Gotta lotta love (except for Joe Rogan)

My dad and I rarely text. But if we do, nine times out of ten it’s a link to Youtube with little to no context other than “good song” or “👍.” Over the years we’ve shared our top songs from bands like Fleet Foxes, Sigur Ros, St. Vincent, and the man of the hour: Neil Young.

Apropos for the current time we’re in, but also in the wake of Joe Rogan spouting continuous horseshit, I’m happy to honor Neil Young this week with one of my fave easy listening earworms “Lotta Love” ~ an oldie but a goldie.

When I first shared this track a few weeks ago my dad said “this isn’t his song.” And though Neil Young wrote and recorded this song (aka I was right), my dad was also right. “Lotta Love” gained much more popularity from Nicolette Larson’s version, which is a jazzier rendition worth listening to for sure. Both released in the same year, naturally I prefer the melancholic version.

This song makes the list for a few reasons 1) simple, accessible lyrics that speak to universal truths 2) the beauty of its repetition 3) killer piano + folky vibes and 4) it’s Neil f*ckin Young.     

Serving us the signature high tenor, sometimes falsetto voice we know and love, Young declares in the chorus:

It’s gonna take a lotta love

To change the way things are

It’s gonna take a lotta love

Or we won’t get too far

Relevant in 1978, relevant in 2022. Here we are, still unable to understand or truly connect with each other in a divided socioeconomic community that makes up the fabric of American politics. I love it here!

Listening activity: Open your bedroom window (I know it’s cold) and sing this so your neighbors can hear a message of togetherness. 

While some of the alternating rhyme schemes are more generic – are with far, night with right – others feel more poignant and poetic:

So if you look in my direction

And we don’t see eye to eye

My heart needs protection

And so do I

There’s really something sweet about Neil Young telling us he and his heart need protection, but are we surprised? He’s the original soft boy <3. 

The same energy continues through the second verse, as he reveals:

So if you are out there waitin’

I hope you show up soon

‘Cause my head needs relatin’

Not solitude

We are reminded today that quarantine – a sister to solitude – has also disconnected us from relating to each other, spending time together. This song feels like an anthem for coming together. From the “la la la’s” in the beginning to the kumbaya campfire energy preaching “it’s gonna take a lotta love” in the chorus, these lyrics would ALMOST be corny if they weren’t written and brilliantly executed by Young.

If we’ve learned anything from his battle against Rogan/Spotify, it is that Neil Young is a man of principle and conviction (though he is still supporting other unethical big wigs like Amazon…!). We’re lucky to have him and his music, regardless of where he may choose to stream.

One response to “Gotta lotta love (except for Joe Rogan)”

  1. Hey G,
    Loved today’s post!! NY has always been a fav. So glad I got to see him in concert with the guys—CSNY—it was amazing.
    Experiencing Rockin in the Free World live was amazing!
    The Harvest LP is a classic and will always be on of my favorites.

    Liked by 1 person

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