Young has made no qualms about admitting that, like any daring artist pushing the bounds of convention, he took a few incorrect turns along the way. With the 1987 release of Time Fades Away, a live album recorded with The Stray Gators on the supporting tour for 1972’s Harvest, Young’s career reportedly hit its lowest point.
In a conversation with Dave Ferrin on the radio in Uk in 1987, Neil Young discussed the album.
“My least favourite record is Time Fades Away,” he said. “I think it’s the worst record I ever made – but as a documentary of what was happening to me, it was a great record. I was onstage, and I was playing all these songs that nobody had heard before, recording them, and I didn’t have the right band. It was just an uncomfortable tour. It was supposed to be this big deal – I just had Harvest out, and they booked me into ninety cities. I felt like a product, and I had this band of all-star musicians that couldn’t even look at each other. It was a total joke.”
In an interview with Q from 1999, Young added:
“The whole tour was a nervous experience. It wasn’t really a lot of fun. I kind of got into documenting that vibe. It’s not something I want to listen to a lot, and when I listen to it, I’m not that impressed.”