Neil Young Has a Plan to Tour Sustainably: "Nothing Dirty with Us"

That's if he ever hits the road again
Neil Young Has a Plan to Tour Sustainably: 'Nothing Dirty with Us'
Photo: Joshua Peter Grafstein
Neil Young has apprehensions about touring again, but that doesn't mean he hasn't been thinking about how to make the experience more eco-friendly. While it seems unlikely that he and Crazy Horse will tour their latest album World Record, the folk icon has been ruminating on what a future Neil Young tour would look like — if it ever happens at all. 

In a recent interview with The New Yorker, Young opened up about his thoughts on touring and sustainability, sharing that he has apparently spent the last few months thinking about every minute detail as he tries to envision a tour that he feels good about:

Well, I have a plan. I've been working on it with a couple of my friends for about seven or eight months. We're trying to figure out how to do a self-sustaining, renewable tour. Everything that moves our vehicles around, the stage, the lights, the sound, everything that powers it is clean. Nothing dirty with us. We set it up; we do this everywhere we go. This is something that's very important to me, if I'm ever going to go out again … and I'm not sure I want to, I'm still feeling that out. But if I'm ever going to do it, I want to make sure that everything is clean.

Young has even thought about the future of concert food — including how it tastes — and is open to the idea of letting a tour continue with a different headliner. 

What was the last thing you remember eating at a show, and how good was it? Was it from a farm-made, homegrown village? I don't think so. It was from a factory farm that's killing us. I've been working on this idea of bringing the food and the drink and the merch into the realm where it's all clean. I will make sure that the food comes from real farmers. Once it's up and going, and I'm finished with my part of the tour, there's no reason why the tour has to stop. The tour can keep on going with another headliner. It's about sustainability and renewability in the future, loving Earth for what it is. We want to do the right thing. That's kind of the idea.

Beyond his envisionment of an environmentally-stable tour, Young is seemingly already bringing things back to basics by using a flip phone