Few acts are as chameleon-like as Neil Young. Only Elvis Costello or David Bowie come close to the famous folk legend’s hefty and monstrous setlist for 2014.
The artist is touring on his latest release, A Letter Home. The album is a bit more subdued and calming than his other recent releases, such as Le Noise and Americana. Because of this, Neil Young is dividing his set into two portions, and dedicating an entire first half as a solo acoustic set.
This first half includes a sole Buffalo Springfield song, the famous “On the Way Home.” Young unleashes his mellow “Love in Mind” for fans as an acoustic version and the setlist includes some rarities, such as “Philadelphia.” A few songs reflect wonderfully in their acoustic format, while others are interesting deviations but are inferior to the huge string sound Young goes for in the studio. Though everyone can agree that hearing “Harvest” purely acoustic and live is a delight.
The back half of the set includes a rendition of “Southern Man” from Young’s early 70’s opus, Harvest. The closing portion of the set is a pairing of “Harvest Moon” from the same titled album and the famous “Heart of Gold.” Young may also add “After the Gold Rush” to the closing set, but he has been known to omit that famous track and include a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Blowin in the Wind.” The subversion is fascinating, and 50/50.
Young commonly closes with “Thrasher,” but he has also replaced it with a big extended version of “Mother Earth.” Omitted from most setlists is “Rocking in the Free World,” one of Young’s most famous songs, and passed on in favor of that country/folk vibe Young has been exploring in recent years.
From Hank to Hendrix
On the Way Home
Only Love Can Break Your Heart
Love in Mind
Mellow My Mind
Reason to Believe
A Man Needs a Maid
If You Could Read My Mind
After the Gold Rush
Heart of Gold
Does Neil Young play any more material from his band work?
Being part of so many other groups and projects, Neil Young seems obligated to pull out a few favorites and overlooked gems from these respective catalogs. “Mr. Soul” by Buffalo Springfield is a popular choice and a staple for 2014. Neil young will sometimes play the Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young tune “Helpless,” though it is not a certainty. In all, Young plays roughly two non-solo tracks throughout his set, and at least one other cover of another artist, such as Phil Ochs “Changes” or Gordon Lightfoot’s “If You Could Read My Mind.”
How do I get access to presale tickets for Neil Young’s tour?
Presales are available through the American Express ticket platform. You must have an American Express card to make the purchase, as well as an account with TicketMaster to acquire the actual tickets.
Neil Young also offers presale tickets through his official fan club. They are always a hot item, and the fan club provides the majority of shows with a presale option days before the public onsale.
“At one point he tacitly acknowledged the tone of almost spiritual pilgrimage in the air by shaking the water out of a harmonica onto folks sitting in the first few rows, a rock ’n’ roll priest anointing his flock. He even shifted into request mode himself after another outburst from fans, mock shouting “The Beatles!” “The Rolling Stoooooones!” “Free Bird!” – Randy Lewis of the LA Times
“The impression created onstage was tent show troubadour: Mr. Young, in a brimmed hat and a baggy coat, moved deliberately among a trove of instruments, including two battered pianos, a hulking organ, a banjo and more than half a dozen acoustic guitars. Some of his warmest banter had to do with the provenance of those guitars, including a Martin D-28 that famously once belonged to Hank Williams, and was here pressed into service on a touchingly delicate reading of “Harvest Moon.” – Nate Chine of the New York Times
“Instead of hunching over his guitar, bending at the waist as he normally does, Young turned his instrument into a machine gun, his legs splayed, straw hair flailing. “I (messed) up again and again,” he roared, first raging, then pained, as if he were reliving some trainwreck moment from the past. By the end, the singer was a demon-eyed street oracle howling at the audience. “They give you this, but you pay for that,” he spat, turning “Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)” into an Occupy manifesto.” – Greg Knot of the Chicago Tribune
Neil Young Tour 2013 Tour Opening Acts: My Morning Jacket, Pegi Young
Started September 21, 2013 in Saratoga Springs, New York | Ended October 30, 2013 in Los Angeles, California
Neil Young Alchemy Tour 2012 Tour Opening Acts: Willie Nelson, Los Lobos
Started February 10, 2012 in Los Angeles, California | Ended December 6, 2012 in Atlantic City, New Jersey
Neil Young Americana 2011 Tour Opening Acts: Pegi Young
Started April 11, 2011 in Durham, North Carolina | Ended October 23, 2011 in Mountain View, California
Neil Young 2010 Tour Opening Acts: Pegi Young
Started January 22, 2010 in Los Angeles, California | Ended December 15, 2010 in Brooklyn, New York
Neil Young 2009 Tour
Tour Opening Acts: Sheryl Crow
Started April 27, 2009 in Denver, Colorado | Ended October 25, 2009 in Mountain View, California
Neil Young 2008 Tour Opening Acts: NA
January 24, 2008 in Park City, Utah | Ended December 16, 2008 in New York City, New York
Neil Young 2007
Tour Opening Acts: Pegi Young, Willie Nelson
Started October 18, 2007 in Boise, Idaho | Ended December 19, in New York City, New York
Neil Young 2004 Tour Opening Acts: Eddie Vedder
Started February 20, 2004 in Portland, Oregon | Ended October 24, 2004 in Mountain View, California
Neil Young Greendale Tour 2003 Tour Opening Acts: Josh Dysart
Started June 8, 2003 in West Palm Beach, Florida | Ended October 26, 2003 in Mountain View, California
Music in Head Tour Tour Opening Acts: Chrissie Hynde
Started August 8, 2000 in Virginia Beach, Virginia | Ended September 30, 2000 in Portland, Oregon