Neil Young On How A Trip To The Woods Inspired His New Album

In a recent Broken Record Podcast episode, during Rick Rubin’s interview with Jack White, Neil Young joined them to share the story of how his walks in the woods where he would whistle inspired the forthcoming Crazy Horse album.

Neil Young and Crazy Horse recorded ‘Barn’ in June 2021 and released the album in December. After that, Young and Crazy Horse collaborated with Rick Rubin to work on an entirely different follow-up album that fans have never heard from the band before. The untitled record that the band finished recording this past summer still has no official release date.

However, the rock legend had explained that the album release would fall near the end of the year as they wait for the vinyl to be manufactured. While fans wait for an official release date, Young wanted to give them an insight into what they could expect from the forthcoming album by sharing the process of how the melodies came together.

Neil Young recently stated that he was in Colorado during the winter and would take walks in the woods. Every time he walked, he would whistle, so he started recording them on his flip phone. Young took his walks every day and came up with melodies with no instruments, just the trees and his whistling, and by the end, there were ten different tunes.

He decided to transfer the recordings into his computer and organize the melodies from the days he had recorded them. After the tunes were in order, Young listened to them and realized there was material ready to be produced for the next project, which turned into the next Crazy Horse album.

Neil Young’s words about his walks in the woods that inspired the new album:

“I was taking a walk in the woods up in Colorado, you know, in the wintertime. I was walking along whistling and heard this. I said, ‘That’s the same song I was whistling yesterday. I don’t know what it is.’ So I got off my flip phone and recorded it.

Once I’d done that, the next day I walked out whistling a whole new song. I did it every day until I had ten different melodies with no instruments. [It’s] so cool going through the trees and singing into this old, you know, whatever it was, a black thing, and then I put it on my computer.

I listened to them all and said, well, that’s that melody, this is that melody, this is that day and everything because I didn’t organize it, so I got them in there, and then I put them all, and I listened to him I said ‘Shit you know there might be something here.’ They’re all here; they came all these melodies.”

You can listen to a clip of the podcast below.