Chasing music and moving images with David Crosby’s documentarian

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“Who are you when the lights have gone out?” In a MusicRadar interview Laurel Canyon photographer Henry Diltz recalled, “David Crosby was in a hotel, and Graham Nash opened the door and said, ‘Hey Crosby, some girl fan made you a present.’ He tossed a stuffed toy American flag gun onto the bed, and Crosby picked it up with one hand and held it to his head while he took a toke with his other hand. I happened to be sitting on the bed, too, inhaling the fumes and listening to Crosby talk to Bob Dylan on the phone. I raised my Nikon and took two shots.” Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young held their first two USA and European tours between 1969 and 1970 before initially breaking up. In “David Crosby: Remember My Name,” Diltz was certain the iconic photo was nabbed in Minneapolis, although Crosby retorted, “I’ve never been to Minneapolis.” CSNY did in fact play Bloomington, Minnesota, on July 9 — the final date of their 1970 trek. For the documentary’s unveiling at the Sundance Film Festival on January 26, 2019, the shot was slightly reimagined for the official poster you see above. Photography by Henry Diltz / Poster Design by F. Ron Miller / Vinyl Films / BMG / PCH Films / Courtesy of A.J. Eaton
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Proving the longevity of English writer Charles Caleb Colton’s 19th century aphorism, documentarian A.J. Eaton convincingly emulates the subject of “David Crosby: Remember My Name” on July 15, 2019, backstage at the Times Talk advance screening and Q&A hosted by New York Times culture reporter Melena Ryzik. Producer Cameron Crowe and David Crosby were also on hand. Photography by Ben Rosser / BFA / Courtesy of A.J. Eaton

The A.J. Eaton Interview

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Pure gold: Idaho singer-songwriter Steve Eaton is flanked by moon boots-sporting eldest son A.J. and youngest boy Marcus circa 1987. The latter, now a singer-songwriter with his own signature model McAlister acoustic guitar, reflects, “We had moved to a different house temporarily and that was as cool as the ‘80s got — sunglasses and moon boots!” Image Credit: Courtesy of A.J. Eaton
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A pretty rare black and white candid finds frequent Roger Corman cinematographer Floyd Crosby strumming a mandolin as eldest son Ethan [also known as Chip] cradles an acoustic guitar and youngest son David mischievously poses with what appears to be a clarinet circa 1947. Image Credit: The Sam Kinghan Collection / “The Byrds” Facebook group; The September 24, 1971, issue of Life Magazine contained an in-depth article of rock stars endearingly interacting with their parents. David, fully immersed as a fringe and long hair-affirming 29-year-old hippie, holds court at his more conservative father’s house in Ojai, California. Photography by John Olson / LIFE Picture Collection
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“My songs emerge from my life, or wherever they do, unbidden and unplanned and completely on a schedule of their own.” Dropped on January 28, 2014, “Croz” climbed to №36 on the primary Billboard 200, David Crosby’s best solo chart placing since his debut “If I Could Only Remember My Name” 43 years earlier. Photography by Django Crosby / Blue Castle Records
Watch pianist James Raymond, acoustic guitarist Marcus Eaton, and David Crosby harmonize on “Radio” in an outtake from “David Crosby: Remember My Name,” a 90-minute documentary issued on January 26, 2019. Incidentally, Marcus’s big brother A.J. is behind the camera. Video Credit: Vinyl Films / BMG / PCH Films / Courtesy of A.J. Eaton
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A slice of time portrays acoustic guitar whiz Marcus Eaton with his friend and former bandleader David Crosby. According to Marcus, “I began working with Crosby around Halloween 2010. He took me to see Roy McAlister, one of the best luthiers [guitar makers] in the world, on March 30, 2011, and surprised me with a then-unfinished McAlister guitar called the ‘C’ [Crosby] model. Crosby handed me a label that said, ‘To Marcus Eaton from David Crosby.’ Now Roy offers my own signature model. The moment captured here was one of the first or second times Crosby played it, so we were just geeking out over how bad-ass the guitar was!” Image Credit: Courtesy of Marcus Eaton
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Marcus Eaton divulges, “Here is an intimate rehearsal [January 4, 2014] with Crosby and I working on vocals for the “Croz” tour that started later that month and continued throughout the year. We were arranging vocal harmonies and guitar parts. There were four or five guitars on the bed in all the different tunings we were using. We played and worked together until about 2016 and then some writing on and off.” Marcus co-wrote “Find a Heart” and “Slice of Time” with Crosby and eldest son James Raymond that made “Croz,” the “Almost Cut My Hair” protest rocker’s first studio album in 20 years. “The Us Below” was a third collaboration that wound up on the “Lighthouse” LP in 2016. Crosby supplied backing vocals on three tracks from Marcus’s 2015 album “Versions of the Truth” — “Up and Over,” “Picture of Us,” and “I Will Be Your Shade.” Image Credit: Courtesy of Marcus Eaton
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Holy moly, John Coltrane rips apart a soprano saxophone-fueled solo on “My Favorite Things” during his final appearance at the Newport Jazz Festival on the afternoon of July 2, 1966. Coltrane succumbed to liver cancer at the shockingly tender age of 40 one year later. Double bassist Jimmy Garrison is in the background. Photography by Hozumi Nakadaira
Watch a raw take of “David Crosby: Remember My Name” documentarian A.J. Eaton shooting the peaceful lawn scene with his star subject, who contributed nearly 20 songs to the Byrds’ hallowed jangle pop arsenal between 1964 and 1967. Video Credit: Vinyl Films / BMG / PCH Films / Courtesy of A.J. Eaton
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“Kermit the Frog said, ‘It’s not easy being green.’ I beg to differ.” Circa July 26, 2015, the writer-director of upcoming film “Angler” A.J. Eaton finds some comfy AstroTurf on friend Gilly’s front lawn. Photography by A.J. Eaton
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Married since 1987 and the parents of Django Crosby, David Crosby and Jan Dance take nothing for granted in the time they have left together. At left they cuddle upon arrival at the MusiCares Person of the Year Tribute to Neil Young at the Los Angeles Convention Center on January 29, 2010. Photography by Kevin Winter / Getty Images; At right they attend the red carpet premiere of Sony Pictures Classics’ “David Crosby: Remember My Name” at the Linwood Dunn Theater on July 18, 2019, in the City of Angels. Photography by Rich Fury / Getty Images
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Twenty-four-year-old rock darling Jim Morrison looks like he was ripped from the cover of a fashion magazine in this April 1968 candid taken outside the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Ennis House in the Los Feliz neighborhood in Los Angeles. Photographer Paul Ferrara’s friendly, black Labrador-blue tick hound mix dog attentively stands close by. Morrison was dismayed that certain radio stations refused to play the jazz-inspired quartet’s commercially underwhelming latest single, “The Unknown Soldier” b/w “We Could Be So Good Together” [№39 POP]. Fortunately, by July the accompanying “Waiting for the Sun” album vaulted all the way to number one. Photography by Paul Ferrara
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“Don’t waste the time. Time is the final currency, man. Not money, not power — it’s time.” “David Crosby: Remember My Name” conspirators Cameron Crowe and director A.J. Eaton are seen in a recording studio circa February 27, 2016, during Crowe’s debut off-camera interview with the man of the hour — David Crosby. Crowe also served as a producer for the accolade-laden documentary. Photography by A.J. Eaton

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Retro pop culture interviews & lovin’ someone fierce sustain this University of Georgia Master of Agricultural Leadership alum. Email: jeremylr@windstream.net

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