Neil Young's Canadian-Country Feel

"There is a town in North Ontario..."

Neil Young's "Helpless" is a masterpiece and a showcase of beauty in simplicity.  There is nothing complex in this song at all.  It is a masterpiece of simplicity.  The song plays over an unchanging three-chord progression and the lyrics do nothing but describe, in simple terms, the feel of Neil Young's childhood town(s). 

Unlike a lot of his other songs, there are no complex metaphors...

... no loud distortion

... no political messages

...

just a longing for that comfortable feeling of childhood.

 

It's pure beauty and I love playing this song.

 

Fun fact: Neil said, in a Mojo interview in 2015 about the song, "Well, it's not literally a specific town so much as a feeling. Actually, it's a couple of towns. Omemee, Ontario, is one of them. It's where I first went to school and spent my 'formative' years. Actually I was born in Toronto..."

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