Wednesday, March 07, 2007


Here is a great interview of David Crosby.................

The survivor of sixties excess explains why time is more valuable than money—and why it was Crosby, Stills & Nash, not the other way around.

Q: You once said of the sixties, “We were right about a lot of things . . . , but we were wrong about the drugs.” But wasn’t the most enduring art from the sixties a direct product of drugs?
A: They coexisted—it was not a direct result. The only drugs with any possible link to creativity were pot and psychedelics, but we had no idea—we thought they were all the same. The minute you get into hard drugs, you’re destroying creativity and you’re killing yourself, fast. Pot is a wonderful intoxicant—it really doesn’t do a lot of harm and is much better for you than booze. It’s a problem that rehab programs never seem to make that distinction.

Q: So it’s safe to say, then, that you still get high.
A: Well, that would be a silly thing for me to say, since it’s illegal.

Q: You’ve been an exponent of the mustache for decades. Any grooming tips?
A: The biggest thing to know about mustaches is you’re gonna have to start wearing a napkin. If you keep it clean, girls love ’em.

Q: And you would know—your 1967 song “Triad” is a touching ode to threesomes. Do you think people today are too prudish?
A: No, just too scared. I wrote that song during this little patch of history in between the invention of birth control and the onslaught of aids, when you could be as free as the breeze, make love to just about anybody you wanted to. It was pretty good timing.

Q: The hotel we’re in right now, the Carlyle, is where Melissa Etheridge’s ex-girlfriend Julie Cypher was inseminated with your sperm for the second time. Can you just order specimen cups and basters from room service?
A: No. Sorry.

Q: What do people not understand about prison?
A: Everything. It’s incredibly violent and you have to thread your way through it extremely carefully. My notoriety both helped and hurt me—some people liked me because I made good music, others thought I would be a real cool guy to kill.

Q: Crosby, Stills & Nash. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Crosby & Nash. CPR. How’d you always wind up with top billing?
A: Say the names any other way, it just doesn’t work. Stills wanted to be first, but it doesn’t sound right. I figured that out very early on.

Q: What’s wrong with the kids today?
A: Nothin’. They’re inheriting a pretty grossly out-of-shape world, and I hope they’re gonna be able to deal with it. All things considered, they’re being handed the fuzzy end of the stick, and I’m surprised they’re not more angry than they already are.

Q: Why do you think this generation’s opposition to the Iraq war is so feeble compared with how yours opposed Vietnam?
A: It’s very simple. Neil Young pointed it out: There’s no draft. In Vietnam, college students were staring death in the face, and that will get your attention very quickly—and bring your idealism to the fore. If they put in a draft people will react. And I’ll have to think about where I’m going to live because I have an 11-year-old son and they’ll be getting him over my dead goddamn body.

Q: If you had 10 minutes alone in a room with the president, what would you do?
A: I don’t think he’s bright enough to understand anything I’d have to say, but I’d talk to him. Don’t you think there should be a law that you can’t have control of nuclear weapons unless you can pronounce the word nuclear? But he’s not really the problem, he’s just a hood ornament. The guys running the engine are the problem. That’s what the song “What Are Their Names?” is about—we don’t even know the names of the people who are really running the world, the people in control of the major corporations.

Q: What could you buy with all the money you spent on drugs in your life?
A: A large ranch. I’m sure I spent $10 million, but it coulda been 15. The time I wasted is way more valuable than the money, though. Time really is the final currency.

Q: We hear that sentiment a lot. Is rehab culture now more dominant than drug culture?
A: There were people who were genuinely looking to get sober, then in Hollywood, as with everything, it became fashionable to go through that process. Some people probably did it who didn’t need to, others got help who really did need it. But it must be working—I know exactly one guy in the world who does hard drugs now, and I know thousands of people.

Q: What advice do you have for Pete Doherty?
A: I don’t really have any, and he wouldn’t listen to it anyway. He’ll reach the bottom and he’ll either want to fix himself up or he won’t. There isn’t anything I can do about it.

Q: Are you amazed you’re still alive?
A: Sure. I don’t know anybody who did what I did and lived. They must have more work for me to do here. Sometimes I get survivor guilt, too. I think about Hendrix or Joplin and other friends of mine and wonder, Why them and not me?

Q: What is the most misunderstood thing about the sixties?
A: That they happened in the seventies.

As always, comments are welcome.


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