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Songs for Beginners

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Editors’ Notes

The depth and intensity of Graham Nash's 1971 solo debut reflect the change that was coming at him from all angles, especially his break-up with Joni Mitchell — the muse of "Wounded Bird." But opening with "Military Madness" sets the tone with some politically charged sentiment seeping in from his earthy recordings with CSN&Y, though it also bounces on a catchier pop sensibility culled from Nash's tenure with the Hollies. "Chicago" reveals Nash's penchant for pulling a pop song out of subject matter as dark as the Chicago Eight's trial and the 1968 Democratic National Convention in much the same way that Neil Young did with the Kent State Massacre in CSN&Y's "Ohio." Young plays piano on the twangy "Man In the Mirror" and on "Better Days," a triumphant tune that celebrates finding one's confidence in desperate times. Other notable guests include Jerry Garcia, Rita Coolidge, David Crosby, Phil Lesh and some of the era's A-list studio guns. Nearly four decades after its release, this album is still so influential that artists like Bonnie “Prince” Billy, Vetiver, Brendan Benson and others have recorded covers for Be Yourself, a tribute to Songs For Beginners.

Customer Reviews

finally on iTunes

Amazing record. You may recognize "Simple Man" from the opening credits of the film "Reign On Me" . With all the new acts that sound like old acts - it's great to see iTunes recognizing a true original. This record is almost 40 years old and it holds up to today's most talented songwriters.


This album is killer. Check it out if you haven't.


Born: February 2, 1942 in Blackpool, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Graham Nash is one of the most durable musical figures to have emerged from the 1960s, both as a supporting musician and a star in his own right, and a key figure in both the British Invasion and the '70s singer/songwriter era that followed. As a harmony singer and sometime lead singer with the Hollies and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, his voice is among the most familiar in two distinct eras and schools of rock music. Graham Nash was born in Manchester, England, and his musical future was determined...
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Songs for Beginners, Graham Nash
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