Friday, October 29, 2010

Buffalo Springfield Again

For those who don’t know much about Neil Young’s personal story, he is the father of two children who have cerebral palsy. His wife Pegi, Jim Forderer, two parents who could not find a school to suit the needs of their special-needs children, and Dr. Marilyn Buzolich, a speech and language pathologist, proposed a San Francisco Bay Area school dedicated to providing an environment where children with complex communication needs could learn, grow and thrive and develop skills they’d need to be successful adults and have a good quality of life. The Bridge School [] opened its doors in 1987. Its major source of funding comes from the Bridge School Benefit show, organized by Neil and Pegi Young and held on an October weekend every year at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California. Past performers over the last 24 years include Bob Dylan, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Pearl Jam, the Dave Matthews Band, and The Who, just to name a few. This year’s shows were extra special because they saw the return of the Buffalo Springfield, 42 years after they last performed.

To put in perspective on how much time has elapsed since the last time these guys performed together before a paying audience, Lyndon Johnson was still president, Bobby Kennedy was still alive. Martin Luther King Jr had been assassinated only a month before. This country was still in the quagmire that was Vietnam. Barack Obama was seven years old and living in Indonesia. Ronald Reagan was governor of California. The Beatles had not yet recorded the White Album. The world had not yet heard about Charles Manson. Yes, it’s been a long time coming…

Bassist Bruce Palmer and drummer Dewey Martin have both since died (2004 and 2009, respectively). The surviving members – Stephen Stills, Richie Furay, and Neil Young – reunited last weekend to perform at the Bridge School Benefit. Rick “The Bass Player” Rosas from Neil Young’s road band and longtime CSN collaborator and drummer Joe Vitale filled in for Palmer and Martin. As is customary for the Bridge School Benefits, Buffalo Springfield performed acoustically. Hearing these old guys play their old songs stripped down to the bare essentials worked very well for them [my opinion anyway]. I went out to YouTube and found the best clips I could from the shows. You can judge for yourself the quality of the performance. All I know is they made ME smile. I have only one question – what took you guys so long? Now if the surviving Byrds and Stephen Stills’Manassas can get together, that would be as special as last weekend’s Buffalo Springfield reunion. Many thanks to Pocolova, Maxsdad49, ZUrlocker, and MrTripps99 for shooting these clips and sharing them with everybody.

A dream setlist if there ever was one:
On the Way Home
Rock and Roll Woman
A Child’s Claim to Fame
Do I Have To Come Out and Say It
Go and Say Goodbye
I Am a Child
Kind Woman
For What It’s Worth
Nowadays Clancy Can’t Even Sing
Mr. Soul

“On the Way Home”

“Rock and Roll Woman” and “A Child’s Claim To Fame”

“Do I Have To Come Right Out and Say It”

“Go and Say Goodbye”

“I Am a Child” and “Kind Woman”


“For What It’s Worth”

“Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing”


“Mr. Soul”

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