Revolution Blues: How Charles Manson Murdered the ’60s (Part Two)

This month marks the 46th anniversary of the Tate/LaBianca murders committed by Charles Manson and his cult-like Family. A nightmarish event with lasting cultural impact, music is central to its story. This and last week’s posts explore the connection. At the edge of town… My fellow Americans, our long national … → read more

Conversations with Death: Clementine

A Sharp Turn A girl. A daughter, a sister, a lover. A prostitute. Ruby lips. Thin, delicate, pretty. Big feet. A fat girl. A clutz, a clod, a chub. A drunk girl. Drowned, lost, forgotten, betrayed. A dead girl. A corpse, a ghost, a zombie. Merciful, lustful, vengeful. Bloated, stinking. … → read more

Should’ve Been Done Long Ago: “Ohio” Part 4

Neil Young, New York 1970 photo by Joel Bernstein This is the fourth and final post of our initial discussion of Neil Young’s “Ohio.” Here are the first, second, and third posts. I know, I know. On the fourth post on Neil Young’s “Ohio,” you’re thinking that I should have … → read more

Get Down to It: “Ohio,” Pt. 3

Crosby, Stills, and Nash perform “Ohio” at a May 4 Commemoration at Kent State University, 1997 (photo: Kent State University archives) This is our third post on Neil Young’s “Ohio.” Read the first here and the second here. In researching my posts on “Ohio,” I came across an online article … → read more

Poor boy, you’re bound to die

Neil Young This our fourth post so far on the familiar murder ballad “Tom Dooley.” –The first post discusses some of the history behind the song. –The second post discusses the history of the song itself, from regional to international popularity. –The third post picks out some performances from the … → read more

The thought that pulls the trigger

As I mentioned in my first post, there’s no small controversy over what, exactly, “Powderfinger” is about. Aided by the abundance of specific details in the lyrics, especially about that boat, almost all interpretations nod to Young’s political sensibilities in some way. That is, they identify the young man as … → read more