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Published: 2012/07/27

Graham Nash Discusses Troubles Behind CSN Sessions with Rick Rubin

Crosby, Stills and Nash have cut ties with producer Rick Rubin, according to a Music Radar interview with Graham Nash. Rubin had recently been in the studio working with the legendary group on a new album of covers, however, Nash reveals that it was “not a great experience.”

“After almost 50 years of making records, we think we know what we’re doing, so it’s very hard to tell Crosby, Stills and Nash what to do,” Nash tells Music Radar. “You can suggest anything you want, but you can’t tell us what to do.”

Stephen Stills recently made headlines by saying Crosby, Stills and Nash would never make another album, implying tension between David Crosby and Rubin.

“Two things are happening. One, Stephen doesn’t know the big picture,” says Nash. “Two, Stephen is very deaf. He may have misheard or he may have been answering the question he thought you asked.”

Nash goes on to say that the group will finish work on its long-awaited album of covers, Songs We Wish We’d Written. According to Nash, tension between Crosby and Rubin was a source of the delay. “First of all, he pissed off David Crosby. David said we wanted to do ‘Blackbird’ and another Beatles song. Rick said, ‘There will only be one Beatles song.’ Crosby said, ‘There will only be one Beatles song if we decide there will only be one Beatles song.’ You know, like, ‘Who the f–k are you to tell me?”

Crosby, Stills and Nash have now rerecorded some of the covers they worked on with Rubin, including James Taylor’s “Close Your Eyes,” The Who’s “Behind Blue Eyes,” and the Rolling Stones’ “Ruby Tuesday.” However, the album’s official release is still uncertain.

“It’s going to be difficult right now because we’re on tour until October. As you can imagine, it’s hard to get three people into the studio, especially if they’re doing different things and have different schedules. So it comes off that Stephen thinks there’ll be no new recordings, which couldn’t be further from the truth.”


There are 21 comments associated with this post

Yuma August 9, 2012, 02:41:09

- HI GangGarrett has a new shirt on looking good! I think I boghut him his last new shirt when he was in High School.You all did such a fabulous job with the photography, a perfect team I d say.Take careLove Dad

Wahhh July 27, 2012, 15:39:41

Somebody call the wahhhbumlance.
I saw these guys perform on some Neil Young special they were absolutely terrible.
Shut up pal, the 60’s are over. No one cares what you say

me July 27, 2012, 15:53:32

What are you talking about Wahhh… just saw them a month ago and they are still great… and that is coming from someone who isn’t a big CSN fan to begin with… and considering their credentials, I think they have the right to decide what goes on their albums! Perhaps if you stop watching music on your iPod, get off your ass and go see live music, you might have a better perspective… until you do, why don’t you “Shut up pal… no one cares what you say”

james July 27, 2012, 16:09:09

These guys are way into themselves. I saw them last month too and you weren’t allowed to take pictures during the show, they were even threatening to kick out old ladies taking pics with their ancient flip-phones. Also, Stills voice sounded terrible, he can still play guitar though. Nash and Crosby sounded pretty good.

me July 27, 2012, 18:03:11

I will agree that Stills was a weak vocal link (and I had forgotten that particular point in my first reply), but still had great guitar chops, in fact better than I would have guessed on the electric… not sure where you saw them, but I saw them in Canandaigua, NY, 2nd row right in front of Crosby and I snapped 47 pictures (just counted to be sure) with not one complaint (using a standard point and shoot)... got some pretty decent shots of all three looking at me, smiling… they may be a bit “too” but, as I said previously, when you look at their contributions to music, it’s understandable (to a degree)... maybe not the nicest way to be but… be happy to send a few of the pix if you’re comfortable enough to post an email address!

dubs July 27, 2012, 18:56:15

I have not seen any of their recent shows but I have heard from several friends that those sweet harmonies, essentially their stock in trade, are lost forever. If that’s the case why are they kidding themselves. Why ? For that matter, why does Phil Lesh insist on singing. They might as well be urinating in their fans ears. If I want to hear the essence of any of these artists, I know where to turn and it’s not a recent recording of them trying to stay relevant. Having said all that, Crosby is a notoriously prickly old SOB.

Yossarian July 27, 2012, 20:11:19

I saw C&N last year and they both sounded amazing. Harmonies in tact for sure. They played 2 long sets with lots of new originals and obscure older material. I think it’s Stills that keeps them from being great at this point. He was always kinda nuts (and hasn’t really sang well live since before CSNY’s 74 tour), but he’s totally off his rocker now.

Befuddled July 27, 2012, 22:52:54

Wahhh = douche

Befuddled July 28, 2012, 01:31:57

@buds: “For that matter, why does Phil Lesh insist on singing. They might as well be urinating in their fans ears.” What a stupid comment. Man, I thought I’d seen it all, but as this thread grows, the Dumber come out to top the Dumb…

Wanker July 28, 2012, 10:18:08

Rick Ruben is an armchair producer.
Never liked that Johnny Cash record
When CSN started in with him I was worried
Glad Cros is putting Rick in his place

Doug Reddick July 28, 2012, 10:30:28

Producers DO make the band sound like they “sound” ,but for Rick to tell them what they can & can’t do is simply laughable.Shame RICK doesn’t get the big picture.

norma stitz July 28, 2012, 11:35:50

Rick Ruben was right. CSN performing blackbird has been done to death

grate71 July 28, 2012, 15:05:56

@normastitz, oh, I’ve loved you for decades!
@dubs, so wrongheaded!

Wooker T. July 29, 2012, 03:22:35

asshole contest anyone?

sluggobeast July 29, 2012, 10:39:17

I’m glad they’re still performing and recording…I think they still have something to say. Though I have to add that their performances I’ve seen in recent years have been uneven. IMO, Crosby — who I thought still sounded great — was and is the heart of the group.

Richard July 29, 2012, 10:48:14

Maybe they should listen to “wasted on the way”. They are an amazing band but I always thought they were three self adsorbed brats. Why do you think Neil hightailed it outta there.

tostonesfix July 30, 2012, 08:11:17

Love these guys but today, at best, they are dinosaur rock. Quite honestly, it was painful to see them live and that was four years ago. Southern Cross sounded okay but the rest sounded not very good to me.

ShogunJLips July 30, 2012, 15:42:51

An album of tired covers by a tired band. !!MONEYGRAB!! And they already have Blackbird on their box set, why record it again??

cosmicbein August 2, 2012, 00:02:58

Nothin worse than a bunch of has beens fightin over which songs they wish they had written.I’ve been in the green room with David Crosby,he loves himself,very rude to others.

zenm00n August 6, 2012, 15:14:59

Calling a band with sold out shows ‘has beens’ seems a bit absurd. Saying that the harmonies are gone and Stills is sounding so horrible also seem to be just clichees repeating themselves – fortunately without any real substance. Sure they are true musicians/artists taking changes and being in the moment so not every show is equally brilliant.
And remember: pissing on someone great does not make you the least great yourselves!

Judy Portlandista September 10, 2012, 11:55:20

Maybe Rick Rubin did a good thing ticking off Croz about playing Beatles. It seems Beatles material may be ultra-classic rock that supposedly everyone drools over but, CRAP, doesn’t it get boring when other groups play it! David, listen up: What makes CSN great is their own material in their own hands.

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