Neil Young Memoir, Film, and Crazy Horse News

May 18, 2012

Neil Young Memoir FilmFilm, music, and literary worlds collide for Neil Young this year, as he prepares to release a new autobiography in October, the final film in his Jonathan Demme-directed trilogy this summer, and a record with the reformed Crazy Horse lineup in just two weeks. There have been lots of updates on these projects in recent days, so let’s get caught up…

“Clementine,” our third taste of the forthcoming Americana LP with Crazy Horse, just arrived in vintage video form following previews of “Oh Susannah” and “Jesus’ Chariot (She’ll Be Coming Round the Mountain).” As with all of the set’s 11 cuts, Young has provided vital liner notes to describe the origins and angles of interpretation for each traditional tune. Here’s the new video for “Clementine” along with Neil’s caption and a corresponding illustration by Shepard Fairey, who provided visual art for each song:

Shepard Fairey/OBEY GIANT ART Courtesy of the artist and Perry Rubenstein Gallery

This American folk ballad is believed to be based on “Down By The River Liv’d a Maiden” by H.S. Thompson 1863. However, it is usually credited to Percy Montrose, 1884 or Barker Bradford from about the same period. The Americana arrangement extends the folk process, using many of the original words and a new melody. The song tells the story of either a bereaved lover recalling his lost sweetheart, or a father missing his lost daughter. In both cases the daughter has drowned in an accident. The song is now famous as an American children’s song. The verse about Clementine’s sister has been omitted from most children’s versions. This verse has different meanings depending on whether the point of view of the singer is taken as the lover or the father. (via Spinner)

Next up, we have an official release date, details, and order info for Young’s new memoir: Waging Heavy Peace arrives on October 2nd, according to Amazon. As with similar autobiographical works of late by Keith Richards and Bob Dylan, which are cited by Young’s publishers, the time period covered in the book is important to note — particularly given that their careers have spanned a half-century at this stage. Here’s a synopsis for Waging Heavy Peace with the book’s cover:

“Young offers a kaleidoscopic view of his personal life and musical career, spanning his time in bands Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills & Nash, and his role as the patron saint of the grunge scene; and moving from the snows of Ontario through the LSD-laden boulevards of 1966 Los Angeles to the contemplative paradise of Hawaii today.”

Finally, you can visit a certain town in north Ontario with the Godfather of Grunge in Neil Young Journeys on June 29th, when Young and Jonathan Demme’s follow-up to 2009′s Neil Young Trunk Show and 2006′s Heart of Gold hits screens. We saw almost an identical trailer when the film premiered in Toronto last year, but this week brought an updated version ahead of its wider theatrical release:

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