145 Facts About Neil Young


Neil Percival Young is a Canadian-American singer and songwriter.


Neil Young plays piano and harmonica on many albums, which frequently combine folk, rock, country and other musical genres.


Neil Young's often distorted electric guitar playing, especially with Crazy Horse, earned him the nickname "Godfather of Grunge" and led to his 1995 album Mirror Ball with Pearl Jam.


Neil Young contributed to the soundtracks of the films Philadelphia and Dead Man.


Neil Young was awarded the Order of Manitoba in 2006 and was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2009.


Neil Young was born on November 12,1945, in Toronto, Canada.


Neil Young's father, Scott Alexander Young, was a journalist and sportswriter who wrote fiction.


Neil Young's mother, Edna Blow Ragland "Rassy" Young was a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution.


Neil Young's parents married in 1940 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and moved to Toronto shortly thereafter where their first son, Robert "Bob" Neil Young, was born in 1942.


Neil Young contracted polio in the late summer of 1951 during the last major outbreak of the disease in Ontario, and as a result, became partially paralyzed on his left side.


In 1952, upon returning to Canada, Neil Young moved from Omemee to Pickering, and lived for a year in Winnipeg, before relocating to Toronto.


Neil Young became interested in popular music he heard on the radio.


When Neil Young was twelve, his father, who had had several extramarital affairs, left his mother.


Neil Young's mother asked for a divorce, which was granted in 1960.


Neil Young went to live with his mother, who had moved back to Winnipeg, while his brother Bob stayed with his father in Toronto.


Neil Young idolized Elvis Presley and later referred to him in a number of his songs.


The band played in Fort William, where they recorded a series of demos produced by a local producer, Ray Dee, whom Neil Young called "the original Briggs".


Mitchell recalls Neil Young as having been highly influenced by Bob Dylan at the time.


The Winnipeg band The Guess Who had a Canadian Top 40 hit with Neil Young's "Flying on the Ground is Wrong", which was Neil Young's first major success as a songwriter.


Neil Young admitted in a 2009 interview that he was in the United States illegally until he received a "green card" in 1970.


Neil Young contributed the songs "On the Way Home" and "I Am a Child", singing lead on the latter.


In 1997, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; Neil Young did not appear at the ceremony.


Neil Young played as a studio session guitarist for some 1968 recordings by The Monkees which appeared on the Head and Instant Replay albums.


Neil Young had known Monkee Mike Nesmith since their folk shows at The Troubadour in 1965.


Young and Roberts immediately began work on Young's first solo record, Neil Young, which received mixed reviews.


Neil Young wrote "Ohio" following the Kent State massacre on May 4,1970.


Later in the year, Neil Young released his third solo album, After the Gold Rush, which featured, among others, Nils Lofgren, Stephen Stills, and CSNY bassist Greg Reeves.


Neil Young recorded some tracks with Crazy Horse, but dismissed them early in the sessions.


Neil Young wrote the song "Old Man" in honor of the land's longtime caretaker, Louis Avila.


Deeply affected by the drug-induced deaths of Whitten and roadie Bruce Berry, Neil Young recorded an album specifically inspired by the incidents, Tonight's the Night.


The album's dark tone and rawness led Reprise to delay its release and Neil Young had to pressure them for two years before they would do so.


Neil Young reunited with Crosby, Stills, and Nash after a four-year hiatus in the summer of 1974 for a concert tour which was partially recorded; highlights were ultimately released in 2014 as CSNY 1974.


In 1975, Neil Young reformed Crazy Horse with Frank Sampedro on guitar as his backup band for his eighth album, Zuma.


In 1976, Neil Young performed with Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, and numerous other rock musicians in the high-profile all-star concert The Last Waltz, the final performance by The Band.


In 1977, Neil Young released the compilation Decade, a personally selected set of songs spanning every aspect of his work, including a handful of previously unreleased songs.


The album marked a return to his folk roots, as exemplified by a cover of Ian Tyson's "Four Strong Winds", a song Neil Young associated with his childhood in Canada.


Over four years, Neil Young would spend US$3,000,000 of his own money on production.


Neil Young set out in 1978 on the lengthy Rust Never Sleeps tour, in which he played a wealth of new material.


The album has widely been considered a precursor of grunge music with the bands Nirvana and Pearl Jam having cited Neil Young's heavily distorted and abrasive guitar style on the B side to this album as an inspiration.


Neil Young compared the rise of Johnny Rotten with that of the recently deceased "King" Elvis Presley, who himself had once been disparaged as a dangerous influence only to later become an icon.


Neil Young worked with rock artist Jim Evans to create the poster art for the film, using the Star Wars Jawas as a theme.


At the start of the 1980s, distracted by medical concerns relating to the cerebral palsy of his son, Ben, Neil Young had little time to spend on writing and recording.


Neil Young did not tour in support of either album; in total, he played only one show, a set at the 1980 Bread and Roses Festival in Berkeley, between the end of his 1978 tour with Crazy Horse and the start of his tour with the Trans Band in mid-1982.


Neil Young later revealed that an inspiration for the album was the theme of technology and communication with Ben, who could not speak.


Neil Young was backed by the Shocking Pinks for the supporting US tour.


Trans had already drawn the ire of label head David Geffen for its lack of commercial appeal, and with Everybody's Rockin following seven months later, Geffen Records sued Neil Young for making music "unrepresentative" of himself.


Neil Young did not release an album in 1984, his first unproductive year since beginning his career with Buffalo Springfield in 1966.


Neil Young spent most of 1984 and all of 1985 touring for Old Ways with his country band, the International Harvesters.


Neil Young appeared at that year's Live Aid concert in Philadelphia, collaborating with Crosby, Stills and Nash for the quartet's first performance for a paying audience in over ten years.


Neil Young recorded 1986's Landing on Water without Crazy Horse but reunited with the band for the subsequent year-long tour and final Geffen album, Life, which emerged in 1987.


The addition of a brass section provided a new jazzier sound, and the title track of 1988's This Note's For You became Neil Young's first hit single of the decade.


Neil Young reunited with Crosby, Stills, and Nash to record the 1988 album American Dream and play two benefit concerts late in the year, but the group did not embark upon a full tour.


Neil Young attracted criticism from liberals in the music industry when he supported President Ronald Reagan and said he was "tired of people constantly apologising for being Americans".


Neil Young toured for the album with Orange County, California country-punk band Social Distortion and Sonic Youth as support, much to the consternation of many of his old fans.


Neil Young contributed to lifelong friend Randy Bachman's nostalgic 1992 tune "Prairie Town", and garnered a 1993 Academy Award nomination for his song "Philadelphia", from the soundtrack of the Jonathan Demme movie of the same name.


In 1994, Neil Young again collaborated with Crazy Horse for Sleeps with Angels, a record whose dark, somber mood was influenced by Kurt Cobain's death earlier that year: the title track in particular dealt with Cobain's life and death, without mentioning him by name.


Neil Young had reportedly made repeated attempts to contact Cobain prior to his death.


Still enamored with the grunge scene, Neil Young reconnected with Pearl Jam in 1995 for the live-in-the-studio album Mirror Ball and a tour of Europe with the band and producer Brendan O'Brien backing Neil Young.


Neil Young has consistently demonstrated the unbridled passion of an artist who understands that self-renewal is the only way to avoid burning out.


In 1998, Neil Young renewed his collaboration with the rock band Phish, sharing the stage at the annual Farm Aid concert and then at Neil Young's Bridge School Benefit, where he joined headliners Phish for renditions of "Helpless" and "I Shall Be Released".


Neil Young continued to release new material at a rapid pace through the first decade of the new millennium.


Neil Young's 2001 single "Let's Roll" was a tribute to the victims of the September 11 attacks, and the effective action taken by the passengers and crew on Flight 93 in particular.


In 2003, Neil Young released Greendale, a concept album recorded with Crazy Horse members Billy Talbot and Ralph Molina.


Under the pseudonym "Bernard Shakey", Neil Young directed an accompanying film of the same name, featuring actors lip-synching to the music from the album.


Neil Young toured extensively with the Greendale material throughout 2003 and 2004, first with a solo, acoustic version in Europe, then with a full-cast stage show in North America, Japan, and Australia.


Neil Young began using biodiesel on the 2004 Greendale tour, powering his trucks and tour buses with the fuel.


In March 2005, while working on the Prairie Wind album in Nashville, Neil Young was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm.


Neil Young's renewed activism manifested itself in the 2006 album Living with War, which like the much earlier song "Ohio", was recorded and released in less than a month as a direct result of current events.


Neil Young remains on the board of directors of Farm Aid, an organization he co-founded with Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp in 1985.


In 2008, Neil Young revealed his latest project, the production of a hybrid-engine 1959 Lincoln called LincVolt.


In 2009, Neil Young headlined the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, and Glastonbury Festival in Pilton, England, at Hard Rock Calling in London and, after years of unsuccessful booking attempts, the Isle of Wight Festival.


Neil Young has been a vocal opponent of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline, which would run from Alberta to Texas.


When discussing the environmental impact on the oilsands of Fort McMurray, Alberta, Neil Young asserted that the area now resembles the Japanese city of Hiroshima in the aftermath of the atomic bomb attack of World War II.


Neil Young has referred to issues surrounding the proposed use of oil pipelines as "scabs on our lives".


Neil Young participated in the Blue Dot Tour, which was organized and fronted by environmental activist David Suzuki, and toured all 10 Canadian provinces alongside other Canadian artists including the Barenaked Ladies, Feist, and Robert Bateman.


Neil Young has argued that the amount of CO2 released as a byproduct of oilsand oil extraction is equivalent to the amount released by the total number of cars in Canada each day.


Neil Young has faced criticism by representatives from within the Canadian petroleum industry, who have argued that his statements are irresponsible.


Neil Young was critical of Barack Obama's government for failing to uphold the promises made regarding environmental policies during his election campaign.


Neil Young recorded "A Rock Star Bucks a Coffee Shop" in response to Starbucks' possible involvement with Monsanto and use of genetically modified food.


On January 22,2010, Neil Young performed "Long May You Run" on the final episode of The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien.


Neil Young performed "Long May You Run" at the closing ceremony of the 2010 Olympic winter games in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.


In May 2010, it was revealed Neil Young had begun working on a new studio album produced by Daniel Lanois.


In September 2011, Jonathan Demme's third documentary film on the singer songwriter, Neil Young Journeys, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival.


Neil Young said that he had been recording with Crazy Horse, completing one album and working on another.


On September 25,2012, Neil Young's autobiography Waging Heavy Peace: A Hippie Dream was released to critical and commercial acclaim.


In November 2013, Neil Young performed at the annual fundraiser for the Silverlake Conservatory of Music.


Neil Young released the album A Letter Home on April 19,2014, through Jack White's record label, and his second memoir, entitled Special Deluxe, which was released on October 14.


Neil Young appeared with White on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on May 12,2014.


Neil Young released his thirty-fifth studio album, Storytone on November 4,2014.


Neil Young achieves this protest in a series of lyrical sentiments against genetically modified food production.


Neil Young created this album in collaboration with Willie Nelson's sons, Lukas and Micah, and is backed by Lukas's fellow band members from Promise of the Real.


In summer 2015, Neil Young undertook a North America tour titled the Rebel Content Tour.


In October 2016, Neil Young performed at Desert Trip in Indio, California, and announced his thirty-seventh studio album, Peace Trail, recorded with drummer Jim Keltner and bass guitarist Paul Bushnell, which was released that December.


On September 8,2017, Neil Young released Hitchhiker, a studio LP recorded on August 11,1976, at Indigo Studios in Malibu.


The album features ten songs that Neil Young recorded accompanied by acoustic guitar or piano.


On July 4,2017, Neil Young released the song "Children of Destiny" which would appear on his next album.


On November 3,2017, Neil Young released "Already Great", a song from The Visitor, an album he recorded with Promise of the Real and released on December 1,2017.


On December 1,2017, Neil Young performed live in Omemee, Ontario, Canada, a town he had lived in as a child.


On Record Store Day, April 21,2018, Warner Records released a two-vinyl LP special edition of Roxy: Tonight's the Night Live, a double live album of a show that Neil Young performed in September 1973 at the Roxy in West Hollywood, with the Santa Monica Flyers.


On October 19,2018, Neil Young released a live version of his song "Campaigner", an excerpt from a forthcoming archival live album titled Songs for Judy, which features solo performances recorded during a November 1976 tour with Crazy Horse.


In November 2018, shortly after his home had been destroyed by the California wildfire, Neil Young criticized President Donald Trump's stance on climate change.


In December 2018, Neil Young criticized the promoters of a London show for selecting Barclays Bank as a sponsor.


Neil Young explained that he was trying to rectify the situation by finding a different sponsor.


In February 2020, Neil Young wrote an open letter to President Trump, calling him a "disgrace to my country".


Neil Young recorded it in the mid-1970s following his breakup with Carrie Snodgress, but opted not to release it at the time, feeling it was too personal.


Neil Young confirmed that he had completed his third book, Canary, his first work of fiction.


On January 24,2022, Neil Young posted an open letter threatening to remove his music from the audio streaming service Spotify if it did not remove The Joe Rogan Experience podcast from the platform.


Neil Young accused the podcast of COVID-19 misinformation, writing that "Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform".


Neil Young Archives includes his newspaper, The Times-Contrarian, The Hearse Theater, and photographs and memorabilia from throughout his career.


Neil Young's family was from Manitoba, where both his parents were born and married.


Neil Young himself was born in Toronto, Ontario, and lived there at various times in his early life, as well as Omemee and Pickering, Ontario before settling with his mother in Winnipeg, Manitoba, where his music career began and which he considers his "hometown".


Neil Young currently holds dual citizenship for Canada and the United States.


Neil Young had a home in Malibu, California, which burned to the ground in the 2018 Woolsey Fire.


Neil Young owned Broken Arrow Ranch, a property of about 1,000 acres near La Honda, California, which he purchased in 1970 for US$350,000 ; the property was expanded to thousands of acres.


Neil Young moved out and gave Pegi Young the ranch after their divorce in 2014.


Neil Young announced in 2019 that his application for United States citizenship had been held up because of his use of marijuana.


Neil Young married his first wife, restaurant owner Susan Acevedo, in December 1968.


From late 1970 to 1975, Neil Young was in a relationship with actress Carrie Snodgress.


Neil Young met future wife Pegi Neil Young in 1974 when she was working as a waitress at a diner near his ranch, a story he tells in the 1992 song "Unknown Legend".


On July 29,2014, Neil Young filed for divorce after 36 years of marriage.


Neil Young has been in a relationship with actress and director Daryl Hannah since 2014.


Neil Young confirmed his marriage to Hannah in a video released on October 31,2018.


Neil Young has been widely reported to be the godfather of actress Amber Tamblyn; in a 2009 interview with Parade, Tamblyn explained that "godfather" was "just a loose term" for Neil Young, Dennis Hopper, and Dean Stockwell, three famous friends of her father, Russ Tamblyn, who were important influences on her life.


Neil Young is an environmentalist and outspoken advocate for the welfare of small farmers, having co-founded in 1985 the benefit concert Farm Aid.


Neil Young worked on LincVolt, the conversion of his 1959 Lincoln Continental to hybrid electric technology, as an environmentalist statement.


In 1986, Neil Young helped found the Bridge School, an educational organization for children with severe verbal and physical disabilities, and its annual supporting Bridge School Benefit concerts, together with his then wife Pegi Neil Young.


Neil Young is a member of the Canadian charity Artists Against Racism.


Neil Young was part owner of Lionel, LLC, a company that makes toy trains and model railroad accessories.


Neil Young was instrumental in the design of the Lionel Legacy control system for model trains, and remains on the board of directors of Lionel.


Neil Young has been named as co-inventor on seven US patents related to model trains.


Neil Young has long held that the digital audio formats in which most people download music are deeply flawed, and do not provide the rich, warm sound of analog recordings.


Neil Young owns a restored Estey reed organ, serial number 167272, dating from 1885, which he frequently plays in concert.


Neil Young owns a glass harmonica, which he played in the recording of "I Do" on his 2019 album Colorado.


Neil Young's preferred amplifier for electric guitar is the Fender Deluxe, specifically a Tweed-era model from 1959.


Neil Young purchased his first vintage Deluxe in 1967 for US$50 from Sol Betnun Music on Larchmont in Hollywood and has since acquired nearly 450 different examples, all from the same era, but he maintains that it is the original model that sounds superior and is crucial to his trademark sound.


Neil Young announced in June 2017 that he would no longer host the concerts.


In 2000, Neil Young was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame.


In 2006, when Paste magazine compiled a "Greatest Living Songwriters" list, Neil Young was ranked second behind Bob Dylan.


Neil Young ranked thirty-ninth on VH1's 100 Greatest Artist of Hard Rock that same year.


Neil Young is referred to as "the Godfather of Grunge" because of the influence he had on Kurt Cobain and Eddie Vedder and the entire grunge movement.


Neil Young is cited as being a significant influence on the experimental rock group Sonic Youth, and Thom Yorke of Radiohead.


Yorke recounted of first hearing Neil Young after sending a demo tape into a magazine when he was 16, who favorably compared his singing voice to Neil Young's.


In 2001, Neil Young was awarded the Spirit of Liberty award by the civil liberties group People for the American Way.


Neil Young was honored as the MusiCares Person of the Year on January 29,2010, two nights prior to the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards.


Neil Young was nominated for two Grammy Awards: Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance for "Fork in the Road" and Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package for Neil Young Archives Vol.