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Oh hello, Mr. Soul

Stewart OksenhornAspen Times Staff Writer

If you’ve read “Shakey,” Jimmy McDonough’s biography of Neil Young, you’d know how hard it is to get old Neil talking to a reporter. So though I tried, no, I didn’t get an interview with Young, or even with his mates in Crazy Horse. But I do have some questions which need answering. Which means other routes must be explored, and this one seems the most likely to succeed. Hey, it worked with Bob Weir. So, Neil, get back to me with your answers. Write, call, e-mail, whatever suits your convenience. No big rush (but keep in mind, I am on deadline).1. Against all odds, all the principles of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young are still alive. But so are the members of Buffalo Springfield, who were a better band, and they’ve got to be in at least as good shape as Crosby. Why not hook up with them already? You’ve got to be tired of carrying CSN&Y around on your back. 2. I’ll spare you the effort of explaining this whole “Greendale” thing if you’ll tell me what the heck “After the Goldrush” is all about.3. Did Crazy Horse miss their music theory classes or something? n see Neil on page A6n continued from page A14. “Shakey,” Jimmy McDonough’s semi-authorized biography of you runs 800 pages – longer than the authoritative biographies of Miles Davis, Ray Charles, Jerry Garcia, Bob Dylan and Igor Stravinsky. Not to mention Nelson Mandela, Lennon (John), and Lenin (Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov). Do you think your life and career merit such attention? 5. So, have you in fact remembered that a Southern man don’t need you around anyhow?6. OK, quick “Greendale”-related question: You sing “Some things are getting better/Other things are getting worse.” That seems to be a theme of “Greendale”: the world’s gone to crap, but people like Sun Green are still trying to make life better. So, what’s gotten better and what’s gotten worse?6a. Last “Greendale” thing, I promise: Is Earl Green named after Earl from New York Pizza? Because, on occasion, I call him Earl Green.7. How’s the model train business? 8. Whom do you miss most: Janis Joplin, Danny Whitten, Kurt Cobain, Grandpa Atrius Green, Jim Morrison, the girl from “Down By the River,” Jerry Garcia, the narrator of “Powderfinger” (he died, right? I saw black and my face flash in the sky and all that?), John Lennon, Richard Nixon, the car from “Long May You Run,” Jimi Hendrix, Old King (your dog) or Carmichael?9. Remember that show, circa 1991, at the Beacon Theatre, solo acoustic, quiet as can be – except for that guy screaming nonstop for you to play “Thrasher”? It wasn’t me, I swear. But it was the guy sitting in the seat directly behind me. Didn’t you want to kill him?10. If you could vote in the California recall election, how would you cast your ballot? Well, thanks, man. Drop those answers by anytime. A little love and affection, Stewy[Stewart Oksenhorn’s e-mail address is stewart@aspentimes.com]


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