Continuous Hit Music: Graham Nash – Songs For Beginners

Continuous Hit Music – a weekly exploration of vinyl finds in 2012. Read ’em all here.

Artist: Graham Nash
Title: Songs For Beginners
Original Release: 1971
Label: Atlantic
Store: Landspeed Records, 30 Garema Place Canberra ACT 2601
Price: $10
(Original)

Poor Canberra. There doesn’t seem to be much going on in terms of records. It used to be quite a place – until many of it’s indie stores sold up, and JB Hi-Fi rolled into town. It seems like the only place to get decent records is the last indie shop in town – Landspeed Records.

Landspeed is quite a cool shop. They do more than just CDs and records – they have clothes and some merch. It’s kind of the way of the future for music retail. There’s not a big collection of records, but there is some nice second hand stuff. It is pretty much the only record stop in Canberra.

And poor Graham Nash. I used to love this record but it hasn’t dated well. I saw Crosby, Stills & Nash live a few years ago, and it descended into parody. Outdated 60s ideals – still peddled. It was an oldies show. It sounds pretty good, but Military Madness, We Can Change The World and Chicago have dated badly. He’s stuck in the 60s, and it’s too bad.

But then there’s Sleep Song. A classic. So very Graham Nash. I would say it’s his best song. It’s yet another song he wrote for Joni Mitchell. And I love Joni and Graham together. I think they inspired the best out of each other. Probably the best two people have ever inspired eachother in the history of music.

The tender moments on this record are still great. Rightly so, this was Nash’s biggest solo album, and came right at the peak of his career. He never really achieved solo success again after this, and rolled happily into the plomp and bombast of endless CSN reunions.

It’s not a terribly uncommon vinyl find, but an original European pressing, with the classic Atlantic label, is definitely worth the $10.

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