Top 10 Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young Songs

Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young

Photo: By CMA-Creative Management Associates/Atlantic Records (eBay item photo front photo back) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

When putting this list together, we were faced with the question, do we write a Top 10 Crosby Stills & Nash songs list, or do we compose a Top 10 Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young list? The debate was formed because Crosby Stills & Nash recorded eight studio albums as a trio and only three as a quartet with Mr. Neil Young. However, it’s NEIL YOUNG! So, in the end, it became pretty clear that we must compose two separate articles looking at both groups separately because, in essence, when Neil Young was added to the equation, there was a big difference in the sound of the band.

The first Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young album was Déjà Vu. The album was released in 1970. The quartet would not record again in the studio for another eighteen years. In 1988, the band released the American Dream LP. Once again, the four would go their separate ways until they released their final album as a quartet in 1999 entitled Looking Forward.

While their studio albums may have been limited to only three records, the group did release multiple compilation albums and a series of live records. Their most famous live album was released a year after Déjà Vu entitled Four Way Street. One can also not neglect to mention their Woodstock appearance.

This list only contains songs released on CROSBY STILL, NASH, AND YOUNG ALBUMS. 

# 10  – Driving Thunder

Opening up our Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young Songs list is the little-known track “Driving Thunder.” The song appeared on their 1988 album American Dream. Stephen Stills and Neil Young wrote the song. The song featured Stephen Stills on lead vocals. When the album was first released, it did not do well critically. Even some band members said they were unhappy with the release, especially compared to their previous work. Still, we thought it was important to have at least one song from the album represented on this list from a historical standpoint to define what these four sounded like in the late 1980s,

# 9  – Slowpoke

Eleven years after CSNY released their second album, the four legends returned as a quartet with their third and final album. It is quite daunting that it was almost thirty years between Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s first album in 1970 and their third album in 1999. This great Neil Young song was released on the last Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young album in 1999. The song was initially intended to be released on Neil Young’s upcoming solo album. Nonetheless, as much as it sounds like a solo Neil Young song, the harmonies on the chorus are vintage Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.

# 8  – Teach Your Children

Teach Your Children is an interesting one. The song was originally recorded and released on the debut album by Crosby Stills & Nash in 1969 simply titled Crosby, Stills & Nash. However, the three recorded a new version of the song with Neil Young that was released on the Deja Vu album, which is the version represented on this list. Jerry Garcia played the pedal steel guitar part.

# 7  – Almost Cut My Hair

And now it’s time for the classics. David Crosby fans may argue that this one was the best. It easily stands as one of the great protest songs of the early 1970s while the Vietnam War still raged on.  The outstanding track, “Almost Cut My Hair,” symbolized the struggle many men faced for various reasons during that period, and in many ways still do. Regarding the performance on record, it’s interesting that David Crosby performed all the harmonies on this one, while the rest of the musicians just played their instruments.

# 6  – Carry On

The song “Carry On” was the opening track of the Deja Vu album. Stephen Stills wrote the song. The legendary Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young vocal harmonies are present from the moment Stephen Stills’ slick guitar line opens the track up. We must remember to give credit to the other two musicians who played on this legendary album. The Deja Vu album also featured Greg Reeves on bass and Dallas Taylor on drums and percussion.

# 5  – Deja Vu

The album Deja Vu was like a greatest hits record. Every track could have landed in this top 10 Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young songs list. However, we wanted to pay some respect to the later albums the band released, and so that’s why a couple of tracks have been excluded from this list. The title track, “Deja Vu,” was written by David Crosby, who also performs the lead vocals on the track.

# 4  – Our House

Following up Deja Vu on side two of the record was the brilliant Graham Nash song “Our House.”  The song was released as a single. “Our House” reached the Billboard Top 40, peaking at number 30. The song was covered by Helen Reddy later in the decade, as well as pop singer Sheena Easton. It’s interesting how Graham Nash, David Crosby, Neil Young, and Stephen Stills all had such different voices from each other. However, when they sang together in harmony, it was just breathtaking.

# 3  – Helpless

The outstanding track “Helpless,” which appeared as the fourth song on Deja Vu’s side A, was written and sung by Neil Young. Once again, the band’s harmonies on the song’s chorus were utterly mesmerizing. Few bands could harmonize like Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. The Beach Boys, The Eagles, The Four Seasons, and many of the 50’s Do Wop groups were fantastic. However, no one ever sounded like Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

# 2  – Ohio

Deja Vu was the only studio album Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young recorded in the 1970’s. However, the band’s record company jumped on the bandwagon and released a Greatest Hits record called So Far, featuring songs from the Crosby Stills and Nash record, combined with Deja Vu. It led to confusion among fans as to who was on what track. It also was a very successful selling record, and as a fan, I always played that album. I still do. The song Ohio had been released only as a single. Its only studio version to appear on a CSNY album was on the greatest hit record So Far. The song was written by Neil Young. It was written in response to the Kent State University killings of four University students. it remains one of the 1970’s most angry protest songs ever recorded.

# 1 – Woodstock

The legendary Joni Mitchell song Woodstock was a perfect fit for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. While Joni Mitchell’s version was really special, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s version hit it out of Yasgurs Farm almost quite literally. This is one of those tracks that defines the meaning of classic rock.

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3 Comments

  1. Avatar Palmtree April 30, 2020
  2. Avatar Marcelo Zevallos May 2, 2020
  3. Avatar JOSÉ HORACIO TOVAR HERNÁNDEZ August 1, 2021

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