David Crosby – If I Could Only Remember My Name (1971)

FrontCover1David Van Cortlandt Crosby (August 14, 1941 – January 18, 2023) was an American singer, guitarist, and songwriter. In addition to his solo career, he was a founding member of both the Byrds and Crosby, Stills & Nash.

Crosby joined the Byrds in 1964. They had their first number-one hit in April 1965 with a cover of “Mr. Tambourine Man” by Bob Dylan. Crosby appeared on the Byrds’ first five albums and produced the original lineup’s 1973 reunion album. He subsequently formed Crosby, Stills & Nash in 1968 with Stephen Stills and Graham Nash.

David Crosby01

After the release of their debut album, CSN won the Grammy Award for Best New Artist of 1969. Neil Young joined the group for live appearances, their second concert being Woodstock, before recording their second album Déjà Vu. Meant to be a group that could collaborate freely, Crosby and Nash recorded three gold albums in the 1970s, while the core trio of CSN remained active from 1976 until 2016. CSNY reunions took place in each decade from the 1970s through the 2000s.

David Crosby03

Songs Crosby wrote or co-wrote include “Lady Friend”, “Everybody’s Been Burned”, “Why”, and “Eight Miles High” with the Byrds and “Guinnevere”, “Wooden Ships”, “Shadow Captain”, and “In My Dreams” with Crosby, Stills & Nash. He wrote “Almost Cut My Hair” and the title track “Déjà Vu” for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s 1970 album of the same name. He is known for having employed alternative guitar tunings and jazz influences. He released six solo albums, five of which charted. Additionally, he formed a jazz-influenced trio with his son James Raymond and guitarist Jeff Pevar in CPR. Crosby’s work with the Byrds and CSNY has sold over 35 million albums.

David Crosby04

Crosby was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice: once for his work in the Byrds and again for his work with CSN. Five albums to which he contributed are included in Rolling Stone’s list of “The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time”, three with the Byrds and two with CSN(Y). He was outspoken politically and was sometimes depicted as emblematic of the counterculture of the 1960s.

David Crosby02

If I Could Only Remember My Name is the debut solo album by American singer-songwriter David Crosby, released in February 1971 on Atlantic Records. A number of guest musicians appear on the record, including Graham Nash, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, and members of Jefferson Airplane, Santana, and the Grateful Dead. The ensemble was given the informal moniker of The Planet Earth Rock and Roll Orchestra. It was one of four high-profile albums (all charting within the top fifteen) released by each member of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young in the wake of their chart-topping Déjà Vu album, along with After the Gold Rush (Neil Young, September 1970), Stephen Stills (Stephen Stills, November 1970) and Songs for Beginners (Graham Nash, May 1971). It peaked at No. 12 on the Billboard Top LPs chart and earned a RIAA gold record certification in the United States.

Crosby’s song “Laughing” had been written earlier in his time with CSNY, while a demo version of “Song with No Words” had been tried out during the sessions for Déjà Vu and would appear on the 1991 CSN retrospective package. “Cowboy Movie” recounted the tale of a group of Old West outlaws torn apart by a femme fatale; in actuality a recounting in thinly-veiled form of the encounter by the quartet with Rita Coolidge and her effect on the romantic aspirations of at least two of them, as identified immediately by Nash.

Graham Nash & David Crosby

Recording sessions took place at the recently opened Wally Heider Studios in San Francisco. Many prominent musicians of that era appear on the record, including Nash, Young, Joni Mitchell, members of the Grateful Dead (most notably Jerry Garcia, who helped to arrange and produce the album)[citation needed], Jefferson Airplane, Quicksilver Messenger Service, and Santana. The ensemble was given the informal moniker of The Planet Earth Rock and Roll Orchestra by Jefferson Airplane bandleader, longtime Crosby associate and fellow science fiction fan Paul Kantner; many from this agglomeration, including recording engineer Stephen Barncard, also worked on Kantner’s Blows Against the Empire, Songs for Beginners by Nash, and the Grateful Dead’s American Beauty, all recorded in part concurrently with the Crosby album at Wally Heider Studios. Even with the star-studded guest line-up, the final two songs feature Crosby alone, and only five songs have actual lyrics, “Orléans” being a 15th Century round listing various French cathedrals.


If I Could Only Remember My Name was released in February 1971 on Atlantic Records. Two singles were taken from the album, including the minor hit “Music Is Love”, a collaboration with Nash and Young that was released in April 1971 and peaked at No. 95 on the Billboard Hot 100.[5][6] The album has remained continuously in print.

In October 1990, a compact disc version was released, having been digitally remastered from the original master tapes, using the equipment and techniques of the day, by Barncard. A double-compact disc version appeared in November 2006, with an audio disc remastered in HDCD, including a bonus track (the hitherto unreleased “Kids and Dogs”, previously earmarked for an unreleased Crosby solo album slated to appear on Capitol Records in the early 1980s) and a second DVD Audio disc of the original album remixed for 5.1 digital Surround Sound.

On October 15, 2021, a 50th anniversary re-issue of the album was released with numerous out-takes and demos, as well as liner notes by Steve Silberman.


If I Could Only Remember My Name was initially panned by many music critics.[12] Writing for Rolling Stone, Lester Bangs deemed it “a perfect aural aid to digestion when you’re having guests over for dinner”. Village Voice critic Robert Christgau gave the album a D− rating and dismissed it as a “disgraceful performance”. Crosby has said of the contemporaneous reviews: “They were looking for another record that was full of big, flashy lead guitar and blues licks and screaming lyrics … [If I Could Only Remember My Name] was not where everything else was going, so they thought it was irrelevant.”

The album went on to achieve cult status and praise from latter-day critics for its austere mood, eclectic improvisation and otherworldly harmony singing. In 2000, it was voted number 156 in the third edition of Colin Larkin’s book All Time Top 1000 Albums. He stated “if you are not familiar with this miraculous record, please take the risk.”

David Crosby & Joni Mitchell

Some reviews of the 2006 reissue compare the album with Nick Drake and Meddle-era Pink Floyd, and discuss it as a progenitor of the freak folk and New Weird America subgenres of indie rock. Other writers cite the album as belonging to the sub-genre of freak-folk or psychedelic folk, and being an early progenitor of the form.

In 2010, Crosby’s album was listed second, behind the Beatles’ Revolver, on the “Top 10 Pop Albums of All Time” published in the Vatican City newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.

On 18 November 2013, Crosby appeared on an edition of the BBC Radio 4 program Mastertapes, which was dedicated to the making of the album. The following day, he took part in the program’s “B-side” edition, answering audience questions and performing songs from the album. In 2016, Japanese musician Cornelius included If I Could Only Remember My Name in his list of “10 Albums Everyone Needs to Hear”.

In 2019, the album’s title was partly adopted for the Cameron Crowe documentary on Crosby, David Crosby: Remember My Name. (wikipedia)

David Crosby05

David Crosby’s debut solo album was the second release in a trilogy of albums (the others being Paul Kantner’s Blows Against the Empire and Mickey Hart’s Rolling Thunder) involving the indefinite aggregation of Bay Area friends and musical peers that informally christened itself the Planet Earth Rock and Roll Orchestra. Everyone from the members of the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane to Crosby’s mates in CSNY, Neil Young and Graham Nash, dropped by the studio to make significant contributions to the proceedings. (Jerry Garcia, Phil Lesh, and Bill Kreutzman, primarily, act as the ad hoc studio band, with other notables adding bits of flavor to other individual tracks.) Crosby, however, is the obvious captain of this ship. With his ringing, velvety voice — the epitome of hippie crooning — and inspired songwriting, he turns If I Could Only Remember My Name into a one-shot wonder of dreamy but ominous California ambience.


The songs range from brief snapshots of inspiration (the angelic chorale-vocal showcase on “Orleans” and the a cappella closer, “I’d Swear There Was Somebody Here”) to the full-blown, rambling Western epic “Cowboy Movie,” and there are absolutely no false notes struck or missteps taken. No one before or since has gotten as much mileage out of a wordless vocal as Crosby does on “Tamalpais High (At About 3)” and “Song with No Words (Tree with No Leaves),” and because the music is so relaxed, each song turns into its own panoramic vista. Those who don’t go for trippy Aquarian sentiment, however, may be slightly put off by the obscure, cosmic storytelling of the gorgeous “Laughing” or the ambiguous (but pointed) social questioning of “What Are Their Names,” but in actuality it is an incredibly focused album. There is little or no fat despite the general looseness of the undertaking, while a countercultural intensity runs taut through the entire album, and ultimately there is no denying the excellence of the melodies and the messy beauty of the languid, loping instrumental backing. Even when a song as pretty as “Traction in the Rain” shimmers with its picked guitars and autoharp, the album is coated in a distinct, persistent menace that is impossible to shake. It is a shame that Crosby would continue to descend throughout the remainder of the decade and the beginning of the next into aimless drug addiction, and that he would not issue another solo album until 18 years later. As it is, If I Could Only Remember My Name is a shambolic masterpiece, meandering but transcendently so, full of frayed threads. Not only is it among the finest splinter albums out of the CSNY diaspora, it is one of the defining moments of hung-over spirituality from the era. (by Stanton Swihart)


Laura Allan (autoharp, background vocals  on 06.)
Jack Casady (bass on 07.)
David Crosby (vocals, guitar)
Jerry Garcia (guitar (on 02., 03., 05., 07., pedal steel-guitar, vocals on 05.)
Mickey Hart (drums on 02.)
Jorma Kaukonen (guitar on 03. + 07.)
Bill Kreutzmann (drums on 03. + 04.,  tambourine on 02.)
Phil Lesh (bass on 02, – 05., background vocals on 05.)
Joni Mitchell (background vocals on 04. + 05.)
Graham Nash (guitar, background vocals on 01., 03. – 07.)
Gregg Rolie (piano on 07.)
Michael Shrieve (drums on 05. + 07.)
Neil Young (guitar, vocals on 01. + 05., bass. vibraphone, percussion on 01.)
background vocals on 05.:
David Freiberg – Paul Kantner – Grace Slick


01. Music Is Love (Nash/Young/Crosby) 3.19
02. Cowboy Movie (Crosby) 8.09
03.Tamalpais High (At About 3) (Crosby) 3.27
04. Laughing (Crosby) 5.21
05. What Are Their Names (Young/Garcia/Lesh/Shrieve/Crosby) 4.10
06. Traction In The Rain (Crosby) 3.42
07. Song With No Words (Tree With No Leaves) (Crosby) 5.54
08. Orleans (Traditional) 1.57
09. I’d Swear There Was Somebody Here (Crosby) 1.21



David Crosby06

The official website:

Renee Geyer Band – Ready To Deal (1975)

FrontCover1Renée Geyer is Australia’s most respected and successful soul singer, with a recording career of nearly 30 years. Her career began around 1971 in Sydney, when a girlfriend took her along to the rehearsal of friends who were forming a band. Geyer was encouraged to get up and have a sing and was instantly invited to join as singer. Although she was so shy in the beginning she couldn’t face the audience, musicians noticed her, and Geyer was invited to join one more experienced band after another until 1971, when she became part of an ambitious jazz fusion group called Sun. Geyer was still just 19.

After one album (Sun ’72), Sun and Geyer parted company; Geyer eventually found herself part of a group called Mother Earth, still with jazz leanings but also incorporating the soul and R&B Geyer loved and excelled at. With Mother Earth, she started touring and was offered a solo recording contract. She insisted that Mother Earth provide the backings on her first album. For her second album, the cream of Melbourne musicians were assembled for the sessions. Geyer formed such a strong bond with these musicians, but by the time the It’s a Man’s World album was released and her powerfully provocative version of the James Brown title song was a big hit, Geyer was ready to throw her lot in with those musicians rather than be a solo performer.

Renee Geyer02Her two solo albums so far had been cover versions or sourced songs, apart from the single “Heading in the Right Direction.” The Renée Geyer Band wrote the songs for 1975’s Ready to Deal album in the studio and toured extensively. A live album, Really.. Really Love You, followed, based on Geyer’s building reputation as a powerfully voiced, raunchy performer.

That reputation found its way to America and led to an invitation to record an album in Los Angeles with famed Motown producer Frank Wilson. While the Movin’ Along album provided another hit at home, in America Stares and Whispers created confusion. R&B stations loved the record, but didn’t know what to do when they discovered Geyer was a white Jewish girl from Australia. For the next few years, Geyer bounced between Australia and America, working in Australia and recording two more albums in America. When 1981’s So Lucky album presented her with a huge hit with “Say I Love You” both in Australia and New Zealand, it became necessary to put the American dream aside for two years. In 1983, Geyer returned to base herself in America permanently, still keeping in touch with her Australasian fans with tours.

Renee Geyer03

While in America, Geyer became part of a group called Easy Pieces with former members of the Average White Band. But the album took so long to record, by the time it was finished, the group had never performed and were going their separate ways. Geyer spent several years in America doing session work for Sting (the fade vocal on “We’ll Be Together”), Neil Diamond, Jackson Browne, and others, touring with Joe Cocker and Chaka Khan and others, and writing songs.

During one foray back to Australia, Geyer was invited to sing the Paul Kelly song “Foggy Highway” for the soundtrack of a TV series based on the seven deadly sins. Kelly was so impressed by Geyer’s version, he offered to produce an album and wrote some of the songs, including the title track, which (alongside “It’s a Man’s Man’s World” has become Geyer’s signature song, Difficult Woman). The working relationship with Paul Kelly was such a happy and satisfying one, Geyer decided to base herself back in Australia. With Paul Kelly and Joe Camilleri (Jo Jo Zep, Black Sorrows) producing, she recorded 1999’s Sweet Life album.

At the end of 1999, Geyer released her frank life story, Confessions of a Difficult Woman through Harper Collins. (by Ed Nimmervoll)

Renee Geyer01

In January 2023, Geyer was admitted to hospital in Geelong where she had hip surgery. It was subsequently discovered that she had inoperable lung cancer. She died from surgical complications on 17 January 2023 at the age of 69. (wikipedia)

Ready to Deal is the third studio album by Australian singer Renée Geyer. The album was released in November 1975 and peaked at number 21, becoming Geyer’s highest-charting album. The album is credited to Renée Geyer Band. The album features the track “Heading in the Right Direction” which became Geyer’s first top 40 single in 1976.

“Sweet Love” featured in the 2000 film Chopper starring Eric Bana.

In October 2010, Ready to Deal was listed in the book, 100 Best Australian Albums. (wikipedia)

Renee Geyer04

And here´s a real nice story about this album:

When I was a 13 year old boy in Sydney, Australia in 1975, I was playing guitar in a metal band, covering Deep Purple, Led Zepplin and so on. One day I heard a song called “Shining Star” by Earth, Wind and Fire on the radio, and my musical world began to shift. I taped it on a reel-to-reel tape recorder, transcribed it, and forced my teenage comrades to start to play funk songs. They hated it, and the band soon split in half.

Later that year, my older brother and I began to go into the city to see Renée Geyer, who had an amazing soulful, jazzy voice and a funky band. Smells of marijuana and patchouli oil swirled around us, and people would laugh at the “little kids” as we walked around, but I was just transfixed by the music. She’d do a song by Chaka Khan and Rufus, and the next day i’d harass the import record shop owner for a record by them. Everything had changed.

There are some great funky tracks on this album, picks are “Sweet Love”, “Love’s got a hold” and “Heading In the Right Direction” . Plenty of Rhodes, clav and wah-wah. (neverenoughrhodes.blogspot.com)

Indeed … a fascinating album … funk, soul and blues… and …what a voice ! And .. if you like Maggie Bell … then you really should listen to this album !


Renee Geyer (vocals)
Mal Logan (keyboards)
Mark Punch (guitar, background vocals)
Barry Sullivan (bass)
Greg Tell (drums, percussion)
Tony Buchanan (saxophone, flute)
Russell Smith (trumpet)


01. Sweet Love 3.19
02. If Loving You Is Wrong 4.20
03. Spilt Milk 5.01
04. Whoop 6.49
05. Heading In The Right Direction 3.59
06. Two Sides 3.29
07. Ready To Deal 3.30
08. Love’s Got A Hold 3.47
09. I Really Love You 5.53

Music & lyrics:
Renee Geyer – Mal Logan – Mark Punch – Barry Sullivan – Greg Tell




Renee Geyer05