Crosby, Stills, Nash And…Rubin?

By Glen Boyd 2008-07-18 01:38:29
You’ve gotta’ say one thing about Rick Rubin – the bearded one does get around. In between his duties as a high powered record exec at Columbia Records, and producing hit records for artists as across the spectrum as Neil Diamond and Metallica, it’s a wonder how this guy can catch his breath -- especially through all that facial hair.

Now Rubin can add another famous name to his already stellar resume – Crosby Stills & Nash. According to Billboard Magazine the producer has signed up to twist the knobs for a new album by the veteran sixties folk-rockers that will consist entirely of cover versions of songs made famous by other artists. The as-yet untitled project is also somewhat shrouded in secrecy, as neither a projected release date, nor any possible song titles have yet been revealed.

According to Graham Nash, the songlist has however been narrowed from sixty songs down to twenty, and the band has been busy rehearsing them during soundchecks on their current summer tour. "Rick Rubin's a brilliant man," Nash said to Billboard.com, "and what he wants is an album with no CSN songs.”

Meanwhile, that “other guy” in the band sometimes known as CSN&Y (for Young) has also been busy. In an appearance on Wednesday night’s David Letterman show (which also featured the Hold Steady, but alas there was no jam), Neil Young talked about his ongoing project to produce a gas efficient classic car, as well as the new CSN&Y concert movie.

The curiously titled CSNY: Déjà Vu (didn’t these guys already release a rather famous album with that title?), hits theatres on July 25, and Neil was at his best on Letterman in pimping the film. Which, by the way, is a documentary of CSN&Y’s 2006 Freedom Of Speech tour, where the band reunited for a series concerts behind the release of Neil Young’s decidedly anti-Bush album Living With War.

In the clip shown on Letterman’s show, footage of CSN&Y performing Young’s incendiary “Lets Impeach The President” was shown in between shots of concert goers both voicing support for the song, and in some cases, Bushies voicing distaste for Young’s politics (“I just wanna hear the music, man”). In today’s economic climate, and with a near universal disapproval rating for Bush, it’s actually kind of fascinating to see that just two years ago Mr. Bush actually had a few fans.

Meanwhile, in another rather tantalizing bit from the Billboard article, Nash revealed there are box sets in the works for both himself and bandmate Stephen Stills. The part which should send guitar afficionados salivating is where Nash drops the juicy tidbit that an albums worth of jams between Stills and Jimi Hendrix has just been discovered, and that an album is in the works.

CSNY: Déjà Vu comes to theaters July 25, and the live soundtrack album arrives in stores next Tuesday.
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