Scratchy: The Complete Reprise Recordings
Matt Piucci guitar, vocals (1989)
In 1978, Crazy Horse releasedCrazy Moon, their fourth original album. It features instrumental contributions from Young, Bobby Notkoff, Greg Leroy and Michael Curtis. Later that year, they joined Young on the tour that led to the successfulRust Never SleepsandLive Rust, both credited to Neil Young and Crazy Horse.
Nils Lofgrenguitarkeyboards, vocals (19701971; 1973; 2018-present)
With Sampedro and producer David Briggs in tow, Young and Crazy Horse quickly recordedZumalater that year in the basement of Briggs rented house inMalibu, initiating their most prolific period of collaboration. Sampedros lack of technical proficiency (Neil kept writin simpler songs so I could play them) and desire to see Young rockin and having fun and seeing chicks asses swaying in the audience would greatly inform the tenor of the record, which largely assays conventional hard rock styles and ribald misogyny with few of the country and folk flourishes that had dominated Youngs music since 1970.
Jack Nitzsche keyboards, vocals (19701971; died 2000)
Rick Curtis guitar, banjo, vocals (1972)
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Scratchy: The Complete Reprise Recordings
Sugar Mountain Live at Canterbury House 1968
According to Jimmy McDonough, Crazy Horse had begun a sixth album of its own in the mid-1990s, but left the project unfinished when Young called upon the group to join him for some secret club dates in California (for which the quartet billed themselves as The Echoes), leading to the recording ofBroken Arrow.Young and Crazy Horse attempted to record for three months inSan Franciscoin 2000; few takes were finished to the bands satisfaction, and Young re-recorded most of the material withBooker T. & the M.G.sforAre You Passionate?.Toast, an album culled from the San Francisco sessions, was announced for imminent release in 2008 as part of Youngs Archives series; as of 2017, it remains unreleased.
(1979) -Powderfinger, Welfare Mothers, Sedan Delivery andHey Hey, My My (Into the Black)
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Crazy Horse remained on hiatus for eight years following theGreendaletour. Although Sampedro was employed as an assistant toKevin EubanksonThe Tonight Show with Jay Lenofrom 1992 to 2010, the band continued to rehearse several times a year and more intermittently with Young during this period.Trick Horsea collection of hitherto unreleased non-Young recordings possibly derived from older Sampedro-funded sessions where session musicians were hired to play the instrumental parts, enabling the band to focus on their vocal performanceswas released oniTunesin 2009.According to Young in a 2011 interview withAmerican Songwriter, They have to be together before I can be together with them. They havent been doing anything together, so they need to be able to do it. I dont have the time to support things. I have to go with things that are going to support me. But I think they can do it.
Please help toimprovethis article byintroducingmore precise citations.
Q&A: Crazy Horses Frank Sampedro on 37 Years With Neil Young.
Neil Young News: Review: Crazy Horses Scratchy & Trick Horse.
Concurrently, Young placed Whitten on retainer in the fall of 1972 with a view toward including the guitarist in his new touring band, the Stray Gators. However, following his poor performance in rehearsals, the band pressured Young to dismiss him. Although Young let Whitten live on his ranch nearWoodside, Californiaand worked with him one-on-one during off-hours in an unsuccessful effort to keep him in the group, Whitten died several hours after returning to Los Angeles, his death attributed to a fatal overdose of alcohol andValium.
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Following a warmup tour of unannounced engagements at variousSan Francisco Bay Areabars (ironically christened the Rolling Zuma Revue in contrast to Bob Dylans contemporaneousRolling Thunder Revue) in December 1975, Young and the band toured Japan and Europe in March-April 1976. However, they were shut out of a proposed summer stadium tour when Young rekindled his collaboration withStephen Stills. They toured America that autumn when Young was forced to make up a series of canceled concert dates after walking out midway through the tour with Stills. From late 1975 to 1977, Young recorded feverishly in various solo and group configurations; Crazy Horse appears on all but two songs of 1977s country-inflectedAmerican Stars n Bars(with many tracks featuring an augmented lineup that included Ben Keith, Carole Mayedo,Linda Ronstadt, andNicolette Larson), whileComes a Timefeatures two performances with Crazy Horse: Look Out for My Love and theFleetwood Mac-inspired Lotta Love.
(1975) – all songs except Pardon My Heart and Through My Sails
Ralph Molinadrums, vocals (1968present)
Credited to Neil Young with Crazy Horse,Everybody Knows This Is Nowherewas released in May 1969. Asleeper hitthat peaked at No. 34 in the United States in August 1970 during a ninety-eight week chart stay, it included the American No. 55 pop hitCinnamon Girland the extended guitar workoutsDown by the RiverandCowgirl in the Sandalongside country and folk-influenced songs such as Running Dry (Requiem for the Rockets), a tribute to the defunct band featuring a guest appearance by Notkoff.
(1975) – credited to Neil Young, with most tracks featuring Lofgren, Molina and Talbot as the Santa Monica Flyers; Come on Baby Lets Go Downtown (recorded live at the Fillmore East on March 7, 1970)
In 2013, Talbot, Molina, George Whitsell and lead vocalist/guitarist Ryan James Holzer formed Wolves. They released their first recording,Wolves EP, on February 16, 2014.
The split with Sampedro and Young proved relatively short-lived as Young and Crazy Horse reunited in 1990 for the acclaimed albumRagged Gloryand for a tour in 1991 that generated the live albumWeld. Over the next 12 years Crazy Horse would steadily collaborate with Young once more, joining the singer forSleeps with Angels(1994),Broken Arrow(1996), the liveYear of the Horse(1997), Goin Home onAre You Passionate?(2002), andGreendale(2003). Sampedro agreed to sit out the recording ofGreendale, as Young felt the material called for only one guitar; he joined the band on guitar and organ for the ensuing tours of 2003 and 2004.
Greg Leroy guitar, vocals (19711972; 1978 [guest])
,Ian McNabb, 1994 (on four songs only; without Sampedro)
Shortly thereafter, Young enlisted Whitten, Talbot, and Molina to back him on his second solo album. Although all parties initially envisaged The Rockets continuing as a separate concern, the older band soon folded due to Youngs insistence on having his new backing trio keep to a strict practice schedule. According to George Whitsell, My understanding was Neil was gonna use the guys for a record and a quick tour, bring em back and help us produce the next Rockets album. It took me a year and a half to realize that my band had been taken.
Neil Young and Crazy Horse on film and video
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John Blanton keyboards, harmonica, cello, vocals (19711972)
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Past members who performed with Neil Young and Crazy Horse
Billy Talbotbass) andRalph Molinadrums) have been the only consistent members of the band. On four of Crazy Horses studio albums, Talbot and Molina serve as the rhythm section to an entirely different group of musicians. Save for three notable interregnums (most recently in 2018),Frank Poncho Sampedrorhythm guitar) has regularly performed with the group since 1975.
Shortly thereafter, Neil Young and Crazy Horse convened to release two albums in 2012.Americanawas composed almost entirely of covers ofAmerican folk music revivalsongs and singer-songwriter standards, whilePsychedelic Pillfeatured original Neil Young songs written for the band. Neil Young and Crazy Horse toured throughout 2012 and 2013 in support of both albums, traveling to the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Europe.
After Whittens death and the tepid reception accorded to both albums, Talbot and Molina were the only full-fledged members of the band. They let the Crazy Horse name go unused while resolving not to retire it altogether. In mid-1973, Young brought together a band comprising Talbot, Molina, Lofgren, and pedal steel guitaristBen Keithto recordTonights the Night, the majority of which eventually saw release in bowdlerized form with additional material added to the album in 1975. In the autumn of 1973, this ensemble (initially billed as Crazy Horse for the inaugural concerts at theRoxyin September 1973) toured Canada, Great Britain, and the United States as the Santa Monica Flyers. Molina and Whitsell would subsequently contribute percussion and guitar (respectively) to YoungsOn the Beachin 1974.
Back in Los Angeles, the group evolved over the course of several years intoThe Rockets, apsychedelic popfolk rockensemble that juxtaposed the rudimentary instrumental abilities of Talbot (bass), Molina (drums) and Whitten (rhythm guitar) against the more accomplishedBobby Notkoff(violin) and Leon Whitsell (lead guitar). After leaving the group as sessions for their first album commenced, the mercurial and reclusive Whitsell left the group and was promptly replaced by his younger brother George, aR&B-influenced guitarist also respected in the bands social circle. After Leon petitioned to return, it was decided that both Whitsells would remain in the group.
Gone Dead Train: The Best of Crazy Horse 19711989
Shortly after beginning work on his third solo album with Crazy Horse in 1969 (including an unreleased take of Whittens Look at All the Things and a performance of YoungsHelplessthat failed to make it to tape due to an engineering error), Young joinedCrosby, Stills & Nashas a full fourth member, recording an album and touring with the ensemble in 1969 and 1970.When Young returned to his solo album in 1970, Crazy Horse found its participation more limited. Aside from overdubbed backing vocals, the group as a whole appears on just three of the eleven tracks onAfter the Gold Rush:When You Dance I Can Really Love(recorded toward the end of the albums recording sessions, the majority of which included Ralph Molina in a semi-acoustic quartet with erstwhile CSNY bassistGreg Reevesand multi-instrumentalistNils Lofgren) plus a cover ofDon GibsonOh Lonesome Meand I Believe In You from the 1969 sessions.Young fired the group in the aftermath of the 1970 tour due to Whittens escalatingheroinabuse (partially attributable to the rhythm guitarists severerheumatoid arthritis) following an incapacitated performance at one of the Fillmore East performances; according to Molina, Whitten also felt that Young was holdin him back as a guitarist and songwriter.
George Whitsell guitar, vocals (19711972)
Past members who performed with Neil Young and Crazy Horse
(live, 1991) – a 35-minute composite of feedback, guitar noise, and vocal fragments culled from endings of songs performed live
The self-titled debut album was reissued on CD in 1994. In 2005Rhino RecordsHandmade division released the two-disc set,Scratchy: The Complete Reprise Recordings, in a limited edition of 2,500 copies. It included a remastered versions of the debut album and their second,Loosein their entirety on the first disc, with the second disc containing nine rarities and outtakes (including both sides of a 1962 single by Danny and the Memories). The original set is currently out of print, but was reissued on Rhino in England andWounded Birdin the U.S.Loosewas also reissued as a stand-alone CD by Wounded Bird in 2006. The Australian reissue labelRaven RecordsreissuedCrazy Moonin 1999 with seven rare bonus tracks, and in 2005 put out a 20-track retrospective,Gone Dead Train: The Best of Crazy Horse 19711989, featuring material from each of the groups five albums with the exception of its second one,Loose.Left for Deadwas released in 1995 on the Sisapa/Curb label, andCrazy Moonwas reissued on CD again as a BMG import in 2005.At Crooked Lakewas reissued in 2013 on the Floating World label.
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Although the album only sold about 5,000 copies, The Rockets soon reconnected withNeil Young, whom they had met two years earlier during the early days ofBuffalo Springfield. In August 1968, three months after Buffalo Springfield dissolved, Young jammed with the group during a Rockets performance at theWhisky a Go Go; Molina would later recall that Youngs idiosyncratically distinctive guitar style blew George Whitsells away. He was kind of overshadowed.
Michael Curtis keyboards, guitar, mandolin, vocals (1972; 1978 [guest])
This sextet recorded The Rockets only album, aself-titled setreleased in 1968 onWhite Whale Records. Whitten and Leon Whitsell contributed four songs apiece, with one song credited to Talbot and Molina and another (Pills Blues, the groups unofficial anthem) to George Whitsell. Whittens Let Me Go was prominently covered byThree Dog Nighton their1968 debut; during this period,Danny Huttonconsidered recruiting Whitten for that band.
video release includes Be the Rain live at the Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario, 9/4/03
Neil Young and Crazy Horse on film and video
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The bands origins date to 1963 and the Los Angeles-basedgroupDanny & The Memories, which consisted of main singerDanny Whittenand supporting vocalists Lou Bisbal (soon to be replaced by Bengiamino Rocco, the husband of actressLorna Maitland), Billy Talbot and Ralph Molina.
Frank Poncho Sampedro guitar, keyboards,mandolin, vocals (19751988; 1990-2001; 20032014)
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With and without Young, 19902014; 2018-present
Crazy Horse capitalized on its newfound exposure and recorded itseponymous debut albumforReprise Recordsthat year. The band retained Nitzsche as producer and keyboardist and added Lofgren as a second guitarist; singer-songwriter and guitaristRy Cooderalso sat in on three tracks at the behest of Nitzsche to deputize for the ailing Whitten. Although the album only peaked at No. 84 on theBillboard200 chart in 1971, WhittensI Dont Want to Talk About Itwould later be covered by a wide range of artists, includingGeoff Muldaur, theIndigo GirlsPegi YoungandRod Stewart. Stewart would record the song three times and score a hit with it on the same number of occasions, most notably as a UK No.1 double A-side in 1977 withCat StevensThe First Cut Is the Deepest. In 1988, the song would become a Top Ten hit in the UK again, this time a No.3 forEverything but the Girl. Two songs from the album were covered by Scottish hard rock bandNazareth: Lofgrens Beggars Day appeared onHair of the Dog(1975), while Nitzsches Gone Dead Train is the second track onExpect No Mercy(1977).
Following the commercial failure ofCrazy Horse, Lofgren and Nitzsche left the group to pursue solo careers; meanwhile, Whittens drug problems pushed Talbot and Molina to dismiss him and turn to outside musicians. The band released two albums on different labels (LooseandAt Crooked Lake) to critical and commercial diffidence in 1972; along with Talbot and Molina, guitarist/singer-songwriter Greg Leroy was the only musician to appear on both albums. While the former saw Rockets guitarist George Whitsell briefly return to the fold, fronting the band in conjunction with Leroy and keyboardist John Blanton, the latter was dominated by theroots rockstylings of Rick and Mike Curtis (formerly of These Vizitors and best known for their later work as The Curtis Brothers).
Ghost On The Road: Neil Young In Concert 1961-2006
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(1970) – credited to Neil Young;Oh Lonesome MeWhen You Dance I Can Really Loveand I Believe in You
The Bridge: A Tribute to Neil Young
Crazy Horseis an Americanrockband best known for their association withNeil Young. Beginning in 1969 and continuing to the present day, they have been co-credited on a number of Youngs albums, with 11 studio albums and numerous live albums being billed as by Neil Young and Crazy Horse. They have also released six studio albums of their own, issued between 1971 and 2009.
Gone Dead Train: The Best of Crazy Horse 19711989
includes Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black) live at the Germain Amptheater, Columbus, Ohio, 9/7/03
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This page was last edited on 29 May 2018, at 10:14.
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As Young spent much of the eighties working in genres mostly outside the bands idiom, Crazy Horse recorded with him more sporadically, appearing only onReactor, an unspecified portion ofTrans, andLife. Sessions for a planned 1984 album with the band ended after they were spooked by the addition of a professional horn section, although a bootleg of a performance at The Catalyst inSanta Cruzcontaining many of the intended songs remains an enduring fan favorite.
(2002) – credited to Neil Young; Goin Home
Danny Whitten guitar, vocals (19681971; died 1972)
Crazy Horse toured with Young throughout the first half of 1969 and, with the addition of frequent Young collaboratorJack Nitzscheonelectric piano, in early 1970. The 1970 tour was showcased on the 2006 albumLive at the Fillmore East. Young would later opine that [on] some of the stuff, Nitzsche was in the way tonally… Crazy Horse was so good with the two guitars, bass and drums it didntneedanything else.Although Nitzsche openly disdained the rhythm section of Talbot and Molina, he retrospectively lauded Whitten (who was ofScottish-Irish Americanancestry) as the only black man in the band.
(live, 2006; recorded March 67, 1970)
(1977) – credited to Neil Young; all songs except Star of Bethlehem andWill to Love
Danny & the Memories, The Rockets, The Psyrcle, Neil Young & Crazy Horse
Farm Aid 2003: A Soundstage Special Event
(1982) – credited to Neil Young; all Crazy Horse players appear on the album, but not necessarily together; the liner notes do not list track-by-track credits
(1978) – credited to Neil Young; Look Out for My Love andLotta Love
Shortly after aborted Young sessions involving Talbot and Molina atChicagoChess Studiosin late 1974, the trio spontaneously convened at TalbotsEcho Parkhome in 1975. The jam cemented the role of rhythm guitarist Frank Poncho Sampedro, a friend of Talbot who began to play with the group (to the initial chagrin of Molina) during the Chicago excursion and proved to be just the right person to help resurrect Crazy Horse. It was great, Talbot would say of the gathering and the chemistry it evoked. We were all soaring. Neil loved it. We all loved it. It was the first time we heard the Horse since Danny Whitten died.After a five-year hiatus Neil Young and Crazy Horse was born again, and Young marked the occasion by finishing off the lyrics toPowderfinger, soon to become one of the new lineups signature songs.
In May 2018, Lofgren joined Young, Talbot and Molina for a series of five open rehearsal concerts inFresno, CaliforniaandBakersfield, California. Initially billed as Neil Young and Crazy Horse, the group (characterized by Young as the Horse of a Different Color) ultimately performed as NYCH.According to Young, Life is an unfolding saga […] Poncho is unable to join us right now but we all hope he will be back.
With the addition of background singers Dorene Carter and YaDonna West, Young and Crazy Horse also embarked on a summer 2014 European tour following a solo Young American tour spanning the winter and spring. For the tour, longtime Young collaboratorRick Rosasstood in for Talbot, who was recovering from a minor stroke.
Several years later, Young included all three members of Crazy Horse in another horn-driven ensemble, the Bluenotes. But when Talbot and Molina proved ill-suited to a blues-oriented approach, Young reluctantly replaced the Crazy Horse bassist and drummer while retaining Sampedro, who would remain with Young in various band permutations over the next two years. Immediately thereafter, Talbot and Molina replaced Sampedro with formerRain Paradeguitarist Matt Piucci, recruited Sonny Mone to provide vocals and recorded the pointedly-titledLeft for Dead(1989).
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Sly Stoneproduced a single for the group (by now rechristened The Psyrcle) inSan Franciscoon Lorna Records (a subsidiary ofAutumn Records); however, it did not sell very well either regionally or nationally.