Graham Nash: "Bradley Manning is a Hero to Me"

By Chris Varias 

Graham Nash

(this is excerpted from a longer review from the Marion Star) 

When Tuesday’s show became political, a measure of the crowd didn’t like it, making for some heated moments on stage and in the crowd. The tension produced an edge to the three-hour event typically missing from an oldies show.

Following a 25-minute intermission, Nash came to the stage without Crosby and began talking about Bradley Manning, the U.S. soldier arrested for his role in the WikiLeaks case. Nash made the point that Manning is being detained by the government in an inhumane manner. The comments drew boos and applause from the crowd.

Nash proceeded to play a song he said that he completed the previous day with Crosby’s son James Raymond, who played keyboards with the band Tuesday night, and that the Taft performance would be the debut of the song. He called it “Almost Gone: The Ballad of Bradley Manning.” The last line of the song is, “Bradley Manning is a hero to me.” There were more cheers, more boos.

“I hope you were booing the (expletive) people that are keeping him in jail,” Nash snapped. A few seconds later, he was more conciliatory: “I thank you all for listening,” he said.

Two songs later Crosby and Nash, each 69 years old, combined the musical and the political in a way that drowned out the booing, if there was any. The pair did an a cappella version of “What Are Their Names” that showcased wonderful harmony singing in stark fashion.

The singing was good all the way through both sets, 26 songs in all. The band was also very good. Joining Raymond was first-call session guitarist Dean Parks, who took some nice turns at pedal steel on tunes like “Teach Your Children” and “Wasted on the Way”; Jackson Browne bassist Kevin McCormick; and drummer Steve DiStanislao.

Main Wikileaks Graham Nash: "Bradley Manning is a Hero to Me"

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World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.