On his beautiful new album, This Path Tonight, due April 15, dual Rock And Roll Hall Of Famer Graham Nash, who is enshrined with both Crosby, Stills and Nash and the Hollies, opens up on his own mortality.
So when Nash presented This Path Tonight at L.A.’s landmark Village studios, where he recorded the recorded the album, it took on even more poignancy given the recent two deaths of two of his fellow musical icons, David Bowie and Glenn Frey.
Before he played the album Wednesday night (Jan. 20) for a gathering of friends, family and industry-ites, Nash sat down with Billboard for an extensive conversation. During that time the 74-year-old Nash reflected on his experiences over the years with both Bowie and Frey and the thing that makes him saddest about the loss of the two greats.
Nash reflected on his more personal relationship with Frey, who he knew for years. “Glenn I’ve known since the late ’60s, early ’70s because he was growing up in Laurel Canyon, making music the same that we all were at the time and I hung with him several times in the journey of the Eagles,” he said. “And we actually lived on the same island in the Hawaiian chain for 30 years so I did see him occasionally.”
Bowie, Nash noted, was an artist who displayed “genius” qualities at times. “I met Bowie a couple of times and on both occasions I was very impressed with his intelligence and the energy that poured out of that man was amazing,” Nash said. “I personally feel he bordered on the edge of genius many times. And one of the most courageous musicians I’ve ever known about. I love Neil [Young] for his ability to change musically, but to change musically and physically, the way you dress, the way you look, was brilliant on Bowie’s part.”
As a musician and an obvious fan of both of the artists Nash can’t help but wonder how much more music both greats could’ve shared with the world. “[It’s] very sad and the thing that upsets me, maybe even in the case of Bowie because I saw Tony Visconti say he was already writing songs for the follow up to Blackstar, his last record, what upsets me is what songs were almost finished in Glenn’s mind that we’ll never hear because he hasn’t demoed them or presented them to make a record of them or maybe he hasn’t even sung them to his old lady or his family,” Nash wonders. “It was the same when John [Lennon] died, it was the same when George [Harrison] died, what songs were in their head at that moment that we’ll never hear.”