Words & Photos by Rod Snyder
Graham Nash of famed Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, is back on the road again, and he played the Keswick Theatre in Glenside, PA on the second night of his 2022 tour. Graham last toured in early 2020, and said during the night, that it was great to be out playing in front of an audience again. The artist was accompanied by long time friends Shane Fontayne on guitar and vocals and Todd Caldwell, on keys and vocals.
Inspired by world events going on at the moment, the show started off with “Find the Cost of Freedom” and then “Military Madness”. A few songs later they performed “I Used to be a King”, a love song that he wrote for Joni Mitchell, after they broke up. This was one of the highlights of the night for me – the lyrics are timeless, and anyone who’s loved and lost, can easily relate to this. Plus, the guitar work that Shane added was exemplary. As an introduction to the song “Immigration Man”, he noted that songs such as this and “Military Madness” written over 50 years ago, are still very relevant today.
Another highlight was the CSN song from their self titled album, a song called “Cathedral”. The chorus is very catchy to sing along with, and Todd Caldwell added some great keyboard to this tune. Graham sent out a personal dedication to Philly’s own WMMR radio personality, Pierre Robert, before playing “Love the one You’re With”, a song that received one of many standing ovations of the night. There was a brief intermission after this song, but things picked up again with more hits from his extensive catalog. “4+20” and “Country Girl” from CSNY’s “Déjà Vu” album, were well received by the crowd.
Nash mentioned during the second set that he kept busy during Covid writing lots of songs, and how the recording process had changed a bit. He would make a demo with some parts and send it to Shane, who would add his own parts, then to Todd, and then back to Nash to piece it all together. They then played “Golden Days”, the first song he recorded with guitarist Shane Fontayne. Nearing the end of the second set, Nash told the story behind “Just A Song Before I Go”. A bet for $500 was wagered, with a rather “low-level drug dealer” that he couldn’t “write a song just before you go”. Nash was in Hawaii and had to get to the airport, to fly back to LA. Well, we all know how that bet turned out.
The set closer “Our House” brought the crowd to their feet and received biggest applause of the night. Then, the encore began with the Beatles song “Here Comes the Sun”, dedicated to the people of the Ukraine. This song featured the 3 band members, standing and singing around Graham’s mic, with only Shane on guitar. It was a beautiful rendition of the song. The final song of the night was CSN’s “Teach Your Children”, which again was very well received.
For just turning 80 years young in February, Graham Nash still sounds amazing. If you are thinking about seeing him, just do it. If you’re a fan of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, you won’t be disappointed. The tour has dates along the East Coast and Mid West, until April 3.
TheWaster.com | A Song Before I Go