David Crosby - vocals, guitars; Graham Nash - vocals, guitars, keyboards; Stephen Stills - vocals, guitars, keyboards; Neil Young - vocals, guitars, keyboards; Tim Drummond - vocals, bass; Russ Kunkel - drums; Joe Lala - percussion, congas; Joni Mitchell - backing vocals on "Another Sleep Song" and "Our House"
When Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young abruptly split apart at the end of 1970, it seemed as though the world's first supergroup would become yet another casualty of drugs, alcohol, egotism, greed, and political infighting that had become so familiar in the world of rock stars. By the end of their initial run (1968 through 1970), CSNY was known as much for their backstage fistfights and legendary episodes of drug abuse, as they were for two brilliant studio albums (Crosby, Stills & Nash and Deja Vu), and the multi-platinum double live LP, 4 Way Street. The group, which often sang about love and peace, had gotten to the point where they couldn't even travel together on tour.
That's why, when the much ballyhooed 1974 Reunion Tour was announced, music industry insiders doubted the group could stay together long enough to even finish it. But David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash and Neil Young proved everyone wrong. Not only did they complete the tour, they did it without a single major fight or argument. And though it would be 14 more years before all four members toured together again, they managed to play 36 stadium-sized shows to over one and a half million enthusiastic fans.
There had been a slew of solo albums in the period between 4 Way Street and this tour, and the group used their individual solo hits to supplement the already large CSNY repertoire. Opening with a lively version of "Love The One You're With," (a 1970 solo hit for Stills), and offering up group arrangements of "Immigration Man" (a hit from the first Crosby/Nash duo LP); "Military Madness" (from Nash's first solo album); "Johnny's Garden" (from Manassas); "Only Love Can Break Your Heart" (from the classic Young LP, After The Gold Rush), and "Lee Shore."
Although more than half of the show was not included in this recording, and there are certainly a great number of mistakes heard here (despite a solid month of rehearsals prior to the tour, the group's vocals are often flat, due probably to problems with the monitor system used for stadium sound systems), this recording is historic nonetheless. Since no official group live album was ever released from this tour, this remains one of the few professional recordings of the band's '74 trek. Although show stoppers like "Pre Road Downs," "Deja Vu," and "Long Time Gone," were left off the Biscuit show there is still plenty of CSNY classics included, among them "Wooden Ships," "Helpless," "Almost Cut My Hair," "Teach Your Children" and "Our House" (with backup vocals from Joni Mitchell, who shared this bill with CSN&Y and others). This recording ends with Neil Young's "Hawaiian Sunrise," which is anti-climatic after the aforementioned hits had been played. But all in all, it is a testament of how four incredibly talented solo artists could figure out how to make it all work as a band.