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Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young-Down By The River (1969)

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Uploaded on May 20, 2007

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young performing "Down By The River" in 1969. This is from The Celebration At Big Sur concert in Sept of 69. Neil Young had just joined the group and this was the first performance of the song by them. Neil had recorded this song with his band Crazy Horse earlier in the year and this was only the third gig for the new group. They debuted together in concert first in Chicago with Joni Mitchell than a few weeks later at Woodstock. The lyrics are about someone who kills his lover by shooting her. The reason he gives for the killing is that she takes him to emotional heights from which he cannot bear. Young has provided multiple explanations for the lyrics. In an interview in 1970 Young claimed that "there's no real murder in it. It's about blowing your thing with a chick. It's a plea, a desperate cry." In 1984 Young said that it depicts a man "who had a lot of trouble controlling himself" who catches his woman cheating on him, then meets her down by the river and shoots her.
"DOWN BY THE RIVER"
Be on my side,
I'll be on your side,
baby
There is no reason
for you to hide
It's so hard for me
staying here all alone
When you could be
taking me for a ride.

Yeah, she could drag me
over the rainbow,
send me away
Down by the river
I shot my baby
Down by the river,
Dead, oh, shot her dead.

You take my hand,
I'll take your hand
Together we may get away
This much madness
is too much sorrow
It's impossible
to make it today.

Yeah, she could drag me
over the rainbow,
send me away
Down by the river
I shot my baby
Down by the river,
Dead, oh, shot her dead.

Be on my side,
I'll be on your side,
baby
There is no reason
for you to hide
It's so hard for me
staying here all alone
When you could be
taking me for a ride.

Yeah, she could drag me
over the rainbow,
send me away
Down by the river
I shot my baby
Down by the river,
Dead, oh, shot her dead.

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