Monday, August 29, 2022



Byter and friend Steve M sent me an email following his receipt of the post on The Moonlight Sonata. Obviously a fifth of Beethoven wasn’t Steve’s cup of tea (How is that for a wonderful mixed metaphor?) because Steve wrote:
50th Anniversary Otto – any chance of a celebratory post for one of the most significant albums in modern music history? Playing it now! Brilliant!
A thought: If Neil Diamond had been living in Australia when he made it, would it have been called “Cold August Night”, because it has been bloody cold here.

Anyway, Stevie boy, here you are . . .


  • Hot August Night is a 1972 live double album by Neil Diamond.
  • The album is a recording of a Diamond concert on August 24, 1972, one of ten sold-out concerts that Diamond performed that month at The Greek Theatre in Los Angeles.
  • This also marked the first album released by the newly formed MCA Records (a merging of the Uni, Kapp, and Decca labels).
  • Hot August Night is one of the biggest selling albums of all time in Australia, where it spent 29 weeks at number 1 on the album charts during 1973 and 1974. This makes it equal 5th for the most weeks at number 1, tying with Delta Goodrem's 2003 album Innocent Eyes.
  • Hot August Night was the number one charting album in Australia for the 1970s, entering the Australian album charts in late 1972 and still charting in the top 20 in 1976. It was the number 1 album of 1973 and the number 3 album of 1974.[5] It re-entered the Australian top 10 in 1982, then had another chart run in 1991-92 peaking at number 21
  • Diamond later released three live "sequel" albums, Hot August Night II (1987), Hot August Night/NYC (2009), and Hot August Night III (2018), as well as the Love at the Greek live album, issued in 1977.
  • In a contemporary review for Rolling Stone, music critic Lester Bangs called Hot August Night a "fine presentation of the entire spectrum" of Diamond's work and praised its music as "great, pretentious, goofy pop" with a melodramatic, "hymn-like feeling".
  • In a retrospective review, Allmusic editor Stephen Thomas Erlewine called Hot August Night "the ultimate Neil Diamond record ... [which] shows Diamond the icon in full glory.”
  • Some of the best known tracks:
Solitary Man
Cherry Cherry
Sweet Caroline
Red Red Wine
Song Sung Blue
Crackin’ Rose
I Am, I Said
  • By the way:
"Crackling Rosé" is the name of an inexpensive sparkling wine once produced by Andres Wines of British Columbia, Canada, which was popular among the indigenous population. One story suggests that Diamond heard a story about a native Canadian tribe while doing an interview in Toronto, Canada—the tribe had more men than women, so the lonely men of the tribe would sit around the fire and drink their wine together—which inspired him to write the song.
  • "Hot August night" is also the opening lyric to Diamond's 1969 single "Brother Love's Travelling Salvation Show":
Hot August night
And the leaves hanging down
And the grass on the ground smellin' sweet
Move up the road to the outside of town
And the sound of that good gospel beat
  • Hot August Night remains considered one of the greatest epic live albums of all time.
  • On September 7, 2011, in a message on Twitter, the 70-year-old Diamond announced his engagement to the 41-year-old Katie McNeil. Diamond said that his 2014 album Melody Road was fueled by their relationship, explaining:
There's no better inspiration or motivation for work than being in love. It's what you dream of as a creative person. I was able to complete this album—start it, write it and complete it—under the spell of love, and I think it shows somehow.
  • The couple married in front of family and close friends in Los Angeles in 2012. In addition to serving as Diamond's manager, McNeil produced the documentary Neil Diamond: Hot August Nights NYC.
  • In January 2018, Diamond announced that he would stop touring after he was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease


Peter Byrne is doing a series of shows in August - November recreating the Hot August Night album with a 30 piece orchestra. See:

There are September dates in Campbelltown, Bankstown and Dee Why:


Neil Diamond gets inspiration for a song . . .

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