Neil Young - Comes A Time (1978)

Neil Young is a prolific Canadian singer-songwriter who has been releasing records since the 60s.

In 1977 Neil Young came to Reprise Records with a solo acoustic album. They liked what they heard, but asked if he wouldn't mind adding full band arrangements. He agreed to it (one of the few instances of Young going along with his record company's suggestions), and went down to Nashville to flesh out his songs, calling on a host of professional session musicians (including bassist Tim Drummond, drummer Karl Himmel, keyboardist Spooner Oldham, fiddler Rufus Thibodeaux and his steel guitarist friend Ben Keith). He also found a backing vocalist in a young Nicolette Larson, whose harmonies added a little extra magic. Some of the songs were even given lush string arrangements, a rarity for Young.
The end result was Comes A Time. With a pastoral, summery sound, it was the closest he had been to pure country at the time, and also in many respects his most accessible and radio-friendly record (Young himself has referred to it as one of the albums he is most pleased with).
Not all the songs came from the Nashville sessions - "Look Out For My Love" and "Lotta Love" were recorded with Crazy Horse (Frank Sampedro on acoustic guitar on the former, and piano on the latter) in his home studio at an earlier date, and have a rougher edge to them (though even then "Lotta Love" was an upbeat, catchy number, and Nicolette Larson herself got to #8 with a cover of it the same year).
It also featured one cover song (another rare thing for Young), a splendid version of the classic "Four Strong Winds" by fellow Canadian Ian Tyson.
It became his highest-charting album since Harvest (#7 in the US and #4 in Canada), and retrospectively can be called one of his strongest, most consistent works.

American Stars N Bars (1977) <|> Rust Never Sleeps (1979)
More from Neil Young



Anonymous said...

How did it come to pass that Linda Rondstat recorded look out for my love? Which recording was first?

KDNYfm said...

Of the multiples of Neil albums, this is definitely among the top 10. Thanx for sharing, and consistently providing quality music in your Blog!