Archive | Jul 25, 2018

Certain Songs #1274: Neil Young – “Rockin’ in the Free World”

Album: Freedom
Year: 1989

Recorded at Plywood Digital, Broken Arrow Ranch on March 10, 1989

There were a lot of warning signs that Freedom was going to be a major album for Neil Young: not only was it was his first album with his hand-scrawled title since Rust Never Sleeps, it was only the third (and final, as of this writing) of his albums with different versions of the same song opening and closing the album.

But for those of us who wanted, needed, craved a great new Neil Young album in our lives, what really clinched it was his performance on Saturday Night Live the weekend before the album came out. While I’m sure that there was early buzz on the album, and the song called “Rockin’ in the Free World” that bookended it, there was no way we could have been prepared for what the song actually was.