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Life begins at 74 for Graham Nash
GRAHAM Nash is no stranger to starting life anew.
At the height of his career with The Hollies - the English pop band he co-founded in 1962 - he left to go to America to start supergroup Crosby, Stills & Nash (CSN) with David Crosby and Stephen Stills in 1968.
The trio - which at times expanded to a quartet known as Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young whenever Neil Young joined them - is highly influential and all of them have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, on their own and as a group.
Now 74, the veteran musician, who was in Singapore a year ago for a CSN concert, is ready to strike out again by himself. His sixth solo album and first in 14 years, This Path Tonight, was released last week.
Recorded over eight days with CSN's touring guitarist Shane Fontayne, the work is a result of a couple of turning points in Nash's life.
He recently divorced his second wife Susan Sennett of 38 years and is currently dating New York artist Amy Grantham who took all the pictures for his new album.
"Both things have inspired This Path Tonight but it's mainly the falling in love," the Lancashire-born singer says, while in Singapore last month to promote the work. "My life has changed (with Grantham and) at 74, I'm walking into the future and I think it's very bright."
Despite being an avid photographer and artist - Nash was sketching the Singapore skyline from the top floor lounge of the Ritz-Carlton Millennial just before the interview started - he shares that songwriting was his choice of expression during the making of the record. "I wanted it to be a very personal album and for it to be intimate and as real as possible ... Music affects the soul in a very direct and strong way; and using it to spread ideas is a wonderful way of communication," he explains.
Even though he claims he is the sort of person who looks forward rather than backward ("Because what the hell can you do about it?"), he was gobsmacked by the time he got to the end of the manuscript of his recent autobiography Wild Tales: A Rock & Roll Life.
"I thought to myself: 'I wish I were him', because it sounded so incredible: things like meeting the Beatles when they were just Johnny and the Moondogs in 1959 all the way to me talking to the Queen of England about The Hollies when she was honouring me with an OBE - I didn't even think she would know The Hollies!" Nash says.
He adds there is no stopping the creative streak he is on at the moment and is raring to write the next album as soon as he is done touring and promoting This Path Tonight: "I feel so free and on fire - my life has changed in this drastic way but my heart tells me it is exactly right for me - there is going to be a lot more creation so it won't be another 14 years before the next Graham Nash record!"
This Path Tonight is out now on all formats and available on iTunes, Spotify and other digital platforms