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Music

Neil Young once shared his thoughts on life on earth in 100 years’ time

Neil Young, the ‘Godfather of Grunge’, is a guitar hero and a master bard. His impact on music and culture has been so tremendous that if you were to delete his contributions from the annals of history, everything else that came afterwards would look markedly different, that’s how important he has been to the expansion of culture. He is an artistic juggernaut.

On his second album, 1969’s Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, Young laid down some of the essential foundations for alt-rock, and without this masterpiece in fuzzy guitar playing, we’d be without so many of our favourite guitar bands. It’s a testament to his skill that a host of legends such as Sonic Youth, Radiohead and Nirvana worship him as a god amongst men. 

Young’s impact has been so significant that his influence extends far beyond music. His early 1970s aesthetic was even the inspiration for Doc Sportello in Paul Thomas Anderson’s flick Inherent Vice, and as a philanthropist, he’s relentlessly campaigned for righteous causes such as environmental and anti-war efforts. 

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Showing just how far his influence goes, his concert film, 1979’s Rust Never Sleeps, provided the foundation for all future concert movies. It is a little known fact that it was the primary inspiration for Talking Heads’ 1984 classic Stop Making Sense

Given that he is so revered, it is only appropriate that Young’s opinions are treasured, as his recent battle with Spotify and Joe Rogan has shown. Whether it be his thoughts on punk, the environment or other artists, Young has consistently demonstrated himself to be a deep thinker, possessing a perception that us laymen can only dream of. Whilst he’s been guilty of a few flubbed comments along the way, he remains a captivating voice on a whole manner of subjects. 

During a 1993 interview with Rolling Stone, the Canadian troubadour gave us his thoughts on what life will be like in 100 years’ time, and whilst some of his account is conceivable, other parts have been rightly consigned to the dustbin of history. 

Young started off by explaining his thoughts on society and how humans fit into the natural order of the earth: “I’m not into organised religion. I’m into believing in a higher source of creation, realising we’re all just part of nature and we’re all animals. We’re very highly evolved and we should be very responsible for what we’ve learned.”

Perhaps under the influence of something, or maybe just carrying on the karmic sentiment of the counterculture, Young posited: “I even go as far as to think that in the natural plan of things, that the rockets and the satellites, spaceships that we’re creating now, that we’re pollinating the universe.”

Given the advent of Elon Musk’s SpaceX programme, and Virgin Orbit’s plans to go to Mars this year, Young‘s next point echoes the developments that have occurred in recent times. 

He said: “Earth is a flower and it’s pollinating. It’s starting to send out things and now we’re evolving they’re getting bigger and they’re able to go further. And they have to, because we need to spread out now in the universe. I think in 100 years we’ll be living on other planets.”

I doubt that people will have colonised planets by 2093, but you just never know. Before we think about taking off to other galactic climes, though, we should seriously think about getting our own house in order. 

Listen to Neil Young’ Old Man’ below.