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Neil Young — Sugar Mountain
Album: Harvest
Avg rating:
8.1

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1280









Released: 1972
Length: 5:36
Plays (last 30 days): 0
Oh, to live on Sugar Mountain
With the barkers and the coloured balloons
You can't be twenty on Sugar Mountain
Though you're thinking that you're leaving there too soon
You're leaving there too soon

It's so noisy at the fair
But all your friends are there
And the candy floss you had
And your mother and your dad

Oh, to live on Sugar Mountain
With the barkers and the coloured balloons
You can't be twenty on Sugar Mountain
Though you're thinking that you're leaving there too soon
You're leaving there too soon

There's a girl just down the aisle
Oh, to turn and see her smile
You can hear the words she wrote
As you read the hidden note

Oh, to live on Sugar Mountain
With the barkers and the coloured balloons
You can't be twenty on Sugar Mountain
Though you're thinking that you're leaving there too soon
You're leaving there too soon

Now you're underneath the stairs
And you're givin' back some glares
To the people who you met
And it's your first cigarette

Oh, to live on Sugar Mountain
With the barkers and the coloured balloons
You can't be twenty on Sugar Mountain
Though you're thinking that you're leaving there too soon
You're leaving there too soon

Now you say you're leavin' home
'Cause you want to be alone
Ain't it funny how you feel
When you're findin' out it's real?

Oh, to live on Sugar Mountain
With the barkers and the coloured balloons
You can't be twenty on Sugar Mountain
Though you're thinking that you're leaving there too soon
You're leaving there too soon

Oh, to live on Sugar Mountain
With the barkers and the coloured balloons
You can't be twenty on Sugar Mountain
Though you're thinking that you're leaving there too soon
Comments (254)add comment
Perfection!
 spigolli wrote:
If Neil was at that age today and made that home recording he'd have lilkely posted an .mp3, as he was an unknown.  Where would he have posted it?  I'd like to find some recordings by artists in the early age of their careers.


 
Unknown? In 1972? With Buffalo Springfield in '67 - '68 and CSNY already behind him and in 1972 a big solo horizon with/without Crazy Horse and various guest collaborators? How is that unknown? He was one of the leading lights of the whole scene by then. Unknown? 
 spigolli wrote:
If Neil was at that age today and made that home recording he'd have lilkely posted an .mp3, as he was an unknown.  Where would he have posted it?  I'd like to find some recordings by artists in the early age of their careers.


 
Funny, I've been wondering if RP would be interested in hosting an "up and coming" channel. Lots of educated, musical and even (too?) critical listeners could provide feedback to new artists. Those that rank above X could be on the main streams?
Not from harvest and was written in 1964.
well he photographed well back then (rich head o' hair, lucky bloke : )
This is one of the saddest songs ever written. But kind of absurd at the same time. Lamenting the loss of youth at the age of 20.
This is the song where a person in the audience coughs, right before the songs ends. You can hear it every time. 

Ah...the risks of performing live! 
Wow, Mr. Young, early days ... Great! {#Cheers}
 moodfood wrote:
then delete your miserable self already.. {#Lol}

 
Just checked the list of members...calle01 is gone. Or maybe he just has a new username...

Great song, great artist. Maybe not the best voice but I can deal with Neil.  
 Webfoot wrote:
Thanks Bill.
  Ditto.
btw, this is not from "Harvest", nor is it from 1977.
 calle01 wrote:
Bill is a communist!
Can you believe he private messaged me to say I could only rate the music if I like it?
That I can only post positive feedback or I get terminated?
How democratic?? WTF?
 

 
If I were you, I'd terminate my own account.  Because, you know, COMMUNIST.
 calle01 wrote:
Bill is a communist!
Can you believe he private messaged me to say I could only rate the music if I like it?
That I can only post positive feedback or I get terminated?
How democratic?? WTF?
 

 
Thanks Bill.
Bill, don't tell me you have this in vinyl ?
very nice!
 oldfart48 wrote:
had i never heard this drivel again in my long life................

 
if you were oldfart63 you might get it, fartster
Divine simplicity and stark beauty.
One of my good friends in college played this song for like an hour straight on the day that he turned 20.

I love the song but I don't think I could have endured that. 
 coyote620 wrote:
One of the greatest songs ever written.

 
Verily. Truer words were never spoken than these: "If you remember the 60's. you weren't there." You had to take the appropriate meds to understand the epoch, otherwise it went right by you. I see you took you pills- Good Coyote!. Poor Old Fart (see below)...
...
One of the greatest songs ever written.
 oldfart48 wrote:
had i never heard this drivel again in my long life................

 

You just have to enter the magical reality of Neil Young. Its like those Da Vinci paintings reflected in the cylindrical mirrors. Go on, Farty, take the drug that makes this all sound correct! Its just this little orrrrrrrange pill here!
had i never heard this drivel again in my long life................
 joelbb wrote:
This song is thought of as a wistful longing for the sweeter days of childhood, but in fact it's just infantile.  What a tedious piece of treacle.
 
At least we thought
This song is thought of as a wistful longing for the sweeter days of childhood, but in fact it's just infantile.  What a tedious piece of treacle.
Had a long drive last weekend (crawled down the M6 motorway at 25mph in the pouring rain) with a strong Neil Young theme - played all of Decade and then again.... wonderful stuff! 

Lucky enough to have met a woman who shares my enthusiam for NY, RP and most things in general - this is for you Ceri!{#Biggrin}
If Neil was at that age today and made that home recording he'd have lilkely posted an .mp3, as he was an unknown.  Where would he have posted it?  I'd like to find some recordings by artists in the early age of their careers.


 fredriley wrote:

I usually agree with your sentiments on here, but I think you're on shaky ground with that one. If the principle is "if you can't do, don't criticise", then you'll only be able to criticise in the limited fields which you (general 'you', not you personally) are expert in. Which would mean that 99% of music listeners and consumers, who can barely play the triangle or sing a note in tune, couldn't criticise songs or artists. It would mean that you couldn't complain about your computer, say, unless you're an IT professional. Or moan about the bus service if you've never driven buses. And so on.

I agree with the OP that Neil Young's voice sucks. That's just a personal opinion, and I've major respect for him as a songwriter, but I'd rather hear a decent cover of a NY song than hear him sing it himself. The voice is just painful to these lugholes.
 
But Fred - C'mon man, Neil's voice is actually quite pleasant on this old ditty, no?
one of my favorite tunes of Neil's
 WayUpNorth wrote:
Very lovely segue from Pearl Jam Off He Goes ... {#Notworthy} {#Music}
 
Brilliant, yes.
The master (Neil) follows the students (Pearl Jam - There He Goes) - as it should be. Sublime
 Cynaera wrote:

I'd like to hear YOU sing.  Once. We always expect so much from those who have success - as if we could do better.
 
I usually agree with your sentiments on here, but I think you're on shaky ground with that one. If the principle is "if you can't do, don't criticise", then you'll only be able to criticise in the limited fields which you (general 'you', not you personally) are expert in. Which would mean that 99% of music listeners and consumers, who can barely play the triangle or sing a note in tune, couldn't criticise songs or artists. It would mean that you couldn't complain about your computer, say, unless you're an IT professional. Or moan about the bus service if you've never driven buses. And so on.

I agree with the OP that Neil Young's voice sucks. That's just a personal opinion, and I've major respect for him as a songwriter, but I'd rather hear a decent cover of a NY song than hear him sing it himself. The voice is just painful to these lugholes.
This song makes my teeth hurt.
 
Very lovely segue from Pearl Jam Off He Goes ... {#Notworthy} {#Music}
 Cynaera wrote:

I'd like to hear YOU sing.  Once. We always expect so much from those who have success - as if we could do better.

Yeah, I can sing the hell out of "Needle and the Damage Done," and even play the guitar.  Doesn't mean I should.

 

Thank you!
 Art_Carnage wrote:
Easily my least favorite Neil Young song. The vocals are excruciating.
 
I'd like to hear YOU sing.  Once. We always expect so much from those who have success - as if we could do better.

Yeah, I can sing the hell out of "Needle and the Damage Done," and even play the guitar.  Doesn't mean I should.

PLEASE... No More Neil Young... His whiny nasal style maybe/might have been/was cute 40 years ago... But now-? Not So Much-!
Damn! Missed it!
 DaveInVA wrote:
I still have the 45 of this I bought when it came out - Great Song!
 
Very cool. That's gotta be rare. (Now if only it had a picture sleeve . . .)



I still have the 45 of this I bought when it came out - Great Song!
This song just says it all to me.

I usually listen to songs for their music, I listen to this one for the lyrics. 
Beautiful!
Big Friday afternoon smile here!!!
First released 1969...composed 1964.
 derekd wrote:
Not a Neil Young fan (think it's a generation thing). But I have to say, I like this and am glad RP exposed me to it.
 

Don't ever let a "generation thing" get in the way of appreciating beautiful art.
Neil, Neil, Neil... when he's good (like here) he is SO fantastic. When he's bad.... oy.
God, I love RP.  First PJ emulates acoustic Neil and then....{#Angel}
 jgeyer wrote:

Isn't coke just an attempt to regain the joys of youth?

 

Touche'! So maybe we are both right!{#Lol}
 RedGuitar wrote:

I thought it was celebrating the joys of youth or something akin to that.  Coke?  I dunno...

 
Isn't coke just an attempt to regain the joys of youth?

 soulcollision wrote:
neil young makes everything ok for me...
 
Well-said. {#Clap}{#Sunny}
Easily my least favorite Neil Young song. The vocals are excruciating.
 sirdroseph wrote:

I am sure someone has answered below, I will peruse down later. I think this song is about Cocaine, though, am I right?{#Stupid} Oh, great freekin song BTW!{#Music}


 
I thought it was celebrating the joys of youth or something akin to that.  Coke?  I dunno...

 sirdroseph wrote:

I am sure someone has answered below, I will peruse down later. I think this song is about Cocaine, though, am I right?{#Stupid} Oh, great freekin song BTW!{#Music}


 
No, the song is (strangely enough) about Young's becoming too old to gain entry to youth events in his home in Canada.

Joni Mitchell wrote "The Circle Game" as a reply to this, telling Neil it was alright to get older.

Or so the story goes.

I am sure someone has answered below, I will peruse down later. I think this song is about Cocaine, though, am I right?{#Stupid} Oh, great freekin song BTW!{#Music}


neil young makes everything ok for me...
"Now you're underneath the stairs and you're giving back some glares
To the people that you met and it's your first cigarette."

Somewhere I read once that Neil Young claimed that these were 2 of the worst lines he'd ever written, smack dab in the middle of one of his most classic songs. True or not, ever since, those 2 lines stick out like the lyrical sore thumb every time I hear this song. I can't NOT hear them, anymore. Aaargh!
 On_The_Beach wrote:

3 for 3; you must be part Canadian, eh?  ; )
 
Actually yes, my great grandparents came from there in the 1850's

 buddy wrote:
Probably my favorite Neil song from that era (Neil Young Songbook 1 - 1966-1969).  It's like hearing a dream for this old guy.

Bill, on the headphones I'm hearing a vinal his - spinning the LP here?
 
tape hiss, old rust tape. That was present on the record as higher background noise, Reprise/Warner tended to use decent vinyl, most of the time.


Its breakin my heart in two.. by `Obsidian-Fox
Scott Alexander  ©2007-2010 `Obsidian-Fox

Nikkor 35-70mm AF /2.8D
.
Now that I've lost everything to you
You say that you want to start something new
And it's breaking my heart, you're leaving
Baby, I'm grieving
If you want to leave, take good care
Hope you find a lot of nice things to wear
Then a lot of nice things turn bad out there
Oh, baby, baby, it's a wild world
It's hard to get by, just upon a smile
Oh, baby, baby, it's a wild world
I'll always remember you
Like a child, girl

You know I've seen a lot of what the world can do
And it's breaking my heart in two
Cause I never wanna see you sad, girl
Don't be a bad girl
Now if you wanna leave, take good care
Hope you make a lot of nice friends out there
Just remember there's a lot, I'd beware

Ive met Andre twice, the first time, he was merrily singing and playing "Sugar Mountain" - Neil Young..
If you want to hear, and see him, Granville and Georgia.. but if you take his picture, give him some change.. I dont think he would mind either way, but it sure cant hurt
by  Scott Alexander, https://obsidianfoxphotography.com/


.
Not a Neil Young fan (think it's a generation thing). But I have to say, I like this and am glad RP exposed me to it.
One of my fav Neil Young favs!{#Clap}
 DaveInVA wrote:
One of the songs that had the biggest impact on me when I was young along with Leonard Cohen's Suzanne and Joni Mitchel's Circle Game...
 
3 for 3; you must be part Canadian, eh?  ; )


One of the songs that had the biggest impact on me when I was young along with Leonard Cohen's Suzanne and Joni Mitchel's Circle Game...
 pauleywalnuts wrote:
More barn!! {#Clap}
 
HAHAH! I know that one!

Wistful.


More barn!! {#Clap}


Just a great, lovely song. Long live N.Y.!
 Jules_Peters wrote:
please, stop playing this song. We're falling asleep.
 
You should deal with that narcolepsy problem you have.


Great classic tune that many of us grew up listening to.  {#Good-vibes}
Love this, so fragile
 bentonian wrote:
Be grateful, at least he's not shrieking, playing the harmonica, or playing the guitar with a piece of re-bar, which is how he sounds most of the time.
 
Roger that.

Be grateful, at least he's not shrieking, playing the harmonica, or playing the guitar with a piece of re-bar, which is how he sounds most of the time.
ok, i know i am getting old, but i loved Harvest when it came out (and still do), and i do not remember this song on it -anyone? i know it shows the Decade cover but when i went to rate it, i saw Harvest....solid 9
please, stop playing this song. We're falling asleep.
I was a kid when this came out and I remember driving along in my mom's buick convertible with the top down hearing this song and loving it — the chorus just conjured vivid images for me even then.  I wanted to go find that Sugar Mountain! {#Roflol}
One of Neil's best - a deceptively simple tune.
Summer of '70.  Whew, that's a fur piece!
outer space
Very nice tune!
Neil young at his elegiac best!
jochenlennertz wrote:
Stupid song!!
 
Get that toddler away from the computer before it does some damage!

 bknv wrote:
{#Iamwithstupid}
 
There's another one...back into your crib!

 jochenlennertz wrote:
Stupid song!!
 
{#Iamwithstupid}

 jochenlennertz wrote:
Stupid song!!
 
Get that toddler away from the computer before it does some damage!
Stupid song!!
A beautiful moment in time captured forever...love hearing this.  Like meditation with a soundtrack.{#Meditate}
 sfListener wrote:
This was a turning point for me, went to college and stopped listening to Skynyrd. Marshall Tucker, etc.
 

Why? I would like to think that a music fan could appreciate Neil Young, Skynyrd, Marshall Tucker, Coldplay, Devo, Bach AND Beethoven.
Can someone tell me if Neil ever recorded this song in studio, or is this Canterbury House live recording all we have?
 phineas wrote:
I changed my rating from 9 to 10. That bumped the average from 8.3 to 8.4. I love it when that happens.
 
Sublime.
 

That would imply that if I lowered mine to 9, I could bump the average back down to 8.3. . .

. . .such POWER. . .

. . .pure. . .unmitigated. . .GOD POWER!. . .

. . .but I can't. I just can't do it. This song is too good.
 lwilkinson wrote:

My life is better, my whiskey is better, my women are better, I can afford steak and a good cigar . . .
 
At least you're not shallow.

I changed my rating from 9 to 10. That bumped the average from 8.3 to 8.4. I love it when that happens.
 
Sublime.
pure beauty....
{#Notworthy}
HazzeSwede wrote:
{#Guitarist}

Not sure what this means, because it's so distorted...


 sister87 wrote:
I saw Neil in Madrid this last July. It was great. Live forever, dinosaur.
 

This song is quite possibly my favourite Neil Young piece.  Achingly beautiful and true. When I hear it now, I think of my 3 young nieces just getting ready to leave the nest.


God how beautiful.  I first became aware of this song in the late 70's when I was in college at NCSU.  I was inspired to buy "Decade" and have been in love with his music ever since.  Thanks Neil.
I agree also

 mefrombrazil wrote:

i agree, my friend.you said my words.
 


                  {#Guitarist}
This was a turning point for me, went to college and stopped listening to Skynyrd. Marshall Tucker, etc.
 jhorton wrote:
Neil's masterpiece.
 
When Neil was God.

THAT IS DEFINITELY ONE I HEAR ALMOST ALL THE TIME ON RP.
I saw Neil in Madrid this last July. It was great. Live forever, dinosaur.
 apd wrote:

Is that the one at Yonge and Eg?


 
I don't think so, but I don't know (I found the image in GIS).  I'm going to guess it is in Niagara Falls.

 timc wrote:
I love Sugar Mountain.  They have all the best candy!




 
Is that the one at Yonge and Eg?

I have a great bootleg of Neil called "Happy that y'all came down" where he does a hysterical version of this with lots of speaking to the audience about the various verses inbetween.  Never realized until that recording how lightly he took his own songwriting.
I love Sugar Mountain.  They have all the best candy!





Mazzy Star, Neil Young. . .yeah
jhorton wrote:

Neil's masterpiece.



I would have to say that his masterpiece in my eyes will always be the Dead Man OST. But this is pretty good as well.


Neil's masterpiece.
DoctorHooey wrote:
You voted for Bush, didn't you?
You mean ''the Bushes''
I rag on Neil for his many losers so, to give credit where credit is due, this is a wonderful song both lyrically and musically.
First Neil Young song I ever heard. A guy named Clay played it flawlessly at our High School's (Jackson Prep) talent contest. Thanks Clay!
what a great song.
S-I-G-H ...
I definitely got pushed out too soon.
DoctorHooey wrote:
I think there are a few RP posters who will be missing their Rosebud in their dwindling hours.
I miss her already.
DoctorHooey wrote:
What on earth does this song have to do with hippies anyway? I think cynical capitalists use colored balloons at their birthday parties too. Read the lyrics. It seems to me it's about yearning for the idyllic feelings of childhood. I think there are a few RP posters who will be missing their Rosebud in their dwindling hours.
He's still a hippy/ Hippy! Hippy! Hippy!
lwilkinson wrote:
...always looking forward (and not looking backwards)...
"Those who do not learn from the past are condemned to repeat it." Some dead guy. Maybe you should look backwards sometime. Anyway, I don't know why I'm jumping in here, except that it always drives me nuts when I see someone completely dismiss the entire fan base of an artist (who has been acknowledged by many to have a great deal of artistic merit, whatever you may think about it) as being foolish or stupid or stuck in the past, or whatever it was that you actually said in your original post. When you do that, you come off sounding like an asshole, and shouldn't be surprised when people attack you for it. The tone of your posts in this thread is condescending, as if your personal experience gives you a much better view of the world than anyone else's. We're not talking about the great moral issues here, we're talking about music, and "De gustibus non est disputandem" applies. So you don't like Neil Young. That's fine. I'm a fan and I don't much like this song myself. Whatever. But that doesn't mean you can simply dismiss everyone who does out of hand, and expect to not get called on it.
What on earth does this song have to do with hippies anyway? I think cynical capitalists use colored balloons at their birthday parties too. Read the lyrics. It seems to me it's about yearning for the idyllic feelings of childhood. I think there are a few RP posters who will be missing their Rosebud in their dwindling hours.
Oh what a hippy he is. . .
:biggrin: :good-vibes: :bananajam:
I prefer the live version off of Live Rust, but this is quite nice, too. :sunny:
felam wrote:
One of the few Neil Young songs I can stand.
i agree, my friend.you said my words.