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Songs for Beginners


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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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Songs for Beginners + If I Could Only Remember My Name + Graham Nash / David Crosby
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Atlantic. Of Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young

Amazon.com

After finding fame with the Hollies and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, expatriate Englishman turned West Coast rock icon Graham Nash made an auspicious solo debut on this 1971 disc. It's an exemplary singer-songwriter effort, striking a vital balance between graceful introspection and political fervor, with an organic intensity that Nash would never quite match in his subsequent solo work. With assistance from the likes of David Crosby, Jerry Garcia, and Dave Mason, highlights include the sensitive internal explorations "I Used to Be a King" and "Man in the Mirror" and the impassioned protest anthems "Chicago" and "Military Madness." --Scott Schinder

1. Military Madness
2. Better Days
3. Wonded Bird
4. I Used To Be A King
5. Be Yourself
6. Simple Man
7. Man In The Mirror
8. There's Only One
9. Sleep Song
10. Chicago
11. We Can Change The World

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Atlantic
  • ASIN: B000002I6V
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (100 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #127,591 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 45 people found the following review helpful By J. Wells on January 18, 2009
Format: Audio CD
I have two main problems with this re-mix:
1. The CD is VERY compressed and clips with practically every drum kick. It's just as loud as a modern metal CD! why do this? HIGHER VOLUME DOESN'T EQUAL HIGHER FIDELITY!

2. It sounds like a completely different album. With all the wizardry of modern studio equipment they pretty much made this sound like it was recorded yesterday. Why? This is not the "songs for beginners" you grew up on. The new mix reveals many things you never heard before but obscures many of the subtleties of the original.

In the end, I can't give it one star because I love this album so much; but this isn't really it... I'd take a scratched-up dollar bin vinyl copy over this release any day of the week.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful By luckykz on September 25, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Nash and his team did a superb job of remixing (NOT re-recording) and resurrecting this record. This one's right up there with the IICORMN Crosby remix. What makes this package especially great is that not only is there a fantastic surround mix, but great care was taken to remix the stereo mix, mastered by the great Doug Sax. Phil Lesh's bass sounds amazing! So if you aren't able to listen in 5:1, it's still well worth picking up. Unfortunately I downloaded the older version on i-tunes a few months back. Loading in this new version and a/b-ing them, it's no contest. Take it from someone who purchased the original vinyl version back in the day, the songs and the sound of this album ranks as the very best of CSN and even Y.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Practical Music on October 18, 2008
Format: Audio CD
I was disappointed in this release. They changed everything around. The original feel is gone which is what really is important to keep during a restoration of any kind. Let's just talk about (Track 10) "CHICAGO".
They start off adding acoustic guitar to the first verse bullying out the Afuche Cabasa, tambourine and the organ. Let's add the lyrics "It's dying" again to make it sound like a mistake. Maybe it was edited out on the original who knows it did not work.
The song/album was perfect why F with it. "Songs for Beginners" is a terrific album I just wish that reissue studio remixers were taught a course in "Respect for Works of Art" during there training. Sorry Graham I hope it was not you that asked for these changes.

GET THE ATLANTIC CD RELEASE (7204-2) and you will feel the songs again. The Atlantic CD has good sound quality and with some EQ tweaks on your system experience "Songs for Beginners" the best way so far.
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Mark Barry TOP 500 REVIEWER on October 19, 2008
Format: Audio CD
With Stephen Stills and David Crosby having produced absolute storming debut albums in November 1970 and March 1971, Graham Nash's quietly lovely opener didn't disappoint either - in fact in the early Seventies - it seemed like everything the combined and individual talents of CSYN did was magical. This October 2008 DELUXE EDITION celebrates "Songs For Beginners" with a Remastered Stereo Remix of the album on the stand alone first disc, while the second disc is a 5.1 DVD Audio Mix (you need a DVD Audio player to hear it on) with an added DVD Interview about his Photography featuring a Gallery of Stills, Photo-Backed Lyrics & Web Links etc.

"Songs For Beginners" was released in June 1971 on Atlantic SD 7204 in the USA and Atlantic 2401 011 in the UK. The album featured many famous guests (one is uncredited), so here's a detailed breakdown (33:47 minutes):

1. Military Madness [DAVE MASON of Traffic on Guitar with RITA COOLIDGE on Backing Vocals]
2. Better Days [NEIL YOUNG (credited as Joe Yankee) on Piano, SEEMON POSTHUMA of THE FOOL on Clarinet, RITA COOLIDGE on Backing Vocals with DALLAS TAYLOR of CSYN and MANASSAS on Drums]
3. Wounded Bird [GN all instruments and voices]
4. I Used To Be A King [NEIL YOUNG (credited as Joe Yankee) on Piano, JERRY GARCIA on Steel Guitar with PHIL LESH on Bass (both of THE GRATEFUL DEAD) and DAVID CROSBY on Electric Guitar]
5. Be Yourself [RITA COOLIDGE on Piano, Electric Piano and Backing Vocals]
6. Simple Man [DAVID LINDLEY on Fiddle, DORIAN RUDNYTSKY of THE NEW YORK ROCK & ROLL ENSEMBLE on Cello with RITA COOLIDGE on backing Vocals]
7. Man In The Mirror [NEIL YOUNG [credited as Joe Yankee] on Piano, JERRY GARCIA of THE GRATEFUL DEAD on Steel Guitar, CHRIS ETHERIDGE of THE FLYING BURRITO BROTHERS on Bass]
8.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By DJ Joe Sixpack HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on August 17, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Hey, laugh if you will, but this is one of the best albums of the hardcore hippie era, and a still-beloved favorite from my childhood years. These quiet singer-songwriterish tunes are very much in the soft-pop mould of the Crosby, Stills & Nash ensemble, which was in one of its periodic stages of disintegration when this album was recorded. David Crosby and Jerry Garcia pitch in from song to song, adding a melodic country-ish feel throughout. Overall, this is possibly the best of Nash's solo albums, a cohesive, beautiful, heartfelt set of twee counterculture lullabies. The dewy-eyed, tender romanticism of Nash's love songs heightens the painful anguish of the political material, the anthemic "Chicago," which served as a harsh postmortem of the chaotic demonstrations at the 1968 Democratic Convention, and the simpler (and more powerful) "Military Madness," which gains considerable strength from its understated tone. This disc also features some of Jerry Garcia's best pedal steel work, particularly on elegaic tunes like "I Used To Be A King." I could go on and name all the other songs; in my opinion there isn't a weak tune in the bunch... If you're a staunch, sneering, anti-hippie type, I know -- from experience -- that there is little that I can do to convince you that this record isn't just a bunch of stoned-out, goopy-headed pablum. But those of you inclined to be more open-minded may find this disc to be quite rewarding. It's sugary, but also quite sweet.
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