Neil Young is one of the most prolific artists, with his unique voice and his insightful songwriting he led a generation of teens in the 70’s. In 1971, Neil Young performed live at Massey Hall in Toronto to sing the hits off his 1970 album “After the Gold Rush.” He also sang a bunch of never before released material that would go on his upcoming historical album “Harvest.” My father was a teenager during this time and worshipped this guy, he would play Neil Young’s songs over and over when I was a kid and I knew most every song by heart by the time I was four years old. It’s pretty obvious why I was named "Neil" after sharing this; my father named me after his favorite musician, Neil Young. My mother was going to name me Matthew Levi and my father nixed that before she could finish signing the birth certificate.
Above: My father in 1973, at the age of 16 years old. I was born less than a year after this picture was taken.
A new CD was released this past week of this historic concert that Neil Young did at Massey Hall in 1971 for the first time. I listened to the CD on iTunes and I was completely blown away by the power of this guys voice and the emotion that went into his singing. The entire CD is live, it’s sounds better than a studio album, and Neil sings all his songs to the tune of his acoustic guitar and playis the piano. I never really liked my first name much and never really understood why my father named me after Neil Young. I also was never a big fan of Young but after listening to this 'new' CD I understood why my father named name after this man and what the appeal was. Neil Young defined a generation and is unlike any singer songwriter that the world had seen at that time. My father was one of the many teenaged boys that were drawn to these touching songs and the whiny, high-pitched voice of this rock legend. Listening to this live CD as an adult I fully embrace my name and the meaning behind it and I understand the appeal of Young. I highly recommend this CD to anyone who loves music and if you have never listened to Neil’s music, this CD will make you an instant fan.