To say that Graham Nash has had an eventful life would be more than an understatement. From his early years with The Hollies, when he shared stages with The Beatles and was a key player in the British Invasion, to thrilling the crowds at Woodstock with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, to his ongoing position as one of rock's most productive elder statesmen, the 70-year-old singer/songwriter has quite an amazing story to tell -- and tell it he does in his new autobiography, Wild Tales.
Speaking recently with ABC News Radio, Graham says he expects that his fans will find plenty of captivating anecdotes in the book.
"I think they'll be interested in the stories of what happened from my point of view, having been there at incredible, pivotal musical moments in history," he maintains. "I've been making music since 1957, and it's been a long, long time."
Included in the 368-page tome are Nash's recollections of his impoverished childhood in Northern England, his love affair with Joni Mitchell and his turbulent history with band mates David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Neil Young.
One particularly amusing tale he shares is the quirky way Young treated him to a first listen of his classic 1972 solo album, Harvest. Rather than go into a studio to check out the recording, Neil took Nash out to the middle of a lake on his property in a rowboat.
"Neil had his entire house [set up] as the left speaker and his entire barn as the right speaker," Nash explains. "[Engineer] Elliot Mazer comes down at the end of the album -- which sounded, of course, beautiful, blasting out into the redwood forest with me and Neil in a rowboat on a lake -- [and] goes, 'How was it, Neil?' And Neil shouts, 'More barn!'"
A touching story Nash recounts is the unique tribute he paid to his late mother, who had had dreams of being a singer herself and who always supported his musical endeavors.
During an early-'70s concert with Crosby at New York City's famed Carnegie Hall, Nash remembers, "I start to tell [the audience how] my mother's encouragement actually led to me standing in front of them. And as I'm telling them this story about my mother wanting to sing on the stage, I reach into my right-hand pocket and I take some of my mother's ashes and I spread them on the stage…And, I must tell you, the audience reaction was stunning."
Nash admits that although writing Wild Tales was generally an enjoyable experience, he struggled when it came time to recount Crosby's well documented battle with cocaine addiction during the 1970s and early '80s. Graham tells ABC News Radio that, in detailing his close friend's "downward spiral into cocaine madness," David actually encouraged him to tell the whole brutal truth.
Now that Wild Tales has been published, Nash declares that one of the nice things is, "I can let that part of my life go, and get on with the rest of my life." He adds, "And I fully expect it to be as equally as magical."
Graham currently is touring the U.K. with Crosby, Stills & Nash, and when he returns, he'll begin a new U.S. solo trek that will kick off with a November 4-5 stand in Solana Beach, California.
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