Neil Young - American Stars 'N Bars (1977/2004) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/176.4kHz
Artist: Neil Young
Title: American Stars 'N Bars
Genre: Heartland rock, country rock, folk rock, blues rock
Label: © Reprise Records
Release Date: 1977/2004
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 176,4kHz/24bit
Source: DVD-Audio (Watermarked!)
Recorded: December 13, 1974-April 4, 1977 / Quadrafonic, Nashville; Wally Heider Studios, Hollywood, California; Broken Arrow Ranch, Redwood City, California; Indigo Recording Studio, Malibu
Neil Young made a point of listing the recording dates of the songs on American Stars 'n Bars; the dates even appeared on the LP labels. They revealed that the songs had been cut at four different sessions dating back to 1974. But even without such documentation, it would have been easy to tell that the album was a stylistic hodgepodge, its first side consisting of country-tinged material featuring steel guitar and fiddle, plus backup vocals from Linda Ronstadt and the then-unknown Nicolette Larson, while the four songs on the second side varied from acoustic solo numbers like "Will to Love" to raging rockers such as "Like a Hurricane." Just as apparent was the album's unevenness: side one consisted of lightweight compositions, while side two had more ambitious ones, with "Will to Love," for example, extending the romantic metaphor of a salmon swimming upstream across seven minutes. The album's saving grace was "Like a Hurricane," one of Young's classic hard rock songs and guitar workouts, and a perennial concert favorite. Without it, American Stars 'n Bars would have been one of Young's least memorable albums, and since it turned up the following year on the compilation Decade, the LP was rendered inessential. --William Ruhlmann
1. The Old Country Waltz 02'59
2. Saddle Up The Palomino 03'00
3. Hey Babe 03'37
4. Hold Back The Tears 04'20
5. Bite The Bullet 03'36
6. Star of Bethlehem 02'42
7. Will TO Love 07'11
8. Like a Hurricane 08'20
9. Homegrown 02'21
Neil Young — vocals, guitars; harmonica on "Star of Bethlehem"; organ, piano, vibes, drums on "Will to Love"
Frank "Poncho" Sampedro — guitars all tracks except "Star of Bethlehem" and "Will to Love"; organ on "Like A Hurricane"; backing vocals on "Like A Hurricane" and "Homegrown"
Ben Keith — pedal steel guitar on "The Old Country Waltz," "Saddle Up the Palomino," "Hey Babe," "Hold Back the Tears," and "Bite the Bullet"; dobro, backing vocal on "Star of Bethlehem"
Carole Mayedo — violin on "The Old Country Waltz," "Saddle Up the Palomino," "Hey Babe," "Hold Back the Tears," and "Bite the Bullet"
Billy Talbot — bass all tracks except "Star of Bethlehem" and "Will to Love"
Tim Drummond — bass on "Star of Bethlehem"
Ralph Molina — drums all tracks except "Star of Bethlehem" and "Will to Love"; backing vocal on "Like A Hurricane" and "Homegrown"
Karl T. Himmel — drums on "Star of Bethlehem"
Linda Ronstadt, Nicolette Larson — backing vocals on "The Old Country Waltz," "Saddle Up the Palomino," "Hey Babe," "Hold Back the Tears," and "Bite the Bullet"
Emmylou Harris — harmony vocal on "Star of Bethlehem"
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