I chat with in person inadvertently help me organize my thoughts for so many of these reviews. Even when those conversations result in me being the punchline!

Tom Waits – Heartattack and Vine (1980)

unnamed

Sensational logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

.

[Album 516/1001]

I don’t really like having to listen to Tom Waits.

Don’t get me wrong, I normally enjoy listening to Tom Waits.

Sometimes, nothing but Waits will suffice and frankly, no musical artist is even remotely comparable.

But as it turns out, he’s not benefitting from this week-long immersion.

.

.

With Everything But the Girl & Brian Eno, I wasn’t a huge fan going into their respective weeks. However, with repeated exposure…

In the case of U2, I’d left that party in the early 2000s. Yet the revisit rekindled my interest.

As for Elvis Costello & Stevie Wonder? There aren’t really many times when I’m not, to borrow the Glenn Miller tune, In The Mood for some Declan &/or Stevland.

Yet Tom Waits?

Well, I was a fan going into the week, so that doesn’t apply.

Since I arrived late to the Waits party a few years ago, I hadn’t left, so no rekindling was required either.

And I think I’m in the mood for Tom Waits frequently enough.

It’s just that instead of being my ‘go-to’ artist, he’s likely my perfect ‘go-between other artists.’

.

sushi

.

For lack of a better metaphor, Tom Waits, or Heartattack and Vine specifically, may be the ultimate palate cleanser.220px-tom_waits-heartattack_and_vine

The pickled ginger between pieces of sushi.

I don’t think I’d want to dine on ginger exclusively but the overall sushi experience wouldn’t be the same without it.

Now that I think about it, I only had sushi for the first time a few years ago.

And I’m certainly in the mood for sushi frequently enough.

It’s just somehow more flavourful with some of that pickled ginger in between bites.

…..

Verbalize the Positive

I’m not sure if either would appreciate being compared to pickled ginger, but much like listening to Tom Waits between other artists, I love reading Chuck Klosterman essays between other novels.

I don’t know, pickled ginger/Waits/Klosterman, that’s a pretty formidable trio if you ask me!