Here is what I knew about Neil Young previously. He’s Canadian, old, cantankerous and a bit of a hippy. I care little for these attributes. But when I saw this book claiming to be a ‘life time in cars’ it piqued my interest. So Canada’s given us Allanis Morrisette, Justin Bieber, Tiffany and Nickelback. Oh and he played with 90s bands like Pearl Jam that never floated my boat. What could possibly go wrong?
After reading Brian Johnston’s Rockers and Rollers, I’m a fan of this ‘rock and roll cars’ sub genre. That book is massively funny. It’s my go to book when I’m bed ridden, sick and need cheering up. Even if this is only about the second book in it I’m aware of. I bought it on face value alone. So here goes…
Turns out Neil Young grew up in an interesting time to be a rev head. His life was about with woody surf vans, Jeeps, big finned Cadillacs, sporty British convertibles and a smathering of big Buicks. Lots of big sexy Buicks. Even the odd hearse or two to carry all his gear around in. Some were dumped reluctantly by the side of the road. Others painstakingly restored but never reassembled. Some were bought just because they looked so sexy just rusting there in the barn.
What makes this book unique is that I haven’t finished reading it yet but I had to write something about it. It’s clearly pretty readable. To date I’ve not been much of a fan of Young. That could very well change. He’s illustrated the book himself and it’s punctuated with his favourite lyrics, both those that inspired him and his own creations. It also gives you an awareness for how prolific he’s been. Sometimes with two or three bands on the go. Man that’s a lot of joints and cocaine.
Yes he’s a cantankerous Canadian, but one that now almost makes up for the others’ foibles. As far as I’m concerned Neil, you don’t keep fuckin’ up. Great book you’ve got there champ. Oh and I can’t get ‘Vampire Blues’ out of my head now.