Q: Why a Neil Young tribute band?
A: Not only are we huge fans, but we feel that Neil is one of the very few artists out there who have stood the test of time, and has transcended genres and trends unlike any other artist. His influence can be heard in a wide spectrum of music from heavy metal, to alternative, rock, folk, blues, punk, and even hip-hop! We respect artists who not only get to the source, but who ARE the source, and it was a no-brainer for us.
Q: Why don’t you try to look like Neil?
A: Aren’t worn-out jeans, a flannel shirt, and a hat enough? Kidding aside – We know there’s some Neil tribute bands out there who grow their hair out or get a wig, get the classic mutton-chops, have their equipment all to spec, and play the songs note-for-note. As much as we respect that, we are a “tribute band”, not impersonators. A group of guys getting together to jam the music they love. Anything short of that would be work…and uh, who wants to WORK? Granted, many say that Mike does a “good Neil” and “has it down”, but interestingly enough….and believe what you want (we really don’t actually care), it’s not our intention to. It’s more of a bonus, actually. If you want to immerse yourself in someone else’s music, it’s just natural to be moved (and literally move) in the same way the original artist is / does.
Q: Hey wait a minute! Neil famously plays an original black (painted) Goldtop ’53 Les Paul with a Bigsby and a Firebird humbucker in the bridge, with a 50’s Fender Deluxe, and a patented “whizzer”. Why don’t you??
A: We’ve always maintained, and the offer is still out there: We will gladly accept the donation of one who procures us a $150K++ guitar, a $50K amp, and a one of a kind mechanism that controls the amp knobs from a pedal board…. and graciously gifts it to us. Sure, there’s the “any old” black Gibson or Epiphone model (which has actually been done for a brief time) just to try and pass off the “look”, but unfortunately they just don’t have the “sound”. Plus, Mike’s pretty happy with his ’84 Gibson SG, “Big Red”…not exact, but it gets the job done!
Q: I’ve been yelling out “For What it’s Worth”, “Wooden Ships” and “Southern Cross” all friggin’ night, but they never play them. What’s up with that?!
A: As much as we love all the amazing music Buffalo Springfield and CSN&Y as delivered over the years, we are only interested in playing songs that Neil has written himself.
Q: Why *don’t* you play all the songs note for note like the studio versions of the songs?
A: Simply because: Neil doesn’t either. If you’ve ever had the opportunity to see Neil live, or watch live footage online, Neil himself never EVER replicates / duplicates. No two solos are alike. Sure, we (and he) will always be sure to play the notable hooks (ie..”Like a Hurricane”, the “Cinnamon Girl” solo, the bridge in “Mr. Soul”…etc). We are of the ethos: “What would Neil do?” We try to make a Neil Young and Crazy Horse concert experience as authentic as possible, from a feeling / vibe / atmosphere perspective. Learning guitar solos note-for-note, and being sure the song is exactly 5:20 in length is simply of no interest to us, and we mean no disrespect to the tribute bands who do this – as it certainly is an art unto itself. It’s just not “us”. Duplicating the vibe…the feeling? That’s us.
Q: I showed up last night at 11:30pm, and you guys didn’t even play “Cinnamon Girl”!
A: Well, umm….we did. It was in the first set. Sorry you missed it L. If you want the full concert experience, you gotta get there at the start.
Q: Why aren’t you guys playing bigger gigs..theaters, casino’s…etc?
A: We’re trying. Thanks to the Blackstone River Theatre, the first of their kind to believe in us, we developed a promo video found here: We’re hoping soon the rest will catch on.
Q: Can I help?
A: Absolutely! If you know of any theater, or live concert venue (not just a local bar)…please do reference us. Our website is www.youngrust.com – all the resources they/you need can be found there, and of course…we thank you immensely for your support!