Scottsdale Arts and Danny Zelisko Presents legendary artist Graham Nash to the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts on Monday, Oct. 15, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $45 and go on sale to the public on Tuesday, July 24, at 10 a.m.
Nash is a two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee — with Crosby, Stills & Nash and with The Hollies. The Grammy Award winner also was inducted twice into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame, as a solo artist and with CSN.
Towering above virtually everything Nash has accomplished in his long and multi-faceted career is the volume of songs he has written and introduced to the soundtrack of the past half-century. His remarkable body of work, beginning with his contributions to the Hollies from 1964 to ’68, including “Stop Stop Stop,” “On A Carousel” and “Carrie Anne,” continued to This Path Tonight (2016), his most recent solo album. Fifteen of his most memorable songs are featured in the just-released collection, Over The Years…, along with a second disc of primarily unreleased demos of some of the same songs, along with others.
The classic union of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young lasted only 20 months. Yet their songs are embedded in our DNA, starting with Nash’s “Marrakesh Express,” “Pre-Road Downs” (written for then-girlfriend Joni Mitchell) and “Lady Of the Island,” from the first LP (1969). CSNY’s Déjà Vu (1970) featured Nash’s “Teach Your Children” and “Our House.”
Overlapping CSNY, Nash’s solo career debuted with Songs For Beginners (1971), whose “Chicago/We Can Change the World” and “Military Madness” were fueled by the trial of the Chicago Eight and the ongoing Vietnam war. Songs from that LP stayed in Nash’s concert sets for years, including “I Used To Be A King” and “Simple Man.” His next album, Wild Tales (1974), addressed (among other issues) unfair jail terms for minor drug offenses (“Prison Song”), unfair treatment of Vietnam veterans (“Oh! Camil”), the unfairness of fame (“You’ll Never Be the Same”) and his muse, Joni Mitchell (“Another Sleep Song”).
The most resilient, long-lived and productive partnership to emerge from the CSNY camp launched with the eponymously titled Graham Nash/David Crosby (1972), bookended by Nash’s “Southbound Train” as the opening track and “Immigration Man” as the closer. The duo contributed further to the music of the ’70s on their back-to-back albums, Wind On the Water (1975) and Whistling Down the Wire (1976).
On the CSN reunion studio LP (1977), Nash wrote the Top 10 hit single “Just A Song Before I Go.” Lightning struck once more on CSN’s Daylight Again (1982), for which Nash penned their second Top 10 hit, “Wasted On the Way,” lamenting the energy, time and love lost by the group due to years of internecine quarrels.
Nash’s voice continues to be heard in support of peace, and social and environmental justice. The No Nukes/Musicians United for Safe Energy (MUSE) concerts he organized with Jackson Browne and Bonnie Raitt in 1979 remain seminal benefit events.
In 2011, Nash was instrumental in bringing MUSE back to the forefront with a concert to benefit Japan disaster relief and groups promoting non-nuclear energy worldwide. That same year, he and Crosby were among the many musicians who participated in the Occupy Wall Street protests in lower Manhattan.
In September 2013, Nash released his long-awaited autobiography Wild Tales, which delivers an engrossing, no-holds-barred look back at his career and the music that defined a generation. The book landed him on The New York Times best seller list, and was released in paperback in late 2014.
In recognition of his contributions as a musician and philanthropist, Nash was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth.
Nash is also an internationally renowned photographer and visual artist. With his photography, he has won honors including the New York Institute of Technology’s Arts & Technology Medal and Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters and the Hollywood Film Festival’s inaugural Hollywood Visionary Cyber Award. His work is collected in the book Eye to Eye: Photographs by Graham Nash. He curated others’ work in the volume Taking Aim: Unforgettable Rock ‘n’ Roll Photographs Selected by Graham Nash (2009).
Nash’s work has been shown in galleries and museums worldwide. His company Nash Editions’ original IRIS 3047 digital printer and one of its first published works — Nash’s 1969 portrait of David Crosby — is now housed in the National Museum of American History at the Smithsonian Institution in recognition of his revolutionary accomplishments in the fine arts and digital printing world.
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Reserved seat tickets may be purchased at Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 E. 2nd St., Scottsdale, or online at ScottsdalePerformingArts.org. To charge by phone, call 480.499.8587. All tickets are subject to facility and ticketing surcharges. All ages welcome.